Thursday, 12 April 2012

The sign of a good promoter (Part One)

Hi everyone, Holly here.

We have just released our second EP together, which is called 'Never Winter Mind Part Two'. As part of the release, we have been sending the CD to all the people who have helped us along the way this far to thank them for their help in whatever capacity (if you have helped us and haven't got a CD yet, it's either in the post or soon will be!).

We sent an EP this week to a chap called Steve Howlett, who organises and promotes an acoustic evening in Norwich called 'Grapevine @ Bedford's'. It's a relaxed night in the upstairs room of a lovely little restaurant/bar in the heart of Norwich (which is pretty nice too, we went in the mustard shop and met Ian Hislop there when we visited last year). We went to play at Steve's evening in May last year after having contacted him to book a date for our tour to which he was really accommodating, and it was a fantastic gig. Really responsive, packed out audience, we were looked after well, and we met Dan Wilde too from Cambridge who was also playing and was excellent.

This is what Steve had to say about our new CD:-

'Just received a copy of the new six track mini album/ep " Never Winter Mind - Part Two " by Holly Taymar and Chris Bilton. ( Many thanks, Holly ! ) It's a thing of beauty, and I love the way Holly and Chris quietly subvert the whole " folky " thing by constantly writing and playing outside the box. People like them keep music vital and fresh. Please make sure you come to Grapevine@Bedfords on 25th April and catch a live set'll love them !'

Big thanks for the mention, Steve! 

Perhaps the most important thing to mention about Steve as a promoter is that yes, he organises the gigs well, yes, he treats visiting artists very well, and yes, he does enough promotion before the shows to ensure that there is a full house almost every gig. But what really matters here is that first and foremost, he is a person who purely loves music. He lives and breathes it. You can tell from his comment that he has actually listened to the EP we sent and really thought about it, not just described it but given his opinion on it. A rare thing indeed!

We were fortunate enough to get to see Steve's record collection after the show and goodness me, that is also a thing of beauty. Not only that, but he literally couldn't wait to play us some independent, new music which he liked a lot and thought we would like. Judging by Steve's example, I think as a promoter you obviously do need to be really organised and plan well enough for the shows to ensure they're a success - but without this underlying, all consuming passion for music and live performance, you got nothing but empty chairs and miserable artists.

As such, we are really looking forward to returning to play at Grapevine @ Bedford's in Norwich, Wednesday 25 April.

Speak soon,

H x

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