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Blog: Pre-Birthday Fun!

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Off to LEICESTER on Saturday lunchtime, where The Sonic In My Screwdriver and i checked into The Holiday Inn (birthday treat!) for some LOLLING around in the jacuzzi/steam room/pool - it was ACE, helped along by getting some complimentary BEER when i mentioned that our mini-bar was a bit LACKING in same. HOORAH!

We were there largely because The Validators were playing at The Victory, so at six o'clock i had to REND myself from the luxuries at the hotel and head down there, where i discovered that there was a whole other BIT of the pub round the back and upstairs. I've been in The Victory LOADS of times over the past 15 years, having lived near or known people who lived near by, so was a bit shocked to find there was a whole chunk of it i knew nothing about. Soon the entire MALE section of The Validators were there, as were the significantly less MALE The Fighting Cocks. Overseeing all was Sorted Supremo Dave Dixey, who had beautifully set the whole thing up for us, and John The Soundman, returning from his triumph at Woodhouse Eaves. We got the PA set up, did our sound check, and headed off for the traditional pre-gig CHIPS AND CHEESE. SMASHING!

When we got back various TYPES had arrived, and there was an all round air of LOVELINESS about the proceedings. Just after nine o'clock i happily looked around the 20-30 or so people who'd turned up, thinking how lovely it all was, and asked Charlie from The Fighting Cocks if he was ready to get going. "Shouldn't we wait until people turned up?" he asked, and i had to tell him that, actually, this was pretty much everybody! As ever with The Cocks they took a while to get everything sorted out, but once they DID get going they were BLOODY GRATE. I have said it MANY times before, but these days watching The Fighting Cocks is SUCH a thing of GRATE JOY, and it made me very happy indeed that everybody else in the room thought so, and by the time they go to the end, with Charlie waving his "BEER"/"ENGLAND" sign, we were all singing along. He looked well chuffed, and Asha and Anna were GENTLY MOBBED by people wanting to tell them how ACE they were.

Emma was a bit worried, as she said "How can we follow that? They're so... SEXUAL!" and she didn't seem reassured when i pointed out that she needn't worry, being SEXY was MY job - possibly this was because i was fannying around with my trouser legs rolled up. I thought I looked DASHING, others thought less so, but it felt so GOOD i am DETERMINED to go get me some three quarter length trousers ready for our gig on Thursday. It's practical AND sexy!

Anyway, we got set to ROCK, and this is what we did:
Quality Of Life Enhancement Device
Better Things To Do
Mental Judo
Things'll Be Different (when I'm in charge)
The Symbol Of Our Nation
Never Going Back To Aldi's
Billy Jones Is Dead
Looking At My Hands
Hey Hey 16K
Tell Me Something You Do Like
The Gay Train
Easily Impressed

Payday Is The Best Day
Bands From London (are shit)
... with those last two being the ENCORE - oh yeah! It was all really really good - John The Soundman had done us PROUD, and it FELT dead good to play. Before we'd Officially Begun we had JAMMED a bit... i.e. me and Rob had played "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" a bit, and i thought, yet again, "COR! My band is BRILLIANT!" and it certainly felt that way when we were playing. One person let the others down by forgetting the chords to "Never Going Back To Aldi's" completely and The WORDS in many places, but HEY! It was my birthday (nearly)!

There were lots of new songs played, and it was EXCITING thinking about how GOOD they're sounding - this Actually Practicing business seems to WORK, although we do need to practice SOME of the songs a tiny bit more! It's just nice doing a gig, looking round at the other people on stage with you and thinking "Oh GRATE! They're here too!" - like when we did "Mental Judo" and Emma and i were singing it AT each other, it was ACE! ALSO "Easily Impressed" was BRILLIANT! AND i liked it when a) Tom played his NEW BIT in "Better Things To Do" b) Tim did BIZARRE DRUM ROLLS in "Bands From London", and c) Mr Frankie Machine COMEDICALLY opened the door to the ladies when i was Introducing The Band. I think you probably needed to BE there for that last one, but it WAS really funny, honest!

Afterwards there was much chatting and JOY before The Time In My Vortex and i strolled home to our LUXURY, tired but happy, and WELL geared up for the coming day of BIRTHDAY FUN!

posted 20/6/2005 by MJ Hibbett

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