Jan 22 2023

Lonesome Ace Stringband 2023

Friday 20th January 2023

Review & photos by Keith Belcher

Friday 20th January, The Live Room.

Opening for Canadian Trio The Lonesome Ace Stringband were Phrase and Fable, a duo consisting of Maria Wallace and Phil Stott . Maria Wallace on vocals, claw hammer banjo and fiddle and Phil on vocals and guitar.

This was Lonesome Ace Stringband’s second visit to TLR. Last time was 15th September 2019. I saw them earlier that year sharing a double header with The Local Honeys at Celtic Connections on 26th January 2019. They would have been back a long time ago had it not been for you know what.

Like a fine wine they just carried on getting better and better and the audience had a real treat on Friday. They are Chris Coole on banjo, John Showman on fiddle and Max Malone on upright bass. Singing is divided between all three in both as soloists and harmonies.

Not surprisingly the show had been sold out for quite a while. A double gig weekend with Sierra Hull and Justin Moses (also sold out)on Sunday 22nd January. Judging from the very rapturous response from the audience they will be back.

Nov 15 2022

Thea Gilmore

plus support The Silver Reserve

Thursday 10th November 2022

Photos by Ron Pengelly

We were thrilled to see a sold out TLR for Thea’s first visit here and also really pleased that she asked our friend Matthew Sturgess aka The Silver Reserve to support her. The pairing of the two was inspired and their music complemented one another perfectly and made for superb evening.

While her material, specifically from the most recent album, Afterlight, was challenging, dealing with her experience of domestic abuse, Thea was anything but gloomy on stage. She was very funny, chatty and self deprecating, especially when talking about her choice of equipment and its shortcomings.

Using a mixture of live looping and a little backing track to enhance her songs, she gave us a stunning show. She really has one of the most beautiful and intimate voices you’ll ever hear. It’s no surprise that she has built a huge and dedicated following over the years.

We were also treated to a brilliant support set from The Silver Reserve, who won a bunch of new fans. We can’t wait to see him back here in March next year when he’ll be co-headlining with Bella Gaffney.

Nov 8 2022

John McCusker 2022

Friday 4th November 2022

Photos by Ron Pengelly

The third visit to TLR by John, this time on his 30th Anniversary in the Music Business tour, which is now probably his 32nd anniversary after postponements due to the pandemic! He was accompanied on this occasion by his stellar band, Sam Kelly on vocals, guitars and bouzouki; Helen McCabe on vocals, fiddle and harmonium; Toby Shaer on pipes and fiddle; and Ian Carr on guitar. It was a stunning performance in front of a sold out crowd, by five incredible musicians.

Nov 8 2022

I Draw Slow

Sunday 30th October 2022

Review and photos by Keith Belcher

Sunday 30th October 2022: The debut appearance of Dublin based 5 piece band I Draw Slow at The Live Room, Caroline Street Social Club, Saltaire. Full marks to Ron and Hilary for this booking. One of only 3 shows in this “tour”.

At the end of this show I was mystified why I hadn’t heard of this band before. Like many great modern Irish bands they may be better known in The States than UK. They’ve played very prestigious festivals such as Merlefest, Rockygrass and Wintergrass and the calibre of musicianship at those festivals in extremely high.

Five albums to their name to date. The band are : On main vocals brother and sister Dave Holden and Louise Holden, Dave also playing acoustic guitar, Adrian Hart on fiddle, Konrad Liddy on upright double bass and Colin Derham on clawhammer banjo. A vast and varied soundscape covering traditional, old time, bluegrass , pop, jazz elements , Americana. It all gelled beautifully and was without doubt their own sound. Intelligent songs, great musicianship, vocals and banter and lovely people. What’s not to like. Not surprisingly no merch was left at the end of the night. I sincerely hope they are back at TLR soon.

Video by Keith Belcher

The Boy's Not Fair; Trouble; and About A Bird In An Airport Terminal

Sep 28 2022

Annie Keating Band

Sunday 25th September 2022

Photos by Keith Belcher

The first visit of New Yorker, Annie Keating and her band to The Live Room was an absolute triumph. Her band – Joe Coombs, guitar; Scott Warman, basses; and Jamie Dawson, drums – supported Annie superbly, with a performance of skill, maturity and power that had the audience cheering wildly from the first number. Read a full review of the show by John Barlass of At The Barrier here.

Live Video by Keith Belcher

Kindred Spirit & Road By 10

Aug 26 2022

Della Mae

Plus support The Silver Reserve

Thursday 25th August 2022

Photos and words by Keith Belcher

The very fabulous Della Mae making their long awaited debut at The Live Room, Saltaire. Originally scheduled for 2020 but something (???) threw a spanner in the works.

Truth to say they surpassed the expectations. I was fortunate enough to see their superb performances at Celtic Connections, Glasgow opening for The Milk Carton Kids and headlining their own show. Changes over the years but tonight’s line up was fiddle player Kimber Ludiker, lead vocalist/guitarist Celia Woodsmith, guitarist Avril Smith, bassist Vickie Vaughn. Mandolinist Maddie Witler didn’t make the trip this time around.

A high octane show from start to finish, serious amounts of energy generated, fair to say at the end there were people initially dancing in their seats but some just got up and danced. One of the most high-powered shows I’ve seen at TLR (and I’ve seen more than most people!).

Support act, Matthew Sturgess aka The Silver Reserve is rapidly gaining a good following with his superb, atmospheric shows. He had both the crowd and Della Mae who watched his entire show hanging on his every word and sound. A short but very sweet set, he’s due back to do more than open next March.

Live Video by Keith Belcher

Della Mae - Down To You

The Silver Reserve - Imogen

May 18 2022

Outside Track 2022

Sunday 15th May 2022

Words and photos by Keith Belcher

The Outside Track is:

Isla Ratcliff – fiddle, vocals (Scotland)

Fiona Black – accordion, vocals (Scotland)

Teresa Horgan – flute, lead vocals (Ireland)

Seán Gray- guitar, vocals (Scotland)

Ailie Robertson – Gaelic harp, vocals (Scotland)

May 14 2022

Seth Lakeman

Thursday 12th May 2022

Words and photos by Keith Belcher

Another fantastic sell out gig at TLR. A trip through Seth’s archive. Set list with albums and year released. Difficult to believe Kitty Jay is almost 20 years old!

Set 1

Love Will Still Remain (Make Your Mark-2021)

The Giant (Make Your Mark-2021)

King & Country (Freedom Fields-2006)

Blood Red Sky (Poor Man’s Heaven-2008)

Bury Nights (A Pilgrims Tale-2020)

Bold Knight (Kitty Jay 2004)

Underground (Make Your Mark-2021)

Higher We Aspire (Make Your Mark-2021)

White Hare (Freedom Fields-2006)

The Setting Sun (Freedom Fields-2006)

Set 2

Lady Of The Sea (Freedom Fields-2006)

Side By Side (Make Your Mark-2021)

Shoals To Turn (Make Your Mark-2021)

Soloman Browne (Poor Man’s Heaven-2008)

Coming For You Soon (Make Your Mark-2021)

1643 (Freedom Fields-2006)

The Colliers (Freedom Fields-2006)

Change (Hearts & Mind-2010)

Kitty Jay (Kitty Jay-2004)

Blood Upon Copper (Kitty Jay-2004)

ENCORE

Last Rider (Word Of Mouth-2014)

May 2 2022

Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman

Friday 29th April 2022

Review and photos by Keith Belcher

An unusual event tonight. Kathryn and Sean, usually one of Folk’s best dressed duos were in civvie garb after leaving their stage bag at Kathryn’s Mum’s house. That didn’t make any difference to the quality of the show. Boosting The Live Room’s already excellent sound with their own Bose units on stage. As Sean said we were in for a veritable Smörgåsbord of songs old and new, self written and traditIonal .

In amongst some of the old favourites were no less than 7 new, as yet unrecorded songs they were road testing on this tour. I think it would be an understatement to say that they went down pretty well. In the mix were traditional murders, tightrope walkers, mysterious cows , love songs, one about a whale singing off key and being lonely and some downright gruesome songs such as Huldra and Child Owlet . Great banter and song explanations throughout.

It goes without saying that Kathryn’s voice, keyboard and flute playing were excellent as was Sean’s guitar work. A really good night. Brother Seth due at TLR later in the month. Set list below.

Set 1

The Granite Mill

52 Hertz

The Rope Dancer (new unrecorded)

The Knight’s Ghost

Red Rose & White Lily (new unrecorded)

The Cows Of Mystery Eavesdropping (new unrecorded)

A Tribute Of Hands

A Song To Live By

Set 2

The Willow Tree

The Fall Of The Lion Queen (new unrecorded)

Night Visiting (new unrecorded)

The Child Owlet

Huldra

The Year Without A Summer (new unrecorded)

Tomorrow Will Follow Today

Pewtor (new unrecorded)

Apr 24 2022

Hot Club of Cowtown

Friday 22nd April 2022

Photos by Ron Pengelly

What a fantastic night we had with the amazing Hot Club of Cowtown on their TLR debut!