Jess Kemp is a performer that I have seen many times and always enjoy her music. She called me to ask if I could shoot a charity night that she was putting on at the Station Irlam. I checked the date and was pleased to let her know I could make it. Then the fun began.
My car was leaking fluid and so that was not an option but not a problem the venue was a railway station. I could catch a train and even spoil myself with a pint or 2. I checked the times and the last one left at 22:00 no good. I got little V out of the garage and attached a case with my camera equipment to to the pillion seat and fired her up. It was an interesting ride on a dark foggy winter night but I made it.
The venue is the old station on the platform of Irlam station. It had been completely renovated and now housed rail memorabilia as well as a small bar and comfortable seating. The gig was to be in the coal yard room which is a great room with painted adverts on the brick walls. The lighting is edison style bulbs hanging from the roof beams. A christmas tree and fire in the corner gave the room real atmosphere. A banner across the back wall reminded me of the purpose of the evening as well as to entertain was to raise funds for The Christie.
Olivia Jade stepped up to the microphone and showed what great voice she has. At the request of Jess she even performed a christmas number I am a real christmas grump but even I enjoyed it!
Ashley Sherlock is a performer that I have been aware of and have wanted to see for a while and he did not disappoint. Great voice and guitar playing made for a wonderful set.
Carl North normally plays with his band the lonely hearts but tonight he was one man with his guitar. I knew from the first few chords I was going to like his music. Hard hitting blues riffs and a strong voice filled the room. A brilliant performance and I can't wait to see him with his band next year.
The raffle. It had to happen you can't have a fundraiser without a raffle! It also gave Sam who had sorted out the sound for the night to switch to performance mode. Jess and Sam compliment each other so well and with a medley of their great songs the room was alive. Jess has song lyrics with real meaning to her and also friends in the room I also enjoy the way she stamps out the base line with a stomp box. Sam switched guitars and styles as he accompanied her. I was really impressed he also included slide guitar to one of the songs. The final song showed how skilled they both are on the guitar as the tempo increased to a crazy level.
Many thanks to Jess for inviting me down.
Thanks to all the performers for a great night and the Station at Irlam for the perfect venue.