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'Folk survivor' Richard Digance ready for return to Wirral
SELF-CONFESSED folk survivor Richard Digance returns to New Brighton next week as part of his current tour.
The BAFTA-nominated entertainer will perform in the Blue Lounge at the Floral Pavilion on Friday, February 15.
In a career spanning 41 years, the London-born musician, poet and tv presenter has supported such stars as American funnymen Steve Martin and Robin Williams and played a duet with Queen guitarist Brian May.
Looking forward to next week's show, Richard told the Globe today: "It’s just a bloke with a guitar, some nostalgia and audience involvement. It's all about entertainment.
"I really love just doing live in small venues and it’s thanks to people like Geoff Dormand, who helped get me the Floral Pavilion gig, that I'm able to come back."
Recalling his last visit to Wirral, the 63-year-old told continued: "It's about 15 years since I was last here, played at The Albion in New Brighton.
"My real passion is for football, I’m a huge West Ham fan, and my only recollection of the gig was talking to this old guy in the pub.
"It really was snowing outside and he took me to see Dixie Dean’s grave."
Richard's career in entertainemt in folk clubs. He also had a hugely successful show on ITV.
He has also been a regular guest on Channel Four quiz Countdown's Dictionary Corner for the last 20 years.
His contribution to music and poetry has earned a BAFTA Nomination as a TV entertainer to a Gold Award from The British Academy of Composers and Songwriters.
He is also included in The Virgin Anthology of Songwriters for his important contribution to British comedy songwriting.
When presented with the Gold Award from the British Academy of Composers and Songwriters he was described as someone who for half a century has travelled the world with just a guitar and an immense collection of stories gathered through his own experiences.
His poetry is included in The Oxford University Press anthology of British Poetry. He has also appeared on stages across the world.
He said: "About five or six years ago I had a sabbatical and thought about where I wanted my career to go.
"When I set out in this business I only ever wanted to be a musician, but television and comedy came along, plus 20 years on Countdown.
"I felt a career change was needed and it was not a hard decision to get the guitar out and go back on stage.
"The whole beauty of the stigma of the folkscene is that you can play to an audience of four people if you want. So far I’ve never been heckled, which is good.
"I was part of a little tribe of folk entertainers. Scotland had Billy Connolly and the Midlands had Jasper Carrott. I seem to be only one still doing gigs, so feel like a bit of a survivor.
"I'm in a nice little bubble at the moment. My books of poems are selling really well, probably because I’ve done Countdown for 20 years.
"I’ve also got enough material for a new album, but I’ll see where I go with it."
Tickets for his Floral Pavilion show, which starts at 7.30pm, are from the box office 666 0001.