Concerts in 2015

Sunday, June 14, 2015 19:54 | Filled in Blog
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Unfortunately I’ve had to cancel the gig at the Dolphin in Portsmouth and at the New Forest Festival. Back problems have led to severe sciatica and travelling is impossible at the moment. I HATE to let people down, but unfortunately it’s unavoidable. My apologies to those of you who were hoping to see me, and I hope you have not been inconvenienced too much by this news.

Still on the slate, though:

Fri September 18th
Westhoughton Golf Club, Long Island, Westhoughton, Bolton, BL5 2BR
Tickets: info@garyandveraaspey or call 01942 671 995 / 079 1098 9217

Sat October 3rd
St Michaels Parish Church, Colwich, near Rugeley, Staffs
To reserve a place phone:
Pam Merriott – 01889 883610
Roger Hughes -01889 881628
Hilary Holmes – 01889 883963

Mon October 12th
Warwick Folk Club, The Warwick Arms Hotel, High Street, Warwick CV34 4AT

Bittersweet: The Clifford T Ward Story by Dave Cartwright

Sunday, January 18, 2015 22:51 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Bittersweet: The Clifford T Ward Story
Sometimes a book can be such a revelation that only clichés can do it justice – un-put-down-able, riveting, unique, tragic, triumphant… they all apply.

Dave Cartwright, Cliff Ward and I were all West Midland men who travelled parallel journeys in the 1970’s. We all secured recording contracts with big companies; we all acquired the soubriquet “singer-songwriter”; we all aimed high and hoped for the best. Clifford got the hit with “Gaye”, Dave and I failed to get one, and in those days that made all the difference. However, all three of us were chewed up and finally spat out by the London based music machine that demanded success above all things.

There were those who did succeed who had no scruple; success meant money and they would do anything to get it. We three couldn’t bring ourselves to think like that, being in thrall to words like integrity and art, and we all hated London and all that it stood for. Dave and I gigged and therefore built up an audience that supported us but Clifford hated live performance and relied solely on media appearances and royalties for his income. That was fine in the singer-songwriter period of the early to mid- seventies, but when tastes changed and heads turned towards punk and a younger generation, the door closed on opportunity for the literate, thoughtful performers.

Dave and I soldiered on, producing work we felt confident with and making a hard travelling living, dealing as best we could with the demons suggestively whispering “failure” into our ears; demons all too capable of destroying relationships as we battled frustration and angst, as did other song writing friends of ours who had made the same journey. Clifford too succumbed, which was bad enough, but then his body failed as he was diagnosed with the worst form of MS.

To use another cliché, the story is Shakespearean in its study of triumph and tragedy.

Dave brings all this before us, but what makes the book so special is that he interweaves his own story with Ward’s, now and then making comparisons with a searing honesty I can only admire.

He is also a very fine writer.

For anyone interested in that period of singer-songwriter ascendancy who has ever wondered how it was behind the scenes, it’s all here.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It’s available in paperback – go get it!

New interview

Friday, December 5, 2014 11:52 | Filled in Blog
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During the summer I gave an interview to Norman Wheatley for his radio programme Gentlefolk2.

Listen to the interview now (the interview is in Part 2)

It’s notable for a recording of Colin Scot’s version of Hey Sandy and for a memory I had buried, now revived by Bill Caddick… undoubtedly selective amnesia!

Fancy a ‘Glad To Be Grey’ Gig in 2015?

Thursday, August 14, 2014 12:17 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Spring approaches and I’m wondering if anybody would like a “Glad to be Grey” show April-October 2015? I’m happy to consider anything within 100 or so miles of Shrewsbury. Village hall, folk club, WI etc. Just email

Audience feedback on “Glad to be Grey” gigs

Absolutely fantastic! I have not enjoyed an evening so much for years.

A superb evening’s entertainment.

We enjoyed your music and your take on life, it bought back some happy memories of our childhood, you made us laugh

The feedback I have received since the concert has been brilliant. People who had not heard of you before the concert, and only came because of the charity, have told me that if ever I do it again they would bring 6 or 8 more people. The fella across the road, came up to me the day after, and said how much he had enjoyed the concert. This, coming from a fella who can find fault with everything. He described you as a true entertainer.

Jim McPhee

Monday, July 28, 2014 10:33 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Sad news today of the death of Jim McPhee.

Jim was my agent for many years and also ran the Red Lion club in Kings Heath Birmingham, where I had some of my best and most enjoyable gigs with always packed houses. Jim also looked after Vin Garbutt and Jake Thackray. He kept a welcoming open house for passing artists with his wife Jill and a better and more caring person I never met.

Wendy and I send our love to Jill and all of the family.


Friday, May 2, 2014 10:26 | Filled in Uncategorized
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In response to demand at my Glad to be Grey gigs we’re releasing “Life!”

It’s a CD compilation of tracks from 6 albums issued over the last 25 years, a sort of “Greatest Hits”.

Order Life!

The summer of my dreams

Friday, January 10, 2014 19:44 | Filled in Video
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A photo-video for my cover of David Mallett‘s wonderful song, available on the new CD, Encore. Arrangement and accompaniment by Bruce Davies.


Saturday, October 19, 2013 20:11 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Well, here’s a surprise for you, and for me too. I didn’t think I’d record again but Wendy wouldn’t let it lie so I contacted my friend Bruce Davies in Scotland and asked if he would be willing to co-operate on a new CD.

We communicated via the internet with Bruce sending me his ideas and arrangements, and I was very quickly committed to the project because of the quality of his work.

Recorded at Red Barn Studios near Dundee, utilising the skills of some very fine musicians, I was able to relax and concentrate on my vocals and the whole week was a real pleasure.

So, here is Encore, 13 previously unrecorded compositions of mine plus one of my favourite David Mallet songs.

As I’m not gigging round the country anymore you can only buy this from my website. All copies will be signed. I hate to mention the coming December festivities, but the CD is just the right size for a stocking!

So, I sit surrounded by boxes, envelopes and stamps awaiting your orders. Wendy waits to see if her persistence is rewarded. Go on! You know you want to!

Buy Encore within the UK (£12)

Buy Encore in Europe
(£15 – includes £3 P&P)

Buy Encore in the rest of the world
(£16 – includes £4 P&P) 

Reviews and feedback

Read Netrhythms’ review of Encore

“My god what a beautiful album. I really think it’s one of your finest recordings! So many heartfelt, beautiful songs.”

“Simply wonderful!”


“Been listening to it all day, beautiful work as always!”

“I absolutely love it. I think it’s a masterpiece!”

“Great sound, fabulous musicians!”

“All of life in poetry and put to music. Genius.”

“A beautiful album with a perfect balance of songs.”

Related links

Click here to download lyrics and chords (PDF)

Autumn fundraisers

Tuesday, August 27, 2013 13:15 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Here are my Autumn “Glad to be Grey” fundraiser gigs.

Saturday September 14th
Hargrave Church Hall (near Chester) CH3 7RN
Tickets: email or call 01829 781 275
Various local charities will benefit

Saturday September 21st
The Cube, Albert Road North, Malvern WR14 2YF
For Community Action Transport

Saturday October 5th
Eccleshall Community Centre, Staffs
Tickets: or cal 01785 859 389 or 01785 850 525
For Katherine House Hospice, Stafford

Saturday October 19th
Alstonfield Village Hall (Between Buxton and Ashbourne Peak national park) 7.30
For the Village Hall Fund.

I know many of you won’t be able to come to these gigs as you’re too far away. However, if you would like to participate in one way a donation to the Katherine House Hospice would be very much appreciated. My mother spent her final days in a hospice and it is a charity worthy of all our support. You can donate on line. Please tell them it is in support of my gig and we’ll announce the sum raised during the evening.

The Price of Bronze

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 15:54 | Filled in Uncategorized
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Here is the first track from the forthcoming album – details coming soon!