Comedian and talented musician Bill Bailey will be sending a social media message for Fifty Gigs In A Day. Great bit of coincidence as he appears at the Victoria Hall, Hanley on February 8 – a venue where I watched many bands and comedians during the late 80’s.
Larks In Transit tour dates –
- Jan 29 2018 Coventry Warwick Arts Centre SOLD OUT
- Jan 30 2018 Coventry Warwick Arts Centre
- Jan 31 2018 York Barbican
- Feb 1 2018 York York Barbican
- Feb 2/3 2018 Newcastle City Hall
- Feb 5/6 2018 Southend-on-Sea Cliffs Pavilion
- Feb 7/8 2018 Stoke-on-Trent Victoria Hall
- Feb 9/10 2018 Sheffield Memorial & City Hall
- Feb 12/13 2018 London New Wimbledon Theatre
- Feb 14/15 2018 Llandudno Venue Cymru
- Feb 16 2018 Carlisle The Sands Centre
- Feb 17 2018 Glasgow SECC
- Feb 19-22 2018 Truro Hall For Cornwall
- Feb 23/24 2018 Plymouth Plymouth Pavilions
- Feb 26/27 2018 Leicester De Montfort Hall
- Feb 28 2018 Nottingham Theatre Royal and Royal Concert Hall
- Mar 1 2018 Nottingham Theatre Royal and Royal Concert Hall
- Mar 2/3 2018 O2 Apollo Manchester
- Mar 5 2018 Cheltenham Town Hall SOLD OUT
- Mar 6 2018 Cheltenham Town Hall
- Mar 7/8 2018 Basingstoke Anvil Arts
- Mar 9 2018 Warrington Pyramid & Parr Hall
- Mar 10 2018 Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
- Mar 12-14 2018 Reading Hexagon
- Mar 15-17 2018 Watford Colosseum
- Mar 19/20 2018 Blackburn King George’s Hall
- Mar 21 2018 Preston Guildhall
- Apr 18/19 2018 Northampton Derngate Theatre
- Apr 20 2018 Brighton Centre
- Apr 21 2018 Margate Winter Gardens
- Apr 22 2018 Southampton Mayflower Theatre
- Apr 24 2018 Cheltenham Town Hall
- Apr 25/26 2018 Hull City Hall
- Apr 27/28 2018 Southport Theatre & Convention Centre
- May 1 2018 Chatham Central Theatre SOLD OUT
- May 2 2018 Chatham Central Theatre
- May 3/4 2018 Tunbridge Wells Assembly Hall Theatre
- May 5 2018 London Eventim Apollo
- May 6 2018 Southampton Mayflower Theatre
- May 8-10 2018 Swansea Grand Theatre and Arts Wing
- May 11 2018 Bristol Hippodrome SOLD OUT
- May 12 2018 Bristol Hippodrome
- May 14/15 2018 Hastings The White Rock Theatre
- May 16/17 2018 Stevenage Gordon Craig Theatre
- May 18/19 2018 New Theatre Oxford
- May 21-23 2018 Guildford G Live
- May 24/25 2018 Portsmouth Guildhall
- May 26 2018 Bournemouth The BIC
- May 28/29 2018 Reading Hexagon
- May 30/31 2018 Aylesbury Waterside Theatre
- Jun 1 2018 Motorpoint Arena Cardiff
- Jun 2 2018 Birmingham Arena
- Jun 4/5 2018 Ipswich Regent Theatre
- Jun 6 2018 London Eventim Apollo
- Jun 8 2018 Leeds First Direct Arena
- Jun 9 2018 Peterborough East of England Arena & Events Centre
- Jun 12 2018 Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
- Jun 13/14 2018 Warrington Pyramid & Parr Hall
- Jun 15/16 2018 High Wycombe Swan Theatre
The Rising release their Christmas single ‘This Special Time Of Year’ this coming Friday December 8.
You can hear and download it here
A new mental health hotline offering support for those in the music industry has been officially launched. The service can be contacted on 0808 802 8008 and it operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The service was created by the charity Help Musicians UK after a recent study discovered that musicians were three times more likely to suffer from depression compared to the general public. The research was undertaken by Sally Gross and Dr George Musgrave of the University Of Westminster and published by MusicTank in conjunction with Help Musicians UK.
A statement on the official website reads: “With 96 years of experience, Help Musicians UK understands the complexity of working in music and recognises the need for support to reflect the nature and unique challenges those in the industry can face.
“If you want someone to talk to, or even explore avenues for ongoing support, get in touch, anytime. We’re here to help.”
Magnum have confirmed the release of their absolutely enthralling new studio album ‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’, as a digipack CD (with bonus 4 track live CD), double gatefold 180 gram purple vinyl LP (+ CD in paper sleeve), download and stream on Steamhammer/SPV on January 19th 2018.
‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’, which marks the major 20th studio album milestone on this illustrious group’s 40 year musical path, is one of Magnum’s most inspired, diverse, exhilarating and alluring albums ever. Reflecting on the reason for this new creative zenith, guitarist/songwriter Tony Clarkin recalls “As I had started to write the songs even before we embarked on our most recent tour, I subsequently had time to let my initial ideas sink in for a few weeks, which helped me realise that I was on the right path,” he says, looking back with satisfaction. “That was a good feeling which inspired me to write more powerful numbers. Apart from that, the usual Magnum formula applied: I go to the studio, try out ideas on the guitar or on the keyboards and do my damnedest to write the best Magnum song of all time.” As a result, ‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’ contains eleven of arguably the best Magnum songs of all time, all additionally sparkling with the fresh inspiration brought to the table by consummate new band members Rick Benton (keyboards) and Lee Morris (drums).
‘Without Love’, the first single, a strident, relentlessly driving groove-laden song with a subtly irresistible melody, glorious guitar riffs and catchy chorus, will totally tantalize the fans’ musical appetite when released on December 8th. After their headline appearance at the Giants Of Rock Festival in Minehead on January 26th 2018, Magnum will set off on a two month European headline tour in February, commencing with the following UK concerts:-
20th February Bristol – Trinity
21st February Cardiff – Tramshed
22nd February Holmfirth – Picturedome
24th February Manchester – Academy 2
25th February Hull – Welly
26th February Aberdeen – Garage
27th February Glasgow – Garage
1stMarch Belfast – Limelight
2ndMarch Birmingham – Town Hall
3rdMarch Preston – Guildhall
4thMarch Nottingham – Rock City
7thMarch Leamington – Assembly
8thMarch Cambridge – Junction
9thMarch London – Islington Assembly Hall
10thMarch Southampton – Engine Room
12thMarch Brighton – Old Market
The album’s mighty title track features a duet between vocalist Bob Catley and Tobias Sammet, a kind of artistic thank-you by the Edguy/Avantasia front man in appreciation of Catley’s guest stint on various of Sammet’s releases. ‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’ was also additionally enhanced by atmospheric arrangements courtesy of the Wolf Kerschek orchestra.
While much kudos must be attributed to original band members Tony Clarkin and Bob Catley for most of the musical prowess on ‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’, a fair amount should be attributed to bassist Al Barrow, (who has been in the group since 2001), along with new keyboardist Rick Benton and drummer Lee Morris. Benton joined the Magnum camp in December 2016 to replace long-standing member Mark Stanway, while Morris took over from Harry James in the summer.
“Harry has two other bands, Thunder and Snakecharmer, and it became more and more difficult to coordinate our schedules,” Clarkin explains and confesses; “I must admit that I was reluctant to let him go, but after Lee had drummed for us for the first time and we realised that he adds even more rhythmic complexity to our songs, I’m more than happy with the line-up change.”
Clarkin feels just as positive about his new keyboardist Rick Benton; “Rick has brought a breath of fresh air and interesting ideas into the band. His style is carefully considered and he seems to know intuitively what enhances our material. You just have to give him a rough idea of the arrangement and he immediately comes up with a perfect solution. All you have to do is listen to and enjoy the atmospheric middle part of ‘Welcome To The Cosmic Cabaret’ to appreciate what a positive addition Benton is to the Magnum fold.”
The digipack CD version of ‘Lost On The Road To Eternity’ will include a bonus live Cd containing 4 songs recorded at Magnum’s 2017 performance at the Leyendas Del Rock Festival in Alicante, Spain.
1 CATS IN SPACE Scarecrow
Their debut was pretty damn fine, so high expectations and they delivered! A marvellous mix of 70s’ rock, pomp, pop and more melodies than you can shake a stick at.
2 THRESHOLD Legends of the Shires
Returning vocalist Glynn Morgan helps the band to make one of the finest albums to date. A real return to form.
3 LONELY ROBOT The Big Dream
Part two of the trilogy and another fine set of musical adventures. No name guests this time as John Mitchell does it all bar the drums and some backing vocals.
4 BOULEVARD IV
Finally we get a new album from Boulevard. Fantastic tunes and production, deserves a place in every melodic rock/AOR fans collection.
5 THE YOUNG ‘UNS Strangers
Folk acapella from this talented three piece. Each song is based on a true story and the songs are all positive and uplifting.
6 STEVE WALSH Black Butterfly former Kansas vocalist returns with an album chock full of melodic rock treats.
7 SONS OF APOLLO supergroup featuring Jeff Scott Soto, Mike Portnoy, Derek Sherinan and Billy Sheenhan. Fantastic joining of music talents and the music lives up to expectations.
8 LIONHEART only 20 odd years since their last album…with Lee Small (Shy/Phenomena) on vocals, Lionheart deserve a place in any melodic rock fans collection.
9 IT Home thought provoking and timely progressive rock backed by oodles of melody.
10= H.E.A.T. Into The Great Unknown they have changed their sound a bit which may upset some fans, but for me they are heading onwards and upwards.
10= PUGWASH Silverlake the power pop album of the year. If you like ELO, Duckworth Lewis grab a copy of this.
10= BARENAKED LADIES Fake Nudes another set of memorable melodies and lyrics that don’t always take themselves too seriously…
HAREM SCAREM United they keep on churning out classy melodic hard rock and long may that continue.
THE BITERS plenty of retro on this one, with the T Rex sounding songs
JEFF SCOTT SOTO Retribution not as instant but stick with it
BIGFOOT one of the debuts of the year. Modern hard rock and the singer doesn’t half sound like Tyketto’s Danny Vaughn at times!
THE NIGHTS more classy Scandi melodic rock with hook filled choruses big enough to land a whale.
THE NEW ROSES One More For The Road good time hard rock, no frills and plenty of riffs.
NIGHT RANGER Don’t Let Up they show no sign of letting up quality wise, another ‘must have’ for fans.
DANKO JONES Wild Cat if you like 70’s rock, Thin Lizzy and foot tapping tunes look no further.
THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA Amber Galactic like Brother Firetribe their ‘day bands’ are heavy yet here they show their love of 80’s melodic rock and AOR.
Fellow GRTR! reviewers choices can be found here
Single released 4 December to raise money for homelessness as charity turns 50
To download the track for 99p click here:
Legendary singer-songwriter, Ralph McTell, has re-recorded his timeless song, ‘Streets of London’, with a choir made up of clients from Crisis – the national charity for homeless people – and guest vocalist Annie Lennox, to raise money for the cause in the run up to Christmas.
First penned 50 years ago, the classic single shares its birthday with Crisis, whose 50th anniversary also falls this December.
To mark the occasion, Crisis’ homeless clients and staff from across the country came together to form an 88-strong choir to sing alongside McTell and guest vocalist Lennox. The choir was conducted by Only Men Aloud’s Tim Rhys-Evans, while the recording also features Fairport Convention’s Richard Thompson on guitar.
One of the most recorded songs of all time, ‘Streets of London’ has been covered by over 200 artists including Cat Stevens and Glen Campbell. The song has long been associated with homelessness, with its lyrics speaking of lonely figures walking through Surrey Street Market in Croydon, where Crisis now has a centre. The latest version is an emotional gem, featuring lush orchestration and soaring choral harmonies alongside McTell’s trademark baritone.
The single is being released to raise money for Crisis and help support some of the thousands of people facing homelessness this Christmas, many of whom will have nowhere to turn as the winter months close in. As well as opening 13 centres for over 4,000 homeless guests over Christmas, the charity works year-round to help people out of homelessness, as well as campaigning for changes that will end homelessness once and for all.
Ralph McTell said:
“It’s 50 years since I wrote Streets of London and it saddens me that the issues raised in the song are still so relevant today. When the idea of a single to support Crisis was mooted, I was very pleased that it might help raise awareness of the charity’s work and the wider issue of homelessness. I have been performing a Christmas concert in aid of Crisis for a few years now; inspired by its commitment to improving the circumstances of so many.
“I was also thrilled that the wonderful Annie Lennox was prepared to lend her voice to a new recording, and when I discovered that Crisis had its own choir, it offered the perfect opportunity to create a new and exciting version of a song so many people know.”
Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive of Crisis, said:
“Our heartfelt thanks go to Ralph McTell, Annie Lennox and all Crisis clients and staff who lent their voices to this record. The vital funds and awareness it will raise will help us support even more people facing homelessness this Christmas.
“It’s 50 years since Crisis was founded as an urgent response to an unacceptable situation – and it’s nothing less than a tragedy that we are still here today when homelessness should be a thing of the past.
“This collaboration between our clients and Ralph McTell can help us to raise awareness of the similar crisis we’re facing 50 years on. But homelessness isn’t inevitable and we’ll continue to work to ensure we won’t be needed in another 50 years’ time.”
To download the track for 99p click here: smarturl.it/streetsoflondon