Time for a spot of pondering. Christmas is fast approaching and yet the west end of Glasgow is a peaceful place with no more activity than you would expect of a quiet Wednesday night. It is, however, on the cold side so shelter had to be sought and it was duly found in the basement of Roxy 171. As if it had actually been planned, The Colts, Chris Blair and Matthew Dickson were also there to perform a tune or two.
Just like pulling a cracker (only without the bang and the cat choking plastic toy obviously), Chris Blair took to the stage. It has been a while indeed since he last graced Glasgow with his presence and, as I recall, he was generally used, in those distant times, as the yardstick by which other acoustic singer songwriters were judged. Perhaps unsurprisingly he drew heavily from his back catalogue for his set tonight but, as always, he ably demonstrated dexterity and commitment to his art.
The Colts sat themselves down, plugged themselves in and set about doing the amiable thing. Obviously not lacking in experience of playing to a pub audience, they delivered a good natured set of acoustic country rock that mixed self penned songs about ladies of the night with respectful covers of genre standards. Apparently they too had been strangers to the stage for some months but you would likely not have guessed that from their performance.
Rounding things off was Matthew Dickson. Unassuming was his middle name as he attempted to merge himself into the wall of the Roxy. Looking somewhat awkward and clearly determined to be downbeat à la Leonard Cohen, he nonetheless demonstrated an underlying, and positively wry, sense of humour and a musical eloquence that will do him credit in the long run. Or his undoing if he keeps telling stories involving illegal substances whilst his father is in the audience.
Then a voice said to me – I hear voices, you see – that it was fried food time. Time, as they say, for a sharp exit.