Ross Connor makes a huge impression at cosy Newport Pagnell gig

The Scene column, by Vicki McCarthy.

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Photo by Mal Whichelow

We’re familiar with the old adage that good things come in small packages.

But never were truer words spoken than when referring to the solo artist and the two duos that I saw live recently at a popular local bijou venue.

I was at The Sunset Lounge, in The Cannon in Newport Pagnell, which has hosted local music talent for ten years and has grown organically from its popular open mic nights, to regular gig nights too.

The promoters say they pride themselves on diversity, inclusion and making it the best night for everyone.

Adherence to this mantra was very evident as local singer-songwriter Ross Connor chose the venue to launch his new EP, Old School Sessions.

Arriving unfashionably early, I was delighted to see many faces from the local music scene, not just there for Ross and his bandmate Carl Wallace, but also to enjoy support sets from Simon Bailey and Rusty G’s.

Simon Bailey – no stranger to The Sunset Lounge – entertained the early birds in attendance with a confident and captivating set that primed us for a night of awesome live music.

Rusty G’s were up next. As a fan of their recorded work, I was excited to see them live and amazed to witness how two guys could make so much noise in the compact venue and do it so well.

Energetic, assured and raucous, they left me annoyed with myself for not seeing them live sooner!

Finally, Ross Connor was on stage. Ross and Carl describe their sound as incorporating catchy hooks, loud guitars, howling vocals and foot-stomping blues rock.

They’re regulars on MK’s gig circuit and no stranger to radio airplay and critical acclaim.

Ticking off previous releases, Money Spider, Ain’t No Fool and Solitary Woman, Ross’s powerful Bluesy growl spat each lyric with conviction and unbridled passion.

Equal effort was put into the delivery of all the new tracks off the EP in the latter half of the set.

Finally, the intimate venue reverberated as Zivonia was belted out, leaving my ears ringing and local musician Plucky Haggis chastising me for not wearing earplugs!

Apparently, these cost as little as £6 online, again proving that good things come in small packages!

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You can catch Vicki McCarthy Monday to Thursday on MKFM from 7pm to 10pm on 106.3FM and http://www.mkfm.com. Twitter: @VickiMcCarthyFM

This column was first published in the May issue of Celebrate:MK lifestyle magazine. Click on this link, or on the photo below, to read the full digital edition

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