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‘Man in wellies & battered hat saves the day’

Jimmy Cricket's latest column in the Lancashire Evening Post

Jimmy Cricket has been reminiscing about the era of the comedy song and how he hopes he has helped keep it alive.

In his latest column for the Preston-based Lancashire Evening Post, the famous entertainer recalls “the many comedy and novelty songs that used to permeate the airwaves in the 50s and 60s”.

He adds: “Commercial radio stations all have playlists now. This means they only play songs that appeal to younger audiences , which companies who advertise with them deem to be possible customers. That’s how the commercial radio stations make their money.

Jimmy Cricket's Light & Shade

“However, you can still hear comedy and novelty songs on BBC radio stations, especially on their request shows.

“However, fear not dear readers.

“Just when you thought the comedy song was a footnote in the history of popular music, along comes the man in the wellies and the battered hat to save the day!

“Yes, my new CD called Light & Shade contains gems like ‘my budgie’s been tweeting for years’ and ‘I got blotto when I thought I’d won the lotto’.”

Light & Shade was officially released on 1 February and is available for £6 at www.jimmycricketshop.co.uk and at Jimmy’s live shows.

In the inside sleeve, Jimmy talks about the history behind the CD, which features a mixture of serious and comedy songs.

New CD gives listeners ‘a few surprises’

Jimmy Cricket's Light & Shade

Jimmy Cricket says he has tried to give people who buy his latest musical CD “a few surprises”.

Light & Shade was officially released on 1 February and is available for £6 at www.jimmycricketshop.co.uk and at Jimmy’s live shows.Jimmy Cricket's new CD is called Light & Shade

The inside sleeve has the following message from the famous entertainer, in which he talks about the history behind the CD, which features a mixture of serious and comedy songs.

 Hiya Folks,

It’s me Jimmy, come closer!

I was asked to write something for this sleeve, so I thought I would do something off the cuff. Get it!

These are the songs I’ve written and performed at my little ‘Jimmy and friends’ nights which I’ve done at St Vincent’s parochial hall in Rochdale over the last few years.

When I do shows I like to give the audience a few surprises and I’ve tried to do the same with this CD.

Sure there’ll be comedy songs that you would associate with Jimmy Cricket, but I’ve also thrown a few serious ones in too! So whether you’re listening in the car, at home, or walking along with your earphones, I hope there is something there for you.

I’d like to mention two people who‘ve been the bedrock of this CD.

Firstly, musical arranger David Carter, whose god given talent enables him to breathe life into my tunes and words.

And record producer Chris Warsop, who has worked tirelessly and painstakingly over the last six months in making sure we had a quality product at the end.

To them I am eternally grateful, as indeed to you for buying it.

ENJOY!

Jimmy Cricket 7th November 2014

From Muddles to Milton Keynes (slideshow)

 

Jimmy Cricket returned to action after his festive pantomime spell with  a show in Milton Keynes.

The well-known entertainer appeared at the Lovat Fields Retirement Village in Milton Keynes, which is part of a national chain run by the Extra Care organisation. Jimmy has appeared at some of their other sites over the years in St Helens, Warrington and Coventry.

This particular visit was organised by Mary Cooper, who is one of the residents at Lovat Fields and is involved in helping to arrange the entertainment programme. A big thanks to Mary for also sending in the slideshow photos of the night.

Jimmy said: “This was my first show after the Christmas pantomime season.

“It came after what is a traditional annual break for me during January, so it was wonderful to return to stand-up after four weeks of being Muddles in Snow White and to entertain at such a hospitable place with a wonderful audience!”

* Click on either of the arrow buttons above to view the slideshow.

Book now to see Jimmy in action

Jimmy Cricket's shows in the first part of 2015

The first venue that famous comedian Jimmy Cricket will be visiting for his 2015 shows around the UK is the Plaza Theatre in Stockport on Sunday (25 January).

With the show scheduled for a 3pm start, there is the chance to have Sunday lunch with all the family, then go along to see him and laugh away the calories! Tickets are priced at £10 (£5 for under 16s).

Jimmy embarks on a tour of Northern Ireland with the You Must Be Joking show next week.

When the veteran entertainer visits the charming Lamproom Theatre in South Yorkshire during February, he will feature in a format that will afford the audience an opportunity to ask him a question, as he brings his Audience with show to the Barnsley region.

Jimmy’s trip to the Victoria Theatre in Halifax on 25 March will be part of a Music Hall show that his good friend, Neil Hurst, is organising.

And he is also looking forward to visiting Bexhill-on-Sea, where the team behind the Bexhill Festival of Music are organising the show he will headline in April.

All the other venues on the list shown above right will also present Jimmy’s Value for a Tenner show.

So if you live in one of the regions Jimmy will be visiting during the first half of 2015, do go along and see him in action.

New CD will be available to buy soon

Jimmy Cricket's new CD is called Light & Shade

Famous entertainer Jimmy Cricket will release his  fourth CD on 1 February.

Jimmy Cricket – Light & Shade  his  second all-musical album – is a mixture of comedy and serious songs, which he has written over the past couple of years.

The themes of the songs are a mixture of what you have come to expect from Jimmy Cricket the comedian, with a few added twists and surprises!

He recorded Light & Shade with Chris Warsop of Redwine Studios in the West Midlands last summer.

Jimmy said: “I am grateful for the professionalism and finesse that Chris has added to the final product.”

Primarily, the CD will be available through Jimmy’s website dedicated to his merchandise – www.jimmycricketshop.co.uk – and at some point in the future it is intended for each track from the album to be made available to download through a pay-per-click facility on this website.

The CD will also be available to buy at Jimmy’s live dates, though it will not be sale at High Street stores.

Jimmy added: “I’m excited to be in a position to see the CD released after what has been a lengthy creative process!”

Jimmy Cricket's new CD is called Light & Shade

Snow White panto – watch photo slideshow

 

Jimmy Cricket’s final appearance in panto over the festive period was captured in pictures by a friend.

Gerry Molumby travelled from Nottingham to Preston earlier this month to watch famous entertainer Jimmy perform in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Charter Theatre.

Another of Jimmy’s friends, John Nolan, and his family came up from West Sussex, where he is the organiser of the annual Crawley Irish Festival.

Not only did Gerry get some great shots of Jimmy performing on stage, but he also tiptoed back stage before the final performance to obtain snaps of other members of the cast, including Prince Charming and Snow White (Adam Trembath and Kristina Castellina respectively).

Gerry also caught on camera the UK’s most famous ringmaster, Norman Barrett, who has been touring with Zippos circus over the last few years. Norman and his wife, Sally, had come to see Jimmy and they did not escape the photographer’s clicks either!

Gerry has now sent the photos and a report to the Irish Post – the English-based weekly newspaper for the Irish ex-pat community within the UK – with the hope of getting some coverage of his and John’s visit to see Jimmy in Preston.

* Click on either of the arrow buttons above to view the slideshow.

A Christmas & New Year message from Jimmy

Here is a Christmas and New Year message from your favourite entertainer Jimmy Cricket:

Jimmy Cricket's Christmas card features the Only Fools and Horses’ sketch staring regular cast members David Jason and Nicholas Lyndhurst, plus special Comic Relief guest David BeckhamDear all,

I write this from my dressing room at the Charter Theatre in Preston where I am currently appearing in a pantomime production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. We have had some great audiences in Preston and the show has been great fun to do! (There is still time to come along as the show continues until the 3rd of January).

Another year has gone by and, after spending some time over Christmas with my family, I will start to look forward to what 2015 will bring.

This will be a special year for me as in October I will turn 70! Already there are plans in place on how this milestone will be marked and one of the exciting events will be a special fun run to be arranged at a location within my adopted home town of Rochdale.

There are already several interesting touring commitments lined up for 2015. In the early part of the year I will feature in a comedy show called You Must Be Joking, which has several tour dates around Northern Ireland in late January and early February.

I am also teaming up with the male vocalist Michael George for a couple of theatre dates in May and I make a welcome return during 2015 to the Warner Leisure Hotels circuit for the first time in several years.

Of course, I will also be touring my own stand-up show throughout the year and venues already lined up for 2015 include: Stockport, Preston, Barnsley, East Kilbride, Horsham, Nelson and Soham.

Over the last few weeks I have just finished recording a new comedy music CD called Jimmy Cricket – Light and Shade and this will be available to purchase early in the New Year.

Finally, it only remains for me to wish all readers a very happy and peaceful Christmas and a great start to the New Year!

Jimmy Cricket (17 December 2014)

Christmas carol service with a difference

Jimmy Cricket is starring in a Christmas carol service with a comedy twist.

The difference between this carol service, which will be broadcast on BBC Radio Lancashire at noon on Christmas Eve, and a conventional one is that this version features comedians who intersperse the music and singing with sprinklings of humour.

The BBC Radio Lancashire carol service includes Jimmy Cricket, Steve Royle, Danny Pensive and Tony Vino

Also involved with famous entertainer Jimmy is BBC Radio Lancs comedian and presenter Steve Royle, alongside comics Danny Pensive and Tony Vino.

The carol service was recorded at the Roman Catholic church in the East Lancashire town of Clitheroe where Jimmy’s son, Fr Frankie Mulgrew, is based.

Fr Frankie did a reading alongside the Parish Priest at St Michael and St John’s RC Church, Fr John. Pictured is the front page of the order of service.

It includes all the classic carols one would expect for such a service, like Ding Dong Merrily on High, Silent Night and We Three Kings.

Jimmy will be listening to the programme on Christmas Eve – in between his 10:15am and 1:30pm performances of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Charter Theatre in Preston.

The panto, which opened last week and runs through to 3 January,  is a straight transfer from a hugely successful show, which was hosted at the Billingham Forum Theatre in Stockton-On-Tees last year.

Tickets are very affordable for all the family and the show schedule has a range of options, including morning, afternoon and early evening performances.

For more details and to book online, please visit the theatre’s website.

Carrying on the Walt Disney legacy

Famous entertainer Jimmy Cricket says the pantomime production of  Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in Preston will stay true to the original Walt Disney version.

In his latest column for the Lancashire Evening Post, which is based in the Lancashire city where the show is being staged this Christmas, Jimmy says it uses some of the songs from the original film.

The panto, which opened last week at the Charter Theatre and runs through to 3 January,  is a straight transfer from a hugely successful show, which was hosted at the Billingham Forum Theatre in Stockton-On-Tees last year.

Tickets are very affordable for all the family and the show schedule has a range of options, including morning, afternoon and early evening performances.

For more details and to book online, please visit the theatre’s website.

Jimmy Cricket talks about Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in his latest Lancashire Evening Post column

The day a legend arrived on public transport

The late American singer and actor Bing Crosby is the subject of Jimmy Cricket’s latest column in the Preston-based Lancashire Evening Post.

Well-known entertainer Jimmy recalls when Crosby, “none other than the Old Groaner himself”, used public transport instead of a limousine when he appeared in a show in Preston in the late 1970s.

Crosby’s trademark bass-baritone voice made him one of the best-selling recording artists of the 20th century, with more than half a billion records in circulation – including probably his best known, White Christmas.

“The reasons why Bing took the train instead of plumping for a chauffeur-driven limo are shrouded in mystery, but my guess is that he was a regular guy who liked mixing with ordinary people,” says Jimmy.

Northern Irish comedian Jimmy  is headlining Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the Charter Theatre in Preston – where he made his pantomime debut in 1981 – over the Christmas and New Year period.

Bing Crosby is the subject of Jimmy Cricket's latest Lancashire Evening Post column