This last week I felt like I had over booked myself. I was travelling round like a car-bound vagabond. I had 4 regular DJ gigs (my regular working week is essentially a long weekend – it seems even longer to the people who have to listen to me), had lots of writing I needed to nail (I didn’t manage), was booked in to give blood (so I can hurry up and get a new tattoo I’ve not even drawn yet) and was booked in to help present the Spa Town Roller Derby team’s first home game.
I did that thing where you stress out, making matters worse simply by stressing, all at the same time as being on the phone to managers and booking gigs involving The Bluetones and The Seahorses. The last bit I actually managed, which you would think would be the highlight of the week for someone like me, but it was actually the surprise package of “roller derby” that was the best bit.
This was one of those things you agree to do months ago, because that date in 4 months is never gonna arrive is it?
Thus I found myself tooling up to Harrogate ladies college on Saturday afternoon with even less of a clue about what I was doing there than I have for my regular DJ gigs.
Roller derby is a mysterious thing that lots of my female friends do and are really really into. Consequently I have seen millions of posts on facebook about it and haven’t had a clue what they are on about. You could file it alongside other womanly activities such as child bearing, trying out new diets, or dealing with your emotions in a grown up manner. I mean, beyond the obvious appeal of athletic women going around on Roller Boots, this was as fathomable as when boyey type boys post videos of their “amazing” exploits on the latest computer game. If you are struggling to follow how confusing I find the whole thing, THAT’S what I mean: I’m like, what are you on about mate, who cares?
However they asked me to provide some music and announcingism which is something I can do, and cos it was for my friends I agreed. I honestly thought I was going to spend the entire day bewildered and confused, a bit like I feel when I go to the mobile phone shop, or computer department – it’s a load of stuff that happens, I realize matters to other people, but I don’t really care about it and would rather be at home in the dark ages.
Sometimes though you meet people and their boundless enthusiasm for something sweeps you along with them. And sometimes you realize that something you had previously thoughts as a bit “lame” is actually totally brutal, and really good fun…
This is what roller derby is. Instantly it was obvious that all the girls and women there are really friendly and nice, but are also driven. Sure, this is a sporting hobby but they absolutely love it, and to be fair, it is kind of impossible to not end up feeling the same way about it. I am not going to try and explain the game to you, as honestly I am still pretty clueless as to how it works… but that doesn’t stop me from watching ruby does it?
Roller Derby is actually kind of like rugby, only on wheels. And without the odd shaped balls, obviously.
As someone who plays and watches football I am constantly amazed at how a much more physical game like rugby very rarely descends into all out violence – or at least the football equivalent of all out violence, which is people telling each other loudly that they are going to hit them for quite a while. In roller derby one of the key aims of the game is to knock other people over; yet rather than ending up fighting, like “lads” often do, these girls then go out drinking and partying after. The atmosphere is really great and once you get a vague grasp of the rules it is very exciting, and clearly involves skill and practice (something I have successfully avoided with my own lifestyle choices).
It’s still a fairly underground sport, but at the risk of suggesting to my readership they take up an activity that could theoretically cause them physical damage (instead of say, telling them to go out drinking all the time) I would say this is something worth checking out if you want some exercise and to be involved in a great social group. I met loads of people and they were all really fun and interesting, and there are much less “handbags” than there are at my chosen token amount of keeping fit, 6-a-side.
I saw two bouts; I couldn’t follow much of the first one because I was still learning, but still enjoyed it, and by the time the second one started I was fully converted.
The first “bout” was the first game for the girls involved, with people from all over the country taking part, whilst the second was a professional fixture between our own Spa town roller Derby girls and the Wakey Wheeled Cats, who come from Wakefield, a far away town about which I know little.
The lead kept changing hands which certainly made for an exciting contest and by the nail biting end I was, well, biting my nails!
As with all fairy tale introductions to a new sport, my team won, but only just, and both teams put their all into it. Most importantly at the end the back slapping between the two teams seemed really genuine, there were no sour grapes, and I am sure that lots of happy grapes got consumed at the after party at Monteys too.
The Spa Town Roller Derby team doesn’t have another home town fixture until September the 5th, but after my introduction to the sport I can guarantee I will be there shouting along with the rest of them, a really fun afternoon and it was great to be a part of something so enthusiastically enjoyed and engaged in!
Find out more at: http://www.spatownrollergirls.com/
Cheers for reading, and here’s the listings for this week – and beyond – have fun, drink good stuff in a good way and don’t be loose with your affections. Trev x x x
Friday 22nd May
The Blues Bar, The Revelators live, free entry
Wetherby Engine Shed, Salsa.
Rift & Co. Dj Tex brings the weekend.
Moko Lounge, #Fridays.
Rehab Nightclub, “Electro Circus” dance Night. Free entry.
Saturday 23rd May
Retro Bar, Punk Reggae night, with Unitiy Fareyekey band, Dropleg Steppers and Dj Lex
Wesley Chapel, Harrogate, Hand Made & Vintage Fair.
Wetherby Engine Shed, Rock n’ Roll night.
Blues Bar, The Jed Thomas Blues Band Band.
Viper Rooms, Angel Lee & Neil Jaques upstairs, Harvey Westwood Downstairs. Door charge applies, or contact the venue for guestlist before 11pm.
Moko Lounge, Drop Out house night. Door charge applies, or contact the venue for guestlist before 11pm.
Rift & Co. Front bar Dj Tex (Soul & R’n’B), main room Disco Dave (upfront dance and chart) free entry.
Rehab nightclub, two floors of music: Top Floor : Max Czernic Rock Party 10pm ‘til 4am.Downstairs: Electricity upfront dance night, doors open 8pm with Pop & Dance music from Djs Wayne & James. Free entry.
Sunday 24th May
The Mitre, Knaresborough, Citizen Smith live.
10 Devonshire Place, Very Quaint Vintage Quiz Bank Holiday “Special” with Dj Trev PLUS live music round from Jonny Skinner.
Blues Bar, full day of live music with Little Stevie and The Business (3pm), Reece Cronin (6pm), Nick and the Sun Machine (9pm). Free entry. Times VERY approximate.
Montey’s rock café, live music from the MG Band.
Retro Bar, open deck social. 601 Glastonbury warm up show.
Viper Rooms. Peek-a-Boo R’n’B night.
Hales Pub, live acoustic night.
Fat Badger, Cold Bath Road, Pub Quiz.
· Monday 25th May
The Harlow Inn, Otley road, Pub Quiz.
10 Devonshire Place, Scrabble Club and other board games for the game and bored alike
Rift & Co. 50% off all food until 9pm.
So! Bar, Otley Road, Pub Quiz.
Rehab, late bar, Industry Drinks offers.
Blues Bar, fully hosted fully entertaining open mic session, hosted by Pete Oliver.
Moko Lounge nightclub, Karaoke.
· Tuesday 26th May
Coach and Horses Pie and Peas night with proceeds to Martin’s House Children’s Hospice.
The Tap n’ Spile pub, folk night.
The Cross Keys Pub, Knaresborough, Folk Night.
Pitcher & Piano Re:Session cheap drinks night.
Rehab nightclub, Dj Max Czernic request night.
Moko Lounge Nightclub, “Skint” main room upfront dance and electro, VIP Room Rock Box Rock night Dj Jaye Selway.
Rift & Co. Bar, “Back to Rev’s” House Night, Half Price Drinks with Toby Skinner plus guests
Blues Bar, acoustic session
Thursday 28th May
10 Devonshire Place, Porkies Prime Cuts. Mrs Moon’s Old Lady Tunes special, vinyl only open deck night.
Blues Bar, Memphis Cruisers live. 50s Rockabilly.
Friday 29th May
Retro Bar, Playtime house night, with Craig Cameron (no relation) plus Playtime residents.
Henshaw’s, Knaresborough: The Friday Night Mix, The Superlatives & Raising Beats live plus acoustic guests.
Blues Bar, Brother Duke and the Deltas.
Wetherby Engine Shed, 70’s disco.
Saturday 30th May
The Blues Bar, The Revelator Band
Wednesday 3rd June
10 Devonshire Place, The Residents Association; acoustic night with regular performers and guests.
Friday 5th June
Old Swan hotel, Thea’s Trust presents a Night at the Musicals.
Moko Lounge, Knee Deep house night presents Dungeon Meat. Special guest DJs plus superb residents, for lovers of all things house.
Sunday 7th June
Sunday Soul Selection (Soul, Mod & Ska) at the Cross Keys from 4pm til 8pm (free entry
Thursday 11th June
10 Devonshire Place; Reggae Rum n’ Records. Jamaican Street food served with a helping or Carribean Cuts from Martin Dodsworth. Jah Zipper cooks up the food, Martin plays the tunes, and you can get a meal, a can of ‘stripe and a rum for a tenner. Wagwan????
Major tom’s Social, Charm. Independent music night with bands and arty stuff.
· Saturday 13th June
Knaresborough, Bed Race Day.
Knaresborough, Henshaws, BEDFEST, Live music all day with Dj Trev & Rory Hoy and The Blue Dawns, Backyard Bisons, Hell Fire Jack,Dragonfly Tattoo, Oscilantern, Humble Scoundrel, Set Sails, The Omega Era, The Superlatives, The Four45s (acoustic), Lence, Citizen Smith,Aaron Bertenshaw, Adam Tait, The Paper Waits, Skinner & T’witch,Strangers In Paradise, Tre, Greenwell’s Moodhook, Paul Pedro Mirfin, Matt Anderson, Andrew Cameron, Jake Pattinson.
Ripley Blues present The Oli Brown Band.
· Wednesday 17th June
10 Devonshire Place, Mark Morrisons (lead singer of The Bluetones) live. Free entry. Recommended turn up time: as early as you can.
Thursday 18th June
10 Devonshire place; Sir Paul McCartney’s birthday. Porkies Prime Cuts open deck special : “Beatles and Wings”. Guest DJs play their own beat & 60’s tunes, with free jerk chicken wings!
· Friday 19th June
not 100% sure on date, please check with venue, I lost the flyer* Wetherby, The Engine Shed, Ceilidh and hog Roast
· Sunday 21st June
Keighley Armed Forces Day.
Major Tom’s Social; Geek Pub Quiz.
10 Devonshire Place; Solstice Quiz night, hippy quiz special, free entry
· Saturday 27th June
Manhatten Club, Swing to Victory 40’s Party.
Soul & Ska night at Starbeck WMC on from 7pm til midnight, (contact club for tickets, not sure of price)
· Sunday 28th June
Valley Gardens 1940s Day.
Starbeck Working Mens Club
· Monday 29th June
Wesley Chapel, Classical Lunchtime Recital, Sara Wolstenholme (violin) Dan Tong (Piano) tickets £10 on the door, all proceeds to fund music education.
Thursday 2nd July
10 Devonshire Place; Porkies Prime Cuts vinyl open deck Jem’s hidden Jems Birthday party.
· 7th July
Henshaws “Fun of the Fair” craft fair, at Henshaws arts and crafts center in Knaresborough.
· Saturday 11th July
Wetherby Engine Shed, 80s School Disco.
· 18th July
Henshaw’s Knearesborough, Highway to Hull, AC/DC tribute plus support from modern Day Dukes.
· Friday 31st July
Henshaws Knaresborough, Friday Night Mix with Greenshaw’s MoodHook plus support.
· 14th August – 23rd August
Henshaws Knaresborough, Urban Beach with a host of live events.
· Thursday 20th August
Henshaw’s Knaresborough, “Dj Trev’s Tropical Beach Cocktail”, whatever that is.
· Saturday 22nd August
Knaresborough House, FEVA Pic-Nic in the Park. All day open air music party. Dj Trev plus four live bands, free entry BYO Pic-Nic
· Saturday 5th September
Harrogate Ladies College (Sports Centre) Spa Town Roller Girls National Championship Fixture. Full contact sports with commentators, DJ and refreshments.
· Saturday 17th October
Fighting Epondymoma’s annual Huge rock gig!
Monthly and events
1st Sunday of the Month, Cross Keys in Knaresborough David Cranes Teenage Kicks Soundsystem presents “The Sunday Soul Selection”, an afternoon of Sweet Soul Music.
1st Tuesday of the month, Major Tom’s Social “Craft Club”. Art attack for grownups!
2nd Sunday of the month, Major Tom’s Social, Dj Scoobies Big Band Selections.
3rd Wednesday of the month, Tap & Spile “Poems Prose & Pints” spoken word group.
Last Friday of the month, Jakes Café Bar, Oxford Road, Wine Club.
Fortnightly Tuesdays, 10 Devonshire Place, harrogate Story Tellers in the back room.
To get listed please message me on facebook.com/djtrev
If I don’t know about your night, please don’t send me a message telling me off for not listing it.
Trev x x x