Steve Ashley, formerly of the Albion Country Band and Ragged Robin and creator of influential debut album 'Stroll On', is performing solo at the Topic in Bradford (West Yorkshire) next Thursday 27th April at 8.30.
He recently had a big birthday concert do where the likes of Phil Beer, Simon Nicol, Dave Pegg, Maartin Allcock, a reformed Ragged Robin and the Steve Ashley Band, among others, revisited his musical history with him - but they won't be there next week or there won't be any room for the audience.
For the rest of April we've got John Conolly, Bernard Carney, and Pete Abbott as headliners, and featured support from Mulberry Blue and Vince Jerrison & Nickie Willis.
This is the Topic's 50th anniversary year and though we aren't planning a weekend-long bash with outside concerts (as took place at the 25th anniversary), in the autumn weeks we'll certainly be thinking of and marking the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Topic (in September 1956) with acts including Wizz Jones, Julie Felix, Vin Garbutt, Dana & Susan Robinson, Steve Gillette & Cindy Mangsen, and Jim Malcolm. And others. David Moss (ex-Banoffi). Beck Sian. And maybe some balloons and a T-shirt.
As well as a lot of guest nights (complete with floor singers) the Topic still has singers' and musicians' nights, generally about once a month.The last two have been well-attended, with 20-30 people showing up, including, last time, 5 of 6-piece Bandersnatch, two out of Mulberry Blue on a practice run, and FYRISH, who played a featured support act earlier this year and must like the place.
The Topic is now (since January this year) at The Cock & Bottle in Bradford, one of Bradford's most historic pubs (estd 1820) and feted by CAMRA in its time. The first real ale brewed on the premises since 1927, Drop Kick, went on sale a couple of weeks ago. (All the real ales from pub-owning brewery William Greenwood are Rugby League related).(This is their only pub, btw).
Take a look at the website for more news, future guests, links to 360+ past guest websites, a history of the club and a history of the pub too, and a list of (almost) all gigs since 1970. We're still hoping to dig up info on the misty 1956-1970 years but the relevant minute books seem to have gone AWOL.