Archived news articles and summary
2019 ROUND UP
This year started for us at Aces & Eights in Tufnell Park, London where we and Boss Caine supported the excellent Mudlow. A popular venue with gigs in the cellar which will hold about 50 people crammed-in, we had a great night there and, although the sound guy looked as as if he couldn't have cared less, he did do an outstanding job of the sound. Then to The Lamb in Surbiton, a quirky little pub famed for its music nights and its enthusiastic music appreciation clientele. We played for just short of three hours and toward the last half hour, we were joined by a saxophonist called James who just happened to be red-hot good at his craft. Of course, we didn't know it at the time but he was actually a session player. We guessed! They passed round the hat for us and we did okay but the best bit was one of the ladies sitting at a table close to the stage (yes, The Lamb actually has one) was doing a colur sketch of us as we performed and to top it all, her friend took a photo of the finished sketch in the foreground with us in the background and it looked really cool! We went as far afield as Banbury for a gin festival and had a great night playing the Lovibonds Brewery in Henley-upon-Thames with Connor Lee as our regular support act. We played regular gigs at The Sun and at The Global Cafe in Reading and a few other venues. We had a great day supporting Nine Below Zero as part of the 21st Century of the Blues Festival at The Purple Turtle in Reading and ended up with a really late one on midsummer's night at The Beacon Festival at Christmas Common in Oxfordshire where we 'headlined' the Acoustic Stage until about 1:30 am 'in no fit state' as they say! We got to see some great bands before we went on, including the amazing Tankus The Henge.
It got quieter in the second half of the year as Neil went to Devon to work and I moved back to Chiswick, both of us really busy with our dayjobs, as it happened.
2018 ROUND UP
An interesting year for us - new venues, new experiences, new ventures! Back in May, Surbiton welcomed us to their Food Festival, where we performed on an open air stage on the first hot day of the year. If you can remember, it continued to get hotter. Yay! We love the heat. We were on the bill of the Big Yella Blues festival in Reading, effectively supporting Mungo Jerry (see pic above with Neil posing with Ray from Mungo Jerry), then our first gig supporting American Cowpunk rousers Speedbuggy USA. This was a great gig. We did ourselves proud and never was so much sweat spilled in earnest!
Individually, doing different things, Jimmy spent time recording and producing the latest album "Shuffle'n'Swing" with some cool session musos (Max Fagandini and Dom Thatcher) as well as playing solo singer-songwriter sets in London. Jimmy also played keys for Scott Swain and The Sinners during the summer of '18. Shuffle'n'Swing was a departure from the material Neil and Jimmy play together, being mainly jazz-oriented pop with emphasis on horns, keys, organ and female vocals. Jimmy worked with some other artists in the studio, including the incredible session vocalist Lou Minas and then moved to Reading for practical reasons. Neil played with a number of artists (Greg Mayston, Oubliettes, Vienna Ditto) on harmonica and cajon culminating in an appearance at the Swanage Blues Festival. Neil decided to resurrect elements of his old band to play some blues and New Jersey soul, like Southside Johnny. The final act of the year as dayjobs started to take their toll was the Oxjam thing during October, a country wide, town-focused musical extravaganza in support of Oxfam.
The "Shuffle'n'Swing" album was launched in December to critical acclaim and Jimmy is also playing keys in Neil's original band "Blues Cruise" to boot.
2017 Round - Up
There were some changes Jimmy The Dog's 2017 from the previous year. We got invited back to the Standon Calling festival (along with Orbital, Grace Jones, Clean Bandit, Gary Numan, The Editors, KT Tunstall et al) but this time as a solo act. So Jimmy decided to do a singer-songwriter set of his originals that don't get played in the full band or the duo - an intimate solo session on the Autumn Shift stage, organised by the excellent Martyn Hall (of Biffy Clyro, U40 and Black Orchid Empire fame) and his better half, Makaelia. Once again, a great medium-sized festival attracting around 12,000 people over 4 days. Party central, despite the wet weather (Glastonbury had it dry for once)!
On the other hand, we played at the Readipop Festival as a four-piece and attracted a few followers. Jimmy went on to stand in on keys on the main stage for Rob and the Retros, after Mark Morriss of the Bluetones. There was also a full band appearance at the Here Comes The Sun festival in Reading and (without Neil who was double booked) as a three-piece at the Secret Garden festival in Osterley, west London where we were joined for a couple of blues covers by the excellent Callum Freire from The Great Wen on lead guitar.
Jimmy and Neil got various regular engagements as a duo doing a mixture of originals and old country blues and Chicago blues covers, Neil on harmonica, vocal, slide guitar and foot percussion and jimmy on guitar and vocals. Mike (bass) left to spend time with his new family and we wished him well and Will left to spend more time with friends of ours, the acoustic duo Bright Shadows.
While Jimmy was spending more time composing soundtracks, atmos and tension cues for TV/Film in the studio and working on a jazz EP, Neil was gigging with various blues bands in the Thames Valley area.
2017 was a testing time, day job-wise and this started to get in the way of band bookings, but then food had to be bought and rent had to be paid as we looked forward to 2018 as a duo!
2016 Round - Up
Jimmy The Dog's big summer festival at the end of July was the Standon Calling festival in the countryside near Bishop's Stortford, on the same billing as major label artists Jess Glynne, Kelis, Suede and The Hives. An acoustic set as a two-piece on the Octopia Stage for the opening Thursday night followed by a full band appearance on the Saturday evening. A great medium-sized festival attracting around 12,000 people over 4 days. In short, a blast!
Also at the Readipop Festival the week before doing a solo acoustic thing again.
Jimmy produced Mark Sharp's album, arranging and playing most of the instruments with contributions from Jamie Jackson, Michelle Laven and Amy Bone (who later sang on the current Jimmy The Dog album, "Runnin' With The Pack").
A lot of the year was spent writing and recording new tracks, continuing the work from 2015. 18 months after the first track was written, the 15 track "Runnin' With The Pack", written and produced by Jimmy was completed and released on 16th December. Worthy contributions were gathered from Amy Bone (b.vocal), Guy William (harmonica), Mark Sharp (b.vocal), Sheila Moylan (b.vocal) and Georgia Patterson (lead guitar and b.vocal). The other main contributor, in a non-musical sense, was Si Jones (photographer) who did the album photo-shoot with Jimmy towards the end of October at various locations in Brentford, London.
Plus, we got one utterly superb review of the new album from The Rocking Magpie blog, which you can read here.
2015 Round - Up
Well, 2015 was a good year for JTD, as a 4-piece band, a duo (harmonica, guitar and vocals) or as a solo act, depending on which event we were booked for.
First of all, Dave Ferguson (bass) left to pursue his professional music career having been commissioned to write music for BBC TV and also as part of the power-rock trio, Black Orchid Empire and Stu left to take up a new job in Barcelona (who could blame him!). So, we welcomed Mike Muggeridge on bass and Will Woodward on drums into the new line-up.
We played a number of gigs and the summer festivals included;
Brewfest (24th May) at The Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich
The Caversham Festival (11th July) at Christchurch Meadows, Reading
Here Comes The Sun Festival (1st August) at The Rising Sun Arts Centre, Reading
and had the logistical nightmare of playing two festivals in the same afternoon (30th August), both at opposite ends of London! :-
Brewfest And Friends at the forecourt of the O2 Arena in Greenwich
Ploughfest at The Plough Inn in Ealing, arriving on stage with. literally, one minute to spare!
There were a few local solo London gigs at venues including The Old Packhorse in Chiswick, The Finborough Arms in West Brompton, The Green Note in Camden and work was continued throughout the year on a new album as time allowed.
2014 Round - Up
New Album Release 29th September 2014
Posted 28th September 2014
And finally!! The second Jimmy The Dog album is available on digital download from 29th September 2014! It's been over a year in the making and "New Tricks" is finally available on iTunes, Amazon, Googleplay, Beats Music, Rdio and Deezer for $9.99(US) or £7.99(UK) and features the exceptional guest talents of Garry "The Slide Guy" Smith - London's premier National slide guitar player, Kim Lenaghan and Helen Cuthbertson Reid on backing vocals and band member Neil Packman on harmonica. There's even a duet with Jimmy and Helen! The 16 tracks were largely recorded before the touring band came together, so Jimmy's on keyboards, guitars, bass and drum programming again on this one and the process was not without it's equipment failures and other minor difficulties but which, however, allowed for some extra time for reflection and improvement. The feel of this album is generally more uptempo and light-hearted than the first and there's more emphasis on rockin' blues and roots retro and less on country, raunch more than romance, blatant directness more than political correctness and even some songs that tell a story. Truth and lies, Cops and Dealers, Preachers and Demons, Werewolves and Vampires, Lover's revenge, Murder and cannibalism, Good love and Bad love and the good old Open Road. It's all there. Go on, download this fully mastered, 71-minute-long collection of 16 tracks (I think that used to be called a "double album" years ago). Better than listening to our demo stuff you'll find for free on SoundCloud. I don't think you'll be disappointed!!
A BIG SUMMERTIME THANK YOU
Posted 27th July 2014
We had a blast this summer at the Ealing Blues Festival! We'd like to say a great big thank you to all who came to support us. A big thanks also to Martin Bonner of The Chairs for getting us the gig and Geoff Garbow for stage management and sound. Short though the slot we had for our set was, it was nice to see upwards of 250 people bopping away to our songs. There's some mobile phone video of us recently uploaded and a few action pics. And it's with a little sadness that we say goodbye to Stu, who has decided to take a cushy job in Barcelona! Well, who wouldn't? He'll still be up for the odd gig though, he says. Best of luck Stu, we'll be down in Spain soon enough to crash on your floor! Oh, yeah, there's still time to get your hands on some free downloads; click on the SoundCloud links to "Oh Darlene" and "Pony Tail" on the Music Page. Available until the end of July.
SUMMER FESTIVAL APPEARANCES 2014
Posted June 2014
Jimmy will be playing at the Ealing Blues Festival in London on the 20th of July 2014 and at The Caversham Festival (solo acoustic) on the 12th of July 2014. Here's the deal.....