Ron Sayer, Ron Sayer Jr Band18/03/2017It’s not often that a band feels compelled to write a review about a venue. More conventional perhaps to write a review about a band I know, but why should the audience/venue get all the fun? We musicians roam around the English countryside (or rather motorway services and roadworks) and play to tens of discerning fans, why should they be the only ones who get to either praise or slate their overall experience? (Not that we ever get slated…perish the thought!)

Anyway, I digress, the reason I’m compelled to write a rare venue review is because its rare that a venue offers such a wholly satisfying experience to the poor, vulnerable and hapless victims of blues, or as I like to call them, the ‘band’.

The Meeting Rooms in Elland is one such venue. When anyone calls you and offers you a paid gig that promises a great crowd, great sound, great food and great accommodation, you tend to slip on your sceptical trousers and take the proposal with a pinch of sodium chloride, then throw it over your left shoulder for luck..or is it your right?

From the time we arrived we were plied with hot and cold running coffee and soft drinks (to clarify, the coffee wasn’t cold), scrumptious heart-shaped ginger biccies and assorted snacks. The staff were friendly, the sound guy was patient (considering my extensive diva-style sound requirements), and every effort was made to make us feel right at home. We had a nice comfy ‘green room’ with actual seats not upturned beer crates (though I should point out that it wasn’t green, so technically there’s a complaint in the making). This made a change from numerous venues we play, that assume that the carpark, the DJ booth, or the disabled toilet constitutes a suitable dressing room. Though at least in the latter there’s a red string I can pull if I need help doing up my jeans.

Food was plentiful and tasty, they even served enough to keep my son Jadon’s voracious appetite in check, no mean feat. On that subject, as I’d had to come directly from Birmingham, having been to see a band with Jadon the night before, then playing on the Bare Knuckle Pickups stand at the Birmingham Guitar Show, therefore I had my sprog in tow for the gig. On discovering this, a room was promptly booked for the boy ensuring a comfy night for him, not to mention Charlotte and I having a room to ourself for some post-gig rampant sleep.

I suppose I should mention the gig itself! When Mr Maguire said ‘you’ll have a great crowd’, he wasn’t kidding. The lovely Lucy Zirins opened proceedings beautifully, whipping the good people up into a suitable frenzy. Then a nicely full room of very appreciative blues fans gave us a very warm Elland welcome. We had one of the best gigs in recent times, topped off with guest spots from Lucy Zirins herself, Paddy Maguire himself, and the vocally gifted Jenna Hooson-Maguire…herself. We also learnt a few new things such as: don’t leave your son alone in a dressing room with fifty bags of crisps, don’t let Charlotte attempt a Yorkshire accent on stage, and there are certain words you should never say to Lucy Zirins! All in all, we can’t wait to go back, if they’ll have us! Thanks Elland!

Jon Morrow27/02/2017Hi just wanted to say what a great night with Lucy and Ron Sayer Band on Saturday night. I have never been to the place before and came through from Wakefield. Will be recommending to all and coming again.Thanks for a great nightBest wishes Jon

Steve Farrar13/02/2017Thank you for sorting everything for the wedding party on Saturday night. Everyone had a fab night, the band were great, the food, the venue, all of your staff and of course the beer. That was the only thing that was not too great in the morning!!!Thanks againSteven and Tracey

Jane Bird19/12/2016Just wanted to let you know how great we thought Saturday night was, we never saw say you to say hello. Good night and nice turkey sarnie.Jane and Mick

Fred Lockwood25/03/2014Can I take this opportunity to say how much my wife, Chris and I appreciated your assistance and courtesy in organising seats for Ben Poole’s concert. Thank you very much.

It was nice that you introduced yourself, particularly as now I shall know to say hello on future visits. It was the first time we have been to the venue. It will certainly not be our last.

I thought it to be one of the best I’ve ever been to. The facilities are superb.

Having contacted Ben since the show to pass on my compliments to him for another excellent show, he has told me how much he enjoyed the event. He thought the hospitality and consideration shown to him and all the band by yourself and all your staff to be second to none; which says a great deal given the number and variety of places, both in the UK and on the continent, that he plays at.

Graham Laddie, GIA Management23/02/2014Once again a big thank you to yourself, Liz and the team for your hospitality last night, great way for the lads to launch a new album, the crowd were really up for it!

Steve Wailes, Wailes Guitars25/06/2012Excellent night at the Meeting Room in Elland, fantastic entertainment from Mitch Laddie and his band. Great sound and atmosphere from this new venue, hope to see more in the near future.