Rob Heron & the Tea Pad Orchestra

Rob Heron & The Tea Pad Orchestra don’t care what genre you choose to put them in – western swing, country blues, ragtime hokum or whatever else– as long as you understand that they’re 100% sincere and 100% immersed in this stuff. This is no lazy pastiche, no dressing up box. They live and breathe this music and want you to get immersed with them.

The Tea Pad are five years into a remarkable story that began with four friends studying folk and traditional music at Newcastle University and now sees them playing clubs and dancehalls and festivals the breadth of the British Isles and into mainland Europe (there was even a brief trip to India last year). Based on Tyneside but with members hailing from Orkney to Warwickshire, the Tea Pad sound draws on myriad influences – from Bob Wills to Django Reinhardt, George Jones to Cab Calloway – yet ultimately sounds like nobody else, that North Eastern Swing style that’s utterly their own and changing all the time.

The Tea Pad are Rob Heron (vocals and guitar), Ben Fitzgerald (guitar), Tom Cronin (mandolin and harmonica), Colin Nicholson (accordion) and Ted Harbot (double bass).

They play Thursday.

Southwell Festival