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Hello everyone, hope you're having a lovely Bit Between, my FAVOURITE of all the holidays. I'm just taking a break from the Traditional Tidy Up (this year's top ASPECT: realising that half the mess round here is all the stuff I decided to take to the charity shop LAST year, but never got around to) to commence the STATS.

STATS! I thought I'd kick off this year with some QUALITATIVE DATA. Several people have asked me where my favourite GIG has been this year, and I've found it difficult to answer as there've been SO very many and so many of them have been GRATE or at least GOOD. I _think_ this has been the most fun year for gigs, so let's take a look at THAT shall we?

* each gig rated by ME from 1 (tears) to 5 (cheers)

GRATENESS: proved with SCIENCE! That's pretty good I reckon, especially when I've done SO many gigs this year. But which WERE the favourites? After some thought I've worked out number ONE and TWO top favourite, but before then here, in date order, are the Top Ten (other) GRATE GIGS of the year: 22/1/2008: The Lamb,London - Ukelele Flash Mob!
26/1/2008: The Fishtank,Durham - Cleator Moor Validators in a FLAT.
11/4/2008: The Perserverance,London - First Freedom Of Expression night.
22/4/2008: The Lamb,London - Frankie Machine on ukelele!
22/5/2008: Firebug,Leicester - the Phil Wilson/Mai 68s night.
1/7/2008: The Lamb,London - Dress Rehearsal for Edinburgh.
25/7/2008: The Midland Railway - Butterley,Derby - Indietracks!
4/10/2008: Wellbeck Banqueting Suite,Nottingham - Lisa and Sam's Wedding!
13/11/2008: The Charlotte,Leicester - Tim joins Half Man Half Biscuit!
9/12/2008: The Lamb,London - Totally Acoustic, with Parents!

MAN OH MAN I've had some GOOD TIMES this year! My SECOND OVERALL FAVOURITE tho was the other week when Tom and I played the PopArt Christmas Party - the main gig itself was MASSIVE fun, but then the end bit singing "Wonderful Christmastime" and "Do The Know It's Christmas Time" made it AMAZING. GOOD TIMES!

And the TOP GIG of the year was, of course, the WEEK at the Edinburgh Fringe. Some of the gigs were under-populated and some of the BUSKING was a bit ridiculous, but all together the whole thing was FANTASTIC. The one where we did the live link to Steve Lamacq's show was a highlight, as was finally meeting Jim Gellatly, and getting good reviews and audiences was BRILL, but the best thing was just LOAFING ABOUT with The Hewitts and The Gigs In My Listings, getting up late, going to pubs, eating CURRY and generally having a GOOD TIME. I really really REALLY enjoyed the whole experience, and hopefully next time we'll be going for TWICE as long!

It's been a GRATE year all round for the LIVE ARENA, and coming next will be some HARD COLD FACTS about where and WHEN it all happened! It may even feature GRAPHS!

posted 29/12/2008 by MJ Hibbett

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Cleator Moor Validators in a Flat????

What business do you have knowing about the one horse Cumbrian town, and home of my Grandparents? It's not every day you stumble across it, and I can be quite the stumbler when the mood takes me.

Any reference to Half Man Half Biscuit's seminal classic, Reflections in a Flat?

Seasonal salutations!

Jon H (sometime Voon fan)
posted 30/12/2008 by Jon H

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