Ian Emmerson took the phrase: “They don’t write them like that anymore” as a personal challenge, and his original songs wouldn’t sound out of place amongst a repertoire of timeless standards, whilst at the same time being wholly new and uniquely his. They are delivered with an acerbic, gloriously misanthropic wit, and a casual style that belies the deftness of his touch, the quality of his voice and the craftsmanship of his songs.
Years of performing at many of the best – and worst – venues and events around Britain and beyond have finely honed both his stage skills and his peevish reluctance to leave the house.
After many years spent with ukulele and baritone ukulele as his main weapons of choice, Ian has rediscovered his first love of guitar, as the primary accompaniment to his songs, although ukulele is never too far away.
He has also recently reconnected with his longest-suffering musical collaborator, Phil Doleman, bringing his guitar chops, his singing voice and his endless complaining to enhance Phil’s set of early Blues, Jazz & hokum – a musical passion they share – to create a sound that has wit, style and feeling, which widens grins and gets feet tapping. Their collaborations have always been huge fun and widely popular, and they both agree this is the best yet.
What they say about Ian:
“Ian is by turns virtuosic, grumpy, groovy and hilarious. Not to be missed.“
– Will Grove-White of the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain
“My standout highlight of the festival” – Barry Maz, from Gotaukulele blog.