Attila the Stockbroker
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Attila the Stockbroker, Steve Foster-Pilkington, The Blue Boar, Maldon, 15/10/15.

I have never been to the Blue Boar before, let alone for a gig, let alone for most of it being poetry.

The Pub was a fantastic venue for this kind of thing, very quirky, old and just right. It is an 650 year old coaching inn with plenty of character and stuffed animals. Good beer on tap and a big open fire in the bar. The gig was upstairs and I was happy to say that we actually got tickets issued (the smallest one that I own now, about an inch by half inch), so another one to add to the collection.

Steve Foster-Pilkington was on first, a quick 40 minute set playing some new songs and old. I am always happy to see Steve perform. As you know I am not too good on set lists but everything was his own apart from “Ring of Fire” as the last one. We had his songs “Plebs,” “The love that Kills,” and a great song about some chap who evades his tax but hates people who claim (we all know people like that). Plenty more but my memory is shit. As usual it was all done with great wit, insight with a hint of sarcasm and feeling. If you haven’t seen Steve before do it, if you have make sure you do it again.

Next on was John Baine, AKA Attila the Stockbroker. I had heard about him from years back but had never had the chance to see him, I knew that he was one of the prime motivators in saving Brighton and Hove Albion FC and his politics are little bit left of Maggie Thatcher, he was also one of the original punks. I had also never seen live poetry so with a new pub, 3 new things all on the same night. I did a little bit of research and watched some YouTube clips, not one did he perform. The thing that struck me was that watching YouTube doesn’t portray how much intensity and emotion is in the room for the real thing. The act was exerts from his book “Argument Yard” which I will be buying for my holiday in December, poems and songs which he sang with an accompanying mandolin. Everything was delivered with humour, anger or just plain emotion. There was a very poignant poem about his step father who he had issues and differences with as a young man (2 different cultures)and grew to love and respect him during the next 37 years. Very moving and I saw that he had a tear in his eye, a shit description by me of the moment but you had to be there. There were the usual suspects to have a go at, Maggie, Tories, Daily Mail, bankers and UKIP. Songs and poems about the miners’ strike, Joe Strummer and being the stand in for John Cooper Clarke, Lynton Kwesi Johnson, Donny Osmond (we even had Puppy Love sang, I have to come out of the closet and admit now that I have always thought that it is a great song and I actually have it on my Ipod). Stories about tours of East Germany and Football. An amusing poem about right wing, UKIP supporting golfers called UK Gin Dependence party. A fantastic night, I thought it might be interesting for a change but I really enjoyed it and will definitely be back for more.

Had a quick chat with Attila at the bar after and he is thoroughly decent bloke, I just hope he doesn’t read this as such a wordsmith as he is would not be that impressed with this effort. I would also like to thank Steve FP for putting the show on.

Duncan, October 2015







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