Last night I ventured with J to Cheltenham’s Bacon Theatre for a concert celebrating the sixtieth birthday of cult folkster (so ‘cult’ I’d never heard of him) Steve Ashley. A whole raft of folk’s top players appeared including several ‘Fairports’ and Robert Kirby who arranged all Nick Drake’s strings and conducted a small orchestra last night. Ragged Robin, Ashley’s old band plugged in their guitars for a while but nobody shouted ‘Judas’. Alas. It was pleasant but lacked the edge that the folk music I prefer demonstrates. I couldn’t listen to this kind of more traditional stuff for too long but one evening was fine. It was fascinating to chat to Peter Muir the owner of folk record label Market Square in the bar beforehand and during the interval. Here was a gent who really knew his stuff, not only about the folk scene, but about most music of import. I did enjoy his observation that Nick Drake was the first ever shoegazer. Which in a way, he was.