Few great venues, plenty of great gigs

Scottish folk duo Anna Massie and Mairearad Green.
Scottish folk duo Anna Massie and Mairearad Green.

If there’s one thing the music scene lacks in the Harrogate area its good venues., writes Gig Scene Editor Graham Chalmers.

There is certainly much to be cheerful about; the amount of talented young bands, the AMP Awards, the efforts of the Ont’ Sofa boys, DJ Trev’s Bottom of the Bottle night, the expertise of live production company FTAV.

Still, with the exception of the Blues Bar and, to a lesser extent, the Harrogate Brasserie, there are no bars or venues putting on live music nightly.

Fortunately, that gap is filled in a piecemeal fashion by the large number of promoters and bar owners putting on occasional gigs.

And there’s plenty of activity on that front right now.

Fake Thackray, a brilliant tribute act to cult Yorkshire folk genius Jake Thackray, is playing Frazer Theatre on Saturday, December 1 to raise funds for the theatre’s roof.

Closer to hand at the same venue, acclaimed Scottish folk duo Anna Massie and Mairearad Green appear on Saturday, November 17 complete with accordian, bagpipes, mandolin, guitar, banjo and fiddle.

More information at www.kula-productions.com

Sticking with Knaresborough, highly-regarded folk troubadour Allan Taylor is coming to Henshaws Arts & Crafts Centre on Friday, November 23 thanks to Cerise Music promoters.

Tickets are available from Cerise Music on 07910 984618, from Pear, 24 High Street, Knaresborough and Henshaws Arts & Crafts Centre and from Cerise Music on 07910 984618.

It wouldn’t be the festive season for blues fans if RipleyBlues weren’t active at Ripley.

Dr Feelgood return on Saturday, December 1 while The Blockheads are back on December 29.

In Boston Spa, rhythm & blues specialists The Bluekings on Saturday, November 24 at the village hall.

Support for this party night comes from young Harrogate band Albion who mix originals with covers by The Who, The Jam and more.

And we end this section, appropriately, with the Blues Bar which promises a cracking line-up of live music this Sunday with top originals bands Hope and Social in the afternoon and Kasiuss in the evening.

Talking of the Blues Bar, one of its resident bands, The Birdman Rallies have posted a new video to a track off their last album Moons.

I’ve checked out the film of Telescope Katie on YouTube and it’s a brilliant – in a psychedelic way.

There are links to the film at our website (www.harrogateadvertiser.co.uk) and www.thebirdmanrallies.com

Legendary folk-rock band The Levellers are currently on tour to promote their tenth studio album, Static on the Airwaves. The band swing our way next Thursday at the 02 Academy in Leeds.

Finally, it’s good to hear that Knaresborough-based DJ Rory Hoy has been shortlisted in the Arts category for the Yorkshire Young Achiever of the Year award hosted by ITV Yorkshire.

More information at www.roryhoy.com