FORTY-FOUR years ago a quiet, shy young man with a burning passion for acoustic roots music left his job as a trainee computer technician at Exeter University to embark on a career as a musician.
Today Phil Beer is nothing short of folk music royalty — loved and respected worldwide as a singer, multi-instrumentalist and raconteur — who also happens to be the patron of Nettlebed Folk Song Club.
A giant of a man with a reputation to match, Phil is bringing his celebrated one-man show to Norden Farm Centre for the Arts in Altwood Road, Maidenhead, on Friday, January 27.
As a member of the acoustic supergroup Show of Hands, Phil has performed all over the world leaving “sold out” signs in his wake — including four concerts at the Royal Albert Hall.
Last year he and Show of Hands partner Steve Knightley were awarded honorary doctorates of music by Plymouth University.
The multi-instrumentalist half of the award-winning duo, Phil’s ability to play just about any stringed instrument is legendary.
As a solo performer his influences are numerous and varied. As well as traditional English and Celtic music, he also draws heavily on Americana and the many contemporary songwriters whose work he admires.
As a virtuoso session musician, his talent has seen him play on albums by the Rolling Stones, Mike Oldfield and Steve Harley, plus hundreds of other recording artists. He has also been part of some of the most noteworthy and influential folk music collaborations of his generation, including the Albion Band.
Tickets for Phil’s intimate show in Norden Farm’s studio are £15. There is also the option of a pre-show dinner at £14 a head.
Showtime is 7.30pm. To book, call 01628 788997 or visit www.norden.farm
For more on Phil Beer, visit www.philbeer.co.uk