YOU know when you’re driving through one of our county’s more remote villages and it’s a dark and stormy night and it’s really quite spooky and… Sssh, what was that? Did anyone else hear banjos?

Well, if you should find yourself in the charming village of Bere Regis next Tuesday, November 12 and should accidentally stumble into the compact and bijou booze emporium that is the Drax Arms, you’ll definitely be hearing the sound of banjos, with quite a lot of added fiddle too.

You’ll be treated to the extraordinarily divine sound of Canadian/US banjo and fiddle duo Allison De Groot and Tatiana Hargreaves, two exceptionally gifted musos who speciaisel in Americana roots, old time and bluegrass.

Originally from Winnipeg, Allison gained a performance degree from the rather prestigious Berklee College of Music, so clearly knows which end of a banjo to blow in.

She’s toured the globe, playing festivals from Celtic Connection to Rockygrass and the Tonder Festival in Denmark.

Based in North Carolina, Tatiana is a flippin’ phenomenal fiddler and has toured and recorded with absolute shedloads of luminaries from the old time and bluegrass scene.

Together they create an adventurous and original sound while keeping an ear tuned to the best of Appalachian traditions. They will no doubt be performing tracks from the self-titled debut album which came out earlier this year.

It’s quite a coup for the organisers of the regular folk nights at the Drax to land this superb duo so it’s hoped the evening will be well supported and other quality artists from across the Atlantic will be persuaded to make the trek to Dorset.

Tickets at £10 are available from or you can reserve yours by emailing or you can take a chance and pay £12 on the door on Tuesday night.

Moving on, and there’s a great line-up of live music at the Nothe Fort Dorset Tattoo in Weymouth tomorrow, Saturday, November 9.

It’s a day-long beer and music festival set in Weymouth’s historic Nothe Fort with military displays and random cannon blasts and will be raising money for the RBL Poppy Appeal.

The music kicks off at 2pm with Joocy loops, followed by sets from Tim Fawkes, Ollie Coe, Chris Davies, Finley Leslie and Hamish, with Danny Adams headlining from 8.30 and it’s hoped Danny will joined for an encore by the Whistling Gunner, the fort’s resident ghost.

Tickets at £10 for adults and £2 for nippers are available on the door or from

And it’s been a busy time for Danny Adams, who this week released his debut single Upside Down.

It’s an absolute beast of a track, a slab of sonic supremacy carved out of pure uranium, so heavy my ears grew a beard and sprouted tattoos within seconds of listening to it.

As Danny tells me: “It was written and performed by my good self with recording mixing and mastering done down here in Dorset. And the B-side is a track called Soul Horizon.

“You can get it through Apple Music, Spotify, iTunes, Amazon Music, Deezer and Google Play.

“And not having it must be illegal,’ Danny adds.

Don’t break the law, kids: Just get it, okay?

Till next time…


Bon Giovi (Weymouth Pavilion)

Rough Cuts (Finns, Weymouth)

Mispelt Yoof (Royal Portland Arms, Portland)

Rachel Scott (Waterloo, Weymouth)

Martin Maton (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

Stacey Lou (Gloucester, Weymouth)

Rapport (Wyke Regis Working Mens Club, Weymouth)

Behind Closed Doors (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Total Madness (Wyke Smugglers, Weymouth)

The Shakespearos (Club Bambooza, Weymouth)

Ricky Solo  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

4 Go Mad (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

Bring Me the Pistols (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Matt Black (Lugger, Chickerell, Weymouth)

Georgie Broad (Britannia, Portland) 5pm.

Darren H (John Gregory, Weymouth)

Martin Freed (Duke of Cornwall, Weymouth)

Jolly Boys Outing (Royal Exchange, Portland)

Strings and Reeds (Duke of Albany, Weymouth)

Karen Kay (Black Dog, Weymouth)


Undercover Hippy (Dorchester Arts Centre)

Joocy Loops, Tim Fawkes, Ollie Coe, Chris Davies, Finlay Leslie, Hamish, Danny Adams (Nothe Fort Tattoo, Weymouth) From midday. Tickets £10. In aid of the RBL Poppy Appeal.

Rock Apes (Finns, Weymouth)

Gaz Brookfield (Old Ship Inn, Dorchester)

Stereoironics (Sailors Return, Weymouth)

Compass (Portland Social Club)

Blue Quays (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

The Duke and The Broad’s Rat Pack Show (Little Ship, Portland)

The Hardcore Troubadours (Gloucester, Weymouth)

Old Dogz New Trix (Wyke Regis Working Mens Club, Weymouth)

Jolly Boys Outing (Wyke Smugglers, Weymouth)

The Cubes (Club Bambooza, Weymouth)

Richard Cooper  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth) 2pm.

Graham Morris (Weymouth Conservative Club)

Tripod (Crown, Bridport)

Silk Bullets, Phoenix, Balance of Power (Hardy’s, Dorchester) From 3pm.

Skinful (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

Paul Sharod (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Finnian (Duke of Albany, Weymouth)

Total Madness (Black Dog, Weymouth)

The Katz (Hope and Anchor, Bridport)


Simon and Garfunkel Story (Weymouth Pavilion)

Tim & Steve (Royal Portland Arms, Portland)

Fly Yeti Fly (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Tim Andrews  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth) 3pm

Richard Cooper (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth) 8pm.

Georgie Broad (Black Dog, Weymouth) 4-7pm.

The Duke and The Broad’s Rat Pack Show (King’s Arms,Weymouth) 9pm.

Di’s Open Mic (Duke of Albany, Weymouth) 7pm.

Revolution (Three Compasses, Charminster)


Tim Andrews  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Acoustic session (Belvedere, Weymouth)


Allison De Groot and Tatiana Hargreaves (Drax Arms, Bere Regis) US/Canada bluegrass duo. Tickets £10 from or email to

Songwriter Showcase (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Ricky Solo (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Dougie Cooper’s Jazz Night (Star, Weymouth)

Open Mic Night (Duke of Cornwall, Weymouth)


Tim Andrews  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Wessex Folk Night (Sailors Return,  Weymouth) Acoustic folk, here every Wednesday.


Dorset Rock Choir (Weymouth Pavilion)

Ricky Solo (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Traditional Tune Session (Cove House Inn, ChiswelI, Portland

Ukulele Sessions (Sailors Return,  Weymouth) Strum on down from 8pm.


Illegal Eagles (Weymouth Pavilion)

Zoe Schwarz and Blue Commotion (Finns, Weymouth)

Long Dog (Royal Portland Arms, Portland)

Something Borrowed (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

Carley Varley (Gloucester, Weymouth)

The Relics (Wyke Regis Working Mens Club, Weymouth)

Shelby’s Elbows (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Jim Etherington (Wyke Smugglers, Weymouth)

Milk & Two (Club Bambooza, Weymouth)

Ricky Solo  (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Mama Feelgood (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

The Remedy (Belvedere, Weymouth)

The Shakespearos (King’s Arms, Weymouth)

Leanne Jackson (Duke of Cornwall, Weymouth)