It has been an exceptionally busy few weeks since my last blog post filled with many fun and interesting gigs. The types of gig that I have been playing have been extremely varied, including solo guitar, duos with Laura White and Claire Barker, various jazz bands, my funk/fusion band, the Claire Barker band… certainly diverse! Playing the Heart FM Fireworks event in Great Yarmouth was incredible as there was an audience of around 12500 people. The entire crowd was dancing and singing to the Claire Barker Band and it felt great playing to such a large and appreciative audience.
Wedding Shows, Festivals, Jazz and Cabaret
The previous two weekends have been particularly busy as I have not only been playing gigs with various lineups, it has also been two consecutive Sundays of wedding shows. On Sunday 7th September, I was manning the stand with Laura White at the St. Andrews Hall Wedding Show. A bit of moving around was required at this wedding show as I was playing solo guitar at the stand whilst Laura was answering questions from show visitors, and we also played a set on the stage before each fashion show.
After the St Andrews wedding show, it was time to quickly pack up and get to the Swardeston jazz festival at which I performed a set with Laura. It was great to catch up with many musician friends at the festival and the event was a great success, especially as it was the festival’s first year.
On Sunday 14th September, I was exhibiting at the Sprowston Manor Wedding Prom and Party Show. This wedding show is always extremely busy and there was a great deal of interest from many of the brides attending the show. A special mention has to go to Bradley Hatch Jewellers for their amazing help at the wedding show. As I was alone on my stand for most of the day, they very kindly offered to help hand out my information whilst I performed. The kind offer was very much appreciated and helped me a great deal. Their stand looked amazing and they were all extremely lovely people. The selection of products they brought to the show looked outstanding and from the conversations with visitors that I overheard, they have great attention to detail. I highly recommend paying a visit to Bradley Hatch Jewellers!
It was great to see the wonderful Toastmaster Bob at the show. Always a pleasure to chat with Bob and his usual wit and charm was being enjoyed by the wedding show visitors. Toastmaster Bob is available to act as toastmaster, master of ceremonies or compere at any venue in Norfolk, Suffolk and throughout East Anglia and the UK.
The amazing smell of freshly cooked waffles filled the air on Sunday as The Waffle Works were exhibiting close by. I couldn’t resist indulging in a maple syrup and crushed hazelnut waffle. Exquisite!
After the Sprowston Manor show, it was time to quickly pack up and rush to the Norwich Playhouse as I was performing with Laura White at the Jazz and Cabaret evening. This is a fantastic show that has been running since 2003. Chris Bailey does an amazing job of organising this charity event. It was a full house and an evening of great performances. I also had the pleasure of playing in the band with Michael Bailey to open the event.
In the second half of the show, I performed a set with Laura White. The sound guys did a great job and even with a large audience on a big stage, it was an intimate performance and very enjoyable to play. We received many great comments after the show and it was lovely to play for such an enthusiastic audience.
The Paul Hill Band – Jazz/funk/Fusion
The Jazz Weekender at Open was very successful. Simon Brown has done a fantastic job in organising this new event and I hope it goes from strength to strength. I opened the two day event with my jazz/funk/fusion band. Our set consisted of tunes by such artists as John Scofield, Pat Metheny, Mike Stern, Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea to name a few. This is not your usual jazz band as it is focused on great grooves and gets quite intense at times! The band consists of Andy Doyle – electric bass, Cath Evans – drums and Simon Brown – keys. Our next gig with this lineup is at Lakeside jazz club on the 22nd October. This certainly is not a wedding band, but if you like getting into some serious grooves, you will enjoy this gig!
Next Public Performance
I have also been extremely busy playing lots of weddings with the Claire Barker Band. Our next public gig is this Friday (19th September) at the Brickmakers in Norwich. I look forward to playing at the Brickmakers as it is always a great night. If you fancy coming along, we will start playing at 9.30pm.
That’s about it for this blog post. Hopefully I will see you at a gig soon!
By Paul Hill