18th May 2018
Well you never know what lies just around the corner.
When Simon said there was a conference at Ettington Chase for people who organise festivals and that in the evening it had a concert and that it was free. Well, to be honest I thought he’d lost the plot. But one dank evening in November 2017 a few of us ventured over to the Chase to explore. We’d missed all the talks about portaloo hire and public liability insurance but we did see some pretty amazing musicians. They all got to play 4 songs to the audience of bearded festival organisers. We saw four acts and could have booked them all for Ryepiece. But the one that stood out was Kit and Aaron. They’re playing was incredible and they seemed like nice blokes too when we spoke to them in the lobby after their 15 minute set.
I booked them to play for us a few days later.
Then the months went by and as the date of the concert loomed I started to wonder if I’d done the right thing. Would they work at Ryepiece? Were they as good as I remembered them? Would our crowd connect with them?
Well as soon as they arrived and started sound checking I knew it was going to be a good night….
Bev, our usual cook, was away so we had Ryepiece newbie Steve and he did us proud
After the long dreary winter and early spring the weather was glorious and the courtyard garden was looking wonderful. It was a sell out night…we actually had to turn people away for the first time ever. The barn and the garden were crowded with people eating, chatting, drinking. There was a really buzzy atmosphere. And then the concert started….
It was a very special night. Everything just seemed to click in to place. Kit and Aaron worked their way through pretty much the whole of their excellent album The Fox (and if you bought yourself a copy then check out the price now on Amazon and feel smug!)
There were no low points. Every song, every tune, every performance seemed to top the last. Aaron’s mellifluous fiddle work fitted perfectly with Kit’s guitar – that could move from a gentle strum to a muscular chop at the drop of a hat. Kit’s singing wasn’t too shabby either. This video taken between the shimmering locks of Messrs Coley and Ingham gives you a little of what it was like….and just listen to that response from a captivated audience at the end.
And then all too quickly it was over. Kit and Aaron seemed to have had a ball too which was great.
They sold a pile of CDs, we chatted, packed up their gear and headed off into the night on their way back to (a very expensive) Bristol.
And another Ryepiece season was over.
For those who into these sorts of things….here’s the complete set list:
John Barley corn
Hard times in old england
All on a day
[Since then Kit and Aaron have been very very busy playing festivals all over the UK and then heading to Switzerland to play 9 gigs at the Buskersbern street festival. Hopefully they will now do some writing and recording and get ready to do it all over again…]