Saturday, 4 July 2015

Jazz concert in Charolles

Inside the magnificent Basilica - Paray-le-Monial
We are fanatical concert goers, well Cees is a fanatical concert searcher actually. If there is a concert worth going to within about 60km of here, he knows about it. We have been known to travel through blizzards to get home from concerts, not something I would like to repeat, but it is now summer and the concerts are plentiful, they are good and they are blizzard free.

The other week we went to a concert in Charolles. We decided to visit Paray –le-Monial before the concert, a town we really do like. The Basilica can never be visited too many times, there is just so much to see. This time we bought a book called “Les Sculptures Cachées de la Basilique” which you can get at the tourist information office and we checked out all the hidden treasures in the building - there are some amazing carvings there. Sadly my camera’s zoom is not good enough to capture them, so here’s a photo of the inside of the Basilica just to give an idea of the majesty of the place.

A tower - the only thing worth seeing in Charolles
On the other hand, we have never really “visited” Charolles. We have travelled though the town many times and we even visited the offices of our builder during the renovations, but we have never taken the time to actually look around. So this time, we decided to investigate what the town has to offer and to have dinner there. A word of advice to all you tourists or non-tourists for that matter, don’t bother, there is really nothing worth visiting in Charolles – sorry guys to trash your town, but we wandered around for a few hours, from one café to the next drinking coffee to while away the time until the restaurants opened for dinner and then on to the concert and the only thing we found was a tower in park which you couldn’t visit.

The day’s outing was really to see a concert of course and fortunately that was superb and well worth the whole trip. It was an Aretha Franklin homage concert – not my favourite type of concert as they tend to not be up to the original (how could they be?) and they are not innovative either, so they are usually the worst of both worlds, but this lady could sing and I mean SING and the band could play as well. I couldn’t understand the names of the songs as she spoke them in her French announcements, but her articulation when singing was magnificent.

Superb concert
The only negative point about the concert was the venue itself. It was far too small for the number of people in the audience and yes I know I am excessively safety conscious after my years in industry, but I don’t think that anyone can say that squashing 120 people seated into a room of 8 by 10 meters (which included space for the band and the bar) with only one exit that was blocked by chairs during the concert, is the safest of environments. Sadly for the organisers, I won’t be going to that venue again no matter how good the band is.

Claim to fame - my poster
But there was a real piece of excitement that I noticed in the bar. When we entered, I looked at the wall and couldn’t believe my eyes, my very own artwork was pinned up on the notice board! As I am not an internationally renowned artist, you must be wondering what I am talking about. A few years ago, I made a poster for a friend of a friend who plays in a rock band – Drugstore Rock . To be fair there was no artistic skill required in making this poster, just good Photoshop skills and there you have it - a poster for a rock band.

Anyway it is my claim to fame and fortune, I even felt like signing the poster, but didn’t dare of course – what a wimp!

For information about holiday accommodation near to a summer full of concerts to meet every taste click here.

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