Vintage rock ‘n’ roll band The Bluejays present Rock and Roll Revolution, celebrating the music of the 1950s at than 35 venues across the UK throughout 2018.
Dates include July 27 at the Pavilion Theatre, Worthing
The band met in 2008 whilst performing as Buddy Holly and the Crickets in the UK Tour of Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story. Ollie received rave reviews for his portrayal of Buddy Holly. After Buddy, the band were approached by Bill Kenwright to appear in his new rock ‘n’ roll show Dreamboats & Petticoats which toured and played a successful run in the West End. Ollie then took over the role of Carl Perkins (the man behind Blue Suede Shoes) in the West End production of Million Dollar Quartet in 2011.
The Bluejays formed in 2013 and quickly became one of the UK’s busiest vintage live acts. First up was a Friday night residency at London’s Troubadour Club (a hotbed for musical talent since the 1950s, playing host to Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell and Paul Simon among others).
Since then, the band have played all over the world in theatres and at festivals and private events. At one event in the grand hall of the Natural History Museum, The Bluejays were joined on stage by Brian May of Queen who took over lead guitar and vocals for a cover of Chuck Berry’s Johnny B Goode.
Chris (bass) recalls: “It was so surreal! To start with this was the first time we’d ever played to the bones of a 100ft diplodocus, but then to have Brian join us onstage… unreal!
“When I was growing up, my mum had the Queen – Live at Wembley ’86 cassette which we used to listen to in the car all the time. There’s a bit on that where Brian talks to the crowd and I remember thinking, when he joined us and spoke on the mic, ‘That’s the voice from the cassette!’ Then he launched into this incredible version of Johnny B Goode. We were all just in awe. To be playing bass for a bona fide rock legend is something I’ll never forget.”
In 2017, The Bluejays were invited to play at the Buddy Holly Center in Lubbock, Texas for the annual celebrations of Buddy’s birthday. With three days in Texas, the band made the most of their Buddy pilgrimage.
Ollie (vocals/guitar) said: “We flew into New York and then on to Dallas. The ground staff at JFK obviously liked our vintage guitars as they chose to keep them there! Fortunately, a courier from American Airlines brought them to us, intact apart from a broken string, a day later.”
Dan (drums) added: “Our first day in Lubbock and we met with Eddy Weir, Buddy’s nephew, also a musician. We had a great chat with him over some burgers and some beer in a bar called Triple J’s on Buddy Holly Avenue. He told us all he knew about his uncle. It was amazing to hear his family’s stories and to learn about the man behind the legend”.
The next day, they visited Buddy’s gravesite.
Chris said: “Having been a music fan virtually all my life and, particularly from performing in Buddy, I knew a lot about Feb 3 1959 – The Day the Music Died. Buddy, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper were all killed when their chartered light aircraft crashed in an Iowa field.”