Our journey began early in the morning of Tuesday 28th August and followed a busy weekend. On 25th and 26th we were in Dorset, playing at the Great Dorset Steam Fair and on Monday 27th we were in Leicester, performing at The Crow's Nest. We had to be at Birmingham Airport a little before 6.00am for our flight to Dusseldorf at 7.50am. It's only a short flight, about 1hr 15mins. We were met at the airport by Ulrich Twelker, who was responsible for getting us the booking. He then drove us to Gütersloh, a journey of about 2hrs 30mins. We checked in to our hotel and then had some time for a rest, before being driven to the town square for sound check. The first photograph shows the stage in the town square and the second shows Nigel and David getting organised during sound check.
Following our sound check we were taken to a lovely restaurant for a meal. We then had time to relax, watch the other band that was playing and then get ready for our set. The following 2 pictures show the town square filling up and a view from the stage about 10 minutes before we went on.
The show was a great success. The audience loved our performance and we couldn't have wished for a better response. The whole organisation of the festival and the way we were treated and looked after was fabulous. We cannot thank Ulrich and Hans Hermann Strand (the Head of the festival committee) enough. The festival runs for a week, with 2 bands performing each night. It feels like the whole town comes out to support the event and it is a real social occasion.
The following morning a report of the show appeared in two local newspapers. For a translation of the reviews, see below the pictures.
Article in „New Westfalian“ on Wednesday, 29th August 2018
Fine fodder for your ears
Gütersloh. Week of the Small Arts II: High spirits folk music from Denmark
with Helene Blum and Harald Haugaard and dance music of the Swinging 60s
with Ricky Cool & The In-Crowd excited on Dreiecksplatz (Triangle Square).
By Matthias Gans
There are these evenings during the „Week oft he Small Arts“ which don’t just
run well, but where all the elements fit together extremely well – the music, the
audience, the weather, the atmosphere – and there’s simply a great vibe. And
maybe it was due to chairman of the hosting culture association, Hans-Hermann
Strandt’s plea „Quitt he chatterboxes and concentrate on the stage!“ – which led
to attentive listening.
It was obvious that Ricky Cool would twiddle the volume knobs a little was to
be expected, with their „Swinging Sixties“ revival – London‘s „Flamingo Club“
served as their role model. But the most beautiful surprise was the fact that the
presentation by this band from Birmingham was not only a lesson in music of
this era, but a full-grown party.
No matter what these gentlemen in their dark-blue suits tackled – from Muddy
Waters‘ „I Feel So Good“ via „Time Is Tight“ by Booker T. & The MGs to the
Mento song „The Coconut Question“ – it all became pure listening pleasure, and
quite often also dancing pleasure. What a pity then that all those benches hadn’t
already been taken away for this evening. Because with Georgie Fame’s „Yeh
Yeh“ at the latest, this feast day of Off-Beat should have been allowed to
continue until the early hours – to hell with working the next morning!
Article in „Die Glocke on Wednesday, 29th August 2018
Rowdy blues stomp meets Danish folk joy by Doris Pieper
Gütersloh. „Let’s have a party, Gütterslooooh!“ Ricky Cool and his musical
gang „The In-Crowd“ don’t hang about. Grab the saxophones, the bass joins in.
The keyboard rumbles, the drums are roaring. With a rich blues stomp, this
groovy, rowdy revue of great numbers begins, full of rocking, nostalgic
reminiscing oft he legendary London Flamingo Club. „Is everything alright?“
That’s how it sounded in the apparently trendiest basement bar in Soho, where
British Rhythm & Blues was born, and where the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin,
Moody Blues and Status Quo played (well, I don’t know about THAT, boys, but
so there), and where American G.I.s met with English jazz fans and Caribbean
immigrants for a beer, and to listen to music. They were all witness to a mix of
styles which is celebrated passionately by Ricky and his band – with a requisite
portion of jazz in the saxes, Ska on the drums and afro-caribbean boogaloo on
the vocal chords. And that’s how it sounded last night on the well crowded
Dreiecksplatz – „Triangle Square“. Round two in the Week of the Small Arts. „I
Feel So Good“.
With their hookline-laden songs from their latest album „Flamingo Nights“, the
gentlemen – properly clad in smart suits and ties, complete with fancy paisley
patterns on their shoes, and the „Blue Beat“ emblem on the trendy trilbies – got
the audience into heated frenzy. From East-Westfalia to Memphis in a matter of
seconds? No problem. „Sounds like Locomotion“ and „Time Is Tight“ set the
framework, for which the youngster Harry Weston-Cottrell bashes his drums
mightily, Ted Bunting roars into his sax, and frontman Ricky Cool plays the
harmonica. It’s not only the musicians who get into a „Dancing Mood“ – and are
celebrated in an excited way.
We arrived back in Birmingham at about 8.30pm on Wednesday 29th, tired but still buzzing. There is a chance we may have picked up another German festival gig for October 2019. If it comes off and turns out to be anything like this experience, we can't wait.