Respected drummer/vocalist Dave Wagstaffe joins Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash with immediate effect.
An experienced musician on the progressive/melodic rock scene, Dave's CV includes work with Steve Howe, Oliver Wakeman, John Wetton, Ken Hensley, and many other respected names. Dave is also a member of the cult progressive rock band Landmarq, with whom he has played for eighteen years.
Dave cites Wishbone Ash as one of his major influences, with Argus being his favourite album, and is delighted to be given the opportunity to play these classic songs. We are sure all who support Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash will join us in welcoming Dave to the band.
DEC 10 2008
It is with regret that we announce the departure of Rob Hewins from Martin Turner’s Wishbone Ash.
This decision has been mutually agreed and no further comment will be made by either side, except to quote Martin Turner:- “I would like to thank Rob Hewins for the immense contribution he has made to the band since its beginning and I wish him every success in the future."
Rob is replaced in Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash by Dave Wagstaffe.
First 2009 MTWA tour dates confirmed
NOV 30 2008
The first confirmed 2009 tour dates for Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash are now online.
Due to overwhelming popular demand, Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash continue the Argus tour into the new year, with the first confirmed dates being a return visit to Greece for five shows at the beginning of January. See tour dates page.
Dates for the UK and other territories will be confirmed shortly. Please note dates should not be considered confirmed unless they appear on the official www.wishboneash.co.uk tour dates page.
NOV 22 2008
It was yesterday published on behalf of Andy Powell that talk of negotiations on behalf of the original members of Wishbone Ash is erroneous. Once again, for anybody interested in the truth, we refer to recent public statements on this site which confirmed that negotiations have been taking place all year, and continue to do so with Andy' Powell's representative, in connection with reunion plans and various other matters.
If it is now being stated or suggested by Andy Powell's team that these copious written and verbal exchanges were / are not negotiations, then the dictionary meaning of the word "negotiation" is being spun beyond distortion and people should draw their own conclusions. If that is the case, then much time has been wasted and there may be speculation as to what can be gained by continued public misinformation.
Reference freedom of speech, it has merely been pointed out to Andy Powell and his team that such rights come with responsibilities not to abuse such freedoms, particularly the expectation of "truth" and / or "fair comment". A basic moral expectation that has legal backing to protect against misinformation or worse.
Once again, we implore Andy Powell and his team to refrain from distortion, spin, misrepresentation etc. This may have been unchallenged over previous years, but it is no longer acceptable. We now trust that the two sides' representatives can be allowed to continue negotiations in private.
Note: to clarify, the wishboneash.com posting referred to in the above statement read as follows:
Due to allegations of spin, erroneous talk of negotiations and in the interests of complying with Gary Carter's request that fans refrain from speculation about reunions and so forth, I have decided to remove all posts pertaining to Martin Turner or Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash from this forum. In the future, if fans wish to find out, or comment about Martin's activities kindly visitwww.wishboneash.co.uk This is being done to protect anyone including and especially Andy Powell, from current allegations of libel, intent to mislead, misuse of free speech and to free up valuable time being taken up in defending himself. Andy wishes to clarify that he requested that the former Wishbone Ash members contact him directly and personally, about anything they have on their minds. He confirms that he called Martin Turner this summer with some gripes. No negotiations were entered into, about anything. He has yet to speak directly with Ted Turner or Steve Upton. LeonT
Martin Turner interviews at Classic Rock Awards
NOV 19 2008
Rock Radio recorded a short interview with Martin Turner backstage at the Classic Rock Awards in London. Click below to hear the interview, as broadcast.
MTWA to appear as Special Guests of Golden Earring
NOV 5 2008
Hot on the heels of the critically and commercially successful Classic Legends of Rock tour Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash has been invited to appear as special guests of Dutch rock legends Golden Earring for two major UK theatre concerts during March 2009.
These shows promise to be high profile events, marking Earring's first UK live appearances in thirty years with their classic line-up still intact and Martin considers it a privilege to be asked to appear. As with the Classic Legends tour, these shows are certain to expose MTWA to the wider rock audience and are already attracting major interest from within the industry.
Golden Earring with special guests Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash play Ipswich Regent Theatre on 13 March 2009 and London Shepherd's Bush Empire on 14 March 2009.
Martin Turner at Classic Rock Awards tonight
NOV 3 2008
Martin Turner is tonight in attendance at the Classic Rock awards in Central London.
This is one of the most prestigious events in the rock calendar and will be covered across a wide spectrum of world media (press, radio, TV, etc). The event is being attended by the likes of Ozzy Osbourne as well as many other first division rock luminaries.
We are crossing fingers that Martin picks up the award for 'best reissue' for Argus
Martin Turner Statement - Reunions
OCT 28 2008
Martin Turner responds to Andy Powell's invitation for the original members of Wishbone Ash to perform at one of his band's shows in 2009:
“Andy Powell likes to refer to Wishbone Ash as an extended family. That works very well, unless your name is Turner, Turner, or Upton.
We have discovered that our names have been mentioned to promoters without our knowledge, and we have informed these promoters - “no”. We will not be getting involved in any event which is being stage managed in public”.
OCT 28 2008
Steve Upton, Ted Turner and Martin Turner were yesterday contacted by Andy Powell via the management company which represents all three founder members, inviting the original members of Wishbone Ash to appear as special guests at one of Andy's concerts during May 2009. The invitation was immediately forwarded to the three original members for their consideration and was discussed between Steve, Ted and Martin and their management during telephone calls yesterday.
The three original members remain consistent with management discussions that have taken place privately with Andy Powell over the past year, during the course of which various options regarding reunion projects have been discussed privately and confidentially behind the scenes. Steve, Ted and Martin remain hopeful that an original members reunion could take place, celebrating the 40th anniversary of the band's formation at the appropriate time and in a manner that is satisfactory to all parties concerned - including the fans. However, any reunion projects would naturally need to take into consideration the personal and professional situations of all four original members - something which does not appear to have been taken into consideration by Mr. Powell in this instance. Steve, Ted and Martin were in particular rather surprised to find that Mr. Powell has already gone public with this invitation without allowing the parties concerned the opportunity to consider and discuss fully the matter behind the scenes and consult their diaries. It is unrealistic to expect an answer within 24 hours, especially in the context of negotiations that had been proceeding positively and respectfully throughout 2008 at a pace all original members were comfortable with.
Having discussed the proposals with Steve, Ted and Martin yesterday, as requested by Andy, further clarification was immediately requested, but no answer has been forthcoming. In all circumstances, Mr. Powell's press release has come as a surprise and has not been authorised by Steve, Ted or Martin.
A full statement from Martin Turner will be forthcoming in due course.
QEDG Management, on behalf of Steve Upton, Ted Turner and Martin Turner.
Congratulations Danny Willson
OCT 21 2008
We are pleased to announce that Danny Willson and his partner Emma are the proud parents of a new baby boy, born late last night.
Danny says: "Mother & baby doing fine, father a bit tired but he'll be ok when he gets back on tour!! No name yet but we're trying!"
I am sure fans will join me in congratulating Danny and Emma on their new arrival. Messages may be left on the fan forum.
UPDATE: Danny and Emma have named their newborn baby boy Austin William Willson
OCT 16 2008
It is with great regret and sadness that we have to annouce that John Fisher passed away recently, following a period of illness with pancreatic cancer.
John played drums with Martin Turner in the Blue Bishops, appearing on the 2002 album 'Deep' as well as countless live appearances. In November 2006, when MTWA needed an urgent replacement for an injured Rob Hewins, John stepped into the tour at very short notice, learning and rehearsing the set with just a few days before the first show. John greatly enjoyed his short stint with MTWA and proved to be solid, highly dependable and a great team player.
John was highly respected as both a drummer and a music teacher. He was capable of playing in a wide range of musical styles, and was equally at home playing with orchestras and big bands as he was with rock, blues or soul bands, such was the diversity of his talent. John had been a member of the band Audience since 2004. Everyone involved with MTWA would like to pass on their sincere condolences to John's family.
Deepest condolences to John's family.
Myself and Ray had kept in contact with John after his stint with the band, so we both knew of his illness very early on, and in fact I can recall a tearful phone conversation with Ray when we found out, we were both totally gutted.
John and I shared a passion for motorbikes and the last time I spoke to him earlier this year, he had brought a brand new Ducati and was loving it. Both myself and Ray had made plans at various points to go and stay with John but sadly we never managed to make it happen. A nicer guy you could you could never wish to meet, and he was also a very funny man to be around. He will be greatly missed my all who knew him.
It’s very sad to hear of John’s passing. He was a lovely guy who stayed with my family and I several times, great company and a true professional who stepped in at very short notice to help us out admirably when Rob broke his collar bone.
Always had a joke to tell and had a smile on his face when ever I looked round. A true team player, liked by all who met him and a very talented musician who had lots more to give, not only performing but, I have no doubt because of his calm and gentle humour, he made a great teacher and I’m sure left a lasting impression on all who knew him.
My fondest memories are of the trip John, Keef, Martin and I made to Holland, my cheeks ached for days afterwards from laughing and John, the lads and I quaffed in the style of Oliver Reed late into the nights. I’m not sure who led who astray but no harm was done and I’ll always think of John with a beer, drum sticks and a grin.
What can I say that hasn't already been expessed well by my friends above? When I first heard of John's diagnosis over a year ago it brought back memories of my brother Kim, and the outcome, sadly, followed much the same course.
Although the Blue Bishops were a band who all had other jobs to do and the gig schedule was therefore fairly light, I will always be grateful to them for getting me back into playing live music. Geoff, their frontman, is a guy whom I became very fond of and it was he who christened John "Little Johnie Fishcake", an affectionate name that I will always remember him by.
The manner in which John left the Bishops was sudden and I always felt rather uncomfortable about it. I enjoyed his company immensely and he was a man that you felt you really would want next to you if you were fighting in the trenches, such was his cool determination to get the job done, but always with a fun edge. So, when Rob got injured I contacted him on pure instinct and he did a fantastic job for us, as has been mentioned above. There were other people suggested at the time who were maybe better placed to join us, but I am so glad that I had a chance to lock up with John once again before fate decreed his time to leave us. He sent me a sweet text recounting our time together not that long ago, and I kind of knew that it was his way of saying goodbye to me. I would like to send my condolences and love to his family especially Jan, his sister.
God bless you John,
Sell Out Audiences Greet MTWA
OCT 4 2008
The Classic Legends of Rock tour is now underway and Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash has been delighting audiences with their set of defining moments from the Wishbone Ash back catalogue, the band's set reaching a rocking climax with Martin Turner's first performance of the classic 'Phoenix' since 1988 , the band breathing new life and energy into this iconic track.
The tour is proving to be a positive experience for both band and fans. Already we have had many "lapsed" fans coming up to us stating that the set has reawakened their interest in Wishbone Ash music. This can only be a positive situation for the overall Wishbone Ash "family", as new friends are made and old acquaintances renewed. This will undoubtedly result in greater sales of back-catalogue and current releases, which benefits all parties. Behind the scenes, the tour is proving to be expertly organised, with a great camaraderie between the bands and a highly professional crew who work hard behind the scenes to ensure that every show is a first rate presentation. Thanks to you guys, you know who you are!
The first show, Norwich, has reported a sellout. Cheltenham too, another capacity crowd except for a few reserved seat "no shows". Colne was a better than expected audience. Tonight's show at Buxton only has a few upper stalls seats remaining as of midday. It will sell out, so if you are intending to come and havent got a ticket, please contact the box office as we are informed that you're not likely to get in on "walk up".
Over the course of the first few nights of the Classic Legends of Rock tour, we have had many enquiries regarding autograph signings, etc. Each band will, where possible, undertake signings AFTER their own set. Martin Turner will be available for autographs during the interval between MTWA and Focus' performances, wherever time and logistics allow. Signings will take place near the merchandise stand. Anyone requiring autographs, etc, should come to the merchandise stand immediately after the MTWA set. Martin looks forward to meeting as many fans as possible at the shows and receiving feedback about the shows and new album, suggestions for next year ' s set list, etc, etc.
In addition to T-Shirts and the Wishbone Ash biography, "Blowin Free" (which is also now back in stock at our online store), we are carrying all the mark 1 and mark 2 catalogue CDs, plus New Live Dates 1 and 2, and of course Argus Through The Looking Glass. Martin will be pleased to sign these CDs. Dont forget that Rob, Ray and Danny will also be available for signings, Ray having his own CD on sale too.
Ray Hatfield - King Of the West
SEPT 24 2008
MTWA guitarist Ray Hatfield releases his debut solo album at the end of September 2008. 'King Of The West' features a selection of all-original songs written and recorded by Ray this past year.
Listeners can expect a varied album covering a wide range of styles - ranging from electric to acoustic, rock tracks to ballads, vocal tracks to guitar instrumentals. All tracks are delivered with a strong sense of melody and of course featuring the guitar stylings which have earned Ray such strong reviews during his time with Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash to date.
Everyone involved with MTWA wishes Ray the very best with this project.
'King Of The West' is now available through our web store. The album will also be available at all Classic Legends of Rock concerts.
Argus Deluxe Nominated for Classic Rock Award
AUG 23 2008
Universal Music's deluxe edition of Wishbone Ash's classic "Argus" album has been chosen as one of six nominations for the Reissue of the Year award in Classic Rock magazine's Roll of Honour 2008 awards.
Classic Rock is a top-selling music magazine with worldwide distribution. It's influence throughout the industry is considerable and should "Argus" win this award it will naturally result in high-profile exposure for Wishbone Ash on a worldwide basis that will, of course, benefit all associated musicians as well as the band's audience.
Now we ask YOU - as an appreciator of Wishbone Ash music - to play an active role in helping raise the band's media profile via this pre-eminent publication. We would like to appeal to EVERYONE who is reading this to cast your vote for "Argus" NOW.
In order for "Argus" to win this award we require the help of ALL Wishbone Ash fans. This is not the time to sit back and let others do all the work. We require YOUR active participation here. We need EVERYONE who reads this post to vote. Don't delay - act TODAY!
We would also ask fans to be pro-active by directing any friends and contacts who also enjoy the band's music to the above link and asking them to vote as well. Every vote received counts. Fan power CAN make a difference. YOUR VOTE can make a difference. We cannot emphasise enough how important it is the ALL WISHBONE ASH FANS vote in this poll.
Thanking you in advance for YOUR help and support. Together let's help make "Argus" a WINNER.
Danny Willson Interview
AUG 16 2008
As Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash's newest recruit looks forward to playing all shows on the upcoming October/November theatre tour, guitarist Danny Willson talks to Gary Carter about his musical beginnings, his career to date and his thoughts on joining MTWA in an exclusive new interview.
Congratulations Keith Buck
AUG 8 2008
Former Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash guitarist Keith Buck contacted us early this morning with the news that Lacey gave birth to a baby girl Marcy at 4.10am today.On behalf of the entire MTWA team, I would like to congratulate Keef and Lacey on their new arrival. We are certain Marcy will bring them much happiness and delight.
Wolverhampton and Cambridge
JULY 23 2008
Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash wishes to extend its thanks to all the people who came out to support the band at the shows in Wolverhampton and Cambridge this past weekend. The weekend kicked off Friday evening at the Robin 2 in Wolverhampton where approx 350 fans witnessed the line-up of Martin, Rob, Ray and Danny on peak form. The venue was new territory for MTWA and, as such, many people in attendance were seeing the band for the very first time. Certainly there were no shortage of positive comments about the quality of the band's performance as people filed out at the end of the night, with many fans expressing their emotional attachment to the Argus album and their delight at hearing the complete album performed - Ray and Danny's dual-solo at the end of "Throw Down the Sword", taking the song to new heights, certainly seems to be a firm favourite with the fans. Overall a highly satisfying result for fans, band and promoter alike.
On Saturday the band made an appearance at the Cambridge Rock Festival. The CRF is a rapidly-growing fixture on the rock calendar and MTWA were in the company of top acts such as Marillion, Andy Fairweather-Low, Bad Company, Juicy Lucy, Deborah Bonham and Mostly Autumn, who were among the many bands that appeared across the 4-day event. The large crowd in attendance on the Saturday night were delighted by MTWA's stellar performance of Argus. In their review of the festival, Southend venue the Riga (which hosts MTWA this Friday 25 July) commented "Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash - for lots of people the best band of the weekend with their rendition of the classic album "Argus" from start to finish and then an encore of "Jail Bait"."
MTWA certainly made many new friends at these two shows. The only down-point across the weekend was receiving the unfortunate news that, sadly, Ray Hatfield's mother passed away on the morning of the Wolverhampton show. I am sure all members of our community will wish to join me in offering sincere condolences to Ray and his family at this difficult time.
Danny Willson in studio with MTWA
JULY 10 2008
New Martin Turner’s Wishbone Ash guitarist Danny Willson visited the studios this week to lay down some guitar and vocal parts for the forthcoming “Argus: Through The Looking Glass”.
Danny is looking forward to the forthcoming July dates, and to promoting the new CD through the October and November theatre tour. Said Martin Turner, “I am delighted formally to welcome Danny aboard, and know that his classy guitar work and strong vocals are just right for the band”.
Argus: Through The Looking Glass update
JUNE 17 2008
We can now confirm that Argus: Through the Looking Glass will be released during the Autumn of 2008, to coincide with Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash's participation in the Classic Legends of Rock national theatre tour. Watch this space...
MAY 25 2008
It is with deep regret and much sadness that I have to inform everyone that Laureen Large, a great friend and associate of Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash, has passed away, following a short illness.
Laureen will be known to most of the regulars here for both her active participation in the forum as well as her behind the scenes efforts on behalf of Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash.
Laureen came to the MTWA scene as a friend and associate of Martin's from his Blue Bishops days. I first had the pleasure of meeting her in October 2005 when MTWA performed its first live "gig" in front of a handful of family and close friends at Liscombe Park Studios in Buckinghamshire. From day one she offered to assist getting the project off the ground in any way she could and soon found herself taking on the role of publicist for the band's first UK tour, putting much time and energy into helping create awareness in the shows via media coverage and suchlike. She also handled merchandise at many shows that I was unable to cover, often travelling long distances especially. She certainly proved to be more than capable. I distinctly remember on one occasion Martin telling me that she had broken my previous sales record. I also recall telling Martin (jokingly, of course), that she was welcome to take my job full time if she wanted it!!
Laureen approached everything she did in both her professional and personal lives with an astounding level of care, dedication and passion. As a wife and mother, she was simply devoted. Her positive energy was incredibly infectuous and she was a genuine pleasure to be around. As a human being Laureen was kind, considerate and caring and made many good friends within the MTWA fan community as well as the communities of the other bands she supported.
As a music fan, Laureen's tastes were varied and her particular favourites included Wet Wet Wet (her all time faves) and Chris Difford. She had no predjudices when it came to music and was willing to give anything a listen, regardless of style or genre - the mark of a true music lover. The last time I saw her was at Asia's recent London concert which she attended together with her son Jonathan. She was not familiar with the band and its music and did not know what to expect, but was knocked out by the band and in particular by WA alumni John Wetton's performance. After the show she was already talking about adding some Asia and JW titles to her collection and asking for recommendations. Typical of Laureen's boundless enthusiasm.
As a contributor to both the .co.uk and .com forums she would often take it upon herself to diffuse potentially explosive situations and, during fan debates, was respected for her ability to take a neutral standpoint and see both sides of the coin, despite her obvious allegiance to Martin Turner. She was a true people's person and I considered it a privilege to call her a friend, if only for a relatively short time. I am sure many of you will have your own memories of Laureen.
Laureen will be greatly missed by all involved with MTWA and on behalf of Martin and the entire MTWA band, past and present, and its behind the scenes team, I would like to offer Laureen's husband Tony and son Jonathan our sincere condolences.
Laureen will be foremost in our thoughts at the next MTWA gig and there will no doubt be few dry eyes when Martin sings "Everybody Needs a Friend" (Laureen's personal favourite).
Rest in Peace, Laureen.
I always try and tell myself that it is one of the strange mysteries of life that we all have our appointed time to leave this world. However, when Howard called me to tell me the news of Laureen's passing I was shocked and saddened. I later spoke with Geoff Grange (Blue Bishops) who befriended Laureen when they were kids together in Hartlepool and introduced me to her when I was working with the Bishops some years ago.
I struck up a friendship with Laureen and we enjoyed many hours of conversation together. My youngest daughter Melody picked up my mobile phone one day and announced that there was a girl calling me by the name of Large Laureen (surname shows up first on my phone), and I will fondly always remember her this way. She was a large personality in so many ways - generous, large hearted, honest, helpful, and with a large enthusiasm for music and the people involved in music.
I would like to send my sincere heartfelt sympathy at this time to Tony, her husband, and Jonathan, her son. I'm sure that those of you who knew Laureen will want to join me in sending her all our love.
So many sunny days we had, but now the wind blows strong tonight, and rain falls like tears from the sky, in tune with our sadness alright. Farewell my friend, till we meet again, at the big gig in the sky,
Classic Legends of Rock
MAR 28 2008
We are pleased to announce major UK theatre tour dates for Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash during October/November 2008. Go to our tour dates page for full details.
MAR 13 2008
Following the announcement of Keith Buck's departure, we are able to confirm that guitarist Danny Willson will be stepping into the fold for the remainder of the March/April 'Argus' tour dates (with the exception of the Dutch shows which, owing to Danny's prior commitments, will be performed by Keith).
Danny is a highly accomplished and versatile guitarist/vocalist who brings with him a wealth of international touring experience and made his debut with Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash last night in Dudley where he joined the band on stage for the encore. Danny will play his first full show with the band in Penzance on 14 March.
Guitar duties on the Summer shows will be split between Danny and Keith, with full details to be confirmed shortly.
Please join us in welcoming Danny to the fold and wishing him an enjoyable and successful tour with MTWA.
MAR 5 2008
It is with regret that we have to announce that Keith Buck has decided to leave Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash in order to accept an offer to tour with leading UK Eagles tribute band Talon as from 23 March. Keith views this as a positive move for both himself and his young family, with Talon having a busy work schedule ahead. Martin Turner and the band are aware that this move comes after much soul searching for Keith. As anyone who has witnessed Keith's performances with MTWA will testify, Keith is a world-class musician and everyone involved with the band would like to take this opportunity to wish him every success with this project and sincerely thank him for his hard work and commitment both musically and behind the scenes with MTWA to date.
Keith has made every effort to ensure that things run as smooth as possible during this transitional period and has been instrumental in recruiting a replacement guitarist for the latter part of the Argus tour. Full details of the personnel change will be announced shortly.
Newcastle, Glasgow and Cambridge added to Argus Tour
FEB 21 2008
We are pleased to announce additional dates added to the Argus tour schedule - appearances in Newcastle and Glasgow, as well as a slot on the prestigious Cambridge Rock Festival bill. See our tour dates page for full details (please note a date change for the previously announced Southend date)