Luke James Williams, Annie Dresner, Lucy Grob, and Dan Wilde to perform solo and in collaboration

Luke James Williams, an experienced singer-songwriter from Willingham, sets out this month alongside Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb and Dan Wilde, to perform as part of the songwriters’ circle.

Luke James Williams.  Photo: Jean-Luc Benazet
Luke James Williams. Photo: Jean-Luc Benazet

The event, titled “An Evening of Song with Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb, Dan Wilde and Luke James Williams,” will feature the four talented musicians performing individually and in collaboration.

Says Luke, 38, “I released an album in July last year, and it was my first full-length album—before that, I had just released a EP. I’ve been gigging a lot; I did my first set of major gigs in the fall of last year, and yeah.” We’re heading out with some other singer-songwriters on the Songwriters’ Circle Tour, which is a bit of a different concept.

“I’ve always supported someone, or come out as a keynote speaker—like I said, I did my first keynote dates in the fall—but this is a different setup, as there are four of us sharing a bill.

“We’ll play individually the first half but then the second half we’ll join together almost as a band and play each other’s songs, I think, as a group.”

Locke, who began playing music in his teens, says the four have known each other “a fair amount of time”, noting: “Me, Dan and Annie – although Annie is originally from New York and I think Dan is originally from Blackpool – they are all from Cambridge – based on On top of that, we’ve known each other through the Cambridge music scene for a long time.

“She supported Annie on her album release back in 2018, and then Annie and I toured together in the fall of 2019. I believe Annie introduced me to Dan during Dan’s open mic night, and Annie and Dan were introduced to each other through the Cambridge music scene.

“That’s how I got to know Dan – I really like both of their music – and then Lucy Grob is from Norwich, but I think Annie met her during the Cambridge Folk Festival in 2019.

“Lucy is someone Annie played with, and when we were thinking of organizing a night with a few more singer-songwriters, we thought it would be nice to share two singer-songwriters and a singer-songwriter on the bill. Lucy was a great choice – she’s another great singer-songwriter.”

An evening of song with Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb, Dan Wilde and Luke James Williams
An evening of song with Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb, Dan Wilde and Luke James Williams

On the subject of the quartet’s musical styles, which are usually rooted in folk/acoustic, Luke notes: “We’re all a little bit different. Lucy skips over maybe more country and Americana, and I think my music probably skips a little bit into pop, a little bit into folk.”

“Dan is a very lyrical songwriter who tells stories — as is Annie, and she’s obviously from the States who has a slightly different voice than hers as well. But we’re all bound by a love of great songwriting and songs and ballads and melodies. It’s what really brings us together, no matter the genre.” .

Luke released his first solo album in 2018 and the album he released last year is titled Our blood is red. He recalls, “I started recording my album at the end of 2019, but then of course it took a very long time to finish it because the studio had to close for very long periods of time – and I only got ready to finish it and release it in July last year.

“I’ve been blown away by the response and am now busy writing new material for another album. Once this tour is over, my attention will turn to writing a follow-up.”

Between them, the four musicians have graced the stage at some of the UK’s biggest festivals including Glastonbury, Cambridge Folk Festival, Green Man and Black Deer, receiving rave reviews from the likes of Folk Radio, Maverick And paste magazine, and has received airplay on BBC Radio 1, BBC Radio 2 and BBC Radio 6 Music.

Indeed, BBC Radio 6 Music’s Tom Robinson said of Locke, who performed at the Cambridge Folk Festival for the first time last year, after it was originally booked for a run in 2020: “Honest and beautiful I find it irresistible.”

[Read more: US ‘outsider’ Annie Dressner to play adopted hometown of Cambridge, Grammy-nominated country band Midland to play in Cambridge]

Come decide for yourself when Luke does his J2 act at Cambridge Junction, alongside Annie Dressner, Lucy Grubb and Dan Wilde, on Monday, March 20th.

An evening of song with Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb, Dan Wilde and Luke James Williams
An evening of song with Annie Dresner, Lucy Grubb, Dan Wilde and Luke James Williams

Tickets, priced at £12.50, are available at junction.co.uk. For more on Luke, go to lukejameswilliams.co.uk.


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