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Pete Atkin >> Gigs >> Last Night at the Pheasantry
(Message started by: Seán Kelly on Today at 10:58)

Title: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Seán Kelly on Today at 10:58

Another lovely evening listening to Pete and Simon at the Pheasantry.  Circumstances have prevented me getting along for one or two of these recently so I was very pleased to be back.  The team worked as well together as ever and slowness seems to be the order of the day – a very welcome slowness which emphasises the gravitas of some of the songs and certainly gives the lyrics room to breathe (and ie be heard).  


Here’s the setlist with occasional brief notes – but it was all really enjoyable. Unless otherwise noted these songs were all with Simon on Piano and Pete on the acoustic Atkin [no relation] guitar.

First Set:
1.      The Man Who Walked Towards The Music – My notes say slow almost magisterial!
then a further slowing down as they segued into
2.      Screen-Freak
3.      The Pearl Driller
4.      The Dancing Master –no guitar
5.      The Flowers and the Wine – no guitar
6.      A Practical Man – rocking and rolling piano and guitar made this one of the more extrovert songs of the night
7.      Between Us There Is Nothing – no guitar –powerful yet understated
8.      A King At Nightfall. So Strong. This was the emotional centre of the night for me.  The new slower performance seems to deepen every time I hear it.  It shows that this song, which seems to be about a very particular set of circumstances, actually speaks of something which everyone eventually experiences : loss and change of role.  How many divorcees can identify with the line about the ring which is “lovely” but which suddenly “doesn’t mean a thing”.  
9.      Beware of the Beautiful Stranger


Second Set:
10.      The Luck of the Draw
11.      Winter- Spring. Pete noted that he had never played this live with Simon – and rarely played it live at all - but that Simon’s piano accompaniment “makes it work”. Great to hear this. Pete described it as being about “the philosophy of saying goodbye”. I can’t have been the only one who felt a sudden sadness at that point at the loss of Clive.
12.      Girl On The Train
13.      All I Ever Did  – Pete Solo on Piano
14.      Me To Thank – Pete Solo on Piano
15.      Search and Destroy – Pete Solo on Piano - a more strident song in amongst tonight’s mostly more reflective ones, and all the more effective for that.
16.      The Secret Drinker
17.      Perfect Moments – Pete had fun demonstrating how, as an experiment, he had originally tried setting this to some often-used pop-song chord sequences. In the end he only kept the first two chords of one of them- thank goodness! Simon took flight on this number with a lovely piano solo.
18.      Thirty Year Man – as strong as ever – No guitar
19.      Have You Got A Biro – let’s call this a very short version, since it seemed the lyrics did not offer themselves up for recall - so Pete moved swiftly on to:
20.       Laughing Boy – and a chance for Pete to reminisce in the introduction to the song about going on tour – and singing – with Clive.
21.      Encore – Together At Last – followed almost immediately by
22.      Touch Has A Memory - another slow and powerful song to end with.
I hope I have got the above list full and correct – but any corrections or additions are very much welcomed.


Caption: Simon takes time out to sit on the stairs and keep a friendly eye on Pete's solo performance on the piano!

Many thanks to Pete and Simon for another great night – and to the Pheasantry staff and sound person for excellent sound and a very pleasant and respectful ambience. The whole thing was being discreetly filmed so hopefully we will be able to see parts (if not all?) of it at a later date.


Title: Re: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Jigbuster on Today at 13:23
What a set list! Wish I could have been there, but nevertheless looking forward to Pete's solo return to Zeffirelli's in Ambleside in September (Pheasantry North?) Who knows, if we get a good house there and the following night at Middlesborough we might be able to upgrade to the Pete/Simon duo in 2025. Meanwhile, don't forget to keep looking for a suitable venue or two for Pete to play on the way north or south from those.

How come the audience didn't turn into Prompt Corner during that short version of "Biro"? With advancing years I've had to accept there are some songs that I can't get through without a cribsheet. It's mainly when the second half of one verse tries to insert itself after the first half of a different verse. A strong story such as "Beware of the Beautiful Starnger" gives me no problem despite having lots of words.
Tony Farren

Title: Re: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Douglas Fergus on Today at 15:11
Thanks for sharing, Sean.
Great review and photographs.

Title: Re: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Keith Busby on Today at 16:16
Good job, Sean! I'm sorry to have missed it. I had thought of coming but there are often late blizzards in Chicago this time of year. Now, of course, it's record warmth.

Title: Re: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Tim Venner on Today at 19:59
Agree wholeheartedly with Sean's assessment of the evening.  Great mix of old and new numbers, and the leisurely pace really allowed us to appreciate Clive's lyrics, Pete's voice, and Simon's playing.  Particular praise for Pheasantry's sound engineer  -  wonderfully clear.

Title: Re: Last Night at the Pheasantry
Post by Seán Kelly on Today at 20:05
Cheers Douglas, Keith and Tim!  And Jigbuster - yes well indeed the front part of the audience did turn into impromptu lyric-prompters - BUT we did not speak with one voice - and probably Pete was right not to trust us (certainly so in my case - I was calling out "Double Decker Bus" which Pete rightly identified as coming from the second verse!  :)

Title: Pheasantry videos now on YouTube
Post by S J Birkill on 17.05.24 at 07:01
Simon Wallace has now completed his mixing and editing of six videos (seven songs) played at this March 9th Pheasantry gig. These were professionally shot with multiple Ultra-HD cameras, and the result is the next-best thing to being there. I've uploaded them to my Midvodian YouTube channel, where they can all be viewed in This Playlist (https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLzaJ9RqvtRw6lSSf3RbvvWmMCLPdXFNfE).

Simon has more in the pipeline, so it would be wise to revisit the Playlist over the next week or three.


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