The Start of 2015

March 10, 2015

Life’s been a little hectic since Christmas, although we stayed fairly quiet as a band so that we could recover from the last couple of months and get a break from one another.

Eleanor Rigby

Our first gig of the year was at The Malthouse to a surprisingly respectable crowd – Paul had been in the night before on a works’ outing and said it had been very quiet, but although it wasn’t full when we played, the crowd wasn’t far off capacity and were in their usual crazy mood.

We followed this with a new venue – Condover Social Club.  It seems that an old act prevents the village of having a pub, so they get round this with a social club instead and it was a lovely room with a great crowd.

The Barley

The Barley

A birthday party at The Barley in Newport rounded off January before a welcome return to the Oddfellows in Wellington at the start of February.  After Sam left The Wrekin, we wondered how a new venue would work out for us.  The simple answer is fantastically. Some of the old crowd, some new faces and a large collection of Scooby Doos filled the pub.

Scooby Dooby Doo!

Scooby Dooby Doo!

Another party followed in Sutton Coldfield.  If you read this regularly, you may be aware of Den York, who plays with us on occasion.  This was a party for an old mate of his and we are currently in negotiations to play in his pub, so we assume it went well.

The final gig of the year was a return to the Dun Cow in Shrewsbury, not a regular, but certainly a favourite for us to play.

More important than any of this, though, was the band outing to Liverpool in January to visit the Beatles Experience.  A whole day devoted to one of our collective favourite bands was a great way of spending a Saturday.  One of the exhibits was an interactive computer used for collecting statistical data.  Paul decided to have a go and took it very seriously indeed:

It should also be mentioned that Ed took his Unlawful Men folk act out on the road during February, but only because if we don’t, Ed will get grumpy.  They played some folk and Paul & Si controlled the sound at some of the gigs.  If you want to know any more have a look at the Unlawful Men FB page – we’re here to talk about Lost The Plot, not waste time on them!

Check out our March gigs here and we’ll see you soon.

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Recently we caught up with the head honcho of the Unlawful Men for a quick and uninformative chat.

We were going to transcribe this, but really couldn’t be bothered.

The second pressing of the CD is now available by sending a crisp £5 note to ed@losttheplotband.co.uk

May 2014

June 3, 2014

Lost The Plot, by Ed

Lost The Plot, by Ed

It’s been busy again, so time for a quick round up of the last few gigs.

On Friday 9th we were back to The Malthouse in Ironbridge. As usual, a great crowd with plenty of dancing and duck throwing. The Malthouse has become one of our most consistent venues with a good, responsive, crowd and fabulous, friendly staff (free beer next time guys?!). A couple of friends, Alex and Jason, turned up for the second half. During an ABBA rendition later in the set, Si took a wander to discover that Jason had lost control of his bladder all over the floor. Check out Si’s reaction at 2:40 in the video below.

Ed got into an interesting discussion with a member of the audience after the gig. She commented to him how much she had enjoyed the gig, but felt the humour was unnecessary, preferring the second set where we pretty much just focussed on songs that would keep people up dancing. Whilst hers is a perfectly valid point of view (and one we explored on Sunday – see below), Ed explained that if we cut the humour (hats, toys, hitting each other, etc) we’d be no different to any other pub band on the circuit. In fact, there are a number of songs that we feel would be almost impossible to pull off without the audience realising that our tongues are firmly placed in our cheeks. You can only go so far down the cheese route as a ‘serious’ band before people give up on you. By introducing the humour early, the audience are ready for whatever we decide to throw at them (metaphorically, as well as physically).

Stupid

Stupid

We left The Malthouse much as we found it, but with more empty glasses and bottles and went our separate ways until the next day, when we headed back to Tipton, to The Kings Arms for our second visit. Our last visit was to a quiet audience – we weren’t sure whether it was working until we finished, when everyone we spoke to assured us we were amongst the best bands they had seen there (we can only assume we were the first they had playing there!). We were ready for a quiet reaction this time, but were pleasantly surprised as the crowd started singing and dancing like the Malthouse had the previous night. A group of women who had seen us on our previous visit sat alongside us, snatching Paul’s hats throughout the gig. Ultimately one left with his favourite hat – Paul has been in a daze ever since.

Paul's Workspace

Paul in a daze

On Sunday we headed into Shrewsbury for The Telegraph. We’ve lost count of the times we’ve played here and we’ve never had a duff gig yet. So, following Ed’s conversation on Friday, we decided to tempt fate.

As our set has developed over the last 27 months, the amount of ‘peripherals’ has increased. Soft toys, hats, ducks, etc. What if…

What if we played with none of the rubbish, none of the toys, hats, ducks, etc.? No crutch, just the music. We ran the risk of regular punters being disappointed, but it would prove whether or not we could do it. So we went for it.

To be honest, the first half a dozen songs saw little more then a polite ripple of applause, mind you it can sometimes go that way on a Sunday afternoon. Before long, however, we hit our stride and forgot the hats and the crowd came along with us. The pub’s ever generous landlord, Alan, tells us it was one of the best gigs we’ve played there. We’re not sure, but we’ll certainly take the compliment.

The following Thursday was a return to Harper Adams University for a private party. In an almost unprecedented move for us we spent our time between soundcheck and gig working out a set list. Some took it more seriously than others and, in the process got quite grumpy…

Harper gigs are always raucous affairs and this was no different, with beer and vomit flying.

On Friday 16th it was the turn of The Old Post Office. What can we say that we haven’t already said about this place? The audience are great, the staff are great, the beer is great and we bring it all down.

Saturday was time for our first festival appearance of the year at Glenstock in Leicestershire, for Festivals 360 (who run the music for the Dorset Steam Fair). As this was only a 60 minute set we, again, turned to a set list for the gig, honing it in the van before hitting the audience with it. The sun was dropping as we played and the lights and smoke helped us create a great atmosphere. More of these please!

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Our final gig of May was on the following Wednesday at The Swan Inn in Stone. Normally a quiet night, there was a great audience in this time and they helped us by cheering anyone entering the pub and booing anyone who left. At one point two guys walked in to a cheer, looked at us in our silly hats, had a quick discussion and walked straight back out to a loud BOOO! 20 seconds later they returned to a huge cheer and stayed for the rest of the evening.

May also saw the release of Ed’s debut Unlawful Men CD, Rope Or A Ladder, a folk odyssey. Jam packed with folk songs, it’s Ed returning to his roots (and includes guest drunk vocals from Paul Crewe). If you want to buy a copy (the first run is almost sold out, so get in quick – only 2 of the original 3 are left unsold), drop us a line at edcase@losttheplotband.co.uk or come and see us at a gig. You can get more info at www.edconwayandtheunlawfulmen.co.uk and listen to some of the tracks on Soundcloud – here’s Ed’s own composition, White Horse:

If you’re not all folked out, you could also get along to see them in a rare live appearance on July 19th at The Wheatsheaf Inn in Chetwynd Aston with Paul and Adelle Parker. Go on, treat yourself. Tel;l them I sent you.

And that was that. May was finished. Half term saw the band go their separate ways for family holidays to return, relaxed, for the upcoming trip to Sussex, where Ed and Paul will learn what a proper accent is all about.

GlenstockGlenstock a success

Lost The Plot Return To The Great Dorset Steam Fair

Lost The Plot Return To The Great Dorset Steam Fair

The big news this week is that we have been asked to return to The Great Dorset Steam Fair at the end of August.

We had a great time there last year before running away to play in Borth, but this time we’ve made sure we don’t have to disappear anywhere, so we’re ready to party.

All details are available at the Great Dorset Steam Fair website including tickets, camping etc.

The other big news is that, ahead of the Dorset trip, we’re heading to Simon’s hometown of Worthing, West Sussex for a couple of gigs. After two years of Plotting, we felt it was about time to show this sleepy seaside town what entertainment is all about.

For those of you in Worthing reading this, Simon grew up in the town, playing with such bands as Bad Girl City and Dirty Shoes before heading north to seek fame and fortune. He failed and ended up in a band where rubber ducks are used to injure the band on a nightly basis.

On Saturday 14 June we’ll be at The Smugglers Return in Ham Road, then on Sunday afternoon we’ll be in the town centre’s Rose & Crown, Montague Street.

Worthing

Worthing

Worthing hasn’t seen anything like this. In years to come, you could be telling your grandchildren you were there when LTP hit the south coast for the first time.

Or not.

Probably not really.

In other band news, Ed is currently working on a solo project. Several decades in the making, this is Ed’s Folk odyssey. He’s been writing various tunes over the last 73 years and finally has enough to put together an album. It’s being recorded at a secret location in Wales with help from old friend Den York and should be ready for release at some point this decade – watch this space for more info as it comes in.

As a prelude to this, Ed played a small folk gig last Friday at the Unicorn Folk Club. Our pet photographer, Matthew Thomas, has sent us this review of the evening as he attended along with Paul:

Friday evening and Dave and Paul travelled to The Bradford Arms to attend an evening at the Unicorn Folk Club. The evening was a charity event for Alzheimer’s research.

It was a very different yet interesting evening at the club. The room was full and very hot! We enjoyed some brilliant folk music and tales along with some real ale served in the countryside pub with Ed Conway playing the final slot.

Ed played alongside his ‘Unlawful Men’ – Jon Thompson on bass, Ben Moorhouse on mandolin and Anthony Kitchen on the bodhran.

The band played a fantastic 45 minute set. The effort the band had put in over the past few months was clear, and that was just on the uniform (black tie, white shirt) The songs were tight with only one minor problem with a bass lead we wont talk about.

Until the gig I had only heard one of the songs the band played, ‘Mary And The Soldier.’ Eds version was a lot more upbeat and all of the songs appeared to have a new twist. The set was very impressive and well thought out. After they had finished playing I heard nothing but positive comments from the audience all saying how brilliant it was and they were all pleased to see Ed performing at the club after a 2 year gap.

Fantastic evening…Even if paul was bladdered.

We can neither confirm nor deny the allegation of Paul being a little under the weather.

Making the most of the weekend off, Si visited The Malthouse to see Microbaby play. The gig was great, but what really made it was the fact that, upon reaching the bar to order drinks, Si was given a rubber duck by the barman. How often can you walk into a pub and be given a rubber duck without people raising eyebrows? The duck was later used for its intended purpose and thrown at Microbaby’s drummer, Steve Eastment. After bouncing off his snare drum it promptly disappeared. Steve needs to work on being hit by ducks.

See you soon.

The Great Dorset Steam Fair 2014

The Great Dorset Steam Fair 2014