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PADDY GOES TO HOLYHEAD: MERTON MANOR CLUB, LONDON
Special thanks to Eileen Handley and Paul Hennessy for the photos.
It's New Year's Eve and the order of the day is a right ole knees up with plenty of bar action and the perfect setting for this occasion was the friendly Merton Manor Club in Wimbledon with Paddy Goes To Holyhead, the band which was formed just for fun almost three decades ago by Weapon singer Danny Hynes.
The Paddies have featured numerous members over the years even once including Sweet members Andy Scott and Mick Tucker and a whole host of stars turning up for special guest slots including members from Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake, Iron Maiden, Slade and many more.
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Tonight Paddy Goes To Holyhead features three fifths of Praying Mantis in the Troy brothers, Tino and Chris Troy and Andy Burgess, plus two fifths of Weapon in young boy Ian Sweeting on the drums and ole Danny Boy on the vocals to perform a set of rocked up Irish toons and other delights that are easily sung along to when one is under the influence of alcohol induced adrenaline.
Punters and band were in fine spirits even before the gig as many made the most of the cheap bar and the gags and laughter was going down as well as the beer.
A bevy of beautiful Scandinavian ladies had especially made the trip over to see their heroes in less than normal surroundings, however they declined the offer of trying out the Pork Scratchings in this working men's club where you can rock out whilst playing a game of pool, darts or crib.
There's even a lawn bowling green out the back where in my drunken state I mentioned to MetalTalk head honcho Steve 'Gobby' Goldby that it would be a good idea that instead of playing Iron Maiden at football, we should start up our own lawn bowling green team so we could drink and bowl at the same time. The idea sounded even better when I was sober in the morning (make that the following afternoon in fact), but I've had no takers as yet.
For those still able to stand, the Paddies played a good rocking set with plenty of encouragement from the rowdy crowd who danced the night away. I was a bit too Brahms 'N Lizst to give a full detailed account but apparently I enjoyed myself.
Danny Hynes held the microphone out to Gobby and myself, foolishly thinking we knew the words to the Tom Jones classic 'Delilah' and was met with tomfoolery lyrics in return, so had to rely on the fairer sex to help him out.
Tino Troy borrowed someone's fancy dress outfit of top hat and black curly wig to throw his best Slash moves, or as one wag mentioned, he looked like Slosh.
Promoter Andy Monkey Reynolds joined in on the fun, crooning his way through Steppenwolf's 'Born To Be Wild' and former Paddy Jeff Summers guested with a Cameo appearance on a funky 'Word Up' and getting Kinky on 'You Really Got Me'. What happened after that?... Who knows, I was busy talking complete nonsense to anyone who cared to listen.
The party carried on into the early hours with the band mingling with family and friends, whilst I made an exit to make the most of the free tube ride home laid on by our Boris, then another mini party started at back home at my gaff with a few other punters from the evening and although I was the first to doze off, yet still managing to drink and eat with my eyes closed, I did wake up and have last wind annoying those who had crashed out by playing the best deep and darker drawn out moments by Uriah Heep at full blast until gone five in the morning.
Yes folks, another year has started exactly the same way as the previous one ended and it's already looking like it's going to be another great rockin' year. Happy New Year Ye All!!
P.S Paddy Goes To Holyhead return to the Merton Manor Club to perform a special afternoon show on St Patricks Day in March.
ALL FOR ME GROG
WHISKEY IN THE JAR
GET IT ON
WASTED ROCK RANGER
DON'T BELIEVE A WORD
THESE BOOTS WERE MADE FOR WALKING
THE BOYS ARE BACK IN TOWN
LEAVE YOUR HAT ON
AULD LANG SYNE
BORN TO BE WILD (with Andy-Monkey Reynolds on vocals)
YOU REALLY GOT ME & WORD UP (with guest guitarist Jeff Summers from Weapon)
THE GREEN GREEN GRASS OF HOME
ROCKY ROAD TO DUBLIN
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