US TOUR UNDERWAY
Jez began his American tour last Friday in Massachusetts, playing shows at venues that have become regular stop-off points on these US trips over the past THIRTY years since his first visit with Jake Walton in the early 1980’s. We have a set-list from Allen Roseman who attended last weekend’s show in Woods Hole, near Cape Cod. There’s a few surprises in there, including ALOYSIUS, FAN DANCER’S DAUGHTER, a solo WAGGA MOON, a “rewritten” FACEBOOK SONG, a “Christmas song from his new Christmas CD” (bit of a puzzle that one…), a new song “about the rich and the poor”, DOVER DELAWARE and AUSTERITY ALPHABET. Jez will still be in New England when the tour resumes later this week in Lancaster MASS… Guitar enthusiasts might note that Jez is again using his Fylde Oberon on this tour. It seems to be his “overseas” instrument of choice, last showing up at the Costa Del Folk festival in Spain earlier this year. We suspect there are practical, rather than artistic reasons for this, given the amount of airline travel involved… We note with sadness that County Durham raconteur and all-round legend Bert Draycott has passed away aged 87. Bert appeared on Jez’s 2010 album “Wotcheor!” as a sign-off announcer, in his typically zany, music-hall style, but Jez’s friendship with him goes back to the early 1970’s when they were both resident performers at the Red Lion Folk Club in Trimdon, County Durham. They also both made their recording debuts on the legendary “Trimdon Folk” LP, released in 1976, a compilation of all the resident singers then involved in the club. That album is now rarer than hen’s teeth, we must add. Remarkably, Bert also worked at Horden Colliery alongside Jez’s father in the 1970’s, just before that pit was closed down. Jez described Bert on his Facebook page as “a true Pitman Poet”, and it certainly is the end of an era with his passing.