Thursday 9th April 2015 – Jonny and the Baptists, Rock the Vote, at the Flavel, Dartmouth

It’s been a lovely spell of weather – and no sign of it breaking (although it was getting a little misty on the hilltops) as we drove into Dartmouth. An ominous “Vote Conservative” sign at the top of the town gave us an inkling that Dartmouth might not be Jonny and Paddy’s happy hunting ground – Dave had been keeping an eye on ticket sales and firing Tweets out all over the place, urging punters not to miss the show. We KNOW these guys can easily fill a room the size of the Flavel’s, we’ve seen them play to packed out rooms in Edinburgh, Exeter and Machynlleth.

We got into town early enough for a stroll around but although it’s been lovely and warm during recent days, we’d forgotten (or I had, wearing a summer dress!) that it’s not yet mid April and as soon as the sun had gone down, it had turned a wee bit nippy, so we curtailed the walk and got ourselves into the Flavel and settled on a sofa with a couple of drinks to await doors opening.

Jonny and Paddy appeared shortly after, said hello, and disappeared off to get their soundchecks sorted, and fairly promptly at 8 we were off and running.

Jonny and the Baptists in their current incarnation have been around for about three years now and we have seen them at least half a dozen times and they just get better and better with each viewing.

The current tour, Rock the Vote will be going on up to and including one day after (in Liverpool) the General Election on 8th May. See the lads’ website for tour dates and venues!

Their shows are full of political satire and mickey taking, presented through the medium of music, personal views and anecdotes. Acoustic guitars, mouth organs and keyboards (in the shape of a lovely piano) are in evidence and while Jonny has lead vocals with his lovely soaring, bluesy tones, when Paddy is allowed to show what he can do with his voice, there is no lack of quality there either! Their music is very rhythmic with catchy melodies which stick in your head for hours after!

Previous tours including the STOP UKIP show, have made it unequivocally clear which side of the political fence the boys are on and Farage is still getting his fair share of bashing here. From a song about a competition to give the Farage name a new definition (I won’t say what the winning entry was but EWWWW), to another where Jonny bewilderedly questions his dad’s voting choices, we are left in no doubt about what the lads think of UKIP and their “leader” (my quotes, not theirs).

The Tories also get a few brickbats thrown their way with opinions on what will happen to Arts funding and the NHS if they are re-elected.

Some favourite songs were pulled out: Angela Merkel, When You Grow Up Little Girl, Do It In The Library, Give Blood, alongside unheard new (to us) ones off the most recent (third) album: Quotes (UKIP), British Revolution and Daily Mail. Our encore song was Not a Pub, a well observed wee ditty from the second album which has some hilarious what DOESN’T make a pub criteria, but where was Boom!?

So, all in all, another great night from the guys and definitely worth the hour’s drive up (although I had a horrendous drive back through the thickest fog I’ve driven in for years!) – just a shame that the room wasn’t full – opposite political opinion, Easter holidays or good weather barbeques? Sometimes there’s just no knowing.



Jonny, Carole, Paddy.


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