Zog Blog Grimsby Jazz - Old Clee Club & Christ Church - Music in Marlow / by Elaine Crouch

Gig 16

It’s a long picturesque drive up to Grimsby and when we arrived it had got quite cold. We set up and sound checked in a larger deader room than last night in Marlow, and, satisfied it was sounding good and with a newly created coda to
'The Things We Did Last Summer', we did what you have to do up here - fish and chips at the legendary Steels Corner House Restaurant in Cleethorpes. The fish was beautifully fresh and the chip portions humongous.

Back at the gig we probably had 50-60 people, pretty much entirely an elderly crowd. I asked promoter, Gill Wilde, if this is the demographic for the young bands when they play here and she said that they can’t book young bands because no one comes to hear them (only when slotted in between the established bands on the festival). Apparently there is another venue attended by a younger audience, but where the admission is free and the program oriented around jam sessions (so the musicians don’t need to be paid). There’s going to be a problem in a few years time when the older audience pass away and there's no one left to play to prepared to pay to listen, less subsidy, etc....

The first set seemed to go fairly well but I sensed a bit of apathy from the audience which I put down to us being a little further away on a stage than last night. However, this feeling was backed up by how few people came to talk to me when I set up in the audience during the break to try to sell some CDs. Only 4 tonight. I don’t think we played at a much lower intensity than last night, but inevitably found the process more up hill due to the less tangible feedback. It’s amazing how much the vibe from the crowd affects your sense of how well the gig is going...

Christ Church - Music in Marlow - Gig 15

A characterful old Bechstein piano and beautiful acoustic made this venue ideal for our acoustic approach. We had a full house (around 100) and really great, relaxed, gig. We sold 39 CDs! Many of the audience came and chatted to me enthusiastically about the music. It was very inspiring to sense this level of interest and palpable involvement. This was definitely one of the best gigs on the tour so far. Big thanks to promoter Martin Ashford for doing such a great job.