Abandoning Paradise

Chapter Five     Crossing England

George Borowski and the Fabulous Wonderfuls

lefty had told me about his friend, George Borowski, who is a highly talented musician with a whole lot of love in his heart and a wonderful stage presence.  He was hoping George was playing somewhere last night and, after a while, that was verified so he asked if I might want to hear him.  Oh yes.

George was going to play at The Globe in Glossop so we set out and lefty chose a route that was beautifully scenic, touring through the English countryside, and we listened to Todd Rundgren along the way.  This was quite a luxury after that long ride on Haximoto and even before that I rarely rode in a car.

Live in Glossop

So, on with the show. The concert opened with Blanty, a young man who played with extraordinary passion but I had been in America too long to understand English very well so much of the content of his lyrics went past me.  It was impossible to miss his talent and his passion.  He was playing in what was, to me, a quite unique style and so he did with his phrasing as well.

George Borowski played the second set and I had in mind that he was a solo artist or possibly a duo but I didn't realise at all what his performance would ultimately be. I had talked with George before the show and he has that special gift in which he can make you feel like he is absolutely interested in whatever you have to say.

George Borowski took the stage and did some quite pretty solo work and this alone would have been worth the trip but the performance grew very quickly. This was the set I was expecting but we had seen them doing the sound check earlier so there was definitely more to come.

Gaynor Wilson was welcomed to the stage and they started doing duets.  Their voices complement each other beautifully but this was far from over. She has a highly outgoing personality and it was fun talking with her even when, to lefty’s amusement, I had no understanding of half of it.

Next they invited Andy (I think), their bass player, to join them. I had not talked with Andy before the show but bass players are hardly ever the most outgoing members of the band.

The show has already gone well beyond acoustic and if you look closely you'll see Andy is playing a Rickenbacker bass while George is playing an electric guitar so old that he's practically worn the paint off it.  Clapton once said when he looked for guitars he always went for the ones that were worn as they are always the ones with the best sound and so it was with George's guitar.

And still it grew when George invited Trish, lead guitarist, and Frank the drummer, to the stage. Trish didn’t talk much at all but instead smoked cigarettes until she could play again. It’s beautiful to see her go completely into another world when she plays.

Now they were fully set for the show and they really lit into it.  George, Gaynor, and Andy (I hope I have his name right) were all singing and Andy was generally singing harmony while George and Gaynor would switch off on lead.  

Everyone in the band is marvelously talented and I had an easier time understanding George so I could better appreciate his lyrics as he writes some beautiful stuff.  For example, he does a song about "Manchester Boys" in which he doesn't see why the boys want to go to football games for fights when fifty million children will see and be affected by what they do.  All of George's songs had great lyrical depth and you can tell immediately that he doesn't just write the words as he feels all of them.

George Borowski and the Fabulous Wonderfuls really are fabulous and they really are wonderful.  They play hard and they play tight for the entire set and I was very surprised when George said they had played for almost two hours as I didn't realise so much time had passed.

It still wasn't over, tho.

George unplugged his guitar to walk out into the audience and sing.  This part got me misty as he was talking about what it means to play for people and it was so impassioned and heartfelt.  These are really beautiful people and it really was fabulous and wonderful to meet them and hear them play.

Trish wasn't one with a big hunger for the spotlight, she just wanted to play and she's very good.  While George was out in the audience, she was sitting on the stage playing some excellent guitar fills for his singing.

Thanks to George Borowski and the Fabulous Wonderfuls for a really beautiful show and thanks to lefty for taking me along with him to see them. This is more liveness here with lefty and his friends than I have experienced in a good long while and I can't imagine how I could enjoy it more.

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