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the rabbit and the prince

first published on the leeds innscene

Blimey Chris, what another steaming night.

You can say that again Torps, you certainly donít get many of them to the pound. As we were walking through the hoards of girls in short skirts that are Saturday night in Leeds, we were looking for only one thing - men in leather jackets with long hair, and not for the reasons you might think - it was Dusty Miller night at the "Prince of Wales".

With a central location, near all the Saturday night haunts, it is very easy to find, straight out of the train station, turn right, and down to Mill Hill, youíll find it on the corner.

For all you out there that donít know Leeds street names like me, itís round the back of Yatesí.

The decor, old paintings, ornaments and object díart, made the place really cosy, like a museum, in fact it resembled my living room, except for the large fish on the walls, Iím no fisherman as you know, Chris, but I do have great tackle.

But you know what, Torps, when we walked in, the jukebox blaring out the Spice Girls latest misdemeanour, I saw the advert for alcoholic soda water, and I thought are we in the right pub? I assumed it was Torpsí infamous directions striking again, how wrong I was to be.

What do you mean, my "infamous directions"?

Iím sorry Torps, I suppose it is easy to mistake Glyndebourne for Glastonbury.

Well... OK, I suppose so. Anyway, Paul and Angela were to be our hosts for the evening, and as we savoured their hospitality, and many regular real ales, Paul told us how he had turned away one customer whoíd asked for John Smiths Extra Smooth. We werenít to make that mistake.

It would have been hard to, who wants wine bar bitter when the Black Sheep is as smooth as a babyís bottom and twice as tasty.

Well, Paul was so impressed with the Black Sheep that he painted his pub in their brewery colours.

It seems a good enough reason to me, Iím often so impressed with my Saturday night kebab that I spray my walls in similar fashion.

As we mentioned before, we were there, principally, to see a band, what did you think, Chris?

It seems to be a fashion nowadays for pubs to have speakers in the toilets, there was no need for them in this place, theyíve got a band playing next to them, and what a band they were.

You're not wrong there, Chris, the band, consisting of Dusty Miller (lead guitar, vocals), Dave (bass guitar), and Andy (drums), resembled the Jimi Hendrix Experience, not only in sound, but in style of play - the two supporting musicians behind the focal lead guitar.

I was actually waiting for Dusty to smash up and set fire to his guitar, but, alas, it was not to be. And despite his amp breaking down at the end of the night, renditions of "Purple Haze", "The Wind Cries Mary" and "All Along The Watchtower", along with some blues classics, meant that Dusty provided a gig Jimi himself would have been proud of.

Well he must have been good, I saw you clapping his sound-check.

Thatís rather like the time when we did a pub music quiz, and you wrote down the names of the songs which were playing on the jukebox before the quiz had even started.

Dusty, by the way, is an ex-member of rock legends Judas Priest, and if there was any doubt in our minds, his looks were soon to confirm his credentials. Dressed in leather and denim, he strutted about with his cac-handed guitar and sang in gravel-voice.

Torps, arenít you going to mention how important the gig was, he has just returned home from his last gig, in Texas no less, where he must have gone down a storm.

I was just about to, when I started wondering when the last time I was so transfixed by somebodyís fingers was? I think it was when I was still going out with Janice, an ex-girlfriend from Market Harborough.

She was a mud-wrestler, wasnít she, Torps?

Yeah, but she was very sprightly.

And although the fire wasnít lit there was a tremendous amount of heat coming from the band, much like Janice.

Enough of your lame jokes, Chris, tell me your overall impression of the place.

Well, I noticed that it is a previous winner of CAMRAís pub of the season, but I think that it is a pub for all seasons

Yep, for once I can agree whole-heartedly with your comments, even though they were a bit of a clichť, with its central location, its a great place to start off your own steaming night out in Leeds, thatís what we had planned, but Dusty Miller and his band had other ideas.

So if your looking for a place to be and be seen on a Saturday night (theyíve got different bands on each weekend), you canít do much better than the "Prince of Wales". We now wait with trepidation for the Rabbitís conclusion, what will it be this week?

The Rabbitís verdict: Definitely thank your mother.

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