It was with huge pleasure that we received an invitation to play once more at Redbourn Folk Club. This was partly because it is a lovely and welcoming club to play at but also it meant that the club was evidently in good health under the new management of Jenny McNaught and Malcolm Hobbs. Jenny and Malcolm have recently taken the reins following years of great service to the club from Jan Strapp and friends. If our experience of the club is anything to go by, they look to be making a really great fist of it.
There were pleasant surprises galore throughout the evening we were there. Jenny and Malcolm are both very fine performers and it was, therefore, a real pleasure to hear Malcolm open the evening. Jenny had to stay active on the pleasingly busy door. It was really great to then see performers like Helen Chinn and Julian Mount from the Watford Folk Club do a spot each – both excellent performers. Later in the evening, we had the further pleasure of an extended spot from The Raven, a duo we have met many times on our travels to clubs and festivals around the South East. This time they were visiting our home turf and they were as good as always – great musicianship and harmonies.
It was also very nice to see a number of our closest friends from St Albans in the audience. Malcolm and Jenny had advertised the event the previous Sunday on Daria Kulesh’s Radio Dacorum folk show, and Rob and I had joined the programme a little later to play a few of our songs and tunes. This may have helped attract a few more people. Certainly, the club room was full fairly early into the evening.
For our part, we felt we played two good forty minute sets and were able to roll out some new Breton and French tunes as well as perform our newly completed translation of L’Amant de Nantes that we learnt from La Bergère but which has also been recorded by La Chavanée. There was a pleasing call for an encore at the end and we subsequently received very warm feedback from friends and club members alike as the club tidied up after the event.
With Redbourn being so close to home it also meant there could be no motorway hold ups and we were home for a last cuppa before turning into pumpkins.
Many thanks to Jenny and Malcolm for both the initial invitation and for the warm welcome at the club. We wish them every success and know that by continuing to do the great job they are doing, they will help the Redbourn Folk Club maintain the great vibe it has had for many years under Jan’s prior direction.