July 13, 2023 By Diane Kemp

Ray’s Page Number 4

It was GREAT to be with you on 8th June; And What a GREAT Night it was?  Simeon does a Fantastic job booking  the Guest Artists.

And this is What “May and & June”, Are Thinking.

May, I’m Hearing lots about The Shirley Folk Club. Rita says it’s Good

She used to be a Singer herself: She should know ; if anyone Would.        

Shirley Folk Club’s  Been going Many Years: They Moved Twice: Yes                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

BUT: Its Got Some GREAT Members. Best local Folk Club is My Guess.

Well Norman was telling Me: It’s got good name: And Guests like it.

I Used to go: But it’s more difficult to get there now. I’m Not so Fit.

We still walk places!! And Where Do We Go?? Freds of course! May

AND YES Freds Is getting to be THE IN PLACE So New People. Say.

Nice to  see New Faces. YES:  It’s Keeping Fred Busy that’s a Laugh!!

Fred is working So hard: He’s Even thinking oftaking on More Staff, 

Freds is getting to be The place to be!! You’ll make New Friends Here. FREDS is THE PLACE To learn What is the New Gossip.??June DEAR

Norah came to the Club Last Week .. AND;That was a surprise!!May

She Never usually comes. That’s True. But there is always a first Day

She’d seen Tania. Who Asked What’s Going On at FREDS Place Now?  

Yes. Tania needs to be  IN THE CROWD:  And She’s OUT Now, Somehow 

AND to be sure, If there are Men Around; OH YES  Tania will be there!!

So WATCH OUT!!  I am guessing TANIA will re-appear!! MEN BEWARE

May: Looks Like FREDS is Where thing sARE Getting To Be ALL A  GO.

Everyone will Agree FREDS is now THE place to be, You know

May: with the Lunch Club doing Well:  FREDS IS GREAT, Yes

The Eccles Cakes are Special, So. Folk Do come for them I guess. 

Fred is Good at looking after Us All: I’m sure You  Agree.

YES: Welcome Folks: Come Join US for that real NICE CUP OF TEA.


What I Miss Most About not being able to get to the Folk Club;Are the Friendly faces and Chat at The Club:

But THEN, When some of the real good Folk Songs, are sung.. 

I realise just How Lucky I have been to  have been in Folk Music. Since  real early days: 

I was in the Scout from the 1950s., and We sang Camp Fire Songs: Like OH MY DARLING CLEMENTINE: The MINSTREL BOY. 

And We were taught  Folk Songs, at School: 

And We had a Piano at home.

My Sister and I both had Piano Lessons.. She was GOOD and Passed EXAMS.. Me I was a lazy learner!! Just Did My own thing!!

Family Parties We All sang round the Piano, (Sister Playing): both Old Songs, and Newer Songs..

Then I did My National Service for Over 2 Years.

And SKIFFLE was The Thing  When I came;

With LONNIE DONEGAN being the Big Name.

And Folk was just getting going.

I joined a Club in Solihull High Street Old Coaching Inn, The Red Lion (Long GONE). 

And I Also joined THE BOGGERY. Jasper Carrots Club.


Ian Campbell had started singing with His Sister Lorna in the SKIFFLE DAYS,,  and Those were Lonnie Donogan days!!.. 

I wonder if You remember “Putting on the Style”..

YES: It’s still there on You Tube.  Oh Skiffle was GREAT!

BUT Folk was getting Bigger..  So He changed to FOLK

And I joined. THE JUG OF PUNCH.

THE NEXT YEAR.. IAN Announced that The Campbell Family had booked a Two Weeks Coaching Holiday around Scotland with different Folk Singing Do’s every night.   

And the rest of the seats Member of  “The JUG” could apply to join the Tour.


What a Holiday THAT was!!!

So I got to know Ian and his Family as Friends.

THE JUG OF PUNCH WAS THE Biggest AND Best Folk Club in the UK. So Anyone Who was Anyone in the Folk World!! 

Who was, Passing thro would Drop-in to “The JUG”.. 

And Ian would get them to sing a couple of Songs..

So I saw and Heard People like James Taylor: Donovan :

Paul Simon: and many others:   When they were just starting.

And Ian would book new singers like Joni Mitchell and 

Tom Rush… Yes Great Days..  

And FOLK has changed so much, since those early days.  

It  now is a much more a Younger Person thing.

Now, at times, the Songs can almost blend with POP.

It is JUST A GREAT scene.

And, SHIRLEY FOLK CLUB is doing a Wonderful Job 

keeping the Folk Scene alive and Very Much Kicking.

I am So lucky to have these Memories. 

And I am still Loving it all.