Live Reviews

  Bob Bowden, Sam Ryan live at The Winchester Club in Glasgow

Isn’t it a shame when the elements interfere with your plans? Old man winter became a nuisance once again wreaking havoc on Glasgow’s music circuit with a number of acts unable to reach their gigs. I, however, was not content to sit at home. My sledge took me to the Winchester Club where a few acts managed to show up - complete with instruments!

Up first was Sam Ryan, a young man whose memory loss can probably be blamed on the freezing outdoors. Not lacking in voice, Sam’s gamut consisted mostly of cover versions. However, there were furtive signs of an articulate singer-songwriter trying to peep through and, in fairness, it can’t be easy to get excited about playing to a single-figure crowd. Despite this, Sam fought on, growing in confidence with each song played. Best judged on another night. One to watch? Too early to say.

Next - and in effect, the main act - was Bob Bowden. In keeping with his predecessor, Bowden’s act was mostly “mash-ups” of the songs of others, but how seamlessly they ran! Quite the crowd-pleaser, Bowden displayed an impressive command of his guitar and never took himself too seriously (as a version of “The Bad Touch” confirmed). It seems wrong to communicate any sort of praise, however faint, for Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”, but Bob’s rendition got the entire room singing. Hopefully, we will hear some original material from this lad as it would seem that he has all the guile to go with the talent.

The gig as we knew it ended here but we were treated to an open stage to which both Sam and Bob returned. We also got some high-pitched yelping from the sound engineer while promoter Andrew Welsh showed that he, too, can do the singer-songwriter thing.

So, there we have it. Little to remark on in terms of songwriting but the very fact that the gig went ahead at all is commendable. Perhaps we’ll meet again when the weather is better and the crowd is larger?

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