Jelly style - now that's a tough one! In the purest terms we're probably a "folk-rock" band. We think of ourselves as a Ceilidh band with a focus on playing strong rhythmic tunes that help dancers hear when to do the next move.
Our setlist is based on English traditional tunes, but we like to mix them up with more contemporary songs. We love to try to find the mostly unlikely mixes!
We've played for all sorts of functions from weddings and family celebrations to public ceilidhs and charity fundraisers.
We also play ocassional pub sessions (we recently played an open-mike slot at the Berkley Arms in Cam to celebrate Burns Night) and if you fancy a ceilidh at your rock festival or instead of your company Christmas Ball, we can do that too.
Steve: Caller, Squeezeboxes, Harmonicas, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals, General nonsense
Steve started playing concertina many years ago when he worked in London (he wanted to learn an instrument that he could play in the car!)
Steve used to play for Morris teams in the North London area and later became a barn dance caller working with a band called Nightwatch from St. Albans. After that he started his own band called Rough Trade - who used to go to gigs in overalls!
He still plays for the Morris occassionally - with Sgt Musgraves Dance from 'oop Norf' and with Zhiggi Zhiggi Zhiggi - a 3 man morris Jig team. Their claim to fame being the backwards Jig performed at the Sidmouth Jig competition...
Steve calls the dances as well as playing the melodies which gives Jellied Reels a unique flexibility.
Grey: Drums, Percussion, Vocals
Graham (Grey) has the unenviable task of setting up and breaking down his drumkit for each gig. We try to be sympathetic, but then it's his own fault, he could have learned to play the flute! Grey provides the drive and stomp for Jellied Reels and along with Steve is a founder member.
Graham has played in pop bands, soul bands, jazz and cabaret dancebands, during this time he ‘played for Simon Dupree and The Big Sound ("Kites" from 1967)
He has played on the same bill as The Baron Knights, Black Lace, The Searchers, The Swinging Blue Jeans and Slade. Grey has done session recording with several Soul and 60's Bands in the South of England. He has had several offers to go fully professional but has preferred to stay solvent and play gigs with friends, much to the Jellies' relief.
Dai: Keyboards, Electric Guitar, Mandolin, Bass Guitar
A veritable Jelly Baby, Dai is the youngest in the band, yet is aware of most of the seminal folk-rock combos and classic albums that the rest of the band refer to on a regular basis.
He blames his Dad, Alan, who plays rock and roll and who told us Dai once came second in a "play Smoke on the Water on as many instruments as possible" competition. He only managed it on 35 ...
He's contributed keyboards to Pontypridd jazz behemoths Wonderbrass and Cardiff-based punksters Dark Chunk and his sensitive acoustic side (yeah, right!) can be heard in his collaborations with Bristolian singer-songwriter Rob Wright.
Bertie: Jelly Baby Award, Lookin' cool
Bertie is perhaps the most popular member of the band as he is stuffed full of Jelly Babies!
He is responsible for the Jellies awarded for acts of supreme courage during events; first couple on the dance floor; surviving a particularly arduous routine; dancing barefoot; dancing with the caller for "demonstration purposes" etc etc.
Jellied Reels takes no responsibility for hyper-active children (or grown-ups) following consumption of sugar saturated Jelly Babies.
Some time in the early 1990s Steve had moved West and started working in the same place as Si (Bass) & Grey (Drums).After a few coffee machine chats it turns out we realised we all had musical backgrounds and we all decided to play for a corporate kickoff bash, along with Trev on guitar. This was a great success and we played our first diddley tune (and Irish Polka in Em that we still use occassionally) alongside side a bunch of rock n roll classics.
Jellied Reels were born.
We played our first Jellied Reels Ceilidh in 1994 to support a charity event for CLIC (Cancer & Leukemia in Children).
Deputy Dave joined a few years later as occasional stand-in Jelly and after various changes of guitarist (similar to Spinal Tap drummers), Dave joined the band proper - even though he commutes from Slough (sorry Dave, Iver Heath)!
Dai joined us most recently and lowers the average age of the band by a considerable amount. Dai has a wide variety of musical influences, including folk, which adds another dimension to our sound.
Tragically, in Aug 2010 Si passed away. We know he wanted us to continue playing and so after a period of reflection we got back on the road.
Consultants of swing
As might be expected in a band full of project managers and consultants we have a ton of experience in playing and organising of all sorts of successful events, know a lot of experts, and we are happy to share our knowledge and experience to help you make the most of your event - even if we are not playing the gig! Just ask.