Tuesday, 19 April 2011

What a Hurly burly Time

Last Tuesday evening a friend and I took a trip up to London to our first "official" burlesque show, I have always seen little snippets of some burlesque shows at weekenders such as Hemsby and the Rhythm Riot however never stuck around to see the whole shbang generally because I always thought that five minutes of  boobs is enough for me, but I was in need of a night out as Chatham does fairly grind me down ,so with tickets at a bargain price of a mere £10 I couldn't really turn down a night out for that kind of money. So off we went to see Miss Polly Rae's Hurly Burly Show at the Garrack Theatre in Charing Cross.

Directed by William Baker this was a magnificent modern take on the kitsch kooky performance of Burlesque, helping it hit the mainstream that little bit more it  was open to women and men of all ages and looking at the crowd there was just as many women as men so this wasn't your average strip show. At first I have to admit I did feel slightly uncomfortable because I hadn't really seen this many women in so little before and it was all slightly crude but it was all fits and giggles and I realised I was being silly and soon got into it! I loved the fact that all the women were slightly different and weren't your average "pin up" so they weren't all with pin curls and cats eyes but just a gaggle of girls that knew how to dance.

What was I to expect, was it just girls taking their kit off through the show or would there be Shakespeare with extra twirling tassels. Well I'd have to say a bit of both! Of course all the ladies were rather good at slowly stripping the stockings off but there was humour and stylishly thought out themes such as western, police women and school girl... Sounds like a perverts dream come true but no it had class if a school girl can have class?

Each routine had a cleverly put together dance with songs to match such as Lady Gaga's Bad Romance, The Pet Shop Boy's it's a sin and their own self written tunes! And if those women were too much for you then there was a swooning crooner Spencer Day who certainly lightened my evening up, how he managed to control himself with all those beauts is beyond me, He worked his magic while the girls were changing for the next sketch and we girls were more than happy to sit there and drool.

Miss Polly Rae oozed confidence and sophistication and completely stole the show (and so she should as it was her show!) A petite scarlet vixen with a dazzling voice which was a little bit nice but a lot of Naughtiness. She had charm, she had class and she had the crowd in the palm of her hand as well as her Hurly Burly Girls .

With rhinestone encrusted outfits that if you blink you'll miss it, it was a show Dita Von Teese would be proud of, using companies such as Agent Provocateur and What Katie Did to name but a couple, for how scantily dressed the girls were it could have been easily misinterpreted for sleazy but no, thanks to the amount of teasing there was very little time to think about the strip!

This performance made me think that women are using this as a way of empowerment, something that makes them feel good and glamorous about themselves and damn right with burlesque work shops popping up all over the country this show made all the women in the audience think Yes I can do that,I can add a bit of bump and grind into my everyday life! Because that's what it got me thinking but as I have as much class as a plant pot and have two left feet I don't think I'll be stripping my draws off anytime soon, only  when it's time to put my pajamas on. A fab night out that made me proud to be a woman!
Until Next Time
Toodle Pip

Photos by Chris Jackson curtesey of Google ;)

Monday, 4 April 2011

Chalking up the Blues... London style

A few weekends back was the first time I had ventured out to London town in god only knows how long! And gosh was it a weekend a long time coming! Months ago I saw a flyer for Dingwalls 25th Anniversary special gig with the one and only Big Sandy and the Fly Rite trio as soon as I saw this I knew I had to go because being a fan of the big man for quite some time and only seeing him once and that was last year, I still had a lot of catching up to do, what made the idea of having a night out in London even better was the fact that the Hillbilly Hop was relaunching the night before, so why not make a weekend of it I thought, so me and the fella booked up our classy travel lodge (only top quality for moi...) and decided that was the weekend for us!

 It is actually amazing how time flies, because before we knew it, the weekend was upon us so heading to London we checked in and glammed ourselves up for the first of two long nights in London town. The Hillbilly Hop had three great acts on which first sold it to me, I am a girl that likes to watch a band so this was a must for me, and luckily the beautiful Ruby Ann, Bill Fadden and the Tagalongs and Mr Dollar Bill were all on the line up, what a night!

A couple of my girls and me! 
I'd heard about the Hop quite some time ago but never managed to go when it used to be open so I was glad that I went to this gig because it was such a fab night, they definitely got the crowd they wanted for a reopening, so many people that I hadn't seen in so long so it was great to catch up with everyone! Bill Fadden's band new band were completely different to what I was expecting compared to his past bands where they have been straight out rockabilly, this one had a good variation of different styles with him singing the Lee Dresser classic doing the rounds at the moment El Camino Real and Benny Joys hit Little Red Book, definitely a band I want to see again.

 Ruby Ann and Dollar Bill I'd seen previously and have always thought they were both great at what they do, a long ole night for someone on J2O's all night but I managed it but was glad to hit the hay at the end of it!

Sunday came and it was Dingwalls time! Yes Big Sandy time! Unfortunately we didn't arrive there until later but my god when we got there, I've never seen so many people in such a small space! Obviously everyone had the same idea about going there because lets face it there isn't many chances to see Big Sandy in the UK but luckily this year I'll get to see him twice with him also being at the Rockabilly Rave this summer (I cannot wait!).

In the hotel, as you do

Don't we look glam?
So we got there around 6 and we got there just in time for the Caezars coming on but unfortunately didn't see much of them because I had to help my friend do a photo shoot (ohh the things I do!) but of what I heard they sounded great as usual with  AJ and the boys giving it 110% . Without trying to sound too fluffy I was a bit gutted that there wasn't enough room to dance because of the amount of people but you expect this with Dingwalls because everyone's cramming to have a jive or bop, but never the less had I had the best time.

 Big Sandy certainly pulled the crowd in when he came on singing his big hits such as Chalking it up to the blues and Thru Dreaming and also was talking to the crowd like he'd known us for years. Audience participation is always good! Especially when he was asking everyone their first record they bought and his guitarist starting singing Message to you Rudy and then others starting singing Crazy Cavan, ohh lordy lord was there a mix but the crowd loved it and so did I! Unfortunately it went to quick but by the end of the night when the Dj's were back on everyone were dancing on the stage after the bands cleared up and there wasn't any room to swing a cat, I attempted to have a go (not swing a cat that is!) but kept getting hit here there and everywhere by other couples giving it some (oo er missus!)

                                            Those girls bows were in every bloody photo!


I noticed both nights that even though I didn't drink which is a rarity for me I had the best of times even though I thought I'd be bored from not drinking, it sure was great not waking up with a hangover! It was nice to get glammed up again because I hadn't been out in yonks, more times like this ahead please, well when I have money and not a continuous amount of work to do .

Until Next Time
Toodle Pip