Saturday, 31 March 2018

Busy start to our 10th Year



We keep pinching our collective selves at the thought that The Magnificent AK47 have been operating in one form or another since the Ashton Keynes Music Festival of 2008...

Emerging from that event, many participants of the original workshop inspired by the success of the session and the following triumph of the "Sing off" against with the "Divas" the next day, and buoyed up with the idea of continuing, enough blokes managed to keep things going to get through a tough period of the "Early Years".

Luckily we received tremendous support from the Festival, in particular the then Festival Director, Mr Graham Loveday and managed to just about stay afloat in terms of finances and enthusiasm, yet despite only meeting every six weeks or more, we gradually built up a small repertoire and word started to spread about something special happening in our corner of North North Wiltshire.

Little did we know what was about to come as more and more blokes started to turn up, mostly from outside the village, including blokes as far away as Swindon and Stroud.  These injections of new talent and enthusiasm started us on our arc of discovery to where we transcended from being just a bunch of blokes rehearsing in a school hall, to a bigger bunch of blokes rehearsing in the back room of the village pub, and then beyond.

Doubtless, there are many more stories to be told of the newbies and their infusion of new influences on the group, but suffice to say that more will be told in times to come as we generally spend the whole year wallowing in our longevity and many great adventures.

One thing to mention, is the huge variety of places that we have sung, from replica sailing ships to windmills, dark tunnels and grottoes, on cliffs and harboursides and so many other places in between that it is going to take two or three blog posts to cover them all.

Now we have already had three months of this celebratory year and managed to squeeze in a Boot Camp, Recording Session, a new album's worth of material on a new CD, a few other workshops and a couple of gigs and even had a gig called off.

Up coming are many more adventures over the course of the year, including a 10th Anniversary Tour to the Cork International Choral Festival in breezy south west Ireland, a big festival later in the summer and and even bigger event we are organising for the first weekend in October and much more.

So, stay tuned for more news of the pioneers of #alt.mvc

Friday, 30 March 2018

Getting ready for our first "proper" international tour


Who would have thought nearly 10 years ago when we first started getting what would become The Magnificent AK47, that we would have been going on tour...?  First of all we had our "Grand Days Out" then our first proper tour was to Cornwall where we were fed within an inch of our trouser capacity and nearly split them laughing during the "Judging Sessions".

Then we somehow managed to get invited to Northern Ireland for a tour to the City of Derry International Choral Festival where we won the "People's Prize" of the award they created just for us, the Audience Award.  A few top memories from that wonderful weekend are above and not all of them involve imbibing in the local liquors, we even do some singing!

Next we returned to Cornwall for another blisteringly good few days, and now, off the back of the Derry visit, we are returning to the isle of Ireland for our first "don't forget your passports" International trip to the Cork International Choral Festival, http://www.corkchoral.ie/.

With this in mind we have booked some extra rehearsal sessions to ensure we are in top form:

Wednesday April 4th SCHOOL HALL BOOKED 19.30 to 21.30   
Monday April 16th  WHITE HART 19:30 to 21:30


Saturday, 17 March 2018

Tickets available on the door


Just in case you haven’t got your tickets for tonight you can probably get some on the door tonight, but please don’t leave it too late.

See you there.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Would you buy a CD from these dodgy geezers?



Would you buy a CD from these two dodgy looking geezers??

The answer of course is "Yes!" and "Can I have more than one, please?"  
Much as this excited young man and his friends did the other night.



"So, how can I get my very own copy (or more)?" you ask yourself...

By going along to St Sampson's Church, Cricklade, North North Wiltshire and purchasing said items at our concert with ChoirJam this Saturday 17th March - tickets at http://themagnificentak47.com/tickets.html.

Simples.

It's here, and it is GIGANTIC!


What better way to celebrate your Tenth year of choirdom than releasing a record of your recent repertoire with Magnificent accompanying art work?!

Pedants amongst you (most of The Magnificent AK47...) will note that it's not actually a "record" like in the olden days, but actually a CD, increasingly like in the olden days, but we will let that pass and will wallow in the brilliant job done by our resident genius Art Meister and current Big Chief, his nibs, the Rt. Hon. Williams of Hicks Esq (P.R.o. S.) and the miraculous works of Mr Chris Samuel in managing to get 10 songs recorded on the one day, and Nick Beere of Mooncalf Studios for capturing our unique sound.

These collectors' items will be available on sale at our gig this Saturday 17th March with ChoirJam at St Sampson's Church, Cricklade and tickets can be obtain via our website or on the door at http://themagnificentak47.com/tickets.html.



Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Creative £Arts?!


It's in black and white in print so it must  be true...!  We are featured in the "Creative Arts" section of the very wonderful local Ripples Community magazine (page 29).  

Knowing The Magnificent AK47 as we do and when reading that phrase speedily, early in the morning and slightly running the two words together, one comes up with a slightly different phrase that that perhaps sums up the blokes rather nicely, although perhaps ones should insert the phrase "young at heart" in the middle, if you take our meaning.

Either way, the champions of BlokeSong will be stirring themselves into action at St Sampson's Church this Saturday 17th March with the vibrant community choral group that is the rather wonderful ChoirJam all the way from Keynesham in that there North Somerset.

It is sure to be a terrific show with such enthusiastic performers, and, er, us, so don't delay, get your tickets whilst you still can from http://themagnificentak47.com/tickets.html and you will be able to be part of another exciting moment in Magnificent History, but more next time.

Saturday, 10 March 2018

Cracker in Cricklade


Loyal Magnificent devotees who might be distraught at the "Snow No Show" situation the other weekend and missing their favourite all bloke multi-hatted singing machine in action need fret no more as we are pressed back into action this coming Saturday 17th March in not so far away Cricklade.

And what a cracker in Cricky it should be with a return concert with the rather wonderful ChoirJam, all the way from North Somerset to the darkest recesses of North North Wiltshire.  They are a hugely entertaining mixed choir with an infections energy and the perfect compliment to the blokes...

Last time our two choirs performed was the "Away leg" down their way in sunny Keynesham and was a truly fabulous evening and we are expecting even more from the "Home leg" at the majestic St Sampson's Church in Cricklade.

Tickets are still available, very reasonably priced at http://themagnificentak47.com/tickets.html and there will be a bar for your refreshment so we very much hope to see you there to join in the fun.



Friday, 2 March 2018

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Sad news and a fond farewell


It was with great sadness and no little shock that we heard of the passing of the wonderful, amazing and inspirational woman we knew as Vanessa Lafaye.

Vanessa was a phenomenally big hearted lady and plays a very special part in the history of The Magnificent AK47, as our very first ever gig was at the "Sing for Laughs" event she organised and invited us to perform at, so many years ago.  We loved the event so much we returned on two more occasions and picked up the phrase "the best Old Boy Band in the land" from her - a true accolade!

She has other connections with our village, through her appearance at the 2017 Ashton Keynes Music and Arts Festival at the first ever Creative Writing Event, which was largely inspired by knowing her and her agreeing to come along to talk about the wonderful books she had written.  She made it such a brilliant evening which was just typical of her.

She has been so inspiring to so many people through her work as an author, choir leader and singer as well as battler against cancer, and just a genuinely great human being.

It was no secret that she had not been well for many years, and not a surprise to her of passing, but the world is a lot sadder for her departure, but a whole lot richer for her having been here.

We will honour our memory of her and dedicate some of our work to this remarkable lady.

Our thoughts go out to James, her husband, and everyone else who was touched by the magic of this very special lady.