Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Well that was the first gig of 2011.  It was also the first outing for bass player Michael and drummer Dave on backing vocals…

There was a little trepidation in pre gig rehearsals as they were press ganged into making a singing contribution. John from our rehearsal studios, The Shed, was repeatedly amused when setting up the mics, as Dave spent weeks deliberating whether having the mic on his hi-hat side, or his ride side was more beneficial…

Meanwhile Michael sang ‘We Shall Overcome’, or other slightly non-rock ‘n’ roll ditties, in order to sound check the vocal levels, with complete aplomb and Dave and Janine joined in accordingly. There is Methodism in the madness…and it is indeed very functional.  Progress, no less, was indeed made at a staggering rate of knots and Dave had to be repeatedly de-volumised, because when he was drumming (ie in Animal mode) he was about 200% louder than when he was eating a banana and sound checking his mic level in reclined mode.

The sound desk in our rehearsal studio has over 200 knobs to control everything and once John (our trusty rehearsal guru) has left us to our own devices, your writer reader, is left in control. It goes without saying that 200 in to 1 do not go and I need a lie down once we’ve finished rehearsing but we get there; eventually.

Live and Let Die, AKA Live and lest ye forget by Wings and Cee-Lo Green’s Forget You were amongst the requests for the wedding set list and we were exceptional at remembering to forget how to play them in early rehearsals. In the greatest traditions of treading the boards, it was all perfectly alright on the night, as we prepared to peak when we needed to peak, and peak we did.

A big shout has to go out to Simon and Warwick our ‘Soundies’. You’re a pair of gems and we sparkle far more when you are with us – we miss you when you’re not. A big ‘TA’ to you two! xx

Chris (keys) and Andy (guitar) were their usual robust and reliable selves on the night with ‘Live and Let Die’ in keeping with Michael’s ‘We shall overcome approach’, it’s a bit tricky but we got there!!!

Another big shout to our resident ‘Genie’ Janine for working her magic and organising everything… we’d never all be in the right place at the right time without you making sure that we are… call sheet attached.  The B. vox rocked, so all that hard work has paid off!  Still a few creases to attend to but we have an iron to hand…

For my part I drove there and back again, sang in the middle, made a few oppps’s and drove home again without breaking a speed limit, or committing any other traffic related offence, detected or un-detected.  My recent trip to Winsford, for driver awareness training, appears to have done the trick!!

And finally a big thanks to Jo and John.  A big shout out has to go to The Bride With Boundless Energy, as out of the 29 songs we played, Jo sat out 3 of them, so we must have got something right…

TTFN

Luke xx

 

What A Year…

Posted: March 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

Well that was 2010!  What a weird year!  We came, we saw and we concurred that The Naked Covers was ‘a moveable feast’.  Steve’s birthday bash was a blast and our last 2010 Fandango… an Epiphany and a Cacophony all at the same time.  Note to self: must sound check longer!  (still, the feedback from Steve was excellent, and check out some recordings of the gig on our ‘listen’ page, courtesy of the fantastic Don Dawber – Janine)

As I write I have a lingering ‘lurgy’ that won’t go away.  I sang through it at a little ‘moonlighting sonata’ in Lymm on the last Tuesday of 2010 (what?! without me? – Janine) but I’m feeling the pinch now when I cough.  Yuch!

We’re spread across the globe for Xmas but hope you had fun, with your near and your dear ones.

New songs and blue songs and songs to sing you, happiness, no more, no less!?  We’ve made some serious progress in 2010.  Hope it’s been a good year for you too.

See you in 2011 for more Fireworks…

Luke xx

 

Beena’s Birthday Bash

Posted: March 27, 2011 in Uncategorized

Well that was definitely a Triple B’day if ever there was one!  Beena’s Birthday Bash got off to a slightly dodgy start when we couldn’t get in to the venue (The Carlton Club – Whalley Range).  The temperature dropped as the afternoon sky darkened and the roars went up at Old Trafford, to signify that Manchester United were, perhaps, having a slightly more comfortable afternoon than a third of The Naked Covers (still can’t feel my toes – Janine).

Fortunately the gunshot soundscape at 15:45 turned out to be fireworks (are you sure?! – Janine).  Beena mobilised the troops and a team was despatched to gather intelligence on the whereabouts of our contact and provide moral support, for those of us with an inadvertent waiting brief.  Eventually Checkpoint Charlie was reached and he arrived and opened the door, about 10 mins after another 2/3’s of TNC had rocked up in the car park and hit the pause button.

Rehearsals are never the easiest of things to organise for TNC.  Janine’s extremely complicated but very effective availability spreadsheet can bear witness to that fact, eh Janine Genie? (no comment – Janine).  It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that TNC’s First Lady regularly has to work her magic to get us all in the same room, at the same time, at least regularly enough to know what we’re meant to be doing.  Sticks man, Dave, was on a different Continent in the run up to the gig and everyone else had their usual busy schedules, so this one was a particularly tricky ‘fog plait’ and we only had 2 days of rehearsals scheduled ahead of the gig.  Then it got worse.

Your writer, reader has been toiling with Voice Over and Commentary on the British Supermoto Championships for Motors TV over the last 8 weeks.  Fortunately for me I don’t have to edit it but the unfortunate souls that do, were afflicted with a rather nasty technical glitch a week ago, where two hard drives went down, each containing about 30 hours of digitised footage.  That meant the edit was suddenly very behind and Wednesday’s scheduled TNC rehearsal had to make way for a Voice Over recording that finished at 03:30 on Thursday morning.  I’m still yawning now… (go to bed! – Janine).

Thursday night’s rehearsal went relatively hiccup free apart from the small matter of a pothole and a blow out on the way home.  Cheers to Dave for road side rescue, a true knight.  Oh yeah, Michael’s bass cab passed away as well, so he needed to acquire a new one on Saturday before the gig.  No biggie!?

So when Saturday comes, Michael’s in the music shop, ‘Sounds Expensive’, to buy his replacement bass gear and tells the helpful shop assistant, “I need to buy a new bass speaker.”  The helpful shop assistant is standing in front of a leviathan bank of bass amplification stuff.  “Sorry sir, we don’t stock them.”  He replies.  “We’d have to order one for you.”  Michael is apoplectic.  Chris, our keyboard player (being the technically informed one amongst us) points out that Michael really needed to buy a bass cab.  Michael protests his innocence.  “But if I’d asked him for a bass cabinet, would he have presumed I just wanted the wooden box!?”  The defence rests M’Lawd! (LOL – Janine)

Michael rocked up to the gig in a cab with his, erm, new cab.  It looked and sounded great and fortuitously came with wheels on, which is a bonus, a bit like the cab it came in.  Ohh this is getting confusing… Andy arrived straight from Centre Parcs – above and beyond the call of duty that one and a big thanks to the family Harley for the 24 hour pass!  Once Chris had wrestled the PA in to submission, we made up for Wednesday’s missed rehearsal and were about ready to rock.  A quick bite to eat was slightly marred by confusion in Jam Street Cafe, so we retired to the local Indian and were suitably nourished.  Eating just before a gig is never the best of ideas for this Singist.  Janine, 2 hours minimum next time and I might be safe, please remind me! (noted – Janine)

The gig went without a hitch, apart from me ending up wearing half a pint of larger and getting my fingers trapped between a door handle and the pint pot, in between sets.  Could have been worse though, the young lady was very apologetic and at least the glass didn’t smash!  Speaking of smashing, a big shout has to go out to Ali and Laura who smashed it with their version of “Happy Birthday in Da house” with a dash of Marylin, for Beena and Manny whose birthday it was too.  Cheers me dears. x

Luke

 

It’s been a funny journey to get this far… to our first gig as The Naked Covers at the Bollywood Arts Centre in deepest, darkest Cheshire. It was only dark because England were just so dire, with their 0-0 World Cup performance, alongside whoever the other lot were, (Janine… you gotta help me out, yeahea!?) (it was Algeria – Janine) just before we made our TNC debut. It’s been nearly 2 years, 3 leaving do’s, 4 backing singers and a BBC Xmas party in the making but finally we ended up with the Slinky 6 (speak for yourself! – Janine).

I think I had 3 weeks to learn the 16 song set before our first gig on 2nd July 2008 as… Doh! What were we called? (Janine… you gotta help me out, yeahea!? Again! Usual story of my forgetfulness) (I’ve lost track of all our previous names! – Janine) (Luke note: just remembered Fundamental Lists) and there were 10 of us in the band: 5 singists and 5 instrumentalists. That takes some organising (tell me about it! – Janine) and we were never all in the same room together until the gig, which was nice. We pulled it off though and then everyone went their separate ways for 3 months, until we got the call from the Official (Hugh) Faupel Parting Party Committee and Michael and the Angels was born, under instruction to perform on 11th Dec 2008!? That one went well as well; even though the instrumentalists ddwibdlled [David is that Welsh or just a typo?] I think I meant dwdindled, or was it dwindled? Yes the instrumentalists dwindled to 4 and the singers subsided to 3. But it worked again, with rehearsals sandwiched in between North West tonight tx and camera rehearsal schedules. The rhythm section was noted in dispatches to be cigarette paper tight that night, by one particularly venerable attendee.

Then gig number 3 reared its head for 30th September 2009 and we were back with another squad change, as the set list and the playing staff were refreshed and rotated once again and the Bollington Boyo’s came on board with a hiatus of numbers that meant rehearsals relocated to Bollington and the now traditional pub de-brief was born. The gig was a flyer and Aled (Jones, no less – Janine) wanted to know why the singist wasn’t a full timer… long story that one! On the back of that gig we agreed to give it a go, without the presence of a leaving do being obligatory and found ourselves at the BBC Xmas party, minus 1 guitarerer (‘guitarist’?! – Janine), as the warm up act for the Karaoke! (ably led by Mr James Donnan – Janine). It was a very strange night and a personal kernel for your writer reader but the general consensus was that we blew everyone away and the night was a legend in our own lunch times until the Xmas and New Year break came and went and the memories faded along with the passing of the decade.

As the balloon went up on 2009 there was rest, recuperation and complete chaos but we eventually regrouped just as winter gave way to spring and by now the singists were down to a dynamic duo. We crashed, bashed and thrashed our way through the jungle of uncertainty that was the set list, until we arrived at a new set that sounded like a favourite old jumper that you’ve just found in a drawer, dyed pink and sprinkled with glue and glitter. 3 weeks before the Bollington gig we weren’t ready! Purely because we hadn’t been able to get everyone in the same country at the same time, never mind the same room but we had a plan and planted ourselves within the legendary nursing climbs of the Greenhouse and despite a nasty viral infection, we tripped the light fantastic at our coming out party, with Bollywood new beginnings.

To be continued…

Luke