Loose Leaf Drifters, The Vicars of Stiffkey, Blisster, Eastern Seaboard, Yve Mary B, The Wash, Shane O’Linski at Cactus Cafe, Norwich 9 January 2016. Sound it Out and the Delta Golden Angels, The Lord Rosebery 10 January 2016 with Yve Mary B, Shane O’Linski, Matt Watson, Jim Niven.
Once again having a pre-match pint in the excellent Owl Sanctuary I then made my way to The Cactus Cafe for the first time in its new incarnation for Shane O’ Linski’s “OosWolf” night – a really eclectic and interesting collection of acts.
Already playing when I arrived were the Loose Leaf Drifters, who were followed (once a guitar had been found) by the excellent Vicars of Stiffkey with their compelling mix of influences. The pace was brought right down again by Eastern Seaboard, a fascinating band who also featured glockenspiel and harmonium, before another loud and fast set by Blisster. In a packed line up there was still time for a set by the mesmerising Yve Mary B before the night was closed by The Wash which this evening was Shane and friends, there was some really intersting stuff in this set.
I really liked the relaxed vibe of the Cactus Cafe which is somewhere between a cafe and a pub with a foot in both camps. Shortly before leaving Yve delighted those of us still there by serenading us at the bar with an impromptu performance of her new song, played on mandolin. A really lovely moment.
The following morning I woke up to the genuinely shocking news of David Bowie’s death. I could not seem to settle at home so spent the afternoon in the city, initially at The Birdcage where Robbie was playing Bowie songs all day. It was good to spend some time here and chat, and watch Maraud. After a late Grosvenor lunch in the Birdcage I went for a while to Norwich Arts Centre where Pasco had the wonderful idea of opening up the auditorium and playing Bowie requests all afternoon. I chose a couple and somehow Rosie seemed to intuitively know the others I was wanting to hear. There was also a projection of Bowie portraits and a Chesterfield to sit on, listen, reflect and grieve. This was so helpful and I thank NAC for this and for being so in tune with the mood of the city’s music fans. They will also be hosting a free Bowie music night on 30 January. Demand to get into this one will be huge.
My plan had been to spend the evening at The Murderers for the monthly Sound it Out night hosted by Yve Mary B but due to some peculiar mix up they were not expecting any music on this night so it was hastily arranged that we’d move the night to the Lord Rosebery, who were wonderful in agreeing to this with about an hour’s notice and even setting up their PA in readiness. Thank you Lord Rosebery for this.
It was still a very enjoyable night of music with this month’s musicians including Yve, Shane O’ Linski, Jim Niven, and Matt Watson, the night closing with Ziggy Stardust.
Many thanks to Robbie and Maraud at The Birdcage, Pasco and Rosie at NAC, Yve and The Lord Rosebery.