13 Oct 2013

Your Musical Memories

One of Stroud’s under-celebrated delights is the monthly concert/gathering, Your Musical Memories. Aimed at an older audience, it nonetheless attracts widely, and with good reason!

Unlike the majority of live music events, Your Musical Memories takes place in the afternoon. It means that if you depend on public transport, you can get to it, and get home again afterwards. Many of us can’t handle late nights – parents of young children, those who are unwell and those who just don’t do so well after dark can all struggle to get to evening events. It’s also important to remember that we don’t all work the same shifts, and that late shifts and early morning shifts alike can radically impair your scope for a social life. There aren’t many events on in the day, which can be socially alienating.

Finally, there’s the issue of cost. Live entertainment tends to be expensive, prohibitively so for people of restricted incomes. With tickets at £5, Your Musical Memories is a good deal more affordable, and therefore accessible.

But it doesn’t stop there…

This is also an event that regularly showcases music from local performers. This is of great importance to musicians and singers. It’s not easy going from being an amateur enthusiast to being a professional performer. It is essential to have spaces that enable people who really are good enough to get out and perform, to have a go at that. Your Musical Memories is a safe space for musicians, showcasing local talent and enabling up-and-coming people to test themselves in front of a sizeable, friendly audience. In terms of having a culture of live music, I cannot emphasise enough how important it is to have spaces where new acts can showcase.

The final noteworthy thing, is the glorious eclecticism. You can find all manner of music in the same space at a Your Musical Memories gatherings. Expect real instruments and no amplification, but beyond that, it draws widely. The piece below about next week’s concert will give you some sense of diversity, but you could equally find jazz, classical, folk, show tunes, and more. It’s an opportunity to hear things you might not normally encounter.

I’m not aware of anything else quite like this in the Stroud area. Please let me know if there are other such events – affordable, accessible, diverse, inclusive and promoting local talent.  I would like to support local community events through this blog, so if you’re involved with anything that’s about local people sharing creativity and inspiration, step forwards! Genuine community is something the Green Party cares about. By that we don’t mean people who happen to live in the same place, but active engagement, real human contact and things people can get involved with.


Thursday October 17th This month’s “Your Musical Memories” concert taking place at Stroud's Subscription Rooms at 2.30 pm shows just how much musical talent there is living around Stroud.

James Watson is our local and renowned classical guitarist, a dazzling virtuoso player who always delights his audiences not just by the music he plays but by his extraordinary and formidable technique. He will be playing music not just by such great composers as Bach and Scarlatti but also music in the spirited Flamenco style.

Also taking part will be a new group of a cappella singers who have christened themselves “The Chordials”. The fifties and sixties were a rich era for harmony singing and the Chordials often draw from Motown, gospel music and the Beatles for their repertoire. For the 17th, they have selected a series of songs, all ‘with soul’, that stretch a full 60 years from the 1930s to the 1990.

Tickets are only £5.00 (which includes refreshments) and can be booked at the Subscription Rooms’ Box Office, telephone number 01453 760900. (When booking, please mention if you use a wheelchair as the number of wheelchairs allowed in the Ballroom are restricted due to fire regulations.) 

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