Derbyshire folk musician set to fulfil Glastonbury dream
A Belper musician who ditched school at 16 to travel to America ‘in search of the streets his heroes graced’ is back in the UK- to fulfil his dream of taking to the Glastonbury stage.
Josh Okeefe, who’s been ‘cutting his teeth in the honky-tonks of Nashville' where he currently lives, is set to perform at the iconic music festival on June 29. Glastonbury is just one stop on the folk songwriter’s concert tour this year along with New York, London- and Chesterfield in his home county.Josh said: “For me Glastonbury will be a special performance, as it is not your average slot. “The stage I’m performing on, ‘LeftField’, is curated by Billy Bragg. I look at Billy Bragg as England’s modern day Pete Seeger. “The work Billy does with Glastonbury is eerily similar to what Pete did at the legendary Newport Folk Festival. He is carrying the torch for folk music.“Just like all of those great folk musicians from the 60s, who surrounded themselves with people like Pete, I will be doing the same in this new age with the likes of Billy.”But Josh, who has hundreds of shows under his belt at this point, is not daunted by this massive career milestone. He did, after all, galavant off to the US at a tender age to pursue folk music- something he says is now ‘engrained in his head’. “In terms of preparation it will be no different that any other performance,” he said.“Performing is as natural to me as waking up in the morning and eating Weetabix.” Music proved to be a vital outlet for Josh as a frustrated teenager. “I couldn’t find any songs out there that said what I wanted them to say,” he said. "So I decided to write them myself.”He cites Woody Guthrie, a significant figure in American folk music, as his ‘main inspiration’. “Everything I pay attention to always leads back to him,” added Josh. For concert dates and tickets, visit www.joshokeefe.com.