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Coming up at Sage Gateshead next week (week beginning 21 May 2018)

The world’s greatest living explorer, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, presents an evening of expeditions, adventure, and exploration.

Legendary artist and activist, Joan Baez, showcases her new album, as well as classic tracks from her 50 year career.

One of Nashville’s most beloved and respected artists, Gretchen Peters, brings her moving and poetic music to Sage Gateshead.

Tickets are still available for these shows and more, taking place week commencing 21 May.

An Intimate Acoustic Evening of Songs and Stories with Nils Lofgren

Monday 21 May, 7.30pm, Sage One

Celebrating his 50th year of touring professionally, legendary Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, E Street Band Member, and solo artist Nils Lofgren makes his first return to the UK in three years accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Greg Varlotta.

The UK has become his most frequent touring stop outside of the U.S. for half a century. Drawing from an expansive repertoire of a lifetime in rock and roll, and sharing many memorable stories along the way, Nils will pick up on the magical experience of his last critically acclaimed UK run.

Nils and Greg will use a multitude of instruments to add colour and depth to these new shows. Nils, along with his lovely wife Amy, plan to spend time visiting with fans after the performance concludes, in what has become the “show after the show”. They always ask the venues to keep the pub open afterwards, too!

Nils says: “I’ve never felt more welcome or at home touring than in the UK. I’m honoured and grateful to celebrate my 50th year on the road there with Amy, Greg and our great UK crew, for an inspired night of music and friends. We love the UK audiences. Please come join us!”

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Sir Ranulph Fiennes

Tuesday 22 May, 7.30pm, Sage One

Named by the Guinness Book of Records as ‘the world’s greatest living explorer’, Sir Ranulph Fiennes has spent his life in pursuit of extreme adventure, risking life and limb in some of the most ambitious private expeditions ever undertaken.

Amongst his many record-breaking achievements, he was the first to reach both Poles, the first to cross the Antarctic and Arctic Ocean, and the first to circumnavigate the world along its polar axis.

In Living Dangerously, Sir Ranulph offers a personal journey through his life, from his early years to the present day. Both light-hearted and strikingly poignant, Living Dangerously spans Sir Ranulph’s childhood and school misdemeanours, his army life and early expeditions, right through the Transglobe Expedition to his current Global Reach Challenge – his goal to become the first person in the world to cross both polar ice caps and climb the highest mountain on each of the seven continents.

Sir Ranulph Fiennes’ many endeavours have pushed his endurance levels to the very limits, inspiring generations and making him a pioneer of exploration with an unparalleled story to tell.

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Gretchen Peters plus very Special Guest Kim Richey

Wednesday 23 May, 8pm, Sage Two

For two decades, Gretchen Peters has been one of Nashville’s most beloved and respected artists. “If Peters never delivers another tune as achingly beautiful as ‘On A Bus To St. Cloud,’” People Magazine wrote, “she has already earned herself a spot among country’s upper echelon of contemporary composers.”

She was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in October 2014 by singer-songwriter Rodney Crowell. He called her “both a songwriter and a poet (who) sings as beautifully as she writes,” and said her song The Matador“moved me so greatly, I cried from the soles of my feet.” Peters has accumulated accolades as a songwriter for artists as diverse as Etta James, Bonnie Raitt, The Neville Brothers, Patty Loveless, George Strait, Bryan Adams and Faith Hill.

Her 2015 album, Blackbirds, debuted at number 1 on the UK Country chart and in the top 40 UK pop chart, and was awarded International Album of the Year and Song of the Year. In 2015, The Telegraph named her one of the greatest 60 female singer-songwriters of all time.

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Das Lied von der Erde

Thursday 24 May, 8pm, Sage Two

  • Royal Northern Sinfonia
  • Brahms String Quintet in F
  • Mahler (arr. Farrington) Das Lied von der Erde

Brahms’ first string quintet shows his love of baroque music in a subtle integration of baroque dance movements he had originally written for the piano, while Mahler’s unusual ‘song-symphony’ is based on a set of transcendent Chinese poems.

RNS will again be performing a chamber reduction perfectly suited to fill Sage Two.

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Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton

Friday 25 May, 7.45pm, Northern Rock Foundation Hall

Although still in his 20s, Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton has earned a reputation for transporting audiences back to the 1920’s and making them wish they could stay there for good. Blind Boy Paxton may be one of the greatest multi-instrumentalists that you have not heard of. Yet.

This young musician sings and plays banjo, guitar, piano, fiddle, harmonica, Cajun accordion, and the bones (percussion). Paxton has an eerie ability to transform traditional jazz, blues, folk, and country into the here and now, and make it real. In addition, he mesmerises audiences with his humour and storytelling.

He’s a world-class talent and a uniquely colourful character that has been on the cover of Living Blues Magazine and the Village Voice, and has been interviewed on FOX News. Paxton’s sound is influenced by the likes of Fats Waller and “Blind” Lemon Jefferson.

According to Will Friedwald in the Wall Street Journal, Paxton is “virtually the only music-maker of his generation-playing guitar, banjo, piano and violin, among other implements-to fully assimilate the blues idiom of the 1920s and ’30s.”

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Nine Below Zero

Friday 25 May, 8pm, Sage Two

Live at the Marquee tour – The iconic debut album performed with an 8-piece band for the first time ever.

One of the UK’s finest rhythm & blues bands, Nine Below Zero, formed in 1979 and named themselves after the famous Sonny Boy Williamson song. In 1980, they released the seminal Live at the Marquee album. By the end of that year, they had moved from selling out the Marquee to selling out the Hammersmith Odeon. In 1981, their first studio album, Don’t point your finger, was released and the band played alongside The Kinks and The Who. They also made appearances on the Old Grey Whistle Test and the South Bank show.

In 1982, they appeared on The Young Ones with the track Eleven + Eleven before releasing arguably their finest album Third Degree, which features such tracks as Wipe away your kiss and You can’t say yes and you can’t say no. The album’s iconic image was taken by none other than David Bailey.

In 1983 Dennis Greaves left to form The Truth, and in 1990, Nine Below Zero got back together for a sell-out 10th Anniversary Concert at the Town & Country Club. Since then the band have played alongside Chuck Berry, Brian May, Eric Clapton, Ray Davies, Bruce Willis, Jools Holland and Glenn Tilbrook.

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Joan Baez – Fare Thee Well Tour

Saturday 26 May, 7.30pm, Sage One

Legendary artist and activist, and 2017 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Joan Baez, has announced an extensive 2018 tour in conjunction with the release of Whistle Down The Wind, her first studio album since 2008’s Day After Tomorrow.

Speaking of the tour, Baez says “While 2018 will be my last year of formal extended touring, I’m looking forward to being on the road with a beautiful new album about which I am truly proud. I welcome the opportunity to share this new music as well as long-time favourites with my audiences around the world.”

Baez’s career has spanned over 50 years, during which she unselfconsciously introduced Bob Dylan to the world in 1963, marched on the front lines of the Civil Rights movement with Martin Luther King, inspired Vaclav Havel to fight for a Czech Republic, and continues to this day to stand passionately on behalf of causes she embraces. She is the recipient of many honours including the Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award and Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience award.

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