Circle Of Friends

LYs to headline at Jamey’s House Of Music

27 June 2013

Jamey's House Of MusicChiefly in the interest of consuming as many Philly Cheesesteaks as possible while in the States, we have added a Philadelphia date to our 2013 American Tour – Jamey’s House Of Music on Overbrook Avenue, “Philadelphia’s coolest intimate venue”.

Jamey’s looks like a truly unique little place, combining – rather unusually – a ‘living room’ feel with state-of-the-art facilities. Seating just sixty, the House Of Music has been described variously as a “house concert on steroids”, “the ultimate man-cave” and “the music mansion”. This from the venue’s website:

“There is never a so-so evening here. It’s a warm and welcoming place to share in some of the most wonderful eclectic music of every style and genre found anywhere, make new friends, enjoy really good Chinese food (BYO welcome) expertly prepared by hostess and chef, Suyun Reilly, and meet stellar musicians one on one.”

I know – sounds bloody lovely, doesn’t it?! We can’t wait. And if you’re coming, expect an intimate, one-off show mixing novel reading with live music and, more than likely, a few unusual numbers thrown in. Support from the inimitable Jon Clifton.

Our Friday night date at Jamey’s also means that our 2013 American tour has gone from dual-state to tri-state, which while making the whole thing sound rather grander than it actually is does provide increased opportunity for phrases of the “Good evening New JERsey! [or equivalent state]” sort. Which is of course the main reason to go on tour in the first place (other than the sandwiches).

For details of all our USA tour dates, visit the GIGS page. Here’s the basic rundown:

Thursday 15 August: Astoria Park, New York (FREE SHOW!)
Friday 16 August: Jamey’s House Of Music, Philadelphia PA (BUY TICKETS)
Saturday 17 August: Circle Of Friends, Riverton NJ (BUY TICKETS)
Sunday 18 August: Burlington Amphitheatre, Westampton NJ (FREE SHOW!)

The LYs & The Riverton Circle Of Friends

19 June 2013

Riverton Circle Of FriendsThe Lightyears grew up in a quiet village on the Oxfordshire/Berkshire border called Goring-on-Thames. The band has spent most of its professional life in London, but I reckon we’ll always think of Goring as ‘where we come from’. That’s right – Eminem has the mean streets of Detroit, Oasis have a violent father on a Manchester council estate, and we have the bake sales and organic butchers of Goring-on-Thames. You do the math.

Back in 2006, on our first American tour, The Lightyears’ tour bus (nb. not actually a bus) rolled into a quiet New Jersey community called Riverton, a small and exceptionally pretty town on the Delaware River with grand old post-colonial houses, an incredible community spirit and just about the warmest and most welcoming people in the world. People actually leave their doors unlocked there. In short, it’s about as close to an American equivalent of Goring as it’s possible to be and, inevitably, soon established itself as The Lightyears’ second home.

When we’re on tour in the States if we’re not in New York we generally base ourselves in Riverton, where like the weary travellers we are we’re always offered a place to stay and a veritable mountain of delicious all-American food. I have eaten corn-on-the-cob there that would make grown men weep – it’s a very special place.

The Riverton Circle Of Friends Concert Series

This year we are very lucky to be headlining at Riverton’s legendary Circle Of Friends concert series on Saturday 17 August. COF was set up in 2009 by music lovers in the area to bring artists direct to the people, and since then they’ve held many amazing events in a number of truly unusual venues including a pump house, the workshop of a yacht builder (the band played with two large unfinished sailboats behind them), a yoga studio and a tattoo parlour (that’s “parlor” to all you American folks). The COF website puts it like this:

Circle of Friends brings musicians and music lovers together, organizing and promoting house concerts to create homey, intimate performances… Every event offers live music, good conversation and a chance to meet new friends.

We can’t wait… it should be a really special show. Tickets are available now (click here to buy yours) in a rather nifty two-tier system – $10 for a basic ticket (which supports us), and $19 for a sustaining ticket (which supports Circle Of Friends as well). This show will be unique on our 2013 tour, with its intimate atmosphere, acoustic set-up and idyllic location, so make sure you don’t miss out. There will definitely be exclusive readings from my novel, and I expect the band will throw in a few curveballs on the set front.

Since 2007, we have had our very own Lightyears plaque in Riverton, erected by the legendary Maureen on her famous front porch to commemorate the time we performed there for the town’s annual Treasure Day. Bowie may have his blue plaque off Regent Street, and Keith Moon his commemoration above the old Marquee Club in Soho, but we’re pretty happy with our wooden tribute on Maureen’s Porch in Riverton, New Jersey. And every now and again it calls us home.

Chris Lightyear

Buy tickets for The Lightyears at Circle Of Friends (Saturday 17 August)