Legendary blues guitarist Robert Cray to play live in Buxton – here’s how to get tickets

Grammy Award-winning blues guitarist Robert Cray will plug his new album in a live show in Buxton.

Sunday, 31st January 2021, 5:30 am
Robert Cray will play at Buxton Opera House on May 6, 2021. Photo by Jeff Katz Photography.

Robert’s latest recording, That’s What I Heard, is due out on February 28 and includes the single Anything You Want which is now available on all streaming services

Over the past four decades, Cray has created a sound that rises from American roots, blues, soul and r ‘n’ b with five Grammy wins, 20 studio albums and a bundle of live albums that punctuate the Blues Hall of Famer’s career.

He’ll be fronting The Robert Cray Band in concert at Buxton Opera House on May 6, 2021. Fans will be able to hear him perform songs from the new album in which he shows gratitude to his soul, r ‘n’ b, gospel and blues heroes.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

On That’s What I Heard, Robert celebrates the music of Curtis Mayfield, Bobby “Blue” Bland, The Sensational Nightingales and more, alongside four newly written songs.

‘Funky, cool and bad’ is how Robert describes the new album which will be released on Nozzle Recods/Thirty Tigers label.

Robert and the album’s producer Steve Jordan go way back, having met during the making of the Chuck Berry documentary Hail! Hail! Rock ’n’ Roll, in 1987. They started working together in 1999, when Jordan produced the Grammy-winning Take Your Shoes Off, and the recent Grammy-nominated LP, Robert Cray & Hi Rhythm. That’s What I Heard is their sixth album. Robert said: “Once you start working with Steve, it’s kind of hard to get away from him.”

The music on That’s What I Heard falls into two camps, the sweet and the funky. Of the former, You’re the One comes from the Bobby “Blue” Bland songbook. “There’s this thing where I feel you kind of gotta get out of your own head when you're covering one of your heroes,” Robert explained. “Bobby’s one of those. You just let yourself go, and do the song because you love it.”

Don Gardner’s My Baby Likes to Boogaloo and the Billy Sha-Rae minor hit, Do It are acknowledged rarities. Robert’s steamroller rendition of Do It gets a little extra push from guest guitarist Ray Parker, Jr., who played in Sha-Rae’s band as a teen.

Burying Ground is a sacred song from the Sensational Nightingales, inspired by Robert’s youth, when Sundays on the stereo were reserved for his parents’ gospel records. Curtis Mayfield wrote You’ll Want Me Back for Major Lance.

Robert wrote To Be with You for his late friend, Tony Joe White. Another of his originals is titled Hot. Robert said, with a chuckle: “We always say to ourselves, ‘I’m old, but I’m hot.”

Spotted hanging around the studio, Steve Perry sang harmony vocals on Promises You Can’t Keep, written by Steve Jordan, Kim Wilson and Danny Kortchmar.

“Robert is a great person besides being extraordinary talent,” adds Steve. “People gravitate to his guitar playing first, but I think he’s one of the best singers I’ve heard in my life”

Robert’s band features Richard Cousins (bass), Dover Weinberg (keyboards), Terence F. Clark (drums), and Steve Jordan (drums, percussion).

Tickets to see The Robert Cray Band are priced from £38. Go to www.buxtonoperahouse.org.uk