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First of all, how in living, frosty hell can it possibly be February already?!?
OK, having gotten that out of the way, I'll tell you a bit about the Leadbellyfest media launch.
It was in the Elgar Room at the Albert Hall.
A room full of people wondering what to expect, including me.
I met the promoters of the event as well as the woman who runs the charity this is all being done for.
It's a children's hospice that tries to aid the families of terminally ill children and, of course, help make the children as comfortable as possible.
The charity is called Shooting Stars Chase.
Even if you can't make the concert they could sure use your support and contributions.
I also met the musical director, Kipper, who is Sting's Grammy Award winning producer and found out that I know and have worked with a couple of the houseband members before.
Geraint Watkins was the keyboard player for The Rhythm Kings while I was with them (and he still is) and Steve Simpson is a wonderful player of all stringed instruments who was in my band when I first started touring in the UK many years ago.
Radio personality David 'Kid' Jensen was the host for the evening.
He and I had a chat from the stage about why I was happy to be involved, etc.
I heard later that I was 'very funny' and 'entertaining'.
Well, OK.
Two different musical acts played short sets, Laurence Jones, a young man with an electric guitar that us slated to be a big deal in the blues world and Slim Chance, originally Ronnie Lane's band, post Small Faces.

The lineup for the show is as follows:

Eric Burdon (The Animals)
Paul Jones (Manfred Mann)
Van Morrison
Ruby Turner
Jools Holland
Gwen Dickey (Rose Royce)
Josh White Jr (His father, Josh White Sr, played at Leadbelly's funeral, who died the year I was born)
Laurence Jones

Oh, and me!

Paul Jones was the only other artist, besides Laurence Jones, to attend the media launch and also chatted with 'Kid' Jensen.
I'm sort of the anomaly here, with most of the others having recorded Leadbelly songs in the past, like The Animals' House Of The Rising Son and Manfed Mann's John Hardy, but I enjoy the challenge of showing up in places where I don't seem to belong.
When they announced the lineup my name got a 'Who?' from someone in the audience.
I think they know now.
All in all, a good couple of hours, well spent, for a good cause.

The actual gig will be posted on our website soon.
Meanwhile here's the festival website again - http://www.leadbellyfest.com
There is a link to buy tickets there. ~


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