We've only been running house concerts at Petersham Bowling Club for a couple of months & when the opportunity to host legendary British picker Albert Lee arose I could barely contain myself. I'd provided lights & some production when he played a similar event at a local Town Hall a couple of years back but was gigging myself that night. Bringing an artist of this stature to my own (be careful what you wish for) venue, & someone who has been a personal inspiration to boot, was going to make the largely thankless task of running a small room feel like a major life's work! Not only that but I was invited to perform opening act duties & so, recruiting fellow Dead Setter, Glenn Skarratt to join me, looked forward to what could only be a career highlight.
Backed by Hogan's Heroes own Peter Baron on drums & harmonies & with locals Michael Vidale on bass (Michael made an album with me back in 2005), the "man of steel" himself, Michel Rose on pedal steel guitar & another local legend, Ged Corben (Lime Spiders, Cruel Sea) on guitar, the band "tore it up" across a lengthy set set that appeared remarkably relaxed compared to their nonetheless brilliant "official" show at the Basement the night before. Highlights included a stunning version of "Till I Gain Control Again" with Albert on piano & a burn through "Country Boy" which seemed to reach more climaxes than a Bangkok Saturday night. As an ex-pat myself (moved here 25+ years ago from South London) it was doubly rewarding. Watch this space- hopefully we'll have some video to post as there was some serious photo hardware on the premises.