AUDIO: Blues Godfather Mayall’s offer fans can’t refuse

John Mayall, the Godfather of British blues

John Mayall, the Godfather of British blues

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They call him the Godfather of British Blues and John Mayall is making UK fans an offer they can’t refuse - to see him on stage at the grand old age of 81.

That’s how young he will be when his 34-date UK tour brings him to Sheffield City Hall on November 4.

John Mayall, the Godfather of British blues

John Mayall, the Godfather of British blues

Mayall is promoting his first album in five years, called A Special Life. And like the 80th Anniversary Tour it’s a celebration of a career which saw his band, The Bluesbreakers, launch some of rock’s greatest musicians.

Members included Eric Clapton; Mick Taylor, who joined The Rolling stones; Peter Green. John McVie and Mick Fleetwood, who went on to form Fleetwod Mac, and Jack Bruce, of Cream.

“They are all great. You can’t compare one with the other because they all have their own personalities and take on things. That’s the mark of a good musician. They don’t sound like anyone else,” he told The Star in an exclusive chat from his home in Los Angeles.

LISTEN: Hear John Mayall’s full chat with The Star’s digital editor Graham Walker - CLICK HERE.

“As a band leader you pick musicians who turn you on, whether they are known or unknown. The main thing is you really enjoy playing with them.

“They are allowed to extend their own possibilities. You are hiring them for a special reason and you want to encourage that.

“It’s great being a band leader, that you get to call the shots and pick whoever you want.

“The band I have now has been together over five years, so we’re like a well oiled machine, as you can probably tell from the new album, A Special Life.

“The title came to me, when I wrote the title song. It was like an appreciation of the way everything has all turned out.

“There are four original songs, The rest are covers by different blues giants. The main thing was to keep it a solid blues album. And people are definitely responding to that.”

Mayall, who wants to be remembered for his body of work, which got him an OBE in 2005, averages 100 shows a year.

He’s added 30 extra dates to promote the album and with boundless energy he even designed the cover, like the many he’s done in the past.

“When I do the UK tour I’ll be 81. I’ll go on as long as I’ve got the energy and good health, as you can probably judge from the new album. I feel as young as the musicians in my band , who are a generation younger than me,

“I think my body of work really speaks for itself. As long as I keep on doing it, that’s my mission in life.”

Tickets for Sheffield are £27.50, fees may apply. Buy in person, call 0114 2789 789 or visit www.sheffieldcityhall.co.uk.

Also visit The Star’s entertainments and listings web site at www.wow247.co.uk.

FULL UK TOUR DATES:

John Mayall 2014 UK Tour Dates

October:

16 - Truro - Hall for Cornwall

17 - Guildford - G Live

18 – Ipswich – Regent Theatre

19 – St Albans – Alban Arena

21 – Tunbridge Wells - Assembly Rooms

22 – Cardiff – St Davids Hall

23 – Salisbury – City Hall

24 – Torquay – Princess Theater

25 – Basingstoke – Anvil

26 – Bristol – Colston Hall

28 – Manchester – Bridgewater Hall

29- York – Barbican

30 – Buxton – Opera House

31 – Llandudno – Venue Cymru

November:

1- London – Cadogan Hall

2 – Norwich – Theatre Royal

4- Sheffield – City Hall

5 – Birmingham – Symphony Hall

6 – Southend – Cliffs Pavilion

7 – Bournemouth –Pavilion

8 – Frome – The Cheese and Grain

9 – Cambridge – Corn Exchange

11 – Sage – Gateshead

12 – Southport – Theatre

13 – Halifax – Victoria Theatre

14 – Dunfermline – Alhambra Theatre

15 – Dundee – Caird Hall

16 – Aberdeen – Music Hall

17 – Glasgow – Royal Concert Hall

19 – Crawley – The Hawth

20 – Portsmouth – Guildhall

21 – Leicester – De Monfort Hall

22 – High Wycombe – Swan Theatre

23 – Dartford – The Orchard

Ticket prices: £33.50 - £25.50 through all venue box offices, online at www.ents24.com and www.ticketmaster.co.uk.

Also visit The Star’s entertainments and listings web site at www.wow247.co.uk.