Has it really been that long . . . . ?

Hey dear friends, just where have the last twelve months gone? Here's hoping you had a great Christmas and here's wishing you a Happy New Year!

Everything seems to have whizzed by in superfast fashion here at Red Shoes Towers. We obviously weren't as busy gig-wise, mainly because the pandemic after effects are still being felt and an awful lot of venues have sadly closed their doors to live music.

Our 40th Anniversary Concert was a massive success with a sell-out crowd at the Kitchen Garden Cafe, so nice to lots of you there this, we really appreciated you being there. We must do it again sometime soon . . . another 10 years eh?

We did play some wonderful clubs, pubs and theatres though and met new friends along the way, plus caught up with lots of old friends that have supported us through the years. A fabulous night at Nuneaton Folk Club run by folk whirlwind Geoff Veasey proved to be a great place for live music and we had a large audience come out to see us on a rather rainy night. We'll be back!

Returning to The Culture Cafe at The Swan Theatre in Worcester, proved to be a chilled afternoon event with a very appreciative audience and we were home in time for tea!

We've been musing on recording some new material, currently in a very formative stage, because as most of you probably know, physical album sales are not going well with niche performers. Maybe we record and just release digitally to well know platforms. As I say, we're musing, we'll let you know if it becomes hard fact, although it would be nice to put some new songs out there in the ether.

We got the call in the summer to do a support spot with Dave Pegg & AJ Clarke in November of last year. It was at a brand new club in Tamworth. Bolehall Manor is a wonderful venue and what a fab gig it turned out to be. We played our slot, but for the final number, invited Peggy up onstage to play mandolin on our song “Celtic Moon” . . . it was tremendous, with the man himself firing off an explosive solo in the middle . . . sublime. Of course Peggy had done his own version of the song on the Fairport Convention album “Festival Bell” a few years previously. Then after a short interval him and AJ delivered a brilliant two hour set of musical mayhem, mirth and top drawer playing, it went down a storm . . . what a superb evening!

People might know that we've not been playing too many gigs, as Carolyn has been suffering with her knee joints and waiting for her latest consultation to see where we go with them. So Derek has been out and about playing solo, vocal and guitar on the local pub circuit, with great success. But also playing bass with his power rock trio, English Electric Lightning - look out for them on the gig guides.

Meanwhile Mark has been invited to perform as a duo with Bob Bignell, who runs Bromsgrove Folk Club, as the residents FAIRFIELD. Apart from a fortnightly slot at the club, they were extremely busy over the Christmas period with a full-on Festive set - Great Fun!

As it's now February 2024, I can update you with some upcoming Folk Club dates: Salties Folk on April 12th, Droitwich and Atherstone Folk Club on May 15th, Warwickshire. It would be great to see you at either or both of these club nights and we're looking for to getting back out there strummin' & singin'.

In the meantime, take care of yourselves and we'll see you very, very soon,

Bright Blessings,

Mark, Carolyn & Derek



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