Paul Goodwin

Back in the saddle, temporarily

Published on Sun 15 Jun 2014

I had one of the best weekends I've had for a good while the other week. On the Friday night I did my first "proper" gig since September, at the Folk Club. We'd spent the week in The Lake District (my God it's pretty there, but the tiny roads are a bit scary for a new driver) and the drive home took 7 hours rather than the 4 that Google had predicted (admittedly there was a Nando's break in Preston, but still) meaning that not only did I not get to practice (I'd not touched my guitar for months) but also I didn't get to the gig until the doors were open. I had a bit of a play in the broom cupboard during the first act (The Broadside Boys - made a very big noise for two people, though one of them was playing a few things at once a lot of the time - they sounded great through the cupboard wall) and everything seemed ok. It felt like old times on stage. I really love the Folk Club, as comical as it can be sometimes - I don't think I'd have got through the being completely shit phase if it hadn't been for such a supportive place. There were a reasonable number of people there. I spend a lot of time not really paying attention these days (is that a getting older thing?) so it was nice to feel like I used to.

Setlist: The Ghost of Paddy's Night Past, Watertight, Magnetic or Rhetorical (no idea how I remembered all the words - I'd not planned to play it), Phosphorus Burn, This Place is Dead Anyway, Muscle Memory, Some Manic Pixie Dreamgirl Bullshit, Cold Case, Edinburgh. Encore(!): You Won't Break My Heart (half of - forgot the words, which is surprising considering I remembered all of Magnetic...), Closure.

I think Saturday was mostly spent unpacking, but on Sunday I went to Wembley to see Cambridge United finally get promoted back to the Football League. The only other game I'd been to all season was the second leg of the playoff semi-final (which was a much better atmosphere than this, what with Wembley being nowhere near the stadium The Abbey is) so I felt like a part timer, but I've watched more games than 90% of the other people there over the last decade I reckon. They were playing Gateshead, who had brought an awful lot of people too considering how far it is, how few fans they have (I think there were a lot of Newcastle United tourists) and how few people from Gateshead have ever been outside Gateshead. It was fun watching them try to use the ticket barriers on the Underground. You know that Simpsons episode where the elephant just keeps charging into other elephants? I think they must have got to the stadium early, because Baker Street was a sea of amber all morning, and there was a distinct contrast between the two entrances.


The first half was pretty terrible and felt very reminiscent of the other two times I've been to Wembley where neither team played well and Cambridge lost 1-0, but, not that surprisingly in the so obviously scripted it may as well be WWE world we live in, the ex-Gateshead player took a wonderful corner for Cambridge's first and then scored a properly incredible free kick that we were sitting right behind. It ranks in the top ten 2 second periods of my life. And I'm not sure what the others would be. One of the nicest things about Cambridge getting promoted is that their ex-manager and now Director of Football has been doing a 676 mile walk to raise money for the youth team because the FA only fund league youth teams. If you drop out of The League you lose £100,000 a year, if you get back in, you get it back. Pretty stupid, though to be fair, a copy of Harry Redknapp's autobiography has appeared in our office, and everyone involved in football seems pretty stupid. Cambridge will, I guess, have a lot of money for the youth team next year.

I did another gig this Friday at The Boat House. They are like half-empty buses. It was super last minute (I found out about it at 4). Shows how much I've been going out in the last while that they've completely remodelled the pub and I had no idea. I enjoyed all the other acts (Heartworks, Theresa Elflein and B-Sydes), and I particularly enjoyed that the crowd seemed like the kind of crowd that could deal with a 100% sad song set. I feel a bit ridiculous being all angsty at my age but what are you going to do?

Setlist: Take it All (half of - SOMEONE's (my...) mobile phone kept interfering with the mic), The Ghost of Paddy's Night Past, Watertight, Muscle Memory, Radio Silence, Heat Death (new song!), Black Coffee and Bromide.

In other news, the new album is "coming along".