With a double nomination in the BBC Folk Awards (Folk singer of the Year and Best New Song), Jez Lowe has leapt into his third decade as a song-writing troubadour, on the back of a new and much acclaimed album – his nineteenth – entitled The Ballad Beyond.
The year ahead will see him in front of audiences right across the UK, as well as in Canada, Australia, Spain and Denmark, not only solo or with his long-standing backing band Bad Pennies, but in new musical company, on new musical journeys.
He’ll also be playing an intimate show at 13 The Warehouse in Queen Street, Morecambe on January 30.
Over the last couple of decades, the likes of Fairport Convention, The Dubliners, The Unthanks, Wizz Jones, The McCalmans, Mary Black, The Duhks, Bob Fox and scores more, have queued up to adopt his songs for their own repertoires.
No wonder Richard Thompson has called him “The best singer songwriter to come out of the UK for a long time”, and personally invited him to play at Thompson’s Meltdown Festival at London’s South Bank Centre in 2010.
Jez Lowe’s contributions to the on-going BBC series The Radio Ballads has cemented this reputation, with a Sony Radio Award among the many accolades coming its way.
Half of the 15 songs on the new album The Ballad Beyond are Radio Ballads songs recorded by their composer for the first time, revealing not only the breadth of the radio series itself, but also that of the writing and subject matter that Jez has striven to reach.
But the bulk of Jez’s time is spent “on the road”.
He’s long been one of the UK’s busiest folk performers, playing for audiences the world over, either solo, (with guitar, cittern and harmonica accompaniment), or with his band The Bad Pennies.
As BBC Radio DJ Mike Harding said: “No-one else writes or sounds like Jez Lowe”, and chances are, even if you’ve never heard the man himself, you’ll have heard his songs, sung at festivals, club-gigs, open-mikes or on CD, by other artists. Tickets are available here priced £12.75.