“I went to see Harvey Andrews in March this year. My dad first played me the Paul Simon Song book when I was eight years old, and it has been my all time favourite ever since. He grew up in Birmingham and has told me of the times he had been to the “Jug of Punch” with his friend, and when he had first heard ‘A Most Peculiar Man’ sung by Harvey Andrews there. After hearing it he had found out the writer and bought the songbook. Paul Simon and other folk music has been a huge influence in my life, and it was surreal to be sitting in a folk club listening to someone who had indirectly made a massive impact on me without even knowing it. My dad was sitting next to me, now much older to what he’d been in the the Jug of Punch days, with white hair and wrinkles. We had bought some cider and some crisps from the bar, just as he had then, and I thought of how he was sitting here listening to it all too, but 35 years later, no longer with his friend but with his daughter. I wondered about where his friend had ended up, and how friendships can fade and that they shouldn’t. Once my dad was passionate about compassion and changing the world and all the excitement and idealism of youth, I have it now, I’m living it, and dreaming it and investigating the songs seriously. That’s what I wanted to say really. I’m investigating your songs seriously.
“It was a kind of poetic night where all these people’s lives seemed to be linked through the years, and influences and passions, especially because I heard many of my Dad’s tales in Harvey’s songs – like buying the Eagle comic and Roy of the Rovers and the Lone Ranger. I felt like I was repeating what had gone before, the new generation of dreamers and folk singers and of those desperate for justice and equality. But I am also afraid that too soon I’ll be the old generation and my banners and smiles will have gone, and that this is my time, right now, and I can’t keep hold of it. I am 22 now, but I won’t be for long! Anyway, thanks. Just a taste of things I’ve thought about.”