Reviews 2015

Woodman Folk Club - Reviews

Ruth and Ken Powell

Les Jones 20 November 2015

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I know it’s been a while but I’m not sure how long it has been since Ruth and Ken visited the club. However long it’s been it was certainly a pleasure to have them back. I was sitting with Sue and Paul Matthews’ son Chris (well he couldn’t find another seat). He told me that he was 12 the first time he saw them at the Lion O’ Morfe. I put this in only for background.

As usual the evening began with a couple of songs each from club residents Barry and Corrine; who sang about loss of youth followed by Wings with Barry playing a guitar part live for the first time, and then Dick Woodhouse who sang the Jez Lowe song London Danny and The Joys of Marriage. For those who feel that’s an oxymoron please complain to Dick not me. Dick’s first song was meant to be about a friar but as happens to us all at times the lyrics did their best to escape him and succeeded. I had said I wasn’t going to mention that but I need to fill the space on the page. Sorry Dick.

Following Bryn’s introductions Ruth and Ken took to the stage. It was at this point that I thought I had come to the wrong venue as while Ken was getting himself settled Ruth began what I can only assume was an informal language lesson. She said they now live in Powys and quite rightly she was trying to help us learn some Welsh expressions in case they came in useful. Ond pam y byddai unrhyw un am fynd i Gymru?

Once Ken was settled they treated us to a lovely evening of music with songs by such people as Joni Mitchell, Sandy Denny, Jimmy McCarthy and other more traditional songs. Ruth sang beautifully accompanied by Ken on two of his wonderful self built guitars. There was always a little tale to go with each song which had Ruth telling us about her accident prone childhood and how she was taught to sing Teddy O’Neill by her mother. If I am to have a favourite from this half it is “Don’t Worry About Me” a beautiful song by Rube Bloom and Ted Koehler dating back to The Cotton Club in Chicago in 1939.

The second half was opened as ever by Bryn Phillips who gave us two of his own songs. “Now All I Listen To Is The Blues”

Ruth and Ken returned to the stage. It is worth pointing out that she thought the audience was a little restrained and had noticed that for some peculiar reason there was an absence of audience members rattling shakers and various other items. That has to be the first time we have had a complaint about not playing them. Strange.

Once again we were treated to a glorious second half with more lovely songs and funny stories. The highlight of the half had to be Ken playing a self made banjo on Wayfaring Stranger.

After rapturous applause they were persuaded to sing an encore which heard the whole audience joining them in a rendition of The Bare Necessities from Jungle Book. Why? Well it was that sort of evening. A wonderful time was had by all.

Diolch i chi'ch dau am noson wych