Wednesday 18th January 2012
Deja Vu, Reading, RG1 2LG
Bohemian Night open-mic hosted by Rob Sowden
It's inevitable when doing open-mics that there are some acts that you're just not going to get on with. It's a taste / chemistry thing. And the way I deal with it is simple: those few acts that are not to my taste I just don't talk about (in fact there are too many great acts to talk about anyway). However I have to say when Wayeta Pilgrim takes to the stage at Bohemian Night my heart sinks and I envisage my life just ebbing away from me.
It's not that she's not talented. Undoubtedly she is a great singer (though perhaps not as much as she hopes). However she will insist on what I call "showboating" i.e. rather just singing a song properly she'll piss around with mock banter with whomever is accompanying her (who are usually great by the way and I wonder how they find themselves in the situations that they do), grand gestures, mock forgetting lyrics. I guess she thinks it's entertaining. I just find it frustrating and boring. And actually, possibly more importantly, with so many acts still waiting to play, disrespectful. She appears out of nowhere, having not sat waiting with the other acts, indulges herself and then disappears again; behaviour that doesn't seem to fit in with the spirit of open-mics and indeed begs the question, what would happen if we all acted like that? The phrase "Big fish in a small pond" springs to mind. She is one of the few acts whom I can't wait to get off the stage.
Don't get me wrong, the evening wasn't a disaster: many of the other acts were really very good. And as for my performance, well, having been wound up by Wayeta, I think it could best be described as "passionate" rather than with any finese (perhaps that's always the case anyway?) Nevertheless I received some compliments afterwards which were much appreciated and indeed a comment which made me feel that I might actually be doing something right here.
Don't forget The Chinese New Year Celebrations Gig at The Jolly Anglers on 27th January. More details have been added here.
Tears of a Clown (Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Hank Cosby)
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