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Gig - Jeff and Vida

Mike Lance, the promoter for Barn D’Or Music, has had an eventful time since he moved his operation from the Hanbury Ballroom in Kemptown to a stripy marquee tent outside the Anchor Inn in Barcombe Mills this autumn. As related a couple of weeks ago, his first band, Stewboss, decided to paddle off down the Ouse in a rowing boat instead of doing a sound check, which delayed proceedings for half an hour or so. Last week his lighting system broke down, so gravelly-voiced sing-from-the-heart Nashville boy Rod Picott had to perform his stuff, with minor-key violin backing, lit by some 70’s disco lights. By all accounts, this just added to the brilliant atmosphere.

This week it’s the turn of New Orleans band Jeff and Vida to hit what must be getting the reputation as the most idiosyncratic stop-off on the scene. Vida Wakeman’s powerful gutsy voice, and Jeff Burke’s ability to switch between banjo, mandolin and guitar is a combination which has made this bluegrassy duo one of New Orleans’ top acoustic bands; they arrive fresh from a tour of Ireland, promoting their latest album. They won’t have seen a rural scene like the one that confronts them at the Anchor in the whole of that tour. A great setting, and great food, to boot, if you don’t mind spending a bob or two. If you can’t make this gig, bear in mind that on the 17th the excellent Irish singer-songwriter Andy White is hitting ‘the Mills’ promoting his latest (tenth!) album, Garageland.

Swamp things: Jeff (left) and Vida (right) hit Barcombe Mills
The Anchor Inn, Barcombe Mills, nr Lewes
When? Tues 10th Oct,
How Much? £8
(t) 01273 400414