Well the recording has finished......probably!

Erik is now heavily engrossed in the mixing and I will be going to his studio to listen as things progress and if there is something that I hear that needs replacing or something extra required, I will record it there..... but I think we are certainly 99% there. Very exciting.

The album is quite different from previous band orientated recordings, not least because it is solely instrumental but also because of the diversity of the tracks.

It is my fourth album with direct connections to Space, (No Earthly Connection, 2000AD Into The Future and Out There being the other three), but the first dedicated solely to one planet.

It is hoped that the release date will be in the first week of April and on the 4th there will be a very special event, including a first playback, with a Q&A at the Space Centre in Leicester. I know that Lee Pomeroy and Ash Soan will be attending but Dave Colquhoun is unable to attend as he has a prior engagement.

There are already enquiries coming in as regards live performances of The Red Planet but a lot will depend on how well, (or not as the case may be), the album does and is received. Certainly it is something I would love to happen but would need serious additional players with me...2 more keyboard players for a start, (first choices would be Oliver and Adam) and additional percussion.

On Sunday 1st I will be performing at The Mill at Sonning for Animals Asia and the wonderful Moon Bears. I always have a guest artiste with me and this year I have the illusionist and great friend, Daniel Dean joining me. A lovely guy and great to watch.

During the first week I will also be preparing for my meet up with Sir Tim Rice as regards our new project which is so exciting I wish I could tell you about it..... but I can’t yet !!!

I am also meeting up with my mate Michael Fenton-Stevens, who you will know from the Benidorm series, as he does guest podcasts and I am one of his guests. I usually turn these down but Michael’s are really quite different and fun and so for him I happily make an exception.

I have had various offers over the last few years to do podcasts of my own but nobody has yet offered me a format that I like......I might just go ahead on my own...when I can find the time that is of course.

On Saturday the 7th I am a guest at Ipswich Town FC to see them play promotion rivals Coventry City. It’s always great fun going to a football match as a neutral and Ipswich Town have always made me feel very welcome on the previous occasions I have been. As they are so close to my home it works out really well....I drop my wife and her mum in the shopping centre, go to the game and then pick them up after.

On the 10th I am part of a presentation for another charity close to my heart called Lifelites. They supply technology in the form of computers and specialist computer programmes to children’s hospices all over the country plus people to train staff on how to use it all.

The rest of the month will see me preparing for the prog rock concerts at Shepherd’s Bush and Sheffield with the English Rock Ensemble.

Just to confirm the line-up for these shows...

Me...keyboards (lots of them).
Adam Wakeman…keyboards (not quite so many) & vocals
Tony Fernandez...drums and other stuff to hit.
Lee Pomeroy...bass and vocals.
Dave Colquhoun...guitars and vocals.
Ashley Holt...main vocals and rattly things.

We will be having a few days rehearsals before the actual shows on the 28th and 29th and then it will be all systems go. We are also hoping to do a few more dates at the end of April although I already know that Adam will not be available as he is busy, either out on tour or possibly washing his hair.

And that’s March.......busy, busy, busy.... but I like it like that!

Enjoy your March...........and hope to see you at the prog events.

Cheers, Rick


Please do not send messages about future plans. As soon as dates are known they will be released. Thanks!

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