At: Groove Pad, 48 Saltaire Road, Shipley BD18 3HN
Topic Newsletter Archive
Newsletter No 259 - January 2024
Hello again all, and a Happy New Year to you. Hope you had a good Christmas and that 2024 will be a good year for everyone.
Our bookings secretary has done a great job for the coming year, with almost all dates filled, and a great variety of performers visiting the club.
For starters, this month:
4th January: Singers & Musicians (£1 entry).
11th January: John Hegley
To quote from a well-known TV series of yesteryear: “...and now for something completely different”….. London-based John Hegley is a mandolin-toting funny man, performance poet, musician, with an impressive CV, even if it’s one not often seen on the folk music circuit. He has appeared on BBC TV and Radios 1 and 4 (including sessions with John Peel); hosted a TV poetry series; was a Perrier Comedy award nominee; was BBC Online poet in residence and Keats House poet in residence. He is a regular at the Edinburgh Festival, and has produced 12 books. And one mug. He also found time in an earlier life to study at the University of Bradford.
Scandalously talented Sunday Times
Marvellous joyful fun Telegraph
An incurable entertainer The Guardian
Support tonight from Chris Manners, a song-maker, singer and guitarist who has been on the Yorkshire folk scene for many years and has performed on previous occasions at the Topic. He is a resident with Ryburn 3 Step and Ryburn folk club in Ripponden.
18th January: Singers & Musicians (£1 entry).
25th January: Briony Griffith & Alice Jones
Hailing from West Yorkshire, Bryony and Alice are long-time purveyors of English folk music, united by a fascination with local folk song and tune collections.
As a powerful new duo, they have taken the folk scene by storm with their signature sound of fiddle, harmonium, tenor guitar, body percussion, beautifully matched vocals, and intricate harmonies in their trademark regional accents. Combining their respect and understanding of tradition with their own contemporary style of performance, they present a unique repertoire of harmony, heritage, and Northern banter.
Following the success of their 2022 debut album A Year Too Late and a Month Too Soon which earned the pair 5-star reviews and global airplay, Bryony and Alice are back with Wesselbobs, a sensational new album of winter songs and tunes produced by Joe Rusby.
Featuring uniquely local versions of more classic seasonal songs, they have unearthed a treasure trove of traditional gems, intuitively arranged to cast a spotlight on the rich traditions, tales, and winter rituals of Yorkshire. The album’s title Wesselbobs refers to a local pastime whereby decorated evergreen boughs, built around a spherical frame, were carried door to door by Wassailers or carol singers in the 18 and 1900s. Also known as Wessel-bobs, Wassail-bobs, or Wesley-bobs, it most notably occurred in the communities of West Yorkshire.
Straight up, beautiful and bold folk singing - Mark Radcliffe - BBC Radio 2
Two of Yorkshire’s finest – Folk Radio UK
Honest, wholesome, and thoroughly enjoyable – Mojo
A sparkling tribute to Yorkshire’s folk heritage - Songlines
Joy Leach has submitted the following:
This is an invitation to join the First Topic Zoom of the New Year on Monday January 15th in the comfort of your own home. Performers and audience members from far and near are welcome. Doors will open at 7.30 for an 8pm start and the programme will run till 10pm. Singers, musicians, storytellers and poets can all take part. Any further enquiries about participating, pass codes for each evening etc, please email: email@example.com or text 07947 747998
THE TOPIC AND BRADFORD CITY OF CULTURE 2025
A reminder (there will be many!!) that we are involved in one of the cultural events in the run up to Bradford City of Culture 2025 as per the following:
Folk Songs for Bradford District - Person and Place: Creating Songs about People and Places of Bradford District.
See the attached flyer for full details of this ambitious project. (Please note the new email address firstname.lastname@example.org which replaces the one on the previous flyer).
This project is by no means limited to the usual participants in the acoustic music scene: if you know of anyone outside our orbit who might be interested in being involved, please let them know about it, nay, encourage them.
Great news! Cleckheaton Folk Festival is back this year, with the usual star-studded line-up. make a note of the dates, 5th, 6th and 7th July 2024, visit www.cleckheatonfolkfestival.org for details and updates.
Buck Inn: Muppett's next Buck Inn session is on 14th January, 1 pm- 4pm. It's timed so that the session can be accessed by the Dales Bus; DalesBus Timetable Booklet. See the previous newsletter or visit https://dales-music-and-dance-collective.org.uk/
As I'm sure you're now aware, guest nights as well as singers & musicians nights are now held in the downstairs bar. Please note that doors will now open at 7 pm to enable the seating arrangements to be completed for the evening.
For those of you wishing to partake of drinks that are only available from the upstairs bar, would you please go upstairs to purchase them, as the bar staff are not able to leave their bar area. When doing so, it would be much appreciated if you would try to leave and come back between songs, as is normal folk club etiquette.
Remember that we now accept (indeed prefer) payment by card, but you can of course pay by cash if that suits you better.
MEMBERSHIP (A polite reminder that membership renewal is now due)
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, doors will open at 7 pm with a 7.30 pm start and 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, seemingly more than ever: please continue to take precautions when visiting the club.
Topic Folk Club