Monday, July 21, 2008

Hillaballoo - South London Songs

South London Songs at last Saturday's Hillaballoo festival was a great success, with a good crowd in Cafe Orange (Telegraph Hill Centre) for an afternoon of South London-themed acoustic music.
The lengthily-named 'Purple Stripes, Blue Jeans & The Occasional Converse' kicked off proceedings with a version of The Coral's 'Dreaming of You'. Admittedly not a South London song, but as the band - made up of Year 6 students at Edmund Waller Primary School - are the future sound of New Cross we let them off.

Brockley Ukulele Group made their public debut with a set including The Only Living Boy in New Cross (originally by Carter USM), Up the Junction (Squeeze), At the Bottom of Everything (Bright Eyes), Anyone Else but You (Moldy Peaches), Rawhide and Hotel Yorba (White Stripes). The first two are bona fide South London classics, the last one has the connection that the band did play at the Rivoli Ballroom in Brockley.

There was more Uke action from Jude Cowan Montague, who performed a couple of South London songs written especially for the occasion, one about William Blake's Peckham Rye vision of angels and one - Doodlebug Alley - about German rocket attacks on the area in the Second World War.

Next up were two bands from the Quaggy delta. Little Devils played a good bluesy set of original material, with plenty of River Thames references. The male and female voices worked really well together.

The Quaggy River Boys played a version of Nick Nicely's 1980s cult pyschedelic classic Hilly Fields 1892, as well as Five Years - a song by Mr Davy Jones from Beckenham, also known as David Bowie.

Singer songwriters Nathan Persad and Ceri James both have albums out on Mile High Music and sang a couple of their own songs each. Nathan mentioned that he used to go to school opposite the venue at Haberdashers' Aske's before playing his I Love Deptford and Nunhead-checking Ivydale.

Ceri played his Deptford Broadway and another track of his new album, Start and Begin.

I (Neil Transpontine) rounded off the proceedings with a mandolin and my Greenwich Park song, Snow Hill.

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