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Chris Difford and Boo Hewerdine


Wednesday 21st March 2018

St John the Evangelist, 109a Iffley Road, Oxford, OX4 1EH

Doors 7.30 pm
Tickets £17 in advance, £20 on the night
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Due to sound check restriction the door time indicates the earliest opportunity we can give access to the venue. Live music will start 20-30 minutes after the door open time.

Chris Difford is a rare breed. As a member of one of London’s best-loved bands, the Squeeze co-founder has made a lasting contribution to English music with hits such as ‘Cool For Cats’, ‘Up The Junction’, ‘Labelled With Love’, ‘Hourglass’ and ‘Tempted’. Despite the fact that Chris has helped soundtrack so many fans’ lives since his first release in 1977, the passion for innovation and love of playing still drives him to carry on writing rather than sit back and admire his handiwork. Chris recently celebrated his 60th birthday and for 41 of those years he has been writing with Glenn Tilbrook, very much the Odd Couple.

Chris and Glenn wrote a new Squeeze album based on the life of Danny Baker, it was the soundtrack for a BBC2 production called ‘Cradle To Grave’ staring Peter Kay. All original music, it became the first Squeeze record in 15 years. ‘From The Cradle To The Grave’ was a very exciting project for all concerned and it was so good to be back in the charts and on the radio again.

Over the course of a 13 album career with Squeeze, it was clear from the very beginning that Chris Difford has few peers when it comes to smart, pithy lyricism. His ‘kitchen sink-drama’ style has drawn plaudits from fans on both sides of the Atlantic, while his influence is keenly felt today. The likes of Lily Allen and Mark Ronson, Kasabian, Razorlight and The Feeling have all recognised the debt they owe to Squeeze’s music and to Difford’s way with words, while journalists were moved by his winning combination with Glenn Tilbrook to dub the pair ‘The New Lennon and McCartney’.

Chris first learned to stand on his own when he wrote the lyrics for the fictional band Strange Fruit in the 1998 British comedy film ‘Still Crazy’, for which he won his first Ivor Novello award. Since then he has written and contributed lyrics for the likes of Elton John, Wet Wet Wet, Jools Holland, Paul Carrack, Lisa Stansfield and Bryan Ferry.

‘Chris To The Mill’ a box set of his 3 studio albums came out in March 2017 on Edsel Records. Available also on Amazon. His forth studio album follows sometime in the summer, written with Boo Hewerdine it’s called ‘Not Only But Also’ and is a collection of songs written in their spare time over the last three years. It’s coming out on Boo’s own label.

As if that is not enough, Chris has a book released this August by Orion Books, an autobiography called ‘Some Fantastic Place’, he will tour the book in 2018 around all the good bookshops and small theatres of England.

We all at times look back at our past to a specific event such as a new relationship, or the starting point of our career and cherish those memories. How though do we view those times?

Acclaimed Ivor Novello Award nominated English singer-songwriter Boo Hewerdine’s new album “Swimming in Mercury” (Reveal Records April 28th 2017) gives us a personal insight as he takes us on that journey back in time. It’s a trip furnished with a glisten and a glint in his eye as he applies style and shapes to his autobiographical memories. Hewerdine revisits and recreates music in a manner that, put simply, a band starting out just couldn’t afford.  In his own words “The new album was recorded in the spirit of the first four track recording I ever did… but instead of a chunky cassette deck we were able to use Chris Pepper’s Cambridge studio. It was an incredibly enjoyable and creative way to work. Often I would write a song in the morning and by the end of the day we would have another track done”.

As a recording artist, Boo’s first tentative steps came with the band, The Great Divide before the formation of his much-loved eighties group “The Bible” and a career that subsequently bloomed such that he is now in constant demand as a musician, songwriter, producer, teacher and live concert performer.

Brit Award winning, former Fairground Attraction singer (and Scottish national treasure) Eddi Reader (MBE) is the perhaps the artist Boo Hewerdine is most regularly associated with, as a songwriter, musician and producer. Together they enjoyed international success with the (Hewerdine written) hit single “Patience of Angels” in 1995 and Boo also produced Reader’s “Sings the Songs of Robert Burns” in 2003, an album now viewed as a folk classic.

Another great songwriter to call upon Boo Hewerdine is Chris Difford of Squeeze. Difford and Hewerdine’s latest project, 2016’s “Fancy Pants” involved co-writing and producing more than thirty songs, initially for a theatre show and accompanying soundtrack. Soundtracks have been a feature of Boo’s songwriting and production canon, since his 1997 work for the films 24 7 and Fever Pitch.

It is expected some of the Fancy Pants songs will find their way onto a new Chris Difford studio album in the future, several of their demos surfaced early in 2017 on the Edel Records released, Chris Difford 5-disc box set “Chris To the Mill”.

All through Boo’s career of performing, of writing material for major artists such as Sia, K.D Lang, Kris Drever (Lau), Duke Special, David McAlmont, and Eddi Reader, being produced by Steve Earle or touring with Richard Thompson to name but a few, it is perhaps going right back to his childhood that gives us the best clues as to his motivation.