On Saturday evening I headed to Basildon in Essex to see SaraBeth appear at Culpeppers. It was my first visit to the venue and I have to say I was impressed. There was country music memorabilia all over the walls and it made for the perfect setting. So after sitting down with a pint the music began.
The first artist to appear on the night was Sasha McVeigh. Her set was an excellent one of six or seven songs. It started with the upbeat and excellent “Hot Mess”, while other highlights were “Georgia Man” (I wrote “this is a great country song” in my notes) and “When I’m Over You”, which is Sasha’s latest single. Her set ended with a brilliant cover of John Denver’s “Country Roads” which certainly got everyone going! I know an act is good when I immediately add them on Twitter when they come off stage!
Next up was Glen Mitchell. Glen and SaraBeth come as a pair, writing together while each appears with the other when on stage. I’ll admit to not knowing too much about Glen Mitchell beforehand, so ignorant in fact that I had no real idea he was from Essex (yes, my website is based around female country artists, so blokes with beards don’t always hit my radar!). This made it a real hometown gig for Glen and it was clear he loved every minute. His set was simply brilliant – with a nice mix of great country music (“Broken” and “Amazing Again” being highlights), two great covers in Robbie Williams’ “Angels” and Bryan Adams’ “Run to You” (the latter finished the set and featured an amazing guitar solo) and fun, with songs such as “That’s How Babies are Made” alongside some great chat between each song.
After a fifteen minute break SaraBeth appeared. SaraBeth is an artist we’ve featured many times on Belles and Gals and I have to say that I couldn’t wait to see her appear. We had a small cameo when she appeared with Glen and it was clear that she has a great future ahead as a “shaker” although as a career path, focusing on her singing voice might be a better move!
She opened up with a cover of The Band Perry’s “Done” and it was immediately clear that she brings as much energy to the stage as she does to her records. This is one of my favorite country songs, so for me it was a great way to start. Highlights in the early part of the set were “You Rock My Rodeo”, “Nowhere With You” and an excellent cover of Lynn Anderson’s “Rose Garden”. The whole set was a nice mix of songs from her previous album, EPs and singles, although the best two songs of the night for me came from her current EP “Full Speed Ahead”. “Windhsield/Rearview” was fantastic and I’d have been happy if she had played it again immediately, while “Song About You” was the first song I played when I got in the car after the gig which is always a good indicator of my highlight!
The set finished with “I’m Sick of It” and it looked like there was going to be no encore at first, but we weren’t going to let the gig finish quite so easily. Out come SaraBeth, Glen Mitchell and the excellent band again and we were treated to a fun rendition of the viral hit “Girl Scout Cookie Monster” complete with hand puppets. This was a great way to end the night, everyone leaving with a smile on their face.
The whole night was a good one. Sasha McVeigh was a great opening act and I will certainly be featuring her on the site VERY soon. I now know that I have to find out a lot more about Glen Mitchell – a class act. And if SaraBeth tours again, I’ll be at the front of the queue looking for tickets.