Thursday, November 05, 2015

Tom Robinson

5 November 2015

Last summer's one-off gig by Tom Robinson (reviewed here in August 2014) reminded me how much I like his music. It also reminded him how much he likes performing. After a break of more than ten years Tom Robinson is now touring again, to promote his first new album in twenty years – 'Only The Now'. The 'Mighty Sword Of Justice' tour is also supporting mental health charities including the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM – see: and the Samaritans, who were collecting donations at Tom Robinson's concert at the Public Hall in Harpenden which we were at last Friday. It was great to see Tom performing new material again (as well as his greatest hit). 'Only The Now' contains some wonderful new Tom Robinson songs that demonstrate his experience and skill as a songwriter. The tango which opens the album, 'Home in the Morning' feels instantly like classic Tom Robinson and 'Never Get Old' is a poignant anthem for his return to the rock and roll stage at the age of 65 (“Did you think we'd never get old? Take a good look at me now.”). A range of illustrious friends have contributed to the new recordings. Alongside long-time collaborators Adam Philips and Lee Forsyth Griffiths, 'Only The Now' features appearances by Billy Bragg, Martin Carthy, John Grant and Ian McKellen. Friday's gig drew a large, enthusiastic audience that clearly knew Tom Robinson's back catalogue well but also gave a warm welcome to the new songs. As he did at the Jazz Cafe gig last summer, Tom looked like he was having a ball and seemed genuinely moved by the reception his music received and the affection of the audience. Great to see him back.

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