The first ever Worcestershire Literature Festival took place this year with many writers, poets and performers involved over a 10 day period. My humble contribution was helping to organise an event on the first Saturday that included Supine Orchestra, Jazzman John Clarke and my good self 'Poet and the Loops' on electronic beats and spoken word (and some accordion thrown in for good measure).
We arrived mid-day in Worcester with the intention of attending an afternoon session and to drum up some support for the evenings event. Unfortunately, the venue in question had shut down, so we found ourselves downing a few pints (shame!) in a pub called The Old Rectum (or something like that) over near the river.
Worcester is an attractive place to visit, and a little later we wandered into town to watch a group of young poets bravely reading out their work to the afternoon shoppers. We also found the Literature Festival office, where there were free books and useful information on the festival attractions, which this year included John Cooper Clarke, Chris Redmond and a talk by the son of Mervyn Peake.
The festival was founded by Lisa Vector-Ventura who is the Director and also a talented writer and poet in her own right. She and her team have worked hard to make this a two week long celebration of all forms of writing, with a little music thrown in for good measure.
My gig took place at the Worcester Arts Workshop, a funky left of field venue run by volunteers and with a great performance space in the old cellars. Naturally, the night kicked off with an open mic session (if you've read any of this blog you'll know why) where anyone could get up and read or sing or tell a few jokes.
I was on after John and started off with 'Holding ourselves from the edge of the headland' and 'A good year for the spiders'. The mid section of my set was blighted by feedback and some unpredicted chaotic kaoss, but I managed to pull it back with an accordion piece in homage to my least favourite tipple - L.L.Loopy Juice. The beverage that sends you a little bit mentalist and sees you ending up trying to have sex with a table leg! As I hadn't sound checked the accordion, I took the instrument to the audience and squeezed my way through each and every one of them.