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Breaking the Palmeira's jinx

The first two 2013 gigs I had booked have both been cancelled, and coincidentally both were scheduled for the Palmeira, an intimate and unpretentious pub in Hove.

Kelly Joe Phelps was the first to drop out of the diary. I was properly sympathetic when I heard he has a neurological complaint which stops him playing the guitar - which he normally does astonishingly well - and his whole tour has had to go.

I was less sympathetic with the normally ebullient Fred Eaglesmith, who apparently woke up rather late in the day to the fact that his European tour schedule posed some logistical challenges. 'Wimp' was my first (and, indeed, second) thought - but then I found that he was supposed to have played Utrecht, Hove and Glasgow on successive nights... Doable by plane, but less straightforward in a van. I'll let you off this time, Fred.

So, I am less than completely confident in urging all within travelling distance of this watering-hole to hold 3 May in your diaries. Who knows what will happen in the next 10 weeks? But, as of now, the unequivocally wonderful Hiss Golden Messenger are due to appear, with William Tyler also on the bill. Who he? Well, try this for size - quite extraordinary guitar playing... So book up anyway, and let's hope it's third time lucky and the gig actually happens.

In other news, Michael Chapman is due back at the West Hill Hall next weekend... And I have just booked flights to Alberta aiming for the Canmore and Edmonton Folk Festivals in August. Edmonton introduced me to both Kelly Joe and Fred: it would be very nice if one or both were back there this year.

As always, watch this space.

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