Katie Doherty and The Navigators

Bobik's, Newcastle

28 July 2019

Whenever I talk about Katie Doherty I think I always talk about her songwriting more than her voice.

So I'm listening to her wordless vocal on the traditional tune Polska and ... I really need to make sure I say, she has an extraordinary voice. She could sing anything and it would sound beautiful. The fact that she also has the most beautiful set of songs is just a bonus.

So what can I possibly say now that I haven't said before?

The venue is great. I think Bobik's is a new venture, but it deserves to be a regular on the scene. It's in the upstairs room of a pub, a comfortable size for an artist like Katie Doherty to fill (I know, I know, she ought to be playing City Hall if there were any justice in the world), the sound is good, the seating is good, there's a bar but they don't serve while the band is on so there's no added noise (yay!) ... yes it really is excellent.

The band is amplified surprisingly loudly for this type of music in this size of room, but still perfectly clear and balanced, and the rock-band volume really suits them, and makes me listen to the songs in a new way. For example the harmony vocals seem to stand out louder and more confident than ever before, the awesome sound of the sparsely-used melodeon bass chords leaps out at you, and all soft little interplays between the three instruments are suddenly more apparent. And it's that kind of freshness that keeps me coming back to hear the same set again and again.

No. That's not true. I keep coming back simply because this is the most beautiful set of songs ever written. I just love these songs.

Katie looked a bit surprised when I approached her—wearing the t-shirt I bought at the last gig—and told her I needed another one. Maybe she doesn't realise that a gig t-shirt isn't a garment, it's a souvenir. The old one will remind me of the London concert. But this one:

Katie Doherty t-shirt

will now remind me of the best concert I've ever seen.