STOP PRESS 24 June 2021. It probably comes as no surprise, given the recent announcement from the Prime Minister, that we are going to have to cancel this event.  I’m really disappointed about this, as are Lauren, Georgia and Joe. Whilst churches are allowed to hold public worship we are not allowed to hold events/concerts – anything that isn’t an act of worship – so I can’t hold this in Emmanuel. However, I’m hoping to arrange another GITG on 22 August 2021 but without Lauren who isn’t available because of other commitments (but with another act added) and I’m hopeful you’ll still want to join with us then.  I’m sure you realise it’s quite a challenge to juggle everyone’s commitments at short notice. Your tickets with WGT will still be valid, though you can cancel and claim your money back if the new date or line up doesn’t work for you. You should hear from WGT in due course. However, I’m hoping you’d still want to support live music and artists in these challenging times for the music industry.  Details will be available as soon as I have them. Be safe and be blessed. Paul.

My tenth annual Gig in the Garden takes place on Sunday 11 July 2021.  We have three fabulous artists to enjoy with a mixture of Americana/Country, Folk/Blues, Swing/Jazz/Reggae and classic songs as we welcome back Billericay  favourite Lauren Housley, introduce the vibrant Georgia and the Vintage Youth and Joe Slater. Ray Jones of TalentBanq recently commented:

That’s one awesome line up!

TICKETS We have kept the ticket price low – despite a truly awesome line-up and especially as we have reduced numbers this year. Prices in brackets will be ‘on the door’ if there are any available on the day!

Adults £20 & fees (gate £25) / Under 16 yrs £10 & fees (gate £15) You can purchase these from


DOORS 15.00 / Joe 16.00 / Georgia 17.00 / Lauren 18.30
(all timings approximate)


PROCEEDS From this event will be given to the Purple Community Fund working in The Philippines. I spent three weeks there in July/August 2019 working alongside some of the poorest and most disadvantaged people in Asia, many of whom live on the largest rubbish dump in the world.

Lauren Housley

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I’m delighted to welcome back and Lauren Housley and her fabulous band. consisting of Thomas Dibb and Mark Lewis plus a guest appearance from Ben Carr. It’s no secret that Lauren is one of my/our favourite artists and I can guarantee that we’re in for an outstanding live set to finish.

Lauren is a native of Rotherham in South Yorkshire, but is now based in Manchester. She draws her influence from a wide range of music genres, with her emotive vocals steeped in Gospel, Blues and a unique blend of ‘Nashville’ flavoured soul with a hint of Americana and Roots, Pop and Rock and some killer covers thrown in for good measure.

An Americana-tinged singer-songwriter with a Bonnie Raitt style twang, a winning way with yearning lyrics. Housley is her own woman and when she turns glacially emotional on When Autumn Came, she’s as convincing as they come …. Sweet Surrender (album) smoulders. Blues and Soul Magazine

Lauren’s debut album ‘Sweet Surrender’ was one of my standout albums of 2015, filled with some brilliant original songs, written alongside long time creative partner Thomas Dibb, that are honest, sincere and personal. A number of tracks play listed on Radio 2 by the likes of Chris Evans, Jeremy Vine and Bob Harris.

Lauren’s follow up album ‘The Beauty of this Life’ was released in the summer of 2017 and features the best of her limited edition album, and 6 new tracks. Laurel Canyon have labelled them world-class in an album review which you can find here. Don’t say I don’t bring quality acts to Billericay.

In 2018 Lauren released a critically acclaimed single ‘My Sleeping Heart’ (one of my favourite songs of 2018) which saw a much more American Country influence with the perfect blend of a traditional and modern sound. Not too unlike the SoCal sound of Sam Outlaw.

Lauren returns with the long-awaited release of her third albumGirl From The Northon 23 April 2021 through her own label, Lovebird Recordings. Wrapped in a fresh and eclectic sound, the central theme of the new record is one of rediscovering herself and her roots:

“To move forward we sometimes have to go back. I wanted to prove to myself that it doesn’t matter where you are in the world, you can make great music.” Lauren confides, “Returning to my hometown of Rotherham a few years ago, after leaving at the age of 18, seemed like the most bizarre decision I’d ever made. It was never part of my ‘plan’ but it has in fact enabled me to reassess my life and career goals and move forward in a way that feels true to myself.”

After completing Girl From The North in lockdown and now finding herself with the same backdrop as she prepares for its release into the world on April 23rd, Lauren hopes more than ever that her new music will bring a burst of light and joy to listeners in these dark times.

Her new single ‘Stay Awake To Dream’ is out now. The accompanying video, filmed at an abandoned airport just outside Nashville, is also available now.

Lauren Housley’s brand of Americana blurs the lines between rock and soul through to country and blues. Her music is genre defying, and will appeal to all. National Blues Review

Georgia and the Vintage Youth


Georgia Crandon is a 24 year old  from Essex with a big voice! Her retro jazz/swing style of music is both vintage and fresh. Georgia is another of a new breed of vibrant singer/songwriters that I’ve enjoyed in recent years. Georgia is accompanied by muso friends called ‘The Vintage Youth’ and she will be appearing as a trio with percussion and Saxophone. Taking influence from the likes of Paloma Faith, Amy Winehouse, Billie Holiday & Louis Prima, Georgia’s contagious melodies and reflective lyrics won’t fail to have your feet tapping along.

Georgia grew up listening to soul, Motown and reggae and these influences come through strongly in her music. Formerly into musical theatre Georgia gave all that up when she realised she was less interested in the dance routines and more interested in the Ray Charles tunes they were dancing to. That’s when she started gigging and writing her own songs.

Since then she’s released three EP’s, which have all have had airplay on BBC Radio 2, BBC Introducing and local BBC Radio shows in Essex, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk, Norfolk and Kent, plus online radio stations. Her first EP ‘The Girl’ featured Dave Swift (Jools Holland R&B Orchestra) on bass and her second EP ‘El Reco’ featured some toasting from Neville Staple (The Specials). Now, her latest EP ‘Go Funk Yourself’ was produced by Mo Pleasure (Earth, Wind & Fire) and features John Waugh on saxophone (The 1975) which, she says “ain’t too bad for a Loughton girl!” 

2019 saw Georgia & the Vintage Youth perform to thousands of fans across the UK in a massive 50 date theatre tour as a support band to Collabro culminating with a performance in front of a sell out audience at The Royal Albert Hall. Major festival appearances include The Isle of Wight, Cambridge Club and Cornbury. Not forgetting headline slots at the Green Note in Camden and the Essex Arms in Brentwood and the Brentwood Festival.

Georgia’s momentum was interrupted in 2020 due to Coronavirus. But Georgia, signed to NEW management is about to set 2021 on fire, following the successful release of her new EP – Overthinker.  The sound is fresh – with immediate youthful appeal, yet echoes the vocal rawness of Janis Joplin, the energy of Marc Bolan and a nod to the wonderful tones of Amy Winehouse. 2021 sees live shows booked at The Suburbs  and The Jazz Cafe plus main stage festivals at Weyfest 2021 supporting Soul 2 Soul and The Dualers.

The evening enjoyed lively entertainment by talented singer Georgia Crandon
Ray Massey, Daily Mail

Essex Girl with a big voice, big blonde hair and a cool little jazz band called The Vintage Youth
BBC Introducing

Joe Slater

Hailing from Croxteth, Liverpool, and at just 23, Joe has a wise head on young shoulders. He says: “Its not about the past it’s all about the future. Real music is about passion and feeling. I want people to feel my music.” When you see him, you’ll know what he means!

Joe delivers a smooth saturating blend of rock, blues and soul that is well beyond his years. Joe’s songwriting and unique vocals take listeners on a journey comprised of energetic sing-alongs and anthemic ballads, full of interior and reflective moments that only the greats could inspire. With 6 instruments under his belt and musical inspirations from The Beatles, The Boss, Dire Straits, Bob Dylan and Oasis … Joe blurs the lines between Blues, Soul and Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Joe recorded with Rock ‘n’ Roll royalty. His ‘State of the Ark’ EP was produced by ” Kipper” (Sting and many more), engineered by Cameron Craig (Adele and many more) and Mastered at Abbey Road Studios.

Since the release of ‘Lady’ in November 2018, Joe has been on an exciting journey. He  was picked up by BBC Radio 6, released his EP on British Airways, became Caffe Nero’s Artist of the Month, secured a residency at The Hard Rock Hotel; Marble Arch and headlined two sell-out shows in London and Liverpool. Joe released the ‘Lost In Time’ EP late 2019 and Joe’s single ‘To The Creator’ is number two in my top songs of 2019.

Joe is making serious waves in London, having performed at the first year anniversary of The Ned, the launch of Soho House White City and on London Live TV (see below). Last summer Joe performed with his band at a series of major festivals including The Isle of Wight, Cornbury, Bootle and Liverpool International Music Festival. He is a resident artist at the new Hard Rock Cafe, Oxford Street and opened for The Christians at the famous Cavern Club, in his home town of Liverpool.

You can read an interesting Q&A with Joe on the Fred Perry website

“Lady carries such absolute conviction you can’t help but get swept up in its gravitational pull. He’s clearly a man on a major musical mission.”  Tom Robinson, BBC Radio 6

“With his raspy voice, perfect pitch and soulful delivery, Slater is unquestionably destined for stardom …” London Hollywood

“One To Watch” The Liverpool Echo

“He has a total grasp on the most stunning vocals and lyricism. (…) he is just so unbelievably talented, soulful and natural in his delivery and form. His voice and aura just fills the space.” The Music Site


COVID-19 There will be a reduced number of people in attendance as we seek to follow government guidelines which may still be in place in July.


HOW TO FIND US Billericay Rectory can be found on Laindon Road, CM12 9LD and is a 10 minute walk from Billericay station (25 mins from Liverpool Street). We are only 5 mins off the A127 and 10 mins off the A12.

PLEASE ENTER The Rectory Garden via the small gate to the left of the Rectory on Laindon Road, not by the gate next to the Community Garden / Car Park, as this will be locked!

PARKING You can park in Emmanuel church (next door) which is just a short walk from the Rectory. There is also parking on the High Street or in the car park behind Iceland.

WEATHER In the event of inclement weather, the ‘Gig in the Garden’ will take place in Emmanuel.

FOOD & DRINK As with other outdoor events here at The Rectory, you are encouraged to bring along a picnic to enjoy – alcohol allowed!

SEATING No seating is provided. Please bring a blanket or a fold-up garden chair (and something warm to wear – just in case!!) Please note, because of limited space, no tables, gazebo’s or parasols are permitted. Please be sure to take all your litter home with you.

PLEASE NOTE this is a listening event rather than a talking event. Please read Shhh … there’s a band playing!

CONTACT / revPACman /

Gig in the Garden 2021 Poster

Gig in the Garden 2021 Poster