At: Groove Pad, 48 Saltaire Road, Shipley BD18 3HN
Topic Newsletter Archive
Newsletter No 251 - May 2023
Hello again all,
I hope you are all keeping well and getting ready for the summer!
Here's the programme for the next month:
4th May: Singers & Musicians (£1 entry)
11th May : Reg Meuross.
Reg’s clever and imaginative lyrics have earned him the title of “Master Storyteller” (PennyBlack Music) and led Mike Harding (Mike Harding Folk Show) to introduce him onto the stage of The Royal Albert Hall as “one of the finest singer-songwriters this country has produced”.
Whether it’s a village hall or the Albert Hall, Reg brings to the stage a collection of extremely beautiful songs, performed with humour and depth, and sung with the voice of an angel. Reg has that rare gift of being able to touch people, through his songs and performance, on a really human level. His words and music paint pictures that remain with the listener long after the song has been sung.
A mighty songwriter and an equally fine singer - MartinCarthy.
A deep well of compassion and insight into the human heart and spirit -Mike Davies, Folk Radio UK.
Intelligent and thought-provoking songs, beautifully made and skilfully delivered - The Times
18th May: Singers & Musicians (£1 entry)
25th May: Musicians From Sheffield - Double Header
Cobalt Tales are singer-songwriter female duo Pat and Nuala, based in Sheffield though originally from Wigan and Stockport. Pat sings powerful vocals, plays acoustic guitar and harmonica on occasion, and Nuala plays bass guitar, sings harmony and adds clarinet, whistles and acoustic guitar. Their combined influences and writing talents cover a wide variety of song styles. They deliver music from the heart that stirs the soul.
Pat and Nuala met in the Scottish Highlands and formed Cobalt Tales in 2016. They enjoy touring throughout the UK and playing festivals, live music venues, cosy folk sessions, charity fundraisers and local community events.
CobaltTales released their debut album, Ever Changing Blue in 2019.
Harmonies are gorgeous, supersoft... Well done! - Edwina Hayes,Singer-songwriter.
Somewhere between Dylan and Mary Chapin Carpenter you'll find Cobalt Tales! Good stuff! - R. Sandland, Tamworth
Auka comes from an Old Norse word meaning to grow or augment - a term that perfectly sums up the band’s organic and original approach to music-making. Relative newcomers to the UK folk scene, Auka released their debut album Evergreen in 2021 and have since been going from strength to strength.
A central theme in Auka’s Celtic-inspired instrumental music is their shared passion for the natural world, especially that of their beloved Sheffield and its surrounding Peak District. Combining influences from a diverse range of musical backgrounds, the band's compositions ebb and flow from moments of delicate calm to those of frenetic energy. Kirsty Lomax’s lyrical Irish flute and whistle melodies are accompanied by intricate and precise rhythmic guitar from Matt Gilchrist – which is further underpinned by expressive jazz-folk double bass from Joss Mann-Hazell (Mishra). The three instruments weave between melodic and accompanying roles to create a unified and organic sound.
A striking homage to the natural world - Songlines Magazine
Ethereal and euphonic - utterly stunning - BBC Introducing
TOPIC ZOOM SESSIONS
Joy Leach has submitted the following:
INVITATION TO JOIN THE MAY TOPIC ZOOM
Monday May 15th from 8 -10pm or so (log-on any time after 7.30). Anyone wishing to take part, either as a performer or as audience, please email Joy Leach using firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’d like to play, sing or recite a poem, (usually a couple of items), we’ll put your name on the Running Order for the evening. Should your preference be to drop-in and take potluck, it’s worth a try. The MC for the evening will try to accommodate, depending on the numbers expected.
You’ll be sent the details, passcodes and a link before the event. Audience members are most welcome. With your permission, we’ll add your name and details to an email circulation list. You’ll then be notified each month, a week or so in advance of the session and will be asked to let us know if you plan to join that month.
Jim Saville kindly lets us use his Zoom Pro, so that we can run the evening without a break.
TONIGHT (MAY 1st) Pete Ivatts is playing at Liz Narey's Bingley First Monday Folk. Pete has performed at The Topic on more than one occasion, with his sensitive songs, sometimes poignant, sometimes humorous, always well crafted.
Venue: The Ryshworth Club, Keighley Road,Crossflatts, BD16 2HB.
Doors 7pm, performance at 8pm, entry by donation to the hat/raffle.
TOM BLISS - CHARITY GIGS
Many of you will remember the days when Tom Bliss was appearing regularly on the local and not so local acoustic music scene. A fine musician and excellent songwriter, he often appeared at the Topic and other local venues, either solo or in various collaborations.
Tom gave up the music scene some years ago and has since been teaching at Leeds Beckett University and involved in various environmental projects. He and his family suffered a body-blow in 2016 when his daughter Ellie was diagnosed with MS, after which Tom briefly reappeared to help raise funds for the MS Society by doing a small series of gigs with a band he put together called The Burning Bridges (Tom, Ross Bennett and Dave Bowie), which raised over £3600.
Sadly,Tom’s daughter’s condition has worsened, prompting him to come out of musical retirement once more to raise more funds for the Society. He will be performing with the band at three gigs nearby, as follows:
26 May 7.30 for 8: Folk at the Farrier, Horse and Farrier, Otley
The Horse & Farrier, 7 Bridge Street Otley LS21 1BQ
27 May 7.30 for 8: North Light Arts, formerly Inkwell Arts, Leeds
31 Potternewton Lane, Chapel Allertton Leeds LS7 3LW
2 June 7.30 for 8: City of York Roland Walls Folk Weekend, Black Swan, York
Black Swan Inn, Peasholme Green, York YO1 7PR (also supporting Motor Neurone Research)
All pay as you feel for the Multiple Sclerosis Society (and Motor Neurone Research - 2nd June)
For anyone who wishes to support Tom but is unable to attend any of the gigs, you can visit:
which also gives a moving account of Tom's previous fundraising campaign and some more background detail.
Other news from around and about:
Buck Inn: as mentioned previously, Muppett's Buck Inn sessions are on hold for the summer: however, on Sunday June 4th there will be a Buck Inn Late Spring Fling!!!!! ( Musicians, Singers and Poets session) between 2pm and 5pm. More details in the next newsletter.
Cleckheaton Folk Festival. Many of you will know by now that this year's Cleckheaton Folk Festival has been cancelled, as the Town Hall, one of the Festival's main venues has been considered unsafe and remedial work is not going to be completed in time. Our condolences go to the hard-working team that has brought us this fine festival over the years and have been doing their best to reinstate it as an annual event after the pandemic.
A reminder that Andy is kindly allowing us to continue to use the upstairs room at Groove Pad for guest nights. Singers and musicians nights will continue to take place in the downstairs cafe bar.
Remember too that we now accept (indeed prefer) payment by card.
Membership of the Topic Folk Club - still only £5 - runs from 1st January and entitles you the lower ticket prices shown in this newsletter as well as the chance to become more involved in the workings of the club if you would like to. You can join or renew your membership on any club night.
For performers who may be thinking of approaching the club for a booking, please email: email@example.com
If you’re visiting the club for the first time, be sure to come and say hello, and if anyone has any suggestions for the club, for example if you would like us to try to book a particular artist, we’d like to hear them.
The Topic runs on Thursdays at Groove Pad, 48 Saltaire Road, Shipley BD18 3HN, 7.30 pm start with a target time of 10pm to finish. Like all the clubs in the area, our aim is to provide good quality live entertainment to suit all tastes of those interested in folk music, and we are hoping we can count on you for your continued support.
Floor singers are always welcome (though may be limited if we have a booked support act - please check). Please arrive by 7.15 pm if you’d like a slot – it helps the MC to plan the evening.
Covid is still around: please continue to take precautions when visiting the club.
Topic Folk Club