So yesterday I launched my album Fit the Fourth by putting some people into a little Chapel in Bethnal Green and singing songs at them.
There’s a list of things that have gone wrong with acoustic gigs that I was keen to avoid: dodgy sound, no seating, a dodgy or random set of acts, a lack of coherence to the night, silly ticket prices.
None of these things went wrong yesterday. The sound was good, the venue was different and had seats in it, it makes total sense to have Jon Hunt and myself on the same bill, there was no money involved (apart from the sound guy’s well-earned fee and the CDs people purchased). It was a proper little show and it worked.
I’m very glad it did because it’s the first time I’ve organised a gig.
That’s not entirely true, I’ve organised many a school concert. Trying to organise forty or fifty teenagers in various different acts and sort out sound, lighting and stage management with too few staff is considerably more stressful than this was.
It is the first time I’ve organised a gig of my own music, to launch an album that’s out on an actual label (well, Bad Elephant Music). It’s the first time I’ve been top of a bill and certainly the most people ever to turn up to see me play who didn’t have to because they were my friends and family.
It’s the first time I’ve played 45 minutes of music where almost every single song was about the same character. It was the first time I’ve attempted to play a one-man version of one of my 20 minute songs that was never intended to be performed in that fashion (I think it worked!).
It was, in short, a bloody good night and I am very happy with it.
There will be recordings in a few days. You have been warned.
PS. I love that the picture above makes it look more like a lecture that happened to include a guitar.