Shropshire Star

'The warmth and the energy was really palatable, it was quite extraordinary' – Grammy award-winning artist set to grace Eisteddfod stage for second time

A two-times Grammy award winning America artist is is bringing his concert tour to Llangollen – the second time that he will have graced the Eisteddfod stage.


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Gregory Porter’s blend of jazz, gospel and soul has brought him fans from all genres as well as simply lovers of good music.

The singer/songwriter will appear at the Royal International Pavilion on July 5 – part of the core week of the festival which will also star Tom Jones and Katherine Jenkins.

Gregory Porter during his last appearance at the Eisteddfod

Bryan Adams, Simple Minds, Madness, Kaiser Chiefs, Manic Street Preachers and Suede, Paloma Faith, Jess Glynne and Nile Rodgers and Chic will will also headline dates either side of the Eisteddfod thanks to a partnership with Live Nation promoters, Cuffe and Taylor.

Talented JP Cooper will support Gregory Porter. Tickets for all the concerts and more information are available on

Gregory said he was delighted to be returning saying the atmosphere and ethos of the Eisteddfod was quite extraordinary.

“I remember the incredible energy, the colour and the smell, the wonderful smell of the flowers on the stage,” he said. “And I remember the warmth of the audience. The warmth and the energy was really palatable, it was quite extraordinary.”

For a person who, as a child growing up in California, experienced horrific racism, Gregory said the ethos of the Eisteddfod – uniting the world through song – resonated with him.

It was as a child that the singer found his incredible voice.

His mother was a minister in a Gospel church and Gregory and his siblings sang at the church.

“We were at church all the time, a service Tuesday evening, another Wednesday, then rehearsals and church all day Sunday," he said. “I was a soloist with the gospel singers and singing with older mature voices, noticing how they fit together, was so important.”

While he sang gospel in church Gregory said that the music played in the Porter household was wide and varied.

“The radio station would have jazz playing next to the likes of Stevie Wonder. My older brothers loved soul so that would be playing in the house.

“It was just in me to sing and write across the genres. In fact this has meant that my music has been criticised by the purists but to me it’s simply my music.

“Liquid Spirit has even been made into a dance track.”

Gregory writes about things that he is passionate about particularly his love for people and the world.

He says his mother’s incredible love for everyone is re-told is Take me to the Alley.

And No Love Dying turns bad luck superstitions on their head making them positives.

Touring takes up about 200 days in Gregory’s year but he says it is hugely important to him.

“I have so much to say through my music, through my lyrics and concerts are my way of spreading what I have to say.

“I miss home, I miss the views from the house, I miss my favourite coffee cup and of course I miss my family. But we cherish the days we have at home.

“I hope that the audience in Llangollen will come along and enjoy my music, my new songs and my older ones.”

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