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Tuxedo Junction: Wheatsheaf, Botley Road, Shedfield, this coming Saturday the 22nd, 8.30pm – 11pm

Plus, this Sunday, at the Square Tower, with the bands listed in running order, each one on the hour, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm etc …

SS Xmas Poster


“Talkin’ with Huddie Ledbetter”

I do quite often in the Skiffle Orchestra these days but the title is actually a line from one of the greatest albums in my life, Van Morrison’s Astral Weeks. Apparently it was released 50 years ago this week and with my mates in Rosemary it was a big part of the soundtrack of our lives in the following 18 months.

I’ve just seen a news item on BBC about the anniversary, which drew attention to its references to Belfast, which I’ve never visited, but there are also references to Notting Hill which in those days and again 20 years later was an important alternative to Pompey for me. The feature also described the “folksiness” of the album, but I reckon it’s more significant for the musicians who give it a jazz feel. At that time, Astral Weeks, Miles Davis and Jimi Hendrix hinted at a way forward for pop/rock towards contemporary jazz. It never really happened, but I shall be forever grateful for that wonderful album.