THE history of rock’n’roll and popular music is littered with great guitar players.

From Chuck Berry to Eddie Cochrane in in the 50s, Hank Marvin to Jimi Hendrix in the 60s, Eric Clapton to Jimmy Page in the 70s, Brian May to Mark Knopfler in the 80s: the list is, like some guitar solos, seemingly utterly interminable.

It would be a pretty amazing gig if they all appeared together in the same venue but that’s more than unlikely, as many of the guitar greats are no longer with us and I doubt there’s a venue large enough to cope with that amount of ego.

But axe ace Phil Walker’s Story of Guitar Heroes does the very next best thing, bringing together scores of fretboard legends throughout the decades in a hugely entertaining show, showcasing classic songs featuring the guitarist’s unique style and tone plus top-notch musicianship all round.

Phil’s been touring the world since 2013 with this first-class production and comes home to Weymouth Pavilion on Saturday, January 25, as part of a huge UK tour.

He’ll be fronting up his ace band of Toby James and Lee Williams on guitars and drummer Alan Varnfield to take you on a historic and sonic tour of rock’n’roll history.

It was doing my nut in thinking about how many guitar-based puns I could fit in, in fact I was up all night fretting…

But you can pick up (hey, see what I did there…) tickets at £22 from the Pavilion box office on 01305 783225.

Moving on, and it’s always good to see a new band make their debut and next Friday, January 17 there will be a huge crowd at Finns in Weymouth for the first show from Ironhide.

As you can probably work out from the band’s name, there will be metal and a bit of leather involved.

The band of Nick Harding on guitar and vocals, Martin Bell on guitar, Faber Petherick on bass and Grant Holford on drums have been putting a set together for months and as Grant tells me: “We’re playing Metallica, Iron Maiden, Megadeth and Pantera tunes, plus quite a bit of Chillis and Royal Blood chucked in as well.”

It’s going to be a great night, and rather moist down in the mosh pit, I should imagine.

And finally, I’m partial to a bit of jazz, having studied numerous jazz magazines in my earlier years, and no venue is more associated with his genre of music than Ronnie Scott’s Club in Soho, London.

This iconic venue celebrates its 60th anniversary this year with a UK tour that comes to Dorchester Arts Centre on Saturday, January 18.

You can relive the early days of dive bars and clip joints in the West End, the run-ins with the law and the lawless and all set to a sound track supplied by some of the biggest names in the jazz world.

The Ronnie Scott All Stars play tunes from the countless stars who have graced the stage at this legendary venue. With exclusive newsreel footage and hilarious tales of low lives and high times, it’s an absolute must for all you jazz buffs. Mmm, nice…

Tickets are £24 from the box office on 01305 266926.

And if you’d like your live music event included in the Echo Gig Guide, just email details to me at

Till next time…



Tatterdemalion and Anglea Laycock (Dorchester Arts Centre)

Jaki Graham (Exchange, Sturminster Newton)

Chief Lazarus (Finn’s, Weymouth)

Wiggie (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

The Shakespearos (Club Bambooza, Weymouth)

Toxic Fish (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Mojo  (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

Vanilla Radio (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Rich Cooper (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Georgie Broad (Duke of Cornwall, Weymouth)

Sheryl Lee (Black Dog, Weymouth)

Andy Grant Band (Royal Portland Arms, Portland)

The Transitions (John Gregory, Weymouth)

Leanne Jackson (King’s Arms, Weymouth)


Pasadena Roof Orchestra (Exchange, Sturminster Newton)

Unhinged (Finn’s, Weymouth)

Rock Apes (Sailors Return, Weymouth)

Strings and Reeds (Weymouth Conservative Club)

Time Bomb duo (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

Elijah Wolf (Little Ship, Portland)

TBC (Wyke Smugglers, Weymouth)

Freezer (Black Dog, Weymouth)

Psychedelephant (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Rich Cooper (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth) 2-6pm.

Darren H Presley (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Regulation 9  (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

Inferno (Wyke Regis Working Mens Club, Weymouth)

Zoe Schwarz and Rob Koral (No 10, Bridport) 12.30pm-2.30pm.

Two Man Ting (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Georgie Broad (Duke of Albany, Weymouth)

4 Go Mad (Hardy’s, Dorchester)

Jack Daniels 5pm. (Three Compasses, Charminster)​

Total Madness (Wyke Regis Social Club, Weymouth)


Sunday Jam Session (Belvedere, Weymouth) 4-7pm.

Rich Cooper (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)

Ricky Solo (Sailor’s Return, Weymouth)  From 3pm.

Dread Balloon (Ropemakers, Bridport) 4pm.

Georgie Broad (Black Dog, Weymouth) 4pm.

Owen Lister (King’s Arms, Weymouth) 4pm.


Acoustic session (Belvedere, Weymouth)


Dougie Cooper’s Jazz Night (Star, Weymouth)


Wessex Folk Night (Sailors Return,  Weymouth) Acoustic folk, here every Wednesday.
Open Mic Night (Duke of Cornwall, Weymouth)


Traditional Tune Session (Cove House Inn, ChiswelI, Portland)  

Ukulele Sessions (Sailors Return,  Weymouth) Strum on down from 8pm.

Songwriters Showcase (Belvedere, Weymouth)


Ironhide (Finn’s, Weymouth)

Adagio (Weymouth Working Mens Club)

Tequila Mockingbird (Belvedere, Weymouth)

Vanilla Radio  (Golden Lion, Weymouth)

Bud Martin (Wyke Regis Working Mens Club, Weymouth)

Dryadic (Ropemakers, Bridport)

Rich Cooper (Edinburgh House of Sounds, Weymouth)