Saturday, 19 November 2011

Birthday, Blues and Beaches

The week leading up to my performance at The Tenby Blues Festival and four day holiday in Saundersfoot was not a great one. I was feeling rough, real rough! I won't explain what was wrong but it wasn't pleasant and I'd well and truly had enough by Friday night when I travelled with Maria down into Pembrokeshire, clutching the magic pills the Doctor had given me hours before that just about made me feel human.

By mid day on Saturday we had met up with my Uncle and Aunt who were also in the area and the four of us were enjoying beautiful Tenby. The blues festival is in it's 6th year and swinging away quite happily in the various theatres, pubs and cafes of all sizes and vintages that adorn this quintessential British holiday town.

A bit of personal history; Saundersfoot, the next village on from Tenby, was my family holiday destination throughout my childhood. I stopped going for a few years when booze and night clubs pulled me into planes and across the sea for summer holidays, and then very happily returned a few years ago. I discovered that Tenby hosts a Blues Festival every November, and was lucky enough to be invited along this year. The fact that all this was to take place on my birthday, 12th of November, just added to the very special nature of the gig.

My main performance was to take place in Caffe Vista, a place that had opened since my last visit to Tenby. I went along a few hours early to say hello and check everything was OK. This aptly names establishment boasts a stop you in your tracks view across the Tenby Harbour from it's balcony and through this amazing window...

I was greeted by the owner Yanni, and in our chat I discovered that he has created an excellent live venue through his passion and personal experiences as a musician. Some truly great names perform at Caffe Vista, if you are ever in the area it's a priority to check whether you'll be around at the time of one of these gigs. Here's the facebook page

In the early evening I performed my two hour sets at Caffe Vista. Both sets were well attended by lovely audiences, featuring both locals and Festival holiday makers. Very nice people; they even sang happy birthday to me!

I'd also been booked to perform at a late night session at The Giltar Hotel. I turned up at midnight as requested and played a short set to some very drunk musos and blues music fans. Bit of an odd one but here again people sang along and treated me well. It was also cool to see inside this posh hotel, in a part of the town I hadn't really seen before.

The next afternoon we returned to Caffe Vista to say thanks to Yanni. We also met his daughters, had some great food and generally lived it up. Here's me and Yanni. I'm windswept, he's interesting.

The next few days it was holiday time in really remarkably mild November weather. Carew Castle, Haverfodwest, Skrinkle Heaven, we did it all. Great way to spend a birthday, I love Pembrokeshire, I love playing gigs and meeting cool people.

Love life.

This week anyway!

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