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Monday, 14 November 2011

Sunday Sessions

In early September of this year I decided that it was maybe time for me to dip my toe into promoting some gigs again.
Something on a smaller scale than I'd previously done as I was keen to avoid taking the financial bath that I've found myself splashing about in more times than I care to recall.
I suppose in hindsight the urge to get involved again was down to Kelly and myself visiting Su Casa and being impressed with the set up that they have.
Getting the cream of the local crop from the west coast of Scotland to perform once a month on a Sunday afternoon seemed appealing, and easily do-able.
So after checking if there was enough people interested in it that's just what we did.
The first one was in October and we managed to secure Matt Scott, Little Fire and Emma Forman to perform for us.
Sadly Emma had to drop out of the line up due to feeling ill, but at very short notice Colin Hunter stepped in and saved the day.
It was a fair success for a first stab at it.
Instead of charging the audience a set price we billed it as a 'pay what you want' afternoon with the audience deciding themselves how much the entertainment was worth by donating to a bucket being passed around.
Colin performed first and played a set that set the bar high for Little Fire and Matt Scott.
Refreshingly, and bravely, he didn't rely on material that we were familiar with and instead decided to run with brand new songs that he has been working on for a band project he is trying to get off the ground.
Based on what we heard that afternoon this is going to be an exciting prospect to look forward to.
Colin really is exceptionally talented and I'd love it of people started to let what he does sink in and gain some appreciation for it.
Next Little Fire ran through some material that cemented his reputation as an artist who is going places.
Previously I'd heard him to a song or two at Su Casa, but this was my first experience of a longer set of his songs, and the performance certainly lived up to expectations.
Currently I'm aware of a few opportunities that could push his career forward to another level so fingers crossed that come 2012 Little Fire will be the name on the lips of everyone as the next Scottish act to break through nationally.
Matt Scott finished the first Sunday Session with a solid performance in front of a home town crowd that had them baying for more. So successful was his set that he ran out of material, and for a couple of seconds it looked like the audience were going to insist that he ran through them again.
Over all I would have preferred it to be a bit busier, but that's not a complaint.
Those who had made the effort to attend were enthusiastically appreciative of the artists who were playing, and they certainly had no problem with dipping into their pockets to contribute towards paying Colin, Matt and Jamie aka Little Fire who all got an even split of the money raised.
Oh, Did I say this was a non profit venture with all proceeds going to the artists?
Well there you go.
With the success of this under our belts I immediately went home and started work on Novembers line up.
This was to be Emma Forman, who was over her little bout of ill health, Ari Pournaras IV who is better known for fronting the excellent Rose Parade, Ross Gilchrist and Anna Sweeney.
Anna kick started the afternoon off with some lovely country tinged songs that managed to beguile the audience and from the comments expressed definitely garnered her more fans.
Emma arrived just in time from Dumfries to basically walk in, do her set and then rush off for the second and last train of the day home.
The effort she made was greatly appreciated and similar to the last time that I'd seen her play she effortlessly impressed.
First of the men to play was Ari whose stripped down take on his bands material was as good as the versions played with his band mates.
This was his first gig off the back of a very successful appearance at King Tuts Wah Wah Hut so it was an honour to have him play and once again those who had made the effort to pop along were richly rewarded for doing so.
Lastly to play was Ross Gilchrist and I've waxed lyrical often enough about his talents for everyone to know that I'm a fan.
His performance was what I'd been waiting to see for a while.
Normally Ross has played a supporting role on bills, and has had to tailor his material to fit the context of that, but with this he had the freedom to just go for it, and that what he did to great effect.
I'm very pleased with myself that I played a small part in getting people to listen to Ross and hopefully he is another artist that will get the recognition that he deserves.
This second Sunday Session wasn't as well attended as the first, not by much though, and those who did come along dug deep and all the acts got roughly the same as those who had played in October.
So, so far so good.
December is a busy month for people so I've decided that I'll shelve the Sunday Sessions for one month and return in January with more artists who deserve a platform to entertain an audience from.
I hope you can come along.
If you are unsure about it then ask about and see what those who have come along say about it, and I'm sure they will tell you that you should get your behind down to Jollys on a Sunday afternoon.
Big thanks, as always, must go to the venue management and staff in Jollys Sports Bar who continue to punch above their weight in both supporting and providing live music to Ayrshire.
If they were to be marked out of ten then they get an eleven.


  1. Thanks for organising Mainy.. Its great that guys like u and the other well kent musos keep bringing along local talent.. Makin Killie a great place to be.. especially on a Sunday afternoon wi Pals amd a wee beer! Fantastic Mainy.. cheers! Trisha G x

  2. Thanks Trisha, but it's also people like your good self and Omar who support us that keeps it all ticking over and that's appreciated.