There are three main reasons I chose Nottingham for my university:
– It was suitably far away from home to experience the thrill of moving out, but not so far when it came to that cliché about the washing.
– Me and my friend jack visited the campus on an open day. It was gloriously sunny so all the girls looked gorgeous. We sat on the grass next to the lake and the student union served us beer, even though it was an open day so we were quite obviously under 18. Jack found a fiver on the floor.
– It was meant to be good for law, which is what I’d applied for.
For the next three years we all played at being adults, doing things we thought adults did like stay out late in clubs drinking VKs and dancing to awful music. It was a playground of boys who’d discovered they had a man’s body, a bit like Tom Hanks in Big, and girls who’d discovered they had a woman’s body, a bit like Jennifer Garner in 13 Going On 30.
I love that one of the words for getting drunk is to get wasted. What a perfect description! A night wasted is a night wasted. I had a lot of fun and managed to leave with a good degree, but I pretty much spent three wasted years here. At least I have some great friends to show for it…
Hmm I wonder if me from a few years back would be pleased with the person I am now? He probably wouldn’t have come out to see me at the Guitar Bar that’s for sure. After all it doesn’t look like much on the outside, an unassuming old building on the edge of the city centre, not as cool as The Bodega Social or The Rescue Rooms.
But what did that little punk know? Not a lot I think. The Guitar Bar is a great place for a gig, full of heart and soul and great people. Pat Cunningham and Josh Kemp were great support acts and it was a really successful night. The new songs feel great, and I feel great too.
It took a while, but I’m finally getting the best out of my time in Nottingham, and it’s finally delivering on the promise it once revealed to me and Jack. Why didn’t I realise it sooner? The honour of playing music to a venue full of people in an old building on the edge of the city centre has all the magic and glamour of sunshine over a lake and grass and pretty girls and fivers on the floor.
Massive thanks to Rob Gibson and Brian Heason for organising this gig. Thanks also to Alan Clifford from BBC Nottingham for inviting me in for a chat in the afternoon.
Biggest thanks to everyone who came along, from Derbyshire, Solihull and even Philadelphia (sort of), everyone was brilliant and made it what it was.