As I write, we have just celebrated Easter, the clocks have gone forward and Spring has officially began. Really!

SOAPBOX DERBY This coming Sunday sees one of the most exciting events in Billericay. Tickets are still available.

Soapbox 2023

Local Council Elections: 4 May 2023

HANNAH WHITE If you want to see Hannah perform in a room with a band then you have to be here on Friday 5 May . It’s Hannah’s only headline show for the foreseeable and the last venue band show until after festival season.


The Coronation of King Charles III

Sunday invite - vs2

Gigs I’ve Attended!

COUNTRY TO COUNTRY Managed to get a couple of tickets for Sunday 12 March. What an evening – country at it’s best and, according to those around us who had been there the whole weekend – the best evening of the lot!  Lindsay Ell was a revelation  –  and what an amazing guitarist.  Loved the ‘non woke’ country rock of Mitchell Tenpenny – not often you get a crowd singing about ‘Bitches!’ The Old Crow Medicine Show had everyone on their feet in a joyous mix of trad country and bluegrass – and who knew they sang the original version of ‘Wagon Wheel?’ And finally, the Zac Brown Band didn’t disappoint. Not as raucous as the OCMS but still had the crowd on their feet.  This is my current fave ZBB song!

MARCUS KING Saw Marcus at The Forum on Tuesday 21 March and, to be honest, it was more than disappointing – after I saw him play a great set during the CMA in Nashville last year. He reminded me of a self-indulgent Neil Young on a bad day. I’ll stick to listening to his albums in the future.

LIVE AT SLIPPED DISCS: LUKE JACKSON I helped to promote Luke for a friend of mine at Slipped Discs in Billericay High Street on Wednesday 22 March. Luke played two sets and, whilst it took me a while to warm up to him (not sure his opening three songs were the best to capture a crowd unfamiliar with his songs) by the end of the first set he had grabbed us and by the ebd of the second we were eating out of his hands! I referred to Luke as modern-day Troubadour who has is crying and laughing with his moving and poignant songs.  Definitely one to invite back!

LIVE AT EMMANUEL: BILLY MITCHELL AND BOB FOX A crowd of just over 100 were treated to a fantastic evening of traditional Northern Folk (and pop) songs from B&B. Their style and banter complemented each other so well with a number of highlights in a 2.5 hour set – no Lindisfarne songs, but a great rendition of Jimmy Nail’s ‘Big River.’ It was a nostalgic evening for me but, once again, a standing ovation showed that it’s not just a Mackem ‘darn sarf’ who appreciated this evening.  There could be an opportunity to welcome ‘The Pitmen Poets’ in the future but, sadly, 100 people won’t be enough to cover the costs of fiour artists.

CHOIR OF MAN I made my West End Debut in Choir of Man of Wednesday 19 April.  If you know, you know, if you don’t – then get along to see it.  It’s a wonderful feel good evening set in a pub with great songs and poignant narration which will have you crying and laughing in equal measure!

What’s Coming Up?

KEITH JAMES Sings ‘The Great Canadian Songbook’ at the Dixon Studio, Southend, on Wednesday 3 May 2023. Keith is always great value and a quite outstanding musician. He’s played at Billericay Rectory a couple of times and comes highly recommended from me! Tickets available here

HOUSE GIG: JEREMY JOHNSON I’m delighted to have arranged for British singer-songwriter Jeremy Johnson to play at Billericay Rectory on Friday 12 May 2023. I have half a dozen spaces left for the hottest tickets in town!   

House Gig: Jeremy Johnson

MIKE PETERS Is playing at Union Chapel on Tuesday 6 June 2023. Mike was the frontman of The Alarm and is embarking on a nationwide acoustic tour.  Unfortunately, Paula is teaching at a conference in Glasgow that week and is unbale to come with me. I’m looking for a gig buddy or someone to offer me a decent price for two tickets!

HOUSE GIG: TINDERBOX It’s always a pleasure to welcome our friends Dan and Monique to Billericay Rectory on Friday 16 June 2023 This will be one of very few live shows they have planned for 2023 (and beyond) so it is one definitely not to be missed!

House Gig: Tinderbox

Leigh Folk Fest 2023

GIG IN THE GARDEN 2023 It’s so difficult to commit to booking artists when I can’t guarantee a decent audience to cover costs, so 2023 is still in the balance. Such a shame when this has been a welcome feature of a Billericay summer since 2009.

What Am I Listening To At The Moment? 

Stoned Cold Country
Davy Spillane
Rita Wilson
Luke Jackson
Lindsay Ell
Old Crow Medicene Show
Zac Brown Band
Billy & Bob
Steve Earle
Jeremy Johnson
Annie Dressner

A Couple Of Interesting Articles To Read!

COLUMN: Billericay Reverend – on how the cross became a fashion accessory

My Best Songs of 2022

EMMANUEL CHURCH We are pretty much fully open now and continue to livestream every other Sunday at 10.30 am on YouTube.

And Finally

Thank you for helping to keep music live in Billericay. Being an independent promoter isn’t easy nowadays, with more and more venues closing down and many simply giving up. I, along with the artists who have appeared, really appreciate your support.

Do continue to support your favourite artists if you can by going to see them live or buying / downloading their music and please support the artists who play in Billericay in 2023 – it is a lifeline for them.

Do keep your eyes on my website for other upcoming events and some recent and very interesting (honestly) articles to read! I recently reached 170,000 hits with an average 120 hits a day which means that some people somewhere enjoy reading what I write! I also write a monthly article for the Billericay & Wickford Gazette and these are posted to my website too!

Don’t forget I’m always happy to catch up for a coffee / beer / curry!

Contact me on email or via Twitter or Facebook. 

Be safe and be blessed