Catching up with two heroes

Colin Hayes on his retirement
Colin Hayes on his retirement
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I suppose we all have heroes; a person who stands head and shoulders above the rest and who makes an impression on our lives; somebody we try to emulate; someone whose shoes we would like to fill.

I have had such a musical hero since my teens and just over a week ago had the pleasure of attending a Gordon Lightfoot concert at the Royal Albert Hall.

Fair enough, at seventy-seven and having survived some serious health issues, the Canadian troubadour’s voice wasn’t as strong as in his heyday – but how he managed to hold a capacity crowd spellbound.

I had last seen him, at the Albert Hall, back in 1971 and for me the magic was still there. I got to wondering how many aspiring musicians have decided to pick up an instrument and take that nervous first step to performing in public at, say, an open mike or singaround because of the inspiration of one such particular artist.

That brings me conveniently on to Spalding Folk Club’s singaround two weeks ago. Colin Hayes, who has chaired the monthly event for many years, and who finally decided to call it a day.

A buffet supper added to the party atmosphere and the evening was rounded off with the presentation of a special cake and a framed photo collage of many of the performers and audience of recent years.

We wish Colin well and are grateful for his loyal stewardship over the years.

(I am especially grateful for that time, some fourteen years or so ago, when Colin cajoled me into fetching my guitar from out of the car boot and taking my first nervous steps. Was it, perhaps, a Gordon Lightfoot song?)

Tomorrow, Friday 3rd, is the First Fridays Singaround at the Wishing Well, Dyke (8 pm).

Also in that area, on Tuesday 7th, is the Masons Folk & Acoustic Club at the Mason’s Arms, South Street, Bourne (8 pm).

Spalding Folk Club’s music session is at the Lincoln Arms, Bridge Street, on Thursday 9th (8 pm) and there is a singaround at the Hare and Hounds, Haconby, on Sunday 12th (also 8 pm).

Boston Folk Club’s guest on Monday 13th will be Dave Gibb at the Eagle, West Street, Boston (8.15 pm).