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Part 1 - Dave Cousins & Brian Willoughby

Grace Darling
Ringing Down The Years
Stone Cold Is The Woman's Heart
Beside The Rio Grande
You Never Needed Water

Part 2 - Dave Lambert solo

Live Inside Your Hell Tonight
The Winter And The Summer

Part 3 - Cousins, Willoughby & Lambert

On My Way
Not All The Flowers Grow
Josephine For Better Or For Worse
Tears And Pavan
Out In The Cold/Round And Round
The River/Down By The Sea


Dick Greener

The gig was very good - the first (very short half) was just DC and BW - a little tentative - I thought the versions of "Grace Darling" and "Ringing Down The Years" were quite low-key, but the duo really got going with a strong version of "Rio Grande" followed by "You Never Needed Water" - always one of my favourites, where the guitar work really flows between the two of them.

The second set started with three from Dave Lambert on his own (though I gather Brian was expecting to play on "The Winter And The Summer", but had popped off for a pee)! I do like Dave's "Live Inside Your Hell Tonight", which was featured throughout the 2000 tour.

Then DC and BW joined him, starting off with the version of "On My Way" as rearranged for the 2000 tour, but delivered on three acoustics - sort of the "plugged" version, "unplugged" if you see what I mean. Next up was an outing for Dave's unrecorded song about the Aberfan disaster "Not All The Flowers Grow", and then "Josephine".

Irritatingly, at this point the folk club organiser signalled two more songs, obviously slightly to the surprise of C,W & L. Keen to give the punters value for money they decided that the "two" songs would be a fantastic version of "Tears And Pavan" followed by "Out In The Cold/Round and Round as the closer (thus neatly giving the fans 4 songs for the price of 2!) "Tears and Pavan" worked STUNNINGLY well with two acoustic guitars! And that pretty much set the scene for the rest of the night - Strawbs Classics Unplugged.

"Out In The Cold" on acoustics I'm sure you can imagine, with DL playing his notes as note-perfectly on acoustic as on his trusty black Les Paul. "Round And Round" might require a bigger leap of faith, but I tell you it worked very well indeed, Dave C laying down a regular rhythm, and Lambert and Willoughby taking the melody lines for guitar and synthesiser.

Rapturous applause and calls for more. Folk club organiser agrees. CW&L pull the two for one trick again (Cousins "I think we're chancing our arm on this one") with - would you believe it - an acoustic version of "River/Down By The Sea". Again, pretty much as rehearsed for the 2000 tour with Lambert and Willoughby trading acoustic licks in the extended riff section at the end. Lots of laughter and the end - Lambert playing various fiddly bits in place of the usual drum-bashing, which got all three of them giggling.

Dave Cousins said that this was the first time they'd played a number of these tracks acoustically, but they'd enjoyed themselves immensely.

PS. Brian told me that they'd rehearsed loads more - "Glimpse of Heaven", "Hangman", "Lay Down" of course) and could have played all night. Folk clubs organisers take note!!!!

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