Organiser Ron McSweeney explains: “I have been considering a change of name for several months. I realised that some people were ‘put off’ attending as audience members by ‘Folk & Blues’ conveying a narrow area of music. We always had a wide range of styles and genres so the name now reflects the diverse music that is performed.”
Singer and guitarist Ron moved here from Manchester in 2008 and began visiting some of the music venues around Nottingham in 2014. It became apparent to him that there was a ‘gap’ in the area which he could fill with another music night – IF he could find a venue.
“The Cottage, or Country Cottage as it was then, had been holding Motown and Northern Soul nights in the recent past so they were happy to allow the use of their premises on the understanding that I brought customers to their hotel” says Ron. “The hotel is very comfortable with good acoustics and, of course, there’s a bar. But, if you prefer, there’s tea and coffee available.”
The third Thursday of every month was decided upon and the original launch date was, in fact, 18th February 2016 – so this week it’s their third anniversary. Thankfully the new hotel owners have been happy to carry on with the music night, given its continuing popularity.
“Unlike many of the venues around the area we have alway attracted a good audience, averaging over 20 each month” adds Ron. “The number of performers varies each month as it is very relaxed. There is no requirement to book a slot – just turn up and add your name to the list. If you are unknown to me I will enquire what you play and arrange the programme so your style and content don’t clash with another performer. We have solo performers, duos, trios, etc, playing all types of instruments from guitars to Uilleann Pipes to a twangy piece of wood (like we did at school with our rulers!!)”
The evening is free except for the cost of a drink or two; and also the raffle – with prizes of wine, chocolates, biscuits, etc – but that’s not compulsory. Of course, you can just turn up to watch and enjoy the music if you don’t perform yourself.
The first one under the new ‘Ruddington Rhythm’ name is this Thursday, February 21st from 8.00pm until 11.00pm – then the third Thursday in every month thereafter, at The Cottage Hotel.