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GIGS 2012

Sunday 28th October 2012

Hop Leaf, Reading, RG1 2QZ

Boho at The Hop open-mic hosted by Rob Sowden

"Jimmy Savile"

Perhaps one of the positives to come out of the Jimmy Savile scandal is that we as a society become more aware of how duplicitous and clever paedophiles are. Consequently hopefully further abuses may be prevented. Unfortunately I don't think that will be the case. I believe these people get away with their crimes so often because we prefer not to think about what they do; we don't think it's part of our lives. We all prefer to have a "quiet life" rather than confront that which is unpleasant. You only need to look at the alleged dilatoriness of various establishments to investigate Savile that that seems to be the case. It's now becoming apparent many abuses may have been prevented if there hadn't been the tendency to look away. I think paedophiles understand this trait that we have and take advantage of it. They work under a cloak of taboo where we prefer not to look. It's like a blind spot. Although understandable, and no doubt helped by his eccentricity, I don't think it helps us (particularly the young and vulnerable) that Savile has been demonised. As a result he has become "dehumanised" which permits us to consider that he is no longer "one of us" which further allows us to look away as if "he and his crimes aren't part of our world".

Unfortunately these people are part of our world and to make the point last night as I introduced They're Going To Get You I explained how the subject of the song was a local headteacher, churchgoer, scout master. In fact, a very highly regarded member of local society. We have to be clear these people move amongst us and are not all eccentrics like Savile or dressed up like the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. To further emphasise the point last night I explained how the subject of the song used to live down the road from the Hop Leaf (a very long time ago) and could quite have easily have been a patron of the pub.

I suspect by the time I'd got to starting They're Going To Get You I'd lost most of the audience which was probably just as well because I forgot half the lyrics and indeed what can only be politely described as f**cked up Ashes to Ashes too. Perhaps it was because of the seriousness of what I was trying to convey or the fact that half my psyche is still scattered across my lounge floor waiting to be reassembled that I screwed things up. It certainly can't be described as my finest fifteen minutes. Probably the highlight was my segue into Ashes to Ashes: "And now for something a bit more cheerful - a song about death, addiction and mothers." At least that got a laugh.

My Set: