One of the songs I wrote when we were all put under house arrest last year was called ‘Meanwhile’. The idea behind it was that, as the human world becomes more confused, anguished and uncertain, nature is continuing blithely on in its own beautiful way.
We’re having a bit of a Meanwhile moment right now. The swallows and other summer visitors are returning to our skies and gardens. Ducklings are hatching (and, as quickly, being consumed by weasels, foxes and cats – but let’s not dwell on that). There is belatedly some warmth in the sun and everything outside is growing or is crazily procreative.
Meanwhile… humans are going through change, too. In the UK, we are preparing to creep out of our burrows into the bright, scary post-lockdown sun.
I’ve now done my final Monday Escape livestream. For an astonishing 55 weeks, I enjoyed the company of friends through a screen once a week. It was an extraordinary and fascinating experience – for me, one of the great positives of these crazy times.
And now gigs, in real, live venues for for real, live people, are coming in.
My return to the stage will bat at the Crazy Coqs in central London on 8th June at 9pm. This remains a socially distanced event with reduced capacity, but there are still a few tickets left – here.
On 18th June, I’ll be nearer home at the Corn Hall in Diss for a show called Unplugged and Unlocked with the superb guitarist and bluesman Dave Thomas. Dave’s latest album One More Mile has been a big hit here and in America, reaching the Number One spot in the UK Roots Chart.
We’ll each be playing solo spots, then getting together for a few songs. It’s going to be great to see old friends again at this great local venue. Tickets for the Corn Hall show can be bought here – £2 from each sold will go to the great charity Help Musicians UK which has been doing such a great job during lockdown.
In July, I shall be part of the Jermyn Street Theatre’s fantastic Footprints Festival, which has a wonderful array of shows, ranging from new drama to Tom Lehrer and Flanders and Swann tribute acts, from science fiction poetry to the revival of a Keith Waterhouse play. I’ll be launching a new show called THE SHOCK OF THE OLD, in which I’ll be nervously circling around the tricky subject of, er, maturity, and trying, through my songs, to cast a new – and, I hope, cheerful – light on the whole business of getting old. You won’t be surprise to hear that we boomers are doing it a bit differently from previous generations.
You can get tickets for THE SHOCK OF THE OLD here; if you like the look of other events at the festival, the best idea is to buy a festival pass. It reduces ticket costs by 25%. There are also reductions for concessions.
Meaanwhile… I’ve done an intimate, no-holds-barred interview with Gina Long for the Eastern Daily Press. Most embarrassing moment, proudest day, what’s in my fridge – the intimacies are beyond shame.
In the latest edition of The Living Tradition, there’s profile of me to tie in with the release of Playing For Time.Read more