FOCSLE Music  founded 1963
real live music in Southampton, UK for the past 60 years

In‑person events at The Guide Dog, Bevois Valley, second Tuesdays

Page updated July 22nd '24.

In‑person FOCSLE Music Guest nights
usually on second* Tuesdays,
at The Guide Dog, Bevois Valley, Southampton  SO14 6SF
* occasionally others

Next EventTues. 23rd July  8pm
Singaround, in memory of Steve Freedman

Suggested material could be maritime-based, and/or humorous, and/or Trad., all of which Steve excelled in.  Anything that prompts YOUR memory of him, with the background to that, especially welcome
     We’ll Pass the Hat, with all proceeds to any charity requested in his memory

More events, and details of the above, 
further down;  add your comments on our Facebook page.

Other music events on Tuesdays at The Dog mean FOCSLE Music can’t run weekly there, and all Weds. are now their Curry Nights [recommended, but too busy for us to have use of The Doghouse].
We rely on your, and others’, good sense in taking some respiratory-illness precautions, and on your not attending if you have symptoms.  COVID ain’t beat, so please continue following the simple counter-procedures.
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Steve Freedman, fine, hearty-voiced singer, wit* and sailor
With a sense of total disbelief, it’s my sad duty to inform you that Steve was found dead on his boat Tyro at Sandwich harbour on the morning of 14th June 2024, on a trip to “the Far East”**.  Have no more details at the moment, but at least he was doing the thing he loved:  sailing.  We’ll miss his merry demeanour (a unique combination of harrumphing and joie de vivre!), enthusiastic singing, and his enthusiasm FOR singing.  It seems unbelievable that, less than four weeks ago, some few lucky ones piled on to Tyro for our previous LotL event, a crazy idea he embraced with his usual whole-heartedness.
On behalf of the whole FOCSLE ‘family’, our sincerest condolences go to his family, and all who knew him.  Sail on, sunshine.

Our evening at The Guide Dog on Tues. July 23rd will be dedicated to Steve’s memory, with songs (of course!), hopefully with choruses (ditto!), narratives, reminiscences, etc. by anyone who knew him.  Another contact has fixed a further, poss. bigger, event on Mon. Sept. 30th:  details when we have them.

* e.g. the penultimate e‑mail I had from him, on June 10th, reported “heading for Sandwich tomorrow (where I plan to buy a sandwich at the Sandwich Sandwich shop)”
* & ** i.e. Essex and Suffolk…
Virtual FOCSLE Music
Last WEDNESDAY of each month, 8pm UK time (note CHANGED meet-cycle)
thus next date July 31st
further down;  our Facebook header [NO m’ship / account / log‑in needed:  FBk won’t even track your click] acts as backup update-space, just in case we can’t access this server.
FOCSLE Music ‘LIVE’   Singarounds and Guest nights.  Entry by donation.   Raffle in break, with alcohol, confectionery and – new for 2024 – CD prizes
Future Events: 
Tues. 30th July  8pm  Singaround
The Guide Dog   38 Earls Road  Bevois Valley  Southampton  SO14 6SF
We’re expecting a visit [now re-confirmed], from upstate New York, by the fine-voiced DEBRA CHESMAN, ex-Fo’c’sle Folk Club Organizer (1993 – 97), to lead songs and join in harmonies for our evening
     Rec. £2pp in the pot

Weds. 7th August  8pm  Singaround
Venue:  The Wellington Arms
   56 Park Road  Freemantle  Southampton  SO15 3DE
Those who can attend only on Wednesdays may like to target this, our last event at The Welly
     Entry by donation, rec. £2pp in the pot

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Virtual FOCSLE Music             e‑mail for access-codes
Join us and our international music friends (incl. some professionals)
Last WEDNESDAYs  8pm (UK)   = 3pm Eastern / NY   = 12noon Pacific / LA
Click/tap for other details, incl. our start-time wherever YOU are in the world
Answers to some FAQs:  we run Singaround-style = whoever shows up performs a turn, while the rest listen in, muted
Musically, any genre welcome, ideally unplugged;  we’re definitely not a platform for watching videos (even if you’re IN them) rather than you performing directly for those of us in the ‘room’
Audience as welcome as performers
Themes may arise on the fly, esp. among the more verbally playful of our number, but nothing formal mooted
Despite the maritime-sounding name* [Southampton is a port city, geddit??], it’s not just a “Shanty Sing”:  they’re a serendipitous part of the mix
Turn up, and leave – and/or come back, even – as suits your schedule
Nice things put on the record:

   I love these   …most enjoyable.  The Focsle crew is a delightful bunch, including some breathtakingly good performers      (Austin, Texas)

…love the atmosphere of FOCSLE [Music] as well as the range of styles…
…enhanced further…  …by having a theme — it really brought out the best in people
…a very enjoyable evening…  …especially when quite a few other
[online] sessions are getting a bit tired.
   Well done for playing such a big part in keeping so many people sane through these strange times
      (Staffs., UK)

   Thanks for all the warmth you put into your hosting.  Felt welcomed and included…  …muchly enjoyed this      (St Paul, Minnesota)

   Congratulations on a very successful event      (Lincs., UK)

   Thanks for giving me the opportunity to meet, hear, and sing to/with a very talented group of singers.      (S. London, UK)

   You have an amazing geographical spread on your Focsle Zoom meetings…  …the four corners of the North American continent from…
   …California and Arizona in the south to Oregon and Alaska in the north west and Toronto in the east, plus an attendee from Sydney, Australia…  impressive!
   The art of compering is much underrated…  …You do it very well.  It helps that you know so many of the performers.
Zoom folk clubs have been the silver lining to the pandemic.  However, what you have at the Focsle is exceptional and truly international.      (Hythe, Kent, UK)

   Thanks for the much-needed musical fix today.  And…  …for the creative theme ideas.      (Eugene, Oregon)

…truly enjoyable, meeting so many different people with so many different songs.      (Derby, UK)

   Fantastic — great session     …amazing!     Lovely…     …entertaining…     …a range of talented performers     …fine folks
   It’s been great       Excellent…  …again     …wonderful sessions every week       …thank you for doing this
      (from around US & UK)

   I rate your 2 sessions as the tops!  [= FOCSLE Music and a US-based virtual ‘cousin’]      (Coventry, UK)
* When The Fo’c’sle Folk Club launched, it was typical for port-based ventures to point up their maritime city connections, hence the pun.  It’s pronounced “folks’ll” [not “fox’ll”];  also, “forecastle” – from which the term fo’c’s’le derives – is the upper deck in the bow of a sailing ship where the crew were quartered, and would relax to play tunes and sing
Contact Paul for all queries about VIRTUAL events
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Performers, Acts, their Agents, or anyone seeking to play at FOCSLE Music

Please sign up to FOCSLE Music’s regular Zoomaround list, for info about virtual events,
or this one, for in-person Sings and periodic guests.