40th Party, Cinnamon Rooms

by Emmett Stapleton

BOWDON Cinnamon Rooms is a place we know so well. Everytime we play there it’s like stepping back in time, and it was no different on this November evening when we were booked to play Michelle’s 40th.

Our venue was the upstairs room. Downstairs on the BIG stage there was a 16 piece Glenn Miller-style orchestra, and an audience with lots of life experience, celebrating VE-Day by doing the Quickstep with Nicholas Lyndhurst in “Goodnight Sweetheart”

Our Sound Engineeress Nat is also The Cinnamon Rooms’ Sound Engineeress, so she was occupied (like France) doing the sound for the saxophones, trombones, kettle drums and timpanis downstairs. We were left to our own devices upstairs and suffered a major top–speakers blowout during soundcheck. Luckily, some 1940’s vintage tops were found in the basement store-room behind a wall of sandbags, and we were ready to rock.

DJ set list sorted, tunes playing, Bar tab for the band set up (thank you very much!) we set about relaxing and getting into the swing of things before the performance. Dave was at the bar ordering 4 lagers and a diet coke for the band when he was approached by a suspicious minded lady guest:
“Who are you? You’re not one of Michelle or Rob’s friends and you don’t look old enough to be a 40th birthday party……..”

After explaining that he was a member of the band and would be performing later on, Dave told her it was his birthday in a week’s time, and how old did she think he was?

“42” came the reply……… !!!!????!!!!

Insider information!!!!

Before we played we decided to go and visit Nat on the balcony overlooking the “Glenn Miller Band”. She told us they were “amazingly loud” and it was difficult to keep the levels down! We watched a couple of songs, and between songs they had a good line in banter:

“Well hello everybody! I do hope you enjoyed that Quickstep there. This next one’s a special request – a Foxtrot – so I do hope you’ve got your dancing shoes on. And Viv will be playing bongos on this number…..” at which point in the split second of silence, Squire let rip a huge BURP! From the balcony…….. Nothing like that ever happened in Walmington-on-Sea.

AND SO to the gig. Well, here’s the full set list:

  • Heart of Glass 

  • Valerie 

  • Mardy Bum 

  • Use Somebody
  • 
She Bangs the Drums
  • 
Pounding Rocks 

  • The Only One I Know
  • 
Last Nite 

  • There She Goes 

  • Chasing Rainbows

  • There’s a light that never goes out 

  • You’ve got the love 

  • Sweet Child O’Mine 

  • This Charming Man 

  • Mr Brightside 
Dakota
  • 
Town called Malice 

  • Look Good on The Dancefloor 

  • Sex on Fire 

  • Disco 2000 

  • Sit Down 

  • Cigs & Alcohol 

  • Are you gonna be my girl 

  • Parklife 

  • Resurrection 


Encore

  • Nobody does it better 

  • Don’t Look Back in Anger 

  • One day like this

So what was the highlight? Possibly it was the band participation amongst the audience while playing “Sit Down”; Maybe it was the birthday girl’s husband Rob getting up and joining in the chorus of “Parklife”; Conceivably it was the absolute spot-on nailed amazing rendition of “Sweet Child O’mine”; Or it couldda been the immediate smoochy couples dancing that started as soon as we began playing “Nobody Does it Better”; Perchance it was the maniac “Yipee, we’ve got Stone Roses Tickets” glee audience reaction when we started playing “I am the Resurrection”……….. It could’ve been any of those…….but the highlight was actually when Rich unexpectedly grabbed a guitar and did an impromptu solo version of “Iris” by The Goo Goo Dolls! You’d think he was practicing to enter “The Voice” or something…….

We’d previously decided to do a morning-gear-pick-up, which meant we could all have a drink. The bar tab set up for us was a mere £16.00 by the time we’d finished the DJ-ing and dancing at half one AM. (There might be a decimal point relocation required in those figures).

It also meant that Squire could use the van the following morning to get rid of the old fridge-freezer from his shed. There’s real benefits to being in a rock & roll band……

Davebass