Another fine, fine evening of music as the nights begin to draw in and everyone feels like getting nice and cosy. October Retune offered true variety: mind-boggling acoustic guitar playing, witty piano-led lyrical songwriting and a ferocious and super-tight trio.
Retune founder Tom Ryder kicked off the night with the usual introductions, and was joined onstage by fellow director Greg Camburn for a version of Chaka Khan’s Ain’t Nobody followed by a new original There Must Be A Song. Greg demonstrated his brilliance once more, firstly on the saxophone and then on the tin whistle.
Then it was time for Richard Burrell. What an astonishingly good guitar player and composer he is. As well as several original pieces full of technical wizardry, he treated us to magnificent instrumental arrangements of Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell, I Can’t Make You Love Me by Bonnie Raitt and These Are The Days by Van Morrison. Great choices, even if Richard did confess that he’s not a big fan of Van. A shocking admission!
Alice Walker was the perfect act for the middle of the evening. Her lyrically-complex songs are expertly delivered, with a suitable amount of sarcastic patter in between. It should also be mentioned that she has an exquisite vocal, and Alice provided some very entertaining answers to Tom’s questions in the onstage interview that followed her set.
Max Palmer had originally been booked to play some of his solo acoustic originals, but we are so glad that he brought along Will on bass and keys and Brad on cajon to accompany him. At times he channels Rory Gallagher, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Jeff Buckley, so we were in great company. The band can do it all, from funked up thrashing and killer riffs through to delicate moments with a feather-light touch. It was not surprising that Max broke a string, but I’m sure he’ll be attaching a new one and retuning it to match the others very soon 🙂
Our final gig of 2019 at The Horn at The Half Moon in Bishop’s Stortford is on Sunday 8th December and it is absolutely jam-packed with goodness. See you there.