3rd Jan- The Atkinson - Southport 

What a lovely night over at the Atkinson in the company of Grateful Fred. A gig that was so last minute that we did not even have time to for the Like to assemble. For the first gig of the year to be in this venue is a good way to kick off 2018. But before we get to the fun of onstage we have to get to the venue. For those who are organised this will probably seem like nothing but for me, trying to get out the door was probably the hardest part of the whole night. Trying to get my guitar, gig bag, the baby, the pram and the changing bag down from the third floor was like some sort of military exercise that I did not if I was going to survive, but with relatively few tears we made and we were on our way. The baby was not going to the gig by the way. I am not having him upstage me!  

I got to the Atkinson while soundcheck was ongoing for Hannah Johnson and straight away knew it was going to be a fun night. A full on country band that sounded perfect to me. They play a mixture of originals and country standards. I believe they have played with Grateful Fred’s quite a few times and are the sort of band that look like they enjoy playing together which makes all the difference.  

But before we get to Hannah Johnson’s band we had an absolutely beautiful set for Rachel Jean Harris who seems to just continually up her game every time I see her play am if you have yet to see her play you are seriously missing out. She has an EP coming out in 2018 I believe and if it is as good as the live performances you are in for a treat.  

So we had a couple of groans for some bad puns about pick-pocketing but I stand by that joke. If those there did not find it funny that is not my fault! It is always nice to play in the Atkinson and the audience is so supportive (aside from their questionable response to fantastic puns) but we had a nice sing along to end my set. Thanks to Colin for thinking of me and having me down to play. Hopefully we can do it again soon.  

Streets of Belfast  
Hometown Boy  
Way I'm thinking  
Thought I’d have learnt  
This far at all  
Guiding light

16 December - Alice Laybourne EP Launch 

Now I know I am late to the party on this one but finally I am able to fill you all in on a good night of fun. First off this is a venue I had no idea even existed and it was an absolute joy to discover this studio in the Georgian quarter of liverpool so thanks Alice for introducing me to this place. Connor Evans opened up the night playing a mix of covers and originals. He also did a fantastic job accompanying Alice for her set as an extremely late substitute. Fair play Connor! 

Next up I rambled on for a bit but then it got good again when Alice Nancy took to the stage. I am sure I have seen Alice play a bunch of times before but cannot place where or when but she writes such down to earth songs that I was instantly a fan and recommend you go listen to some of her stuff. I cannot comment on her punk band because she would not play any of those songs on the night. 

Alice Laybourne closed out the night with a set of covers and originals of her last Ep and the reason we were all there, the new EP letting go. Alice was struggling a little bit with illness but I still think she has a great voice and I did not notice her struggle at all. She sounded great as she has done every time I have seen her play. It was great to see so many people there for her launch as well. I did not see too many disappointed faces . Thanks for letting me be a part of it. 

The Way I'm Thinking 
Hometown Boy 
Thought I'd have learned 
This Far At All 
Let The Music Play On 
Streets of Belfast 
Guiding Light

10th November - The Studio, Widnes 

 

Wonderful trip to Widnes in a lovely venue that you should definitely check out if you are in the area called The Studio. They also do work helping people back to employment. If the sound guy was any more sound he would have to work in a hospital. He was ultra sound. The organisers and the staff were so accommodating even when I showed up really early asking for a cup of tea. Thanks to Louise for having us on at The Studio and keep up the great work! 

I got to do a little roadie work with swapping out leads and switching guitars for one of the acts. Our headliners were Dawn and the Embers and if you have not heard them play you really should. Great band and I promise I am not just saying that because I managed to get a lift home from Dawn. Hopefully when you see them Dawn has not had a recent run-in with a hoover which may have impacted her guitar playing.  They are working on an EP at the moment and that will be worth getting into your ears when it comes out. 

I was joined by Declan and Claire for this one. Claire had played The Studio a few weeks back and we were really glad she joined us for this. We even practiced and worked on harmonies and everything….although we ended up not playing that song. Typical. 

Thought I’d have learned 

Let the Music Play On 

Hometown Boy 

This Far At All 

Streets Of Belfast 

Long Way Home

10th August Jacaranda Record Store Sessions 

Short set at the Jacaranda hosted by the magnificent Thom Moorecroft who opened up the night. We have spent many, many hours in the Jacaranda over the years in the basement and on the ground floor but this was the first time up in the cafe on the first floor. They also have a vinyl but more importantly they have excellent cake. I had a great conversation with Peter from Grateful Fred and Barry Jones from Southbound Attic band about music. I also got to see Derek King again as well as one person in particular who had a tremendous voice and she absolutely blew me away when she sang but for the life of me I cannot remember her name but if someone knows who she was I thought it was brilliant.

Thought I'd Have Learnt

Let The Music Play On

Streets of Belfast

8th August- 81 Renshaw Street 

It has been a long time since we played a Tuesday night anywhere. Normally we are otherwise engaged but we had a night free and I gave Derek a quick shout and next thing you know we are back with Liverpool Acoustic. This was our first night at Renshaw street and this is a tremendous venue. We were in the cafe which is at the front of the venue. Definitely worth a trip as they have so many events taking place nearly every night of the week and they also have a vinyl shop. Plus the owners are nice people! I spent the night taking photos of Adrian Wharton who took the picture here. I cant remember who all played but I do know that Derek King and Pete King started the night off and Pete can hit some higher notes than I can. Sounded great. We played without Shane and I whipped out a new song which I still don’t think is properly finished. 

Streets of Belfast

Hometown Boy

This far at all

Way I'm thinking 

Untitled New Song 

Thought I’d have learnt 

Guiding light 

Long way home

Zanzibar, Liverpool 12th May 2016 

This was our first gig as a band in a long time even if our Claire could not make it down unfortunately. It was an absolutely stacked line up of great bands playing in support of our good friends Cascadia Fault Line and as always the Zanzibar treated us well and made us sound great. Some of the puns were that bad that Shane threatened to quit the band onstage. At least I found them funny and that is all that matters. We were not as prepared for this gig as I would have liked to be but we still had fun and most importantly, I did not fall asleep thanks to the caffeine and sugar. 

Jenny Kermode opened the night with just herself and her guitar and sounded excellent dishing out a few covers in her set of mostly her own songs. Very moody stuff and I hope to play with her again. Also on the bill were Indigo Tree who just keep sounding better each time I hear them as well as Dassler Jacks who were another new one for me. I had to leave before the main event of Cascadia Fault Line. Parenting a newborn leaves you extremely tired (Who knew) I thought getting home would allow me a little more sleep but nope, the wee man had other ideas. He decided to sing his wee 1 week old lungs out all night. Rock n Roll! 

South out of Town 

Let The Music Play On 

Taking No Hurt 

This Far At All 

Hometown Boy 

Thought I’d Have Learned 

Guiding Light 

Next up myself and Cascadia Fault Line are off to London to Harrisons on thw 26th May with Ugly man records

8th March - All Saints Church - Newtown 

Any excuse I have to get on a train you better believe I will take it especially if it is a train through Wales. Newtown was wonderful and I hope we get the chance to do it again. Alex from D3 helped us out a tonne and made sure we knew where we were going. As some of you may know I am not the most religious person in the world but I can say the work that D3 put into the night and throwing the church doors open to everyone in the community regardless of faith, gender, sexuality or race was great to see. Everyone was very welcoming and this sort of community events are going to become more important in the world we live in. Very inclusive and I hope that this will not be the only live music night they put on in their beautiful church. 

Millicent Kendall got the ball rolling with a set on her ukulele and some covers and Cascadia Fault Line closed out the night with a great set. I have said it before and I will say it again, Rachel has a phenomenal voice and hearing her sing in the church setting made it sound even more special. I have heard some of their songs over the years and could not get over the change the band has brought to them. I am very excited to be playing with them again at the Zanzibar in May. I am grateful they let me tag along with them.

In between those sets I managed a song or two. I got to meet some truly interesting people and hear stories that I normally would miss out on so thanks everyone for listening and sharing the evening with us and especially for picking up copies of the CD. Hope to do it again soon. 

The Way I’m Thinking 
This far at all 
Thought I'd have learned 
Faces and names 
Blood 
Ghost town blues 
Streets of Belfast 
Guiding light

21st January 2017- The Brink, Liverpool 

It had been a very long time since I played at the world famous brink stage. We are probably going back a couple of years now at least so it was great to be able to play here again. I managed to squeeze onto the bill because the band Derek in mind (the fantastic Mondegreen) were not able to play. So a few days before I warmed up and got ready to be subbed on. As I mentioned it was Derek King hosting the day and as always he delivered some great songs to kick it all off. He also hosts the Liverpool acoustic open mic at the Courtroom Cafe every Tuesday. You should all go there 

This was followed by David Barnicle who has a new EP out at the minute so you should give that a spin. I was also absolutely blown away by Alice Laybone and in particular her newest song which I think was having its first outting. It was phenomenal and because I have the memory of a goldfish and it has been a few weeks I cannot remember the name of it. Truth be told I really enjoyed everyone who played that day. 

Somewhere in between all of this I played a quick 4 song set myself and had a great time doing it 

Let The Music Play On 
Thought I'd Have Learnt 
Faces & Names 
Guiding Light 

Most importantly for me I got the chance to speak to Ian Hall who is a great poet but an even better person just to sit down and have a craic with. I learnt about what David Bowie stuff to try although I am still not convinced it's my cup of tea as well as a few phrases in Cornish. He was also kind enough to write a review of my wee set and made me sound like I know what I am doing. 
http://www.liverpoolsoundandvision.co.uk/2017/01/22/gary-maginnis-gig-review-the-brink-liverpool-2017/ 

Thanks Ian and thanks to the brink for putting on a great day of music open to all ages. Thanks also to Derek King for thinking of me after hundreds of other acts were unavailable! 

23rd Sept Courtroom Cafe  

I was originally planning to do these all separately but it involved too many late nights and too many sugar highs 
and sugar crashes that it all ran together a little bit. On Friday I hosted down at the magnificent Courtroom cafe for their open mic. We had a great array of talent playing all night. I do mean all night because it was still going strong after I left at 2am.I opened the night up the night with a couple of songs by myself and then finished that portion of the night off with the Like. In between we had so much good stuff. A particular highlight for me was hearing C-90 play. I thought he was fantastic with his loop pedals and am glad we got that recorded because he sounded great. I also had the pleasure of hearing the two sides to Futurejack with an acoustic set on Friday then an electric storming session the next night. I had not seen this iteration of the band before and they blew me away. Dirty, loud rock music and all the things I love.  

Ghost Town Blues 
Learning to Live 
When I was A Child 

With The Like 
Walk Home 
Thought I'd Have Learnt 
I know we played something else as well but I cannot remember now 

I have uploaded a version of Thought I'd have learnt that we recorded from this set as well. All in all it was good craic. Thanks to Catherine, Alicia and everybody who played. The Courtroom Cafe is a kick ass venue and hopefully we can do it all again soon.

15th August - Cafe D'Arte Formby 

I am once again a little slow here on updating but hey-ho I finally made it. Thanks once again to Colin from Grateful Fred for having me play in a very warm and sunny Formby. I have been meaning to go to Cafe D’Arte for a long time and this was a fantastic chance to head over.

 I got there early to a very stressed out Grateful Fred member doing battle with the sound. I think he got there with it and it sounded good by the time we got to show time. It was lovely to see some folks from the Southport gig again and they seemed to enjoy the solo set as well. I got to meet Brigid Mae Power and I am very doubtful that the next time you see Brigid it will be in such a small venue. She is completely in control of her voice and has a massive range. It was an beautiful and she is such a nice person. I managed to get a lift back to Liverpool with her and it was great having a wee chat with her on the drive back. Thanks to the Colvins we have video of the set as well as Adrian Wharton for their photography. Again, always impressed by their ability to make me look like one of them cool musician types. I had some really interesting conversations with folks after the gig and look forward to another Grateful Fred gig in the future. 

Waiting on The Flood 

This Far At All 

Thought I’d Have Learnt 

Blood 

The Way I’m Thinking 

Faces & Names 

Open Road 

Learning To Live 

Long Way Home 

Streets of Belfast