Preview: Norwich full gig guide March 29-April 4

Eilen Jewell

Eilen Jewell - Credit: Archant

Boston-based country sensation Eilen Jewell visits Norwich to perform her beautiful vintage Americana. She mixes everything from country gospel to rockabilly blues with a wisdom and rootedness that belies her 30-odd years. Plus: David Ford, Judie Tzuke, King Charles.


Norwich Arts Centre, March 30

South Coast singer-songwriter David Ford, who released his debut album I Sincerely Apologise for All the Trouble I've Caused to critical acclaim, and was signed by Sony in the US, returns to coincide with the release of his fourth solo album Charge.

The album, which has been co-produced by New York based studio wizard James Brown (who is more usually to be found making Grammy-winning albums with the likes of Foo Fighters), is the third to be self-released on David's own label.

It reflects the familiar musical and lyrical themes of Ford's work: a healthy shot of Americana, a sprinkle of English melodicism and a touch of rock'n'roll, all tied together with finely crafted lyrics that observe Ford's estrangement from the world of modern rock.

He prefers to plough his own furrow. Major label interest has been shunned in favour of his own label, but whereas others have embraced the internet model of 'fan funding' — financing recordings from fans pre-orders — David prefers to old fashioned method — touring. From theatres to house gigs and even playing at fans' weddings — from Oklahoma to Tyneside; no journey is too far if there's a gig and hot meal at the end of it.

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He is very much in the troubadour tradition. And his passionate live performances have won him a devoted and loyal fan base across the USA, Canada and the UK.

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Waterfront, April 3

Emotive, Stay With Me Til Dawn songstress Judie Tzuke has spent more than 30 years in music and has a repertoire that embraces ballads, soulful pop and soft rock.

Her most recent album, One Tree Less was released on Big Moon in 2012, contains some of her best songs, including the beautiful Joy and Humankind.

When not working on her own recordings Judie has continued to explore her ability to write beautiful songs, working with a large number of artists including Lucie Silvas, Morcheeba, Tom Baxter, David Saw, Kirsty Hawkshaw, Gareth Gates, Alex Parks, Ryan Dan, Hybrid, Fragma, Alesha and many others.

Her songs have also been covered and recorded by a wide range of artists including Mylo, Mint Royale, Elaine Page, Peter Cox and The Swingle Singers.

She continues to be one of the UK's best and most unique singers and songwriters... as she said when interviewed for her 2010 retrospective album Moon on a Mirrorball: 'I have to think it's all possible or I might as well stop, and I don't want to stop now.

I don't want to be thought of as an artist from any particular era, I feel I am just as much from the 1970s as from this decade... I'm just doing what I do.'

Special guest is her daughter Bailey Tzuke, a singer-songwriter in her own right.

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Norwich Arts Centre, April 4

Boston-based country sensation Eilen Jewell visits Norwich to perform her beautiful vintage Americana. She mixes everything from country gospel to rockabilly blues with a wisdom and rootedness that belies her 30-odd years.

Jewell has quickly distinguished herself as one of the rising stars of a new generation of roots musicians in the US.

Since her official 2006 debut, Boundary County, she has surveyed a wide range of traditional musical styles, from the folk and jug band leanings of her early recordings, through an album-length homage to Loretta Lynn and the country gospel of her work with The Sacred Shakers, right up to 2009′s Sea of Tears, which bristled with the electricity of 1960s UK garage rock and Chicago blues.

Her latest album, Queen of the Minor Key, draws on everything from classic country (the fiddle-driven 'Reckless') to early R&B (the shuffling 'Hooked'), with an emphasis on sounds from the seamier side of the tracks.

With dirty sax riffs and low-slung guitars, the instrumentals that bookend the album — Radio City and Kalimotxo — evoke the bump-and-grind exotica of vintage Southern California suburban saloons. Yet on the flipside, Jewell imbues slow, jazzy numbers with torch and tenacity that linger long past last call.

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Waterfront, April 4

King Charles is an extravagantly moustachioed posh boy and friend of Mumford & Sons who plays a mix of winsome folk and Jamie T-styled songcraft.

Clearly there is plenty to dislike then. Yet seemingly he is increasingly popular and this Norwich debut has been shifted from the Waterfront Studio to the main room due to popular demand.

His website boasts: 'He doesn't look like anyone you know, he doesn't think like anyone you know' and that 'he doesn't make music like anyone you know'.

The former is true; he looks like a cross between Salvador Dali and the sort of Hoxton hipster you'd cross the road to avoid. His debut album LoveBlood is similarly beset by achingly trendy and over arch styling — yet its also frustratingly addictive. His songs draw on many different genres: he calls his style 'glam folk' but there's Afro-beat, hip-hop and country influences, too. Think Vampire Weekend if they'd gone to art school rather than Havard.

He's rather good at opening lines too. Bam Bam explodes into life with the observation, 'That girl who is (is) but your beautiful daughter, she may be the cure, but for now she's the torture…', while the delightful Ivory Road declares, 'You're the nose in my bullet, the trigger on my gun, you're the sandbank in the ocean, oxygen in my blood…'

For all his annoyances, this is the most intruiging gig of the week. Support from We Were Evergreen and Story Books.

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Ria Ritchie (pop/acoustic) — Tau Club & Lounge

Sensi-Jam: feat. Sensi-Tize + Congo Natty (reggae) — Waterfront

Firewire + Against All Odds (rock/ska/punk) — Brickmakers

Cernunnos + Trollkraft + Consecration + Grimace (metal) — King Edward VII

Ashes To Angels + Wicked Faith (goth/punk) — B2

The Gastric Band (rock'n'roll) — Walnut Tree Shades

They Harvey Boys (eclectic) — Brewery Tap

Tarantino Night (punk/funk) — Blueberry

Bill Downs (acoustic) — Bar 11

Chibber (pop) — The Otter Drayton

Norwich Folk Club: feat. Glynn West (chorus songs) — Christ Church Centre

Backstreet + Spoilt Broth (soul/funk) — Keir Hardie Hall

Latino Sound (Latin) — Revolucion de Cuba

Graham McGrotty — Old Catton Maids Head

Bobby Graham — Royal British Legion


David Ford (Americana) — Arts Centre

Kings & Crows (rock/EP launch) — Waterfront

Secret Affair + The Lambrettas (Mod/rock/pop) — Epic

Dirty DC (rock/tribute) — Brickmakers

Mucked Up Funkies (funk/rock) — B2

Bad Touch (rock) — King Edward VII

The Killer Tomatoes (punk/indie) — Blueberry

Catch 22 (pop/soul) — Trowel & Hammer

Johnny Jump Band (country/blues) — Buck Inn

Honeydripper (blues/soul) — Eaton Cottage

Mojo Preachers (blues/funk) — Wildman

Wapscallions (pop/rock) — Horsford Social Club

Me Myself & I (country/60s) — The Freedman

Stone Cold (rock) — Angel Gardens

An Act of Vandals (electro/dubstep) — Bedfords

Tallawah Band (reggae) — Revolucion de Cuba

Dog Days of Summer (indie/roots) — Golden Star

Amanda — Old Catton Maids Head

Ricci — Quebec Tavern

Tony Cann — Union Street Coach & Horses

Terry Adam — Sprowston Social Club

Kevin Solo — Heath House


Cakes & Ale + Mari Joyce (folk/acoustic) — The Birdcage

The Moor (metal/rock) — B2

Bob Reeves (country/3pm) — King Edward VII

The Planks (soul/3pm) — Brewery Tap

Julian Sas (blues/5pm) — Walnut Tree Shades

Cats From Mars (swing/jazz) — Revolucion de Cuba

Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) — Brickmakers

ABC Blues Brothers + Sarahs Day — Ber Street Gates

Blues Rewind (blues) — Heartsease

— Silver Road Cottage


Brickie Bank Holiday Bash Alldayer: feat. The Jacks + Wicked Faith + Uprising + more (10 bands/charity) — Brickmakers

Matteo Raggi + Simon Brown Trio (jazz) — Oaklands Hotel

ParkFest: feat. Arcane + Jessie Q + The Spores (electronic) — Karma Kafe

Julian Sas (blues/rock) — King Edward VII

AJ Experience — Quebec Tavern

Floating Grehounds (rock/4pm) — William IV

Jazz Jam: feat. Rich Buddie — Walnut Tree Shades

Jazz Jam: feat. Brendan Young + Lee Vasey + Ian Hireson + Mark Jolley + Matt Furness (jazz) — Silver Road Cottage


The Misfits (punk) — Waterfront

The Little Unsaid + Cate Ferris (multi-intrumentalist/folk) — Bicycle Shop

Page 44 + Amberline + Face The Ocean (pop/rock) — B2

AKA (rock) — Brickmakers

Phab Club: feat. James Matthews (Americana) — Vauxhall Centre

Traditional Folk Night — Beehive

Jam Night — Rumsey Wells


Judie Tzuke (rock) — Waterfront

Eilen Jewell (roots) — Arts Centre

Annie Tishaw + Lewis Murphy + Morea (acoustic) — B2

Grapevine: feat. Cole Stacey & Joseph O'Keefe + Holly Taymar + Chris Bilton + Freya Roy (acoustic) — Bedfords

Lovely Promotions (various bands) — Walnut Tree Shades

Pure Acoustic (open mic) — Brickmakers

Traditional Irish — Gatehouse

Open Mic — Garden House


King Charles + We Were Evergreen + Story Books (indie/folk/psych) — Waterfront

Planet of Sound: feat. Antlered Man _ Lady Panther (rock) — Open

Energy + Dynamite + Keno Kings + Beat Connection (pop/rock/charity) — Brickmakers

Keltrix + Sam Green (folk) — Bedfords

Egypt (blues) — Walnut Tree Shades

Voices (hardcore) — B2

Lovely Promotions — Ten Bells

Ghostriders Western Club: feat. Donna Wylde (country) — TA Centre

Lee Atterton — Bar 11

Johnny Jump Band (country/blues) — Micawbers Tavern

Groovapolitan (funk) — Rumsey Wells

Vagaband (Americana) — Rose Tavern

Open Mic — Lounge

Open Mic — Union Street Coach & Horses