Due to Allegretta's illness this noticeboard is not up to date, but now that Allegretta is better we hope to keep it up to date from now on. Ally will probably go back and add pictures later.
These are the other concerts we played that are not listed on here:
Gauklernacht -26th November in Belegaer
Miss Sevka requests...
For this appearance we were grateful to be joined by the lovely Hollyberye, who sometimes plays with the four of us regular members. We were honoured to play to a small but friendly crowd at the west gate of Bree.
After the introductions we played ten numbers including the Dwarf tune Sanctus and a Helf song called Forever Autumn. The first high point for this outing was a poem by Reginald Dwale set to a lovely piece of music that was originally named after a little jacket (Bolero).
Then Toolee outdid herself by singin a song in Forrin about a hobbit called Tiny who likes ale a little too much.
The best part for me was when we were joined by two singer musicians who sang a duet about ... well, I suppose it could be called love... but partly inspired by ale again. We would like to thank Thorwien & Tunvil for bringing the song 'Tanz mit Mir' to life as you can see below. We hope that they will join us again soon.
After an encore in which we played two bird songs, we were able to join in the dancing to our lovely hosts - Instant Play
Thank you Instant Play, Hollyberye and to Toolee for the pictures.
We were invited to play the Bird and Baby by one of the organisers and were pleased to do so of course, though this time it was a challenges as it was at fairly short notice. I think we can say we pulled it off with aplomb though.
We started our set with three Alefords (Toolee, Gennetta and me) and were shortly joined by Polyantha. You can see the four of us in the above picture.
In this set, on our home ground as it were, we played some songs that we had not played since our time in the Bilberries, and it was indeed very nice to be able to welcome one of the old band to join us to play a new song all about dresses.
This seemed to be a very appropriate song to sing with Acorne, as she has such taste in dresses (and has lent me the pattern for several of hers).
What can one say? I am still breathless from all the running, jumping and racing that we took part in and the races that we saw!
The Games were brilliant! I cannot praise the Dwarf community enough. I was pleased to see the Dwarves won: they are such good sports! Hobbits came third - we will have to up our game next year.
We were so happy to close the Games, we all had such a good time.
Our concert started a little late due to problems earlier, but it didn't matter, that meant more time to cool off and have a meal or two and some ale.
Miss Hollyberye was our fourth Aleford today. We played several comedy songs and even brought out the Crebain song (formerly the Craban song, because I wasn't sure how it was spelled). I think the crowd were pleased we played that as they never seem to get enough of it. We also played the Yoohoo song and the audience joined in, always a touching moment, I find.
The grass in Bre is always a little long - it came up to my waist - so you can only just see us.
Thank you again to miss Hollyberye for her amazin movin pictures. I was watching her when I wasn't concentratin on my music but I still don't know how she does it.
I think the set was appreciated and was a good start to the games. Either that or the crowd were just so nervous about the following event that they clapped manically.
I don't *think* that they were throwing themselves off the bridge in Rock Belly Pit afterwards in response to our music. Perhaps it just moved them mightily?
We are not sure how Miss Hollyberye manages to do this but she plays her instrument whilst doin some very Rune-keeper-like magics to make this amazin movin picture. Thank you Miss Hollyberye!
We performed at Weatherstock at the top of the hill. The Aleford band that played there were Gennetta, Toolee, Kelidonna and myself.
The day started with a lovely concert by the Lonely Mountain Band and then a procession up the hill from the rather frightening Forsaken Inn. I could see why it had been forsaken! The procession was huge and we were joined by lots of younger people who had little experience of horses and the area, so progress was slow.
When we first arrived it took a long while to settle everyone down before the first bands could perform.
There were 10 bands chosen to play, and they were all excellent, of course. Unfortunately someone let off an appalling green stink bomb soon after the start and people were forced away from the venue, and it took ages before the area was made ready for the bands to perform again.
I won't say much about the other bands as I am sure that they would rather you read about them on their own notice board but suffice to say that they were all very good, the cream of the crop.
We had time to play just four tunes; Bagpipe Boogie which is an instrumental favourite; a song which has become our theme tune, Craban; the lovely folk song called She Moved Through The fair and a new song about Weathertop to a tune called Echo Beach.
After all the bands had performed there was a public vote and we did not do as well as I hoped, in fact we came last. I think the whole band were hugely disappointed, and not least because we had some new words to sing to our Weathertop song, which we would have played at the end. Ah well, we can play that another time.
However we won what to us was an even better prize - the Lonely Mountain Band Cup. What a supreme honour, to be voted best by the very amazing group of people who organised the whole thing. A group of people we hold in high esteem.
We would like to thank:
Mr T Urbine and his associates
the other bands
and most of all the Lonely Mountain Band
Also we thank Hollyberye and Timcoolish (AKA FreeMark) for the moving pictures of the concert which are here
...giving it our all!
We were pleased to be able to play this concert series which is part of the competition process to gain a coveted place to sing at the very pinnacle of the music world in Middle Earth: at Weatherstock itself. With just 55 minutes to showcase the band we knew we would have our work cut out to show all the variety and skills that we possess. Gennetta worked out a wonderful set designed to do just that. After all the other bands performed, we were last on, following last year's Weatherstock winners The Remediators. What an honour!
The Aleford Band on this occasion was Gennetta, Toolee, Kelidonna and Allegretta.
Toolee dressed the four of us in a lovely contrasting outfit, different to our normal green costumes. We played and sang old favourites, new tunes, comedy songs, dance tunes and love songs. This time we did have a larger percentage of songs which means, as Gennetta is fond of saying, that they have lyrics. If they don't have lyrics they are tunes. So having got that clear, let me tell you that for this concert ten of the fourteen tunes we played had lyrics, which is much higher percentage than usual.
We started with a lively dance tune, followed by a song that went down so well at Winterstock, then Gennetta sang the first of two songs, a new song about trying to get some time to herself. I think this will inevitably become know as the Yoohoo song. Toolee wowed the crowd with her singing of the favourite 'Music-box dancer'.
Those who have heard us play will know that we intersperse classical music and folk songs with more modern songs and this concert had a bit of everything, so you would not have been surprised that we had an Hopera song (that is a play that made up only of songs) and the elf classic Seahorses.
We are known as specialists in the comedy song genre and we pleased the crowd with a new song about a mouse, an old one about a travelling saleshobbit and a comedy song about birds. Actually there was another bird song but it was entirely more dark - an Aughairen folk song called Seven Craban.
We always aim to make the audience laugh, cry and think, so to that end we also performed two love songs to make the audience cry, one with music and lyrics brought to us by Toolee. To make the crowd think, I am particularly proud of a song we found and only finished practising a few days ago about the plight of the Rohan people.
Our set seemed to go down very well and we finished with a favourite tune which, in tribute to the lovely Tinki, Gennetta renamed Waltz in Yellow.
Here is a link to the magical moving pictures
Thank you to all the organisers and other bands, and of course to a splendid audience. A special thanks goes to Miss Toolee Twitchytoes for her drawings and to the fine person called Leddyzep who provided the moving pictures. I understand Leddyzep is a distant relative our our own Hollyberye I can only imagine how Toolee remembered all the details after playing so well.
The weather is always good for Shirefest, but that is not what makes it a great festival. The sheer quality of the acts appearing and the welcoming and appreciative audience make Shirefest a joy in which to take part.
We were lucky to be the first band on stage and so opened the Sunday session. We opened the set with a new reel called The Morning Dew, and it set the tone for the session. Almost a quarter of the set, four of the 17 tunes, were on their first outing. It seems a while since we introduced a new reel, and it seemed to go down well.
We treated the crowd to four bird songs, including my current favourite, Nightbird and a song that Gennetta sang called Seven Craban which is a rather dark but beautifully complex song.
Another new song is one of Toolee's favourites and is called Brandywine, set to an old tune known to some as Shenandoah (which is probably some Dwarfish name for the Brandywine).
Our recent collaboration with Struck By Moonlight was so successful that we asked if they wanted to repeat it and were delighted when they agreed, so we did the Moskau song again. We do enjoying playing with them!
We played for almost an hour, and were delighted to be able to relax and dance whilst watching our friends Struck By Moonlight play, as well as several other amazingly good bands.
Thank you to all the organisers and other bands, and of course to a splendid audience. A special thanks goes to master Peppey BristleBrush for his drawing.
We had the honour of opening the second Forest of Oaks concert - the concert that Acorne has put together which features every band that has performed in the Oaks concert for the past year.
The audience was HUGE! Not only was it huge, it was made of of so many friends and fellow musicians and we were delighted to be able to play for them.
When we were introduced there were some comments about us murdering birds, but this time we did not sing about our other line of work as pest exterminators. We performed a set of mainly dance tunes, all upbeat songs to get the party going.
At the end of our set we were joined by a band that we met recently - Struck by Moonlight and we played a collaboration with music by the very talented Belaya to which I wrote lyrics. I don't think that song could have been better, and the audience seemed very appreciative.
Struck by Moonlight then went on to play their own set and were followed by a myriad of other brilliant bands.
Acorne had the idea of building an All-stars Orchestra with members of each band playing as a whole group. well as you can imagine that meant a lot of work by those who wrote the music, Trincia of the White Flames and our own Gennetta, both of whom had to write music for 22 players. We were indebted to master Bruzo who gave Gennetta some advice and help on writing scores for a score of musicians. Then we had to get everybody lined up and ready to play, with some coming straight from playing their own set, some who were tired, some dropping their music or even their instruments and some couldn't see the music for another's hats! As you can imagine it took some time to get everyone ready, but finally we played four tunes all together. Gennetta was so intent on the music that she sat on her pipe and broke it, but Toolee was so calm that she managed to even do some drawins.
After all that it was a joy to get back to just listening and dancing to the other bands.
Drawins by our own dear Toolee!
In sunny April a concert with friends is just what we all need, and so we we were delighted to play with the lovely and talented Mondbarden.
The three usual members of the Aleford band were joined by the delightful clarinetist Hollyberye though she does play flute and lute too.
After our set we stayed to hear the skillful set played by Mondbarden. It was nice to share a stage with them, though it was a long way to travel, we all thought it was well worth it.
At some point we want to invite them to play with us on a stage in our Shire.
We were delighted to be able to play at the the Greenfields music festival hosted by Les Beaux Chapeaux. After watching several great bands, we had an hour to perform our set, and Toolee, Gennetta and I were joined by the very lovely Kelidonna, with whom it was a pleasure to play.
This image suggests that there was only a tiny audience, but the crew had set up the stage so that the sound carried well and so the audience spread out; some sitting, some dancing, others standing smoking or drinking. The audience were... well let's say well-lubricated... and certainly warmed up by the time we went on stage: we followed after four great bands. Having said that they were clearly a crowd of well behaved music lovers and the quality of dancing was very good. We joined that audience both before and after our set, and they were, like us, determined to have a great time.
Our set list contained a song which Gennetta sang, despite her having been poorly earlier in the week with a nasty cold. Toolee sang her delightful song about pipe-weed and had choreographed a splendid dance to go with it. I don't know how she manage to dance and yet still had the breath to sing!
A song which only appears at this time of year is our Bullroarer song so it was a delight to get a chance to play that one. We added two new songs to our set list: a pony song called Genevieve and a song which Gennetta has been very keen to play, a Eluf song about two singing flowers.
We limited the bird songs to two this time, though one member of the audience had requested the Craban song when we started to play the first song: we obliged him later.
Well, did you go to OAKS, Oldfurlong?