Posted by Les Divers on Jul 18, 2017

Gray Bartlett has packed a lot into his 75 years.  Not only has his 30 albums and 20 singles sold well in excess of 1 million units, he continues to work as a concert promoter, boosting upcoming visits by Tommy Mandel and Johnny Cash’s daughter Rosanne.  Gray had realised very early on while listening to Chet Atkins that he could see colours in music and by 1961 had recorded his first single as a guitarist.  His career subsequently embraced musical direction, composition and production as well as concert promotion.  Bill Duncan recalled meeting Gray in the late 1980’s when Gray was performing in China to a live audience of 200,000 people and then conducting a master class for 500 young guitarists.

A large attendance on Monday was treated to Gray’s reflections of the many great artists with whom he has worked including Vera Lynn (still alive at 100) Rolf Harris, Pavarotti, Nora Jones, Dianna Krall, Billy Connolly and Michael Jackson.  He emphasised his love of seeing children grow up, dream and imagine and teenagers setting goals.  To the delight of the significant club attendance Gray then played on his 1966 Gibson guitar 325 the stunningly beautiful “Fields of Gold” (the definitive vocal version belongs not to Sting singing his own composition but to the late great Eva Cassidy and can be accessed here: ) and the old favourite “Apache”.

Don Bowater introduced and thanked Gray and Nick Loseby was once again responsible for arranging such an interesting guest speaker.