Lichfield Guildhall was turned into a whirl of frenetic energy when the lively, ground-breaking Sheelanagig performed.


Support for the evening came from local singer-songwriter Robert Jackson, who played some deft acoustic guitar, harmonica and sang, while Mike Seal joined him on double bass.

Their original set consisted of such songs as the bluesy Sweet Elizabeth, the narrative Big Crane, the love songs You Didn’t Want to Go and Let’s Jump the Wheel, while the delicate ballad A Potter’s Wheel was one of the highlights of the set.

The bluegrass jive of Hold Me Down closed the well thought out opener.

With an instrument list of fiddles, guitar, flutes, double bass and drums, Bristol-based Sheelanagig hopped across a lot of genres in their set, which ranged from klezmer-inspired dance tunes, soft ballads allowing for some emotional violin and whistle playing, and pieces that ranged between the two.

The songs were largely long-form compositions, and the set started with the appropriately named All Over The Floor.

Bad Ken had a brooding atmosphere to begin with before a bass and drum interlude took the tune in another direction. Funk music, featuring guitar and driving bass and drums, and a hypnotic violin figure featured throughout The Manc Monk.

Shetlag was a piece inspired by Celtic music, with the filigree guitar opening offering a tone poem of sorts. Hassid took from the klezmer tradition but added some jazz interpretations, while Lament – which finished the set – filled the hall with the sound of tapping feet and clapping hands.

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  1. What an amazing evening it was. We were exhausted by the end but left smiling. So happy we took a chance on this gig and will definitely be looking out for them in the future

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