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 Barry will be guest of Steve Norman of Spandau Ballet and his special guest Don Powell of Slade, Saturday 22 June 2024, 20:00 

"Songs, Stories & Stuff" joining the band on a few numbers at  PizzaExpress Live Holborn, London

https://www.pizzaexpresslive.com/whats-on/steve-norman-of-spandau-ballet-and-don-powell-of-slade

New single available for download go to Music Downloads

June 1st 2024. This instrumental piece was written and recorded in response to the passing of Steve Harley and for those in his audience who attended the numerous shows we performed together over a 40 year period. Never a dull moment, musical beauty, masterful lyrics, brilliant ensemble and stage craft, forever raising the bar, grateful for the opportunity, forever in our memory.

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Steve Harley - 27 February 1951 – 17 March 2024

 

My personal take of an extraordinary man.

Steve was surrounded by his loving family at home at his end of life on 17 March 2024. The best place he could have wished for. Next to working his songs and sharing it with the world in masterful style on stage, the two places closest to his heart. He also loved the horse racing world by way of a relaxing distraction from professional life.

When we toured, it was art, history, places and the adventure ahead. His tireless energy in pursuit of these things with such plans of future must have been heartbreaking when realising they can no longer continue although Steve could be stoic at moments of diversity. Never before had Steve cancelled or missed a show. He was committed to deliver the best. He surrounded himself with appropriate personnel who would represent him in this.

 

I was honoured to be invited into his world over 40 years ago. We were bonded through music. Steve’s magnificent songs using emotive imagery in pop music struck me first hearing the Psychomodo album and with a violin too; it was an ideal vehicle for me to jump in, Steve drove.

 

Unique in pop world of music, he’d wince at being tagged “glam rock”when 50 years ago Steve found fame with his first band, Cockney Rebel. They may have been theatrical but, (fancy dress has always been in pop world), the band’s music reached a far wider style than “glam rock”. In Abbey Road studios with orchestra and choir aged 21 years, kick started his broad palette more progressively. His love of literature and language also base for inspiration. It had to be of particular and high quality to ever sit alongside his music. These were high standards he set.

 

Stuart Elliott remained ‘first call’ musician from that first line-up. We’d often remark on how fine a musical experience we’d be on when working with Steve. It is not just ‘songs’, not like working with anyone else, this molten musical improvisation would pour from the song material, Steve steering the audience, elevated to their feet by the end of each and every show, without fail. “Job done” Steve and I would nod with such pride returning to the dressing room. It had to be “special” another description and a unique privilege performed and delivered every time. On “Come Back All is Forgiven” European tour then just on violin back in 1988 Cockney Rebel, I don’t think we ever worked out an ending for several songs, “Make Me Smile” and “Tumbling Down” songs come to mind. Steve would conduct the audience to join him in choruses then lights down and blackout.

 

The band morphed from Cockney Rebel, known as the rock band, so that he could carry on offering venues a ‘different package’. He’d started stripped down line-ups in duos with Nick Pynn, later Robbie Gladwell and Jim Cregan. Next came the trio with James Lascelles. The trio worked a great deal around UK & Europe followed by his latest generation, The Steve Harley Acoustic Band as it became billed, with David Delarre and Oli Hayhurst formed from the last and final album “Uncovered”. He was so proud of this recording so was I and Matt Butler, his producer. He brought in Martin Simpson and along with myself as key instrumentalists was given carte blanche in the studio. In live performances he’d let me go, exploring inventive possibilities. He was like that with all of us musicians, sometimes to bursting point to see how far we could go. Many enduring fans know “The Lighthouse”, and extended violin solo to name but one piece. Sadly the longevity of touring “Uncovered” was cut short when Steve was taken ill so cancelling shows from September 2023 onwards. Our last show together was The Palace Theatre, Newark 30 June 2023.

 

He reliably informed me I’d performed more shows than any other musician but perhaps more significant were the charitable fundraising events like Macmillan nurses, the London Hospital of Neurology or the launch of the Lucy Blackman Trust, just to mention a few. I so admired this skill and use of his fame to such effect, like auctioning his own guitars from stage to the audience, even literally, his shirt off his own back to raise huge funds to donate.

 

Steve was generous, charitable and loving and I was welcomed into his family.Energy, charisma, knowledge and compassion, pub quiz on the tour bus, list goes on, evermore missed. Such encouragement and integrity learned from a self taught musician, never stopping to push music making and performance further in which I was fortunate to play an integral part. The intuitive natural expression from his chosen musicians along with his technicians, production managers, tour managers, promoters, venues and friends and of course family, we are united and rewarded.

 

We had purpose and meaning, we will search for another; tragically no longer with Steve Harley. R.I.P. our dear friend.

20/03/2024-  it is with great sadness that Steve Harley has died, announced by his family on 17/03/2024.

Having just returned from performing in France I will write my own reflection in time.. R.I.P. Steve, my musical soulmate and friend.

Clann na Mara trio March 2024 in Sete, South France dates from 15 to 19 March inclusive.

Looking forward to some live playing, improvising on traditional Irish music with these good pals.

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Steve Harley Acoustic Band - Pizza Express Live, Holborn - Live review - May 2023-

https://closeupculture.com/2023/05/27/steve-harley-live-music-review/

Steve Harley Acoustic Band Epstein Theatre, Liverpool – Live Review - May 2023

https://louderthanwar.com/steve-harley-epstein-theatre-liverpool-live-review/

Steve Harley Acoustic Band 2023 dates announced -

https://allabouttherock.co.uk/steve-harley-acoustic-band-dates-2023/

10 December 2022 - start of tour amalgamating Cockney Rebel, the rock band and Steve Harley's Acoustic Band, Steve is 50 years a Rebel dates!

5 March 2022 - Clyde Auditorium - The Armadillo -a big night to remember as Steve Harley starts his 71st year and celebrates 50 years since the start of his band Cockney Rebel. Joined by special guest Eddi Reader, string quartet, singers Jen Wallace and Gen Sylva, the 4 piece Acoustic band with David Delarre, guitar, Oli Hayhurst, double bass occasionally augmented by drums and percussion from Stuart Elliott and James Lascelles adding some piano too and on bass guitar Kuma Harada. We all feel privileged to be able to do the thing we love, expressing ourselves through music!

Steve Harley Acoustic Band:  ‘Uncovered’ 2022 UK Dates

A couple of reviews from the December 2021 shows, 

Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel- what a relief to be out on the road again!

Such a pleasure to have had the opportunity to perform on the recording, ‘Live from Lafayette’ by award-winning British vocalist & songwriter, RUMER who’s released her first ever live album on September 17th, 2021.

Recordings are from the live stream concert, filmed at London’s Lafayette in October 2020. I’m on violin, mandolin, guitar, and Dobro, accompanying RUMER’s stunning singing.

 

‘Live from Lafayette’ follows the success of her 2020 studio album, ‘Nashville Tears’. The album reached #17 in the UK Album Charts and #1 in both the Country and Americana charts.

Songs featured are from Nashville Tears and selections from her much esteemed catalogue, now fully remastered for digital, CD and vinyl release.

Check out the link:

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Barry will be appearing in the full band line-up with singer, Rumer for a Live-Stream Concert from Lafayette in London on 17 October 2020. Playing violin, mandolin, dobro and guitar to the latest album release of Hugh Prestwood songs called "Nashville Tears" including songs from her fine back catalogue. 

 

Book tickets by visiting the website:

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Finn Bjelke in Norway is now with Bauer Media on Radio Vinyl. He has a new IP-station show called "Bjelke's Jukebox". Describing my solo album "Where Birdsong Meets Aeroplane" clearly enjoys it saying "...a brilliant piece of work! A mix of all things I love about music. I will put three or four tracks on rotation on my new radio station. Really different....."

I'll take that....thank you very much Finn! https://radioplay.no/vinyl-bjelkes-jukebox/

"Uncovered" Steve Harley 2020 studio album release reviews this March “It’s A Thing Of Great Beauty” – Record Collector review- Read it here

“An Unqualified Success” – Fireworks review -Read it here

Wednesday 26th February 2020 - Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel on ITV This Morning to play  hit song, "Make Me Smile", (Come up and see me).

 It's been 45 years since the no.1 slot in the charts! 

Steve Harley Acoustic Band - looking forward to playing within the Harley line-up with fantastic musicians David Delarre-guitar, Oli Hayhurst double bass and occasionally Tom Hooper on percussion with whom Oli appeared on the "Uncovered" recording. The viola has been getting a good airing on this material and I'm enjoying it's gutsy sound! Tour dates begin 21 February at Harrogate Theatre Royal.

Steve Harley Announces the “Uncovered” album for 2020

Above heading  links to Steve Harley's website and news of album release and touring dates of new Acoustic Band.

Lesley-Ann Jones -  Review - Bestselling Author, Journalist, Broadcaster has posted this wonderful review of  "Where Birdsong Meets Aeroplane" on her blog of March 15 , 2019.

How many instruments can Barry Wickens play? How many line-ups has he played them in? He’ll shrug that off with his ravishing grin. Oh, Barry. He so personifies modesty, I’ve wanted to strangle him for it at times. I hold back. When I first danced to his fiddle, back in the Eighties, he was gilding an average white band called Short Stories, lifting blunt instrumentalism and so-what songs with his hovering, insane violin. Via assignments with John Martyn, Thrashing Doves and Howard Jones, he ducked in and out of Immaculate Fools before joining the Cockney Rebel cause. He has played guitar, violin and mandolin and sung BVs for our Steve ever since. 

‘Virtuoso’ seems too inadequate a word for his breathtaking talent. Call me biased. We’ve been friends a long time. Feast your ears on his music anyway. Experience his brilliance on the road right now, as part of Steve Harley’s acoustic trio, through to December. Buy his debut solo album from his label Observation Records, ‘Where Birdsong Meets Aeroplane’. 

What kind of a title is that? A magically musical one. It’s a message. And I think that it’s this: that a blackbird’s song at dead of night rings clear over the roar of a 747;  that the smallest voice has the most enduring resonance. All we have to do is hear. This music is contemplative, stealthy and shimmeringly sublime. You’ll never play it when your friends come for dinner. You’ll flick the satnav off and drive the long way round. You’ll park further away and you will sit outside, willing it not to end. You will indulge in this album again and again. You will have learned how to listen.

https://lajwriter.blogspot.com/2019/03/play-me-like-you-play-your-violin-barry.html?fbclid=IwAR2PFLbG6PylNUBwk5D2yRwAOw49UgI5rORsQvEujISfjw9LI7rzLm-VRNk

A Barry Wickens Solo Album for the Autumn of 2018 has gone into manufacture at the start of October.The release date has yet to be announced.

The violin and viola are members of the alternative rock medium I work in and where acoustic instruments meet electronica, nature meets technological, my worlds collide and marry. With musical contributions from Stuart Elliott (drums), James Lascelles (harmonium), Brian Betts (electric guitar), all vocals and other instruments played by me.This is my first solo album! Coming Soon! If you would like to pre-order your copy of CD, please register your interest and contact via this website and you will be contacted once the product is ready for release.

Steve Harley Acoustic Trio Tour UK Spring 2019 with Barry Wickens & James Lascelles

FEBRUARY

Sat 16 Feb – Holborn Pizza Express

Sun 17 Feb – Holborn Pizza Express

Mon 18 Feb – Stafford, New Vic

 

Thurs 21 Feb - Stockton ARC 
Fri 22 Feb - Whitley Bay Playhouse
Sat 23 Feb - Leeds City Varieties  
Sun 24 Feb - Pocklington Arts Centre


Thurs 28 Feb - Milton Keynes Stables 
 

MARCH

Fri 1 March – Nottingham Lowdham
Sat 2 March - Liverpool Epstein 
Sun 3 March - Salford Lowry 


Thurs 7 March - Basingstoke Haymarket 
Fri 8 March - Harpenden Public Halls
Sat 9 March - Corby Cube 
Sun 10 March – Great Torrington, Plough Arts Centre


Thurs 14 March - Bury St Edmunds Apex 
Fri 15 March - Herne Bay Kings Hall 
Sat 16 March - Dartford Mick Jagger Centre 


Weds 27 March - Worthing Pier Pavilion
Thurs 28 March - Exeter Phoenix 
Fri 29 March - Worcester Huntingdon Hall 
Sat 30 March - Morecambe Platform  

 

APRIL

Thu 4 April – Lytham St Anne’s Lowther

Fri 5 April – Hull Minster

Sat 6 April – Greenock Albany

Sun 7 April – Greenock Albany 

 

Thurs 11 April – Holborn Pizza Express

Fri 12 April – Holborn Pizza Express

Sat 13 April -Holborn Pizza Express

 

Fri 19 – Cardiff Acapela Studio

Sat 20- Cardiff Acapela Studio

Sat 27 - Isle of Wight Shanklin Theatre

February Cancellations now rescheduled for later in 2018

Cancellation of February Shows.
Steve Harley has been forced to cancel five sold out concerts as he has sustained a broken hip.
Refunds are available for ticket holders for the cancelled shows and customers should return to their point of purchase.

My first album recording (me the guy crossed legged on the floor, aged 18yrs. old ) with Steamboat Bluegrass Band from 1974. It appears people are trying to sell this vinyl LP on the internet - good luck!

I'm so lucky music and friendship brings me back to playing with these guys at a poignant event, Jo Cox's memoir, a street party in her home neighbourhood by the River Thames.

"The Great Get Together" are street parties country wide initiated by Brendan Cox, her husband, one year on after her murder. Long may these events continue in Jo's memory!

“As she said in her maiden speech in parliament – we have far more in common than that which divides us.

“Jo wanted a chance to bring our communities together to celebrate what unites us.”

Hermitage Riverside Memorial Garden, which is right by the Thames, off Wapping High Street, not far from St Katherine Docks, from 2pm.

https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Hermitage+Riverside+Memorial+Garden,+St+Katharine's+%26+Wapping,+London/@51.5045584,-0.0675616,15z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x96b1e1f7c58bb677!8m2!3d51.5045584!4d-0.0675616

Two spectacular events this 2017 include Glastonbury Festival, Saturday 24 June

.....and  17 November Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel along with Madness in Minehead  Butlins music weekend

Creative Arts, including music as an industry, brings in around £8.5 billion GDP.  I experience the value of music on a daily basis and see how it impacts on  young people in education,  creatively and developmentally in individual's life and social skills, health and well-being.  We cannot guess  jobs of the future but many will require the skills of invention and creativity.  I'm lucky to still be exploring music, I don't stop learning but for our children please join in this campaign headed by the Incorporated Society of Musicians to keep a broad based curriculum in our schools.

  • The Government supports our creative industries, but we need their support for our creative subjects; please #BaccDown: http://bit.ly/1B7lRLW

Barry is featured artist on violin of forthcoming recording by Guido Dossche titled, "Tote Freunde".

Title track 5 of new record due for official release

 28 October 2016.

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November 2016 3-man acoustic tour dates announced  Steve Harley with James Lascelles & Barry Wickens.

Go to "Live Dates" for listings and details.

Rock for Ronson Concert - latest announcement:

Earl Slick (David Bowie) with Lisa Ronson (Mick's daughter), Paul Cuddeford, Steve Norman (Spandau Ballet), MonaLisa Twins and All For One Choir of Yorkshire will appear with Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel. City Hall Hull 23 April 2016

I'm very pleased to announce joining the Protection Racket family as an endorsing artist. These lovely people in Cornwall make musicians lives more stress free! I've been using their cases for years and are simply the best robust yet lightweight guitar gigbags and drum cases holdalls etc. 

http://www.protectionracket.com

WOGAN, Radio 2 Sunday December 7th 2015 from 11am - Harley in conversation plus an acoustic set.  Richard Madeley sits in for Sir Terry' and MonaLisa Twins additional musicians. 
Listen again for a limited time;
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03d25mm

2015 The Best Years of Our Lives - November tour dates announced -  Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel  

The Best Years of Our Lives Tour

5 September 2015

Prostate Cancer UK Charity gig

The Faces get together onstage: 

Rod Stewart, Ronnie Wood and Kenney Jones.

Saturday 13 June on stage with Steve Harley at Kenny Jones's  "Rock 'n' Horsepower" Festival, Barry along with Jim Cregan and the house band are performing at approx. 19.30. 

Barry Wickens, Alex Jones, Matt Baker, Steve Harley, Paul Whitehouse, James Lascelles

5 March 2015

Steve, Barry & James appear live playing on BBC "The One Show" Here with the presenters and Paul Whitehouse.

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