Soo’s Reviews
JEFF GALLANT BAND  20th OCT '19 I always enjoy this band. I love Jeff's voice and his obvious delight in singing country - his smile says it all.  Clive has been allowed to show his personality and brought comedy to the act as well as singing a few songs. An all-round good night.  I look forward to their return. NEXT WEEK  -  ROOTS AND WINGS Soo RAYMOND FROGGATT  -  13th OCT '19 It was great to have Froggy back at Fred's as those of us who have been fans for many years know he is such a personality and he draws the audience in. I could listen to his stories for ever - and I have. He was ably backed by Best Of Friends who stick to traditional country songs, some seldom heard and very enjoyable. Froggy was on stage for about one and a half hours and you could hear a pin drop as usual when he performs. A perfect evening. NEXT WEEK  -  JEFF GALLANT BAND Soo CARL SCHAY  -  6th OCT '19 We have had a good year at Fred's with both established and first-time artistes.  I think this week we had the cream of the crop.  Carl taught himself to play the guitar in 1990 and has always been a solo artiste.  He has a brilliant voice which suits all manner of material and most is very current, but I'd listen to any song he chose. From Leeds he must come our way again.  A brilliant night. We heard "Red Dirt Road", "Small Town Summer" and Garth Brooks' "Red Strokes" - seldom heard - amongst others. NEXT WEEK  -  RAYMOND FROGGATT and THE FROG BAND Soo JAMES & WOOD We have had many new acts this year and none have been disappointing - this week was no exception. James N Wood are originally from S Africa and Glasgow respectively. (IS THAT THE RIGHT WAY ROUND?) They have 2 awards for most popular band of the year from CMDS and band of the year in the North East. They've been together for nearly 4 years. They sang a good range of material - we heard "Rolling In My Sweet Baby's Arms" and "Missing" amongst others. NEXT WEEK  -  CARL SCHAY Soo JOHN DOHERTY  -  22nd SEPT '19 "You get your moneys worth with John" a friend remarked this week - one song after another with hardly a break.  He started "nice and easy" he said with older material eg The Gatlin Bros' "Bed Of Roses"; we also heard some tracks from Ricky Van Shelton and George Strait etc gradually singing newer songs and line dance tracks such as "Day Of The Dead". He has a good voice and deserved the standing ovation we gave him. A lovely evening. NEXT WEEK  -  JAMES AND WOOD Soo DARREN BUSBY  -  15th SEPT '19 Darren has won Voice Of The Year and I think he deserves it. He started the evening with a Kenny Rogers medley and we also heard a few Marty Robbins numbers, and plenty of songs and requests for the people dancing. It was lovely to hear the late Kenny Johnson song "Some Memories Just Don't Die". At the end of the evening his father joined him on stage for one song and then we knew where Darren gets his voice from. I'm pleased to add that he is not retiring, just cutting back a bit. NEXT WEEK  -  JOHN DOHERTY Soo THE THORNHILLS  -  8th Sept '19 Fifty years next year Arthur and Keith have been entertaining us in West Virginia and now The Thornhills.  Still the same warm friendly people and seasoned entertainers on stage. I loved their choice of songs with a smattering of jokes.  Add nostalgia and it was a perfect night. NEXT WEEK  -  DARREN BUSBY Soo SOULS AND STONE  -  1 SEPT '19 It's 3 years since this married duo came to Fred's. It's a different act from others because they are very different from each other. Greg likes old country, dresses country and sings it well.  Jaynie is new country and sings ballads beautifully. Their first song was "That's How A Cowgirl Breaks A Young Man's Heart" and it was nice to hear "Whisky Lullaby". NEXT WEEK  -  THE THORNHILLS Soo GEORGE MACKINTOSH  -  25th AUG '19 Long time no see was the case with George this week.  He used to come to Fred's often with his 2 sons as "Arizona Flame".  Now he is a solo artiste and has been for 9 years. George lives in Glasgow and fortunately for us loves travelling! It was a laid-back enjoyable evening and I loved his choice of music.  I won't mention his good voice! NEXT WEEK  -  SOULS ‘N’ STONE Soo COUNTRY COUSINS  -  18th AUG '19 A new duo at Fred's, Brian and Harry are really cousins - hence the name.  They are from Co Durham and have been performing together for 19 years.  Smartly dressed with a change of shirts at each interlude, they looked "country". I enjoyed their choice of material and they played 3 songs that I'd never heard - "The Dance Of The Angels", Tennessee Rain", and "Raindrops And Roses". Brian chats between the music and has a lot of country knowledge. A good night. NEXT WEEK  -  GEORGE MACKINTOSH Soo CHRIS DUNNE BAND  -  11th AUG '19 Wow and treble wow! You cannot beat live music played by talented musicians and this 6-piece band is so talented, full of energy, and enjoy what they do. Chris has a brilliant voice and is ably backed by his band who also sing and harmonise beautifully. The room was packed and we all had the time of our lives. NEXT WEEK  -  COUNTRY COUSINS Soo NIGEL SLATER  -  4th AUG '19 Nigel gave us a good night - something for everyone.  The room was full, the dance floor busy and listeners enjoyed his superb voice.  Plus there was a good mix of songs. Nigel will be back in February with The Breeze.  We will never forget Gary but I do love The Breeze.  Looking forward to it. NEXT WEEK  -  CHRIS DUNN BAND Soo STONE COLD COUNTRY  -  28th JULY '19 We had a nice evening with this father and son duo - Ray on pedal steel and son Steve on guitar. They played middle of the road songs - not too old and not too new.  They also did two instrumentals - one Bing Rocky Top. NEXT WEEK  -  NIGEL SLATER Soo DAVE BRYAN  -  7 JULY '19 It was Dave's first time at Fred's, although I have seen him for over 20 years at Walesby Festival and I've always thought he had a good voice. As Fred would say he went down well with the audience - another good point was his material - all pure country songs and audience requests. Like Arnie he'll be back! NEXT WEEK  -  SMOKEY MOUNTAIN BOYS 21st JULY      -  CHRIS RADDINGS 28th JULY     -  STONE COLD COUNTRY Soo JEFF GALLANT DUO  30th JUNE '19 At the end of my previous review I said I wished Jeff would return with his band and I have got my wish, and on October 20th they will be back at Fred's again - the week after Froggie's return. Just saying ! Jeff has a great stage presence and with Clive on guitar we had a lovely evening. I must add that Jeff's voice is so clear some members of the audience understood songs they had previously found hard to hear.  Can't be bad! NEXT WEEK  -  DAVE BRYANT Soo WAYNE T  -  23rd JUNE '19 It was a pity the room was half empty due to holidays. Wayne comes from Liverpool and has a really nice voice - it must run in the family (The Thornhills). Those of us there had a good evening with him and enjoyed his mix of songs. NEXT WEEK  -  JEFF GALLANT DUO Soo TEXAS GUN  -  16th JUNE '19 Long time no see - it's 22 years since Texas Gun came to Fred's according to George Snr.  They were often at Fred's and round the festivals with Simon on drums. He is no longer with them so Derek Thurlby joined them tonight.  Coming from Scotland I don't think they travel so much. George Jnr has a great voice and their long experience showed on stage tonight. NEXT WEEK  -  WAYNE T Soo IAN HYLAND BAND  -  9th JUNE '19 This 5-piece band from London bring us laid-back relaxing country music.  Dance if you want to or just sit back and enjoy listening! We heard tracks by George Strait, Alan Jackson and Merle Haggard among many others. NEXT WEEK  -  TEXAS GUN Soo ANGELS WITH DIRTY FACES Wow! I was excited to see this band at Fred's. I saw them at Wolvestock Festival about 3 years ago then I recognised Stu who came full circle last night, having been in a popular band for 15 years with his 2 brothers Danny and Steve as Young Country, later changing their name to The Landons. This band has been together for 3 years and I would describe them as a progressive country band.  They weren't to everybody's taste but they were to many as we saw with the audience reaction. They are excellent musicians and Stu has a good voice. Neil Jacks is on bass, Chris Bucknall on keyboard, Daniel Jordan on drums and Jack Donald on guitar. I want to thank Berney for trying out new acts.  After all, variety is spice of life! Kezia Gill surprised us with an acoustic first spot which added to the great evening. NEXT WEEK  -  IAN HYLAND BAND Soo RYAN PAYLING  26th MAY '19 Another newcomer to Fred's although he comes with a good pedigree as his grandad is George of Texas Gun and his father is George junior who has a fabulous voice - seems he's passed it on to Ryan.  Ryan has only been on stage for 4 months and is feeling his way as he goes. We also has 3 numbers from another newcomer hoping to make his way on the country music circuit - Daniel Beard, just 20 years old.  He sincerely hopes to leave his future audiences smiling after having a good night watching his shows. We need new blood so the best of luck to both young men. NEXT WEEK  -  ANGELS WITH DIRTY Soo PHIL AND KEN  -  19th MAY '19 Phil and Ken like to play older country music and that's alright by me - I love it all, old and new. Some songs we heard were "Storms Never Last", Waylon Jennings; "Don't Be Angry", Stonewall Jackson and "If Love Was A River". They also sang an acoustic number "My Book Of Memories". NEXT WEEK  -  RAY PAYLING Soo BADLANDS  12th May '19 If you didn't get to Fred's on Sunday you missed a treat.  This band is an example of today's modern country - upbeat and great musicians.  Russ Kitchin is the vocalist and plays guitar brilliantly.  Ash Thompson is on drums, Phil Holden on guitar and I will get the other member's name next time they come as I am positive they will return. The room was packed and the atmosphere electric with people enjoying all forms of country music.  The dance floor was full all night, and the gent who danced solo to one or two songs was so entertaining, adding to the evening.  Great! NEXT WEEK  -  PHIL AND KEN Soo THE THORNHILLS  -  5th MAY '19 This duo from Liverpool, once performing as West Virginia, have been on the country circuit for so long they can’t go wrong, and always give a good night. NEXT WEEK  -  BADLANDS Soo