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Author Topic: EBA Bluesweek  (Read 2514 times)

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Offline blueshome

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EBA Bluesweek
« on: July 03, 2012, 10:26:55 AM »
Dont forget Euroweenies, Bluesweek is drawing nigh.

Who is going?  It'll be fun week.

Offline harvey

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2012, 12:12:54 PM »
Looks like I will be there,missing my fix of tangerine cheese cake.


Online Norfolk Slim

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2012, 12:32:17 PM »
If I have someone to share Cognac with, I'll get my cheque off :-)

Need to show off my new Schmidt Stella anyway.

Offline blueshome

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2012, 01:52:31 PM »
Then we are 3. Plus Richard I'm sure.

Offline Parlor Picker

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2012, 01:31:16 AM »
Sounds like a winning combination: Blueshome, Harvey, Slim and Richard all drinking cognac, eating cheesecake and salivating over an Oscar Schmidt guitar...  ;D
"I ain't good looking, teeth don't shine like pearls,
So glad good looks don't take you through this world."
Barbecue Bob

Online Norfolk Slim

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2012, 03:21:23 AM »
Having read the various comments and reports on Port Townsend it dawned on me that not a word has been said about the EBA Bluesweek yet...

I certainly had a good time, as ever.  Its right to say that next to the glittering array of CB tutors at PT this year, some of us felt a little hard done by.  Times are tough and airfares are expensive.  Numbers were pretty low, and the Harp people seem to be on the verge of outnumbering us guitarists these days.  I think that may have much to do with the quality of their tutors.  Whilst there are now only two Harp tutors at Blues Week, Joe Filisko is an absolute star, and has more stamina than most of us put together.  This year we also had Mark Graham who was very entertaining.

Guitar Wise, Rick Franklin was the life and soul of the party as usual and took the beginner / intermediate classes - leading them through a substantial repertoire.

Del Rey was back for a second year.  Though I didn't go to them, I understand her Minnie classes were very highly regarded and challenging.  For me, as last year, her informal Uke Jug Band club was the best fun of the week (with the exception of a late night conversation about the fictional preservation of parts of various old blues singers in pickle jars, which doesn't bear repetition on a civilsed forum).

I knew very little about Steve Phillips before the week, other than that he had been in the NottingHillbillies with Mark Knopfler.  His solo performance at the staff concert was excellent.  He turned out to be a very knowledgeable and passionate player of old blues and a fine guitarist with some interesting tricks and ideas to pass on.  He certainly wasn't a natural teacher, but I enjoyed what he did.

As usual Michael Messer covered slide, and in addition "Catfish" Keith. 

A good friendly week, with barely an ego to be seen anywhere which makes for a great atmosphere.  Jams were far less frequent or prolonged than some years- I think due to falling numbers, fewer tutors (especially ones like Homesick Mac who are inclined to stay up until 4am playing with the students...) and probably some other factors too. 

Overall, socially it was an excellent week and just gets better each year from that perspective in my opinion.  Musically, a little more limited than was ideal and the smaller numbers certainly took their toll (the student concert was barely filled, whereas it usually spills over into the next evening). 

I am hopeful that the teaching staff will be refreshed again next year, and offer us a little more- though im sure its hard to make the budget work even with the reduced roster.

Finally- I shifted 5 Weenie Cds too, including one to Rick Franklin.  I'll be arranging a lump payment of profits to date to the website very shortly.


Offline Prof Scratchy

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2012, 03:54:25 AM »
Good to get a review. From the few pics I've seen it looked like a fine occasion. Steve is (and has always been) one of the finest players around, and he doesn't need an airfare!

Online Norfolk Slim

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2012, 04:14:08 AM »
Very True Professor...  I think he would agree himself that he struggled a little to proactively "teach" for the full week but he was good company and a mine of useful knowledge.  Very much in the "here's something I do, have a go" category of teachers.

There may be footage of Ukulele jug band performances to follow at some stage.

Offline harvey

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2012, 04:44:17 AM »
Thanks Simon, nobody  reviewed the weenie weekend either in full… which is a shame.. Unfortunately unlike you my writing skills are very limited.
I had a really enjoyable week, wouldn’t rank high on my list of blues weeks, nevertheless I agree with a smaller group does for me improve the social side… i.e. you get to speak to fewer people and in more depth and a lot of the attendees like ourselves are stalwarts !
I really enjoyed Del Rey I thought she was excellent and opened my eyes and ears to some new ideas. Her classes were very challenging, which is a good thing.
And I started my Uke journey which is great. Great fun
All the student performances were excellent too which just puts me to shame…… (Simon’s performance was very good as always)
Enjoyed the late night Cognac and of course the last night dip into the Profanisarous ! sadly mostly unrepeatable

Offline blueshome

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2012, 07:47:59 AM »
I have to disagree with Simon on a couple of points.

I think the Steve Phillips classes I attended were excellent and his skill and enthusiasm rubbed off on those present and his delivery was nicely informal but packed with information.

As to the jams, for the 5 evenings  I was there, I was not in bed before 3.00am as per any normal year. Imprisoned with numerous very skilful harp players for the final couple of hours of each session. A very clear absence of jamming guitarists with any stamina excepting Messrs. Franklin and Roach.

There was a really nice vibe this year too, with a lot of really nice new folk around.

As to next year, I know that Mike is trying to book a  faculty with more of our old friends from the US. Hopefully this, and the absence of the Olympics, will allow numbers to get back up.

Offline uncle bud

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2012, 08:01:39 AM »
Thanks for the reports, fellas! Sounds like a good time as always.

I really like Mark Graham and think they should steal him back for PT.

Offline huge furry whipinstool

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2012, 11:59:24 AM »
I was surprised reading this thread that UK Weenies were not more familiar with Steve Phillips and his music.

I first met Steve at a student party in Leeds in 1970. Around midnight 2 guys arrived, pulled up some chairs, placed a bottle of whiskey between them, got out their National guitars and launched in to the Jess Johnson / Roy Harvey classic 'Just Pickin'. This was Steve and Mark Knofler who in those days performed as the duolian string pickers. They then proceeded to spend the next 4 hours playing near perfect renditions of country blues songs I had only ever heard on records.

I thought then and still believe that Steve is the finest exponent of country blues in the UK. Although he primarily stays 'up North' he does make the occasional trip South and I would recommend anyone who hasn't seen him perform to make an effort to catch one of his gigs.

He is also an excellent songwriter, luthier and landscape artist. Have a look at his website to see some of his work.

Online Norfolk Slim

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2012, 12:11:09 PM »
Hmmm.  Some clarifications needed from me I think  :D

I certainly wouldn't criticise Steve's classes.  They were enjoyable, informal and as I say, he was a mine of knowledge and know how.  He said himself that teaching wasnt really his thing which is absolutely fair enough. 

With regard to knowledge of him, I plead my relative youth.  I was 16 at the time the NottingHillbillies made their album, and mainly listening to Public Enemy and Ice T...  I had not heard of him before he was selected to teach at Blues Week, but its clear that people who had an interest in Blues back in the 80s and early 90s hold him in high esteem, and rightly so.  His luthiery skills are impressive; he played his own guitars including a fantastic 12 string and we probed him for knowledge about them mercilessly!

As for the jams, perhaps they kicked off later than they have done at times in the past?  I didnt see too much, but then we had some small quieter (and usually fairly poor) attempts at jams upstairs.  More than happy to hear that things were still going on as usual.


Offline Parlor Picker

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2012, 03:51:55 AM »
I agree with Scratchy - Steve Phillips is one of our national treasures. I first saw him play in Leeds some time in the 1960s when we were all going around with long hair and in loon pants, and he wore a pin-stripe suit, had short hair and played stunning country blues.

I got to know him later after I had moved away from Yorkshire and occasionally saw him play on my visits back home to the Leeds area. He always seemed at his best playing in a pub, with a pint of bitter by his side and a cheroot in his mouth!

At a gig a few years ago here in the south of England, he announced a song as one he had learned from a tape I had sent him 17 years before. What a memory - I'd totally forgotten about it.

We have some fine players here in the UK and Steve is up there with the best of them - alongside the likes of Roger Hubbard, the Hokum Hotshots and (dare I say?) Prof. Scratchy.
"I ain't good looking, teeth don't shine like pearls,
So glad good looks don't take you through this world."
Barbecue Bob

Offline steadyrollinman

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Re: EBA Bluesweek
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2013, 04:03:45 PM »
If I have someone to share Cognac with, I'll get my cheque off :-)

Need to show off my new Schmidt Stella anyway.

Slim, interested to hear about your schmidt stella; how old and from where did it come?

Regards,

Chris

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