But after Covid and the winter Omicron variant surge put the dampeners on their most recent Christmas dates, Southsea Alternative Choir are putting on a special summer show at The Wedgewood Rooms on Friday, July 1.
Vocalist Charlie Waddington was forced to miss the seven-piece’s December Wedge show after getting Covid – and many who had bought tickets didn’t show. Then three more band members caught Covid forcing them to cancel their Southsea Beach Café show on December 28.
Guitarist and choir co-founder Sam Richards says: ‘Although it feels like we've got back to some sort of normality, I think there's going to be a bit of a spike around winter-time/Christmas-time with regards to Covid for a while.
‘We thought maybe we should do a bigger show in the summertime when there's less likelihood of people missing the show, so we put together this idea.
‘You know what we're like, we like to theme things – we can't go out and just do a normal gig! We have to do this, otherwise the possibilities of choosing the songs to play are never-ending because of all of our different tastes in music, so we have to put walls up just to restrict the endless flow of: “What about this B-side from the 1968 single by...”’
‘[Guitarist] Sam Davidson suggested that we do “a night at the movies”, where we pick our favourite tunes from films which are pretty well known.
‘It's eclectic tunes from the ’60s up to the 2000s.’
Although they’re keeping most of the set under-wraps, Sam adds: ‘I found out one of my favourite records, It's a Shame About Ray by The Lemonheads is 30 years old this month.
‘It's a record I remember, just laying around listening to, drinking French stubbies and looking at the stars – that's the record me and my good friend Gary did that to.
‘To think that's 30 years ago, I can't get my head around it, and it's made me and Charlie think maybe we should bring a Lemonheads song into the set. There's a little spoiler for you if you know their songs. It might not be the original, but I'm pretty sure you can work it out.’
The choir was created out of a desire to help raise money to help a friend’s son get a vital operation in America, and charity remains at the heart of what they do – there will be bucket collections on the night, and all money from tickets sales goes to good causes.
Sam adds: ‘This year we're raising for Motiv8, a local charity which helps young people deal with mental health issues.’
Support comes from former Gilkicker frontman and solo singer-songwriter Sam McCarthy.
We have three pairs of tickets to give to the lucky entries drawn at random from the correct answers to this question: Who is the lead singer of The Lemonheads? A) Eddie Vedder, B) Kurt Cobain, C) Evan Dando.
Send your answer via email to [email protected] by 11.59pm on Wednesday, June 29. Full rules here: nationalworldplc.com/competition-prize-draw-terms-and-conditions.
Tickets cost £10. Go to wedgewood-rooms.co.uk.