GIG: The Union Gap & The Fortunes
DATE: Friday 27th November & Saturday 28th November 2009
VENUE: Hoburne Naish Holiday Park, New Milton, Dorset.
COST: accomodation for the weekend in a rather nice Lodge
RATING: Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

This “gig” was in fact, a girls weekend away, in a 3 bedroom lodge at Hoburne Naish Holiday Park on the south coast, and included 2 nights of cabaret. Just Minty along for the ride, no Beeb at this one.

On the Friday night, The Union Gap were performing in the club. We entered the room as Reg, the entertainments manager was in the middle of the 60’s music quiz. Too late to participate, we found a spare table, ordered our drinks and made ourselves comfortable.
Around 9pm, The Union Gap took to the stage after what was probably one of the longest introductions I’ve ever heard:- a Top 40 style recorded countdown, which covered many places in the chart before the No 5 chart position was announced, at which point the band struck up with one of the 2 hits I know of – “Lady Willpower”, but without Gary Puckett fronting the band, it didn’t sound like the version I was familiar with.

The rest of the first half of the show was filled with 60’s covers, including “Out Of Time”, “Flowers In the Rain”, “Great Balls Of Fire” and “Daydream Believer”. On their rendition of Runaway (and a bit of a Del Shannon medley tagged on the end) you could hardly hear the keyboard / organ being played (which is the soul of that song imho).

Overall, this was just a 60’s covers band, and a fairly poor quality one at that, trading on a name associated with a couple of hit singles. There was nothing to make this band stand out, and although some of the audience did get up and start dancing and jiving, the fairly lengthy song introductions and general banter from the band members meant any momentum they got going came to swift end at the end of each song as the audience sat down during the chit chat!

We retired to the bar at the interval and didn’t go back for the 2nd half.

Saturday night, and seizing the moment when the rain let up briefly, we crossed the mud laden park to the club for that night’s entertainment. Tonight we were settled at our table before the quiz, so we took part this time, eventually winning it after a head to head with another team! A sparkler and a washed old sock were our prize!

Around 9.30, The Fortunes took to the stage and started with “Here It Comes Again”, a cover of Dusty Springfield’s “I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself” and the Everly’s “Cryin’ In The Rain” which had a bit of a Moody Blues feel to it, with some effects from the keyboard. The keyboardist was introduced to the audience, Bob Jackson who had previously been with Badfinger, which led right into a Badfinger song, “No Matter What” and later in the set “Without You”. The audience were up on their feet, dancing for most of the time, and other highlights included “Here Comes The Sun”, “You’re My World”, “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore”, “You’ve Got Your Troubles” and as they came to the end of their set, the band reacted to audience calls of “more, more” were with “Wonder Of You” which had everyone waving their hands in the air and singing along. The final song really rocked, “Hold On Tight To Your Dreams” and ended a really jolly night.

Afterwards, the band made themselves available to sign copies of their CD and pose for pictures, which was a really nice gesture.

So, Saturday’s entertainment went down much better than Friday’s. The Fortunes really stood out as professional musicians, encouraged the audience and sounded very good, not only performing their own songs, but doing the covers too.

1 comment:

  1. Eddie can't half belt out You're My World don't you think? (Saw him doing it when he was with The Dakotas.)