What’s On at Focsle Music, Southampton

Wednesday evenings at The Guide Dog, Bevois Valley, SO14 6SF.
Occasional guests at another Southampton venue

Here’s what’s on for the next few weeks.
To look further ahead, view our online calendar, or our current leaflet.
Song of the Week: Babe of Bethlehem
22 Nov 2017

DIY musical get-together at The Guide Dog

  Unamplified music, of any genre, provided by whoever's in “The Doghouse”.  We're gradually gathering a new mix of regulars, from a bunch of students who are passing the word around about our great atmosphere, through musicians who couldn't make our former Friday meet-night, to old (and middle-aged!) faithfuls, who've followed us from the previous venue.  Like they do, come and enjoy the music, beer and plenty of laughter.

  Free entry, with voluntary raffle.

6 Dec 2017

Home-made Music at The Guide Dog (N.B. 1st Weds.)

(A Saints match on Weds. 13th, and the fall of Xmas, enforce changes to our December schedule:  since Nov. has five Weds., we've brought this one forward a week)

  The musical menu is served up by whoever attends so, ahead of the night, we don't know what it will be.  Subject to attendance, you'll hear 3 or 4 numbers from each performer, of any genre, and (depending on the extent of the musician's repertoire) often inspired by a piece done earlier in the 'round'.  Expect great humour, beer and banter.

  Free entry, with raffle tickets for sale to help Focsle Music's funds.

18 Dec 2017

MON.:  Xmas Party, with Mummers (jointly with The Doghouse Music Session [tbc])

(A Saints match on Weds. 13th., and the fall of Xmas, enforce changes to our December schedule).

  What we're not changing, though, is the happy format of The Focsle's Xmas do:

seasonal food, the usual hilarious nonsense from King John's Mummers, party-pieces from Focsle Music regulars, interspersed with carols.

  If you've been, you'll know that The Doghouse is really a bit small for a battle between Turk and Englishman (however stagey).  However, KJM pride themselves on operating in the tightest of spaces, and two KJM members have pronounced the space sufficient.  (Subject to OK from the pub regulars, we may enact it in the main bar, and maybe the rest of the party will decamp there).  KJM's visit is mooted for about 21:45, after their final pre-Xmas rehearsal (so perhaps they'll remember their lines?  A good or bad thing:  that's for you to judge  :-)  "They practise beforehand, which ruins the fun":  Flanders & Swann).

  Will update this timing when I know more, BUT don't rely on that for turning up and expecting a seat, since I wonder where the audience is actually going to be while KJM do their thing!

  In another twist, we may be joined by musicians from The Doghouse Music Sessions, run by Nic Bradford and Cath Watkins on the 4th Monday of the month (which, in December, is Xmas Day:  they thought there might not be much demand then ;-)  so are splitting their event;  see also Dec. 28th).

  No raffle this week:  King John's Mummers perform and collect for charity.


27 Dec 2017


28 Dec 2017

THURSDAY:  Post-Xmas Escape musical meeting, jointly with The Doghouse Music Session

  At the kind invitation of The Doghouse Music Sessions musicans, we again join forces for an opportunity to escape the ghastly relatives or other tribulations of this period of excess.  This is their postponed Xmas Day session.  Burn off a few calories by joining in with, or leading, some songs (poss. seasonal, poss. not:  who knows?*) and/or playing along with (as your musical skills allow) or just tapping your feet to, invigorating tunes courtesy of Nic Bradford (guitar), Cath Watkins (fiddle) and whoever else of their usual contingent is not too bladdered to turn out for some spirited music-making.  On an ad hoc basis, some of the numbers will be more Focsle Music style:  a more obvious "lead" singer with others providing improvised backing harmonies.  You could even persuade said relatives (if they're not TOO ghastly), to join us, perhaps exposing them to the joys of acoustic music for the first time, while swelling the numbers (and the sound?)

  Bet the raffle will be extra good, loaded with unwanted presents as prizes  ;-)  [Cynical, moi?]

* strictly, if you turn up to perform, YOU do!

Other things of interest

8th. Nov.:  Real blast of a night

with Shirley Knot, our half-resident 4-part harmony group, plus Himar, from the Canaries, and part of Jigfoot.

Shirley Knot are John Connell, John Miller, Rosie Marshall & Rob Wilson.  Generating that indefinable quality: atmosphere, they gave us plenty to sing along to, with their infectious brand of obvious enjoyment.  With about 32 people in (or trying to get in) the room, we were well full, and it felt great.  The non-resident half of SK  join us again on Mon. 18th Dec., in their guise as King John's Mummers (see details, left).

Stroph Rayner

The Fo'c'sle’s former Treasurer and hilarious Music Hall-style singer, died in early October.  Donations in his memory can be sent to:  Cancer Research UK, c/o W. G. Bush Funeral Directors, 163 Hursley Road, Chandler's Ford, EASTLEIGH   SO53 1JH   On behalf of the Rayner family, and Focsle Music, thank you.

  “Cosy”, “Lovely pub”, “Good subdued lighting”, “Friendly and helpful staff”, “Best beer in Southampton”:  some comments about our intimate venue.  The Guide Dog in Earls Rd is a civilized Real Ale haven, with books, newspapers, board games, and no jukebox.  Most 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month, we run a ‘singaround’ / song-circle format in its back room (The Doghouse [geddit?]).  Any deviations from that will be posted on our calendar here.  Some listed dates may morph into guest-nights or "feature" slots (where one performer is given an extended time to deliver a sequence of material).

  To join our mailing-list, e-mail paul@focsle.org / jon@focsle.org.  We’ll be maintaining three:  one for guest nights;  one for non-guests;  and one for those who like both.  Please say which you’d prefer to be on:  thanks.  In the few hours prior to an event (say 5pm Weds. onwards), I may not have e-mail access:  for last-minute contact, TEXT 073 8040 1951.


See links at bottom for other pages, all viewable with no login or profile (needed only for administrators).

On "Photos" page, buttons below event-details point to next / previous dates.  To reach a date directly, use the online calendar on the Homepage.


Reg Meuross - 18 November 2016

"Thanks for a lovely night!" (Reg Meuross)

"We had a wonderful evening, and made very welcome by @FocsleFC" (Adrian Harris)

Jon Witcher

Good to see Jon Witcher drop in at the club (9 Dec '16).  A former stalwart of the club, and the lead singer with Hampshire Union, Jon moved to Wales in 1989.  Somewhere down the intervening 27 years he shaved off a magnificent beard!

Paul Clarke

7 October

Mesmerizing evening with Lee Collinson: my favourite of the year.  Since his last Focsle visit (when Debra Chesman was in charge!), he hasn't lost a drop, not in vigour, fluidity, wit or authority (he claimed afterwards to be less sharp, but you wouldn't have known). The (enviable*) banjo-playing could provide him with a living on its own, yet that's a sort of sideline for him.  Keep a lookout for his occasional (3 or 4 times yearly) intimate gigs like this. Top dollar.

* inevitable jokes notwithstanding

John Licqorish ("Meon Rose")

(25 November)

Had a great night at the Collaborations singaround on Friday - great club - great people - community singing - kazoos - what more could you ask for - look forward to goin again soon