Jess Gillam with James Baillieu

In Support of Awards for Young Musicians

28 Nov 2019

£15.00 (+ Booking Fee)

The HopBarn and Awards for Young Musicians (AYM) are delighted to host a special evening with prominent young Saxophonist Jess Gillam.

Hailing from Ulverston in Cumbria, Jess Gillam is blazing a trail in the music world with her outstanding talent and infectious personality. After performing at the prestigious Last Night of the Proms in 2018 and having her performance described as “the indisputable highlight” by BBC News, Jess continues to grow her international career.

Jess is the first ever saxophonist to be signed to Decca Classics and recently released her debut album “Rise”, which shot to No.1 in the Official UK Classical Charts. Featuring a selection of her favourite pieces ranging from Marcello and Shostakovich to David Bowie and Kate Bush, it was highly celebrated and received rave reviews.She is also a presenter on TV and Radio. She became the youngest ever presenter for BBC Radio 3 and hosts her own weekly show called “This Classical Life” in which she talks to musical friends and colleagues about the music that inspires them. The show has been very well received by audiences and critics alike, with The Guardian stating “there are many more established presenters who lack Gillam’s warmth and impressive ability”. She also presented five BBC Proms live on television alongside Katie Derham and Tom Service. 

Jess has been the recipient of a Classic BRIT Award (in the Sound of Classical Poll), was the first ever saxophonist to reach the final of BBC Young Musician of the Year, and in 2019, performed live at the BAFTAs (British Academy of Film and Television Awards) to millions of viewers at home. 

A free spirit in style and character, Jess is a passionate advocate for the power of music in society, often combining her concert engagements with educational and social projects. She is a patron for Awards for Young Musicians and a trustee for the newly formed HarrisonParrott Foundation. 

For this concert, Jess will be accompanied by pianist James Baillieu, who himself is as celebrated musician and has received numerous awards for his song-writing, whilst performing across the UK, Europe and the US

This special event has been offered due to Jess Gillam's continued support and patronage to Awards for Young Musicians (AYM). Through their means-tested programmes AYM support more than 400 talented young musicians from low income families per year, with funding and other help.

“AYM’s practical support and their belief in me throughout my teenage years was invaluable. Music has the power to transform lives and AYM recognise that.”

All proceeds from this concert will go to AYM.

Undoubtedly this will be a unique performance event and one that promises to be a rare opportunity to hear such a young talent in an intimate setting.

Martyn Joseph

A TrueBlue Music Event

06 Dec 2019

£18.72 (Incl of Booking Fee)

TrueBlue Music is proud to present the return of Martyn Jospeh to the HopBarn


Martyn Joseph is a completely unique and mind blowing artist. Take everything you think you know about singer songwriters….and rip it up. For one man and a guitar he creates a performance with a huge far-reaching sound that is energetic, compelling and passionate. Be it to two hundred people or twenty thousand, he blows the crowd away night after night. 


2018 saw him honoured with a ”Spirit of Folk” Award by Folk Alliance International in Kansas USA and he also received Fatea magazine’s “Lifetime Achievement Award” here in the UK, and in January 2019, he released his critically acclaimed album Here Come The Young, of which Uncut magazine said “He’s never sounded more potent than he does here” 


He is gifted with the rare ability to speak to the soul with his expressive and poignant lyrics and has a career spanning 30 years, 32 albums, over a half a million record sales and thousands of live performances.


Compared to Bruce Springsteen, John Mayer, Bruce Cockburn and Dave Matthews, he has created his own style and reputation as a mesmerizing live performer and stands in his own right, built on a reputation for giving what thousands have described as the best live music experience of their lives. 


A unique talent driven by passion, social awareness and love for his trade, he's a jaw dropping guitar player who has developed a unique percussive style, teamed up with a powerful show stopping voice, and has been called “The Welsh Springsteen”

“Stunning, heartfelt music” Bob Harris BBC Radio 2,


“He’s never sounded more potent than he does here” Uncut


"Intelligent and enlightened songs are both energising and provocative…from subtle tenderness to growly indignation. A Welsh national treasure” MOJO


“One of acoustic music’s most original voices, and most forward looking of his generation of singer/songwriters” Q Magazine

All profits from TrueBlue Music event go to Beaumond House Community Hospice

Sunjay Sings Buddy

25 Jan 2020

£14 (+ booking fee)

Following Sunjay's recent visit to The HopBarn, we are delighted to welcome him back with his popular take on Buddy Holly

In the Spring of 2017 Sunjay was invited to play the lead role of 'Buddy Holly' in the touring theatre show 'Buddy Holly & the Cricketers'. UK wide, Sunjay wore the horn-rimmed frames, the dinner suit, bow tie, talked Texan and traded in the acoustic guitar for a Fender Stratocaster!

Sunjay started learning Buddy Holly songs aged just 4! Being in the stage show gave Sunjay the opportunity to perform his favourite Buddy Holly songs night after night, in front of thousands of people; a dream come true you might say!

Having worked up a vast repertoire of Buddy's songs Sunjay was inspired to record the aptly titled 'Sunjay Sings Buddy' CD (also featuring some of the stage show band members who have become firm friends).

Now with his own 'Sunjay Sings Buddy' stage band, see Sunjay strut his stuff! Rave On! 

Having recently performed his own work at The HopBarn in autumn 2019, Sunjay has establised a strong reputation for his musicianship and deep musicial knowledge. This promises to be a highlight of any venue's programming. 

"Sunjay is very much the man of the moment. Not so much the flavour of the month is the flavour of the year." – Living Tradition

Keith James

The Songs of Nick Drake

08 Feb 2020

£14.00 (+ Booking Fee)

Nick Drake is the most revered and loved of all this country’s singer/songwriters. He recorded three cherished Albums between 1969 and 1972 but was almost entirely unknown in his day. After his tragic death in 1974, aged only 26, his music almost disappeared into obscurity. Now, thanks to a massive resurgence of interest and a worldwide re-evaluation of his genius, Nick Drake has become a National treasure. An important book, Remembered for a while was released a couple of years ago, written by his elder Sister Gabrielle Drake, this volume throws light on almost everything attributed to Nick’s brief career as a songwriter and recording artist as well as on many corners of mystery and supposition.

A number of years have now passed since singer/guitarist Keith James paralysed the whole country with his stunningly beautiful series of concerts entitled The Songs of Nick Drake. At the beginning of the project in 2001 he was the first artist ever to bring this fragile and intriguing music to theatres across the UK in its pure live concert form. The end result was over a decade of highly acclaimed concerts amounting to over 1500 shows in venues in the UK, Ireland, Holland, France, Italy and Spain including all of Nick’s Schools and Colleges – even Glastonbury Festival.


‘Meticulous dissection of Nick Drake’ idiosyncratic guitar techniques handled with surgical precision’ Northern Sky


‘Some of the most atmospheric and emotive music you will ever hear’  The Independent


‘Keith James has become a pillar of trust. A sublimely intimate and engaging voice’  Sunday Times


‘a sensitive and pleasingly understated delivery, all the better that the songs might speak for themselves’  Acoustic Magazine

Joe Newberry and April Verch

A Gate to Southwell Event

15 Feb 2020


Born in Missouri Joe Newberry is a top notch banjoist, guitarist, singer and songwriter, a charismatic performer who charms audiences wherever he goes. April Verch is a world class fiddle player, step dancer and singer from Canada’s Ottawa Valley, who started step dancing at age three and playing the fiddle at age six! April has countless awards, ten albums and sixteen years of touring around the world under her belt with her own trio the April Verch Band.


These two hugely talented musicians came together several years ago and now tour regularly across the world. The collaboration is a seamless blend of Canadian and Ozark/Appalachian styles, a masterful fusion of shared interests and musical tastes. Their voices blend in harmony, their instrumental playing is unsurpassed, and the addition of April’s spectacular step dancing takes their live performances to another level! 

Claude Bourbon

Medieval and Spanish Blues

07 Mar 2020

£12 Advanced (+booking fee) or £14 on the door

Ready for a unique and talented take on a wide range of musical traditions? Claude Bourbon is known throughout Europe and America for amazing guitar performances that take blues, Spanish, and Middle Eastern stylings into uncharted territories. 


Claude’s inimitable style incorporates all five digits on each hand dancing independently but in unison, plucking, picking and strumming at such speed and precision that his fingers often seem to melt into a blur. Thousands of people in the UK, Europe and USA have enjoyed listening to this virtuoso and for the majority of his audience it is an experience that compels them to return again and again to hear and watch him play, as his fingers lightly dance over the strings of his guitar and create a unique sound that is ’Claude’.


It is very hard to describe the almost endless amalgam of different influences in Claude's playing, all melting into each other, as he moves from classical openings, across a whole continent of cultural roots, from the Balearic’s to the Balkans, and then across to the Mississippi Delta, and shoehorned into all that is music that would not have been out of place in the courts of Emperors and Kings. 


Claude has played countless venues, including Glastonbury Festival, Isle of Wight Festival, Colne Great British & Blues Festival, Rock O'Z Arene, Avenches, Switzerland, among others. He has shared the stage in Europe and the USA with countless musicians, Calvin Russel, Charlie Morgan (Elton John, Gary Moore), Jan Akkerman (Focus), Steve Grossman (Miles Davis), Herbie Armstrong ( Van Morisson), Jose barrense Dias and many more.


Experience an evening of exploration in the unique ambiance of the Thumb!


“ Claude Bourbon is a unique figure today… his playing is almost indescribable“ - The Hook, Charlottesville, USA


"Never heard anyone get that much beautiful sound out of a J-45", Bob, Tucson, AZ


“A breathtaking acoustic fusion of blues, jazz, folk, classical and Spanish guitar from a stunning guitar virtuoso…”Altadena News, USA”


“…This accomplished artist offers tender, compelling performance through highly developed precision. His sound instantly creates ambience – from haunting Spanish moods to lyrical, romantic jazz, Claude Bourbon provides both a rich evening of music for lovers, and a real treat for music lovers…”, BBC, UK

Ray Cooper

Between the Golden Age & The Promised Land

14 Mar 2020

£16 Advanced (+ Booking Fee)

Ray Cooper is a Scottish/English songwriter currently living in Sweden.

When Cooper left art school in Brighton he decided to follow where music took him. He joined Oysterband, eventually recording 19 albums and touring in 27 countries. In 2013 he went solo and never looked back.

After setting up a recording studio in a small log cabin in Sweden he made his first album 'Tales of Love War and Death by Hanging' in 2010; it has a strongly historical theme. In 2014 he followed it up with 'Palace Of Tears' which was about more recent, more personal history.

'Between The Golden Age & The Promised Land' released in May 2018, will surprise many of his listeners. It is a big sounding record with serious themes but is nevertheless simple, raw, joyous, and unashamedly romantic.

While Cooper continues to develop as a singer, here he plays all the instruments too, in a stripped down production inspired by producer Rick Rubin's treatment of Johnny Cash's late recordings. The familiar mandolin, cello, guitar and harmonica are all there but Cooper also makes his recording debut as a piano player .

“I am half Scottish and half English, I live in Sweden, I tour in Europe, I have no home town, I think of myself as a north European now”.

‘Ray is one of those songsmiths who possesses the ability to really get inside the characters..– his insights are penetrating’ ..’– majestic, full bodied, confidently widescreen in nature’. David Kidman fROOTS June 2018

'Musically ‘Between The Golden Age & The Promised Land’ is a majestic, tour-de force of an album, destined, surely, to become one of the releases of the year’. David Pratt Fatea 2018

* * * * ....'just get out there and buy it as soon as you can.' Dai Jeffries RnR magazine.2018‘


Between The Golden Age & The Promised Land’ is an album awash with atmosphere. Tim Carroll Folk Words 2018

Sarah McQuaid

22 May 2020

£12 (advanced) £14 on the door

With the release of her new album, If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous (2018) The HopBarn is delighted to host singer/songwriter Sarah McQuaid. Sarah who was born in Madrid, raised in Chicago and who is now based in Cornwall, has expanded her battery of instruments to include piano, electric guitar and drums, drawing international critical acclaim.

Inspired by her folksinging mother and her musician cousin Gamble Rogers, whom she first met at her grandmothers house in Indiana, Sarah toured from the age of 12 with the Chicago Childrens Choir. She then lived and worked in Ireland as a music journalist and magazine editor before venturing on her own solo music career and moving to Cornwall. 

Having recently been awarded a Lifetime Acheivement Award by the Arts International Guitar Festival in recoginition for her use of the DADGAD tuning and her authorship of the Irish DADGAD Guitar Book, Sarah is an artist to follow. Guitar legend, Michael Chapman who collaborated with Sarah on her latest album, noted that Sarah has the precision and sophistication of writing and playing that simply blows him away. Her voice too has been likened to malt whiskey and melted chocolate.

Sarah is clearly an artist to follow and The HopBarn is really excited to be able to bring such a highly praised musican to this rural part of England.

With its classy songwriting, exemplary musicianship and high

production values, this is a collection to savour - fRoots, UK

A consummate artistic triumph that marks a new

phase in McQuaid's career - Folk Radio UK

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