Sophie’s Appeal Rainbow Summer Ball

It was a warm summer evening just outside Southampton at Eastleigh football club where Take Note were invited to play for Sophie’s Appeal Rainbow charity ball. For the event we had Will ‘slide’ into the band on trombone.

The aims of Sophie’s Appeal are to support the social, emotional and educational welfare of children, their families, nursing and support staff and provide a caring and supporting environment in both local hospitals and in the community. There are so many ways in which the Trust provides support to parents, carers and schools who find themselves suddenly faced with the reality of cancer. A particular focus of the evening was to raise funds to enable more families to visit their Rainbow Retreat near Poole.

With the theme of rainbow in mind, all the guests were suitably dressed in a plethora of colours, and the band not wanting to be outdone – Craig in particular, was a kaleidoscopic palate of colours!

Once all the fundraising activities had taken place, the band filled the dance floor until the night was out with a wide variety of hits including “Build me up buttercup” right through to “Sweet child o’ mine”. It’s always great to have the dance floor filled with such a variety of ages enjoying the evening.

Celebrating At The Arrow

What’s that old phrase: three’s a crowd? And there certainly was at our third gig for The Arrow pub in Eastleigh, Southampton!

We picked a very long set list this week, one which we knew the crowd would love. Craig was very excited to be returning to his favourite watering hole and his mates were excited to see him! This year was particularly special as Richie’s 3rd year as landlord and to honour the special occasion, Kool and the Gang paid special tribute to him in their Celebration anthem courtesy of all his loyal patrons.

Since our last gig there in January, we’ve added quite a few songs to our set, and it was a great opportunity to give our old fans something new. Sweet Child ‘o’ Mine, Pencil Full of Lead and Everybody Needs Somebody were all absolute hits with the crowd. Mat, raging out his guitar solo in Sweet Child ‘o’ Mine, as always got a massive cheer from the rest of us who aren’t gifted with his nimble fingers.

It didn’t take long for the crowd to get involved and our main groupie Tara taking up the roll of honourary tambourine player. Another drunken fan managed to get hold of a microphone and belt out Mr Brightside (Beyonce wouldn’t stand for that)! But we found it rather funny as he, slightly less than tunefully, belted out ‘I just can’t look, it’s killing me’ for the whole pub to hear!

After our second encore and playing for 3 hours straight the band were exhausted. But the crowd weren’t done yet. Clamouring for more, and never failing to disappoint, Craig took it upon himself to sing Robbie Williams’ Feel with his voice of Angels (was that pun painful enough?) as the whole pub joined in.

We always love hyping up a crowd! But the best thing about gigs like these is when the crowd hypes itself up and we end up riding on their adrenaline. Some incredible videos of our performance are on The Arrow’s Facebook page and you can feel the energy shining through! In addition to this, Daisy very kindly took some lovely photos of us for future publicity – let me tell you it’s very difficult trying to pull an attractive face whilst playing the saxophone…! The Arrow is a firm favourite in our annual calendar, you always give us a big welcome and we look forward to playing for you again very soon. Links to some snapshots of our performance are found here;

A Knockout Boxing Performance

We were filled with excitement as the TN team pulled up outside the Eastleigh Railway Institute on the eve of 13th October. Raring to go, we walked through the doors and were taken aback as the club, which usually hosts bowls and drinks, had transformed itself into a full-sized boxing ring! Yes, you guessed it – our very first live boxing gig!

RLM Fitness representatives had been setting up for hours and as we joined in the preparations, the atmosphere was already high. After a quick warm-up ourselves, it was time to get the crowd going! Playing some of our usual classics as well as a new addition to our set list, Everybody Needs Somebody it was time to introduce the fighters.

 

As Craig gave his first hand as a ring announcer, his deep voice pumped up the crowd even more and the rest of the band just had to wonder if he was in the wrong career.
The cheers from supporters on both sides made the anticipation in the room almost unbearable. As each of the RLM fighters made their entrance walks into the ring, the TN team rocked the already-shaking house with classics like Johnny B Goode and Park Life. In return, we gave the away team a cheeky musical wink of luck as each opponent was greeted to a good ol’ bit of Get Lucky.

As we watched each fight, we were in awe of the skill and dexterity many of the fighters possessed. RLM Fitness’ Luke Martin made a particularly impressive knock-out punch within 1 minute of his fight.
Five fights later, RLM fitness had won three to the away team’s two but the night was only just beginning. As the cheers continued to grow, the main event was yet to come!

 

After a ten-minute breather, we were ready for the main event of the night: The United British Boxing Federation Title Match. Representing the home team, Sam Dixon and challenging him for the title, Ryan Cooper. As TN blasted out one of their all-time favourites, Let Me Entertain You, Sam strode across the floor with an air of determination before facing his opponent.

It was a close match and the determination and ferocity of both fighters meant the referee had to intervene multiple times to keep the fight clean. Eventually, after many ducks and blocks, RLM Fitness’ Sam Dixon was announced champion! The cheers were deafening; it seemed like they could be heard all the way from the station.

Sweaty and tired, the fighters went for some cold showers and beer as the TN crew launched into our set list. In the usual style, we had the audience and dancing as the words to Sweet Child Of Mine passed across their lips. Dancer of the night award of course must go to the guy who jumped into the ring and proceeded to do back flips from the corner cushions!

As the band relaxed in the dressing room after another successful gig, Bex and Gemma were particularly inspired by some of the fighters and decided to have a go at boxing themselves! Safe to say, they weren’t very good… best keep the hobbies to playing music, girls!

“People were taking about three things tonight;

The big guy that got knocked out

The little guy who got knocked out

And the band!” – RLMFitness