Saturday, May 20, 2006


With dark wood panelled ceilings, signs from the London & North Western Railway and the Lock Keepers Cottage, the Railway Inn at Rodley, provided the perfect venue for one of Yorkshire’s favourite folk bands. John Birkby’s distinctive voice and guitar skills, Paul Flannery keeping everything together on keyboards, and the multi-talented Ian Fairbairn on mandolin, fiddle and guitar, make it very easy to understand why Aiken's Drum have remained so popular over the years. As the sepia photographs of stream trains, Rodley village and canal barges looked down, Aiken's Drum enthralled new and old fans alike with an evening of classic songs from their vast repertoire, including ‘Grand Central Station’, ‘Isle of St Helena’ and ‘Diamantina Drover’. The musical talents of the band, including Ian Faibairn showing his versatility by playing three different instruments during one song, the warm friendly atmosphere of the audience and surroundings, gave the evening the feel of a stress free oasis after a working day.