‘A hilarious and heartfelt celebration of the life and songs of one of this country’s finest and funniest wordsmiths. Highly entertaining whether you are discovering Jake for the first time, or an ardent fan.’
The late Jake Thackray is being increasingly acknowledged as one of the greatest English songwriters of the twentieth century, a unique talent, whose songs are full of poetry, wit, irreverence and humanity.
His intelligent and hilarious lyrics, talent for storytelling, clever wordplay, occasional, artful use of vulgarity and surreal imagination delighted many viewers and outraged some. Since his death in 2002 there has been growing recognition of his genius and a resurgence of interest in his work.
John Watterson is the UK’s leading performer of Jake’s songs. As Fake Thackray he has toured with Fairport Convention and performed at Latitude, Cropredy and the Edinburgh Fringe Festivals. He has also played for Jake’s family and appeared on Radio 4’s ‘Great Lives’.
We were lucky to have enticed John from his Yorkshire home to Devon for our gig on Thursday 12 October. It was another excellent evening, starting with a really lovely hot dinner created, prepared and cooked by the chefs of The Cafe on the Green. John's performance of Jake's songs, along with tales of the great man himself and stories of John's own about his life on the road and encounters with Jake's friends and family were spellbinding. I'm not going to blether on about this - this is what audience members have said:
Great night tonight – thanks for organising a very entertaining performer. The Castleford Ladies Magical Circle was exactly as we remember it! – Tim and Susie
Thank you very much for the lovely evening with Fake Thackray. Jake’s music is witty and amusing and the whole evening was great fun. – Sue
Great evening last night, thank you.
We thought the food was superb and the arrangement of serving by table worked out much better than the previous “canteen type queuing” method – food was hot, portions were equal and social conversations were not disrupted by somebody having to stand in line. FT was really good. David & Jillian
Last evening at Widecombe Sailing Club was one to remember and shows again that you have a sure eye / ear and excellent coordination skills. Ambience and dinner were again of the highest order (the lamb was delicious) and Fake Thackray was quite extraordinarily good. It’s a tall order crafting a performance for those who were brought up on the uniqueness of Jake Thackray and also those to whom he was an unknown name, yet John Watterson did this superbly and added a little something of his own. So... many thanks / a la prochaine….. Philip and Helen
We really enjoyed yesterday evening.
The food was delicious. John Watterson was just great. I heard him with Fairport in Exeter a few years back and he was just as good last night, actually better I think as his tribute song was worthy of Thackray himself. Thank you for organising the event.
Jane and Martin
Hi Daf, Hope everything going well. Congratulations to you, the team at the Cafe on the Green and of course John for a very entertaining evening.
Just to say many thanks for a fantastic evening with the hugely entertaining songs of Jake Thackray and a delicious meal.
See you again soon.
I came last night to Fake Jake and thoroughly enjoyed my evening! Was most impressed with how like the original John sounded! A very good event......thank you for organising it.
Hey ..another excellent evening . This time with Fake Thackray, alias John Watterson …or is that the other way round ?
Very different entertainment.. food for thought and particularly… attention !
You haven’t dropped one ... yet... I’m predicting... never !
Aren’t we lucky here, not only an interesting evening, but with good food too ( compliments to The Cafe on the Green )... smashing !!!!
Thanks again Daf.
Looking forward to the next one.
Here are a few photographs by Andrew Lester.