The next dates for Smokey’s are in the calendar: Saturday 18 March and Saturday 15 April. We’re into a monthly routine now, and hopefully sticking to Saturdays as much as possible. We’re still working on getting the decks into action. It’s been frustrating for Smokey’s resident techno whiz, Lyndon, who’s put a lot of effort into the kit, but we’re determined that we get them on top line rather than risk spoiling the evening with bad sound. When we’ve got it cracked, the core of the evening will be on good old-fashioned stinky vinyl whizzing round at 45 rpm. I just need to remember that I can’t rely on iTunes to kick off each new record while we have a dance! It’s a real treat to play a mix of the stuff I bought years ago when I first started on the rock’n’roll scene, alongside the great new repro records available from outlets such as our pals’ shop Sounds That Swing. I will have the laptop on hand, though, as it gives me access to the thousands of tracks elsewhere in the collection, rather than rely on squinting at tiny writing on the backs of the CDs.
Smokey’s are still running the monthly swing jive events as well, covering the 1940s and catering for those wanting to try out what they’ve learned at classes, leaving me free to concentrate on some wild rock’n’roll and rockabilly for my gigs, and really trying to recreate the 50s diner vibe that Smokey’s does so well.
So, if you want to jive till your head spins, bop till you drop, or stroll till you feel like – well, I don’t know what happens if you stroll too much – come down and join us. Parking’s easy in Cheltenham after 6.00 pm, entry is free, so all you spend is what you eat and drink (and there’s an awful lot to choose from!). The latest dates will always be on the Smokey Joe’s Facebook page.