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CJ and Dave Reay

12th October 2023, 7.30pm

Where else will you see a singer and multi-instrumentalist who's performed in a band with an X Factor finalist, plays Football, and has played cricket for England? The CJ CV packs in more than most, but highlights include blowing her driving lesson money on a drum kit while already playing piano & flugelhorn, writing her first song on a plane whilst on round to a cricket scholarship in New Zealand, busking her way round NZ with a guitar from her music shop job and studying West African drumming in Burkina Faso. Playing London's Borderline and Twelve Bar clubs as drummer with X Factor finalist Ben Mills in signed band Orange Street just followed on from there. She has sung solo on festival main stages and given drum workshops at major festivals including Cambridge Folk Festival, New Forest Folk Festival and Broadstairs Folk Week. 

CJ runs many open mic nights each month?! And have done so for over 25 years

Dave Reay picked up his first guitar aged 10 and soon got the bug for fingerpicking from Paul Simon, Bert Jansch and John Renbourn. Ragtime and blues took him into jazz and some rock strayed into the mix. He has toured nationally on the folk circuit with his wife, singer Gay Reay, in acoustic jazz/folk duo Galliard, receiving Radio 2 airplay for the CD Strange News. The couple also provided backing vocals and lead guitar for singer/songwriter Ron Trueman Border in the band The Strangers, where Dave got to develop his flatpicking. He has played acoustic and electric jazz in various line-ups around the South East in venues including Soho's Pizza Express.

When the pair met as drummer/vocalist and guitarist in the gypsy jazz ska band, Gypskazz, each had no idea that the other shared their passion for folk and country, but once the secret was out, they knew they had to try out some songs!

The result, now with some successful festival appearances under their belt, is CJ & Reay, with a set of Americana, acoustic covers and originals that encompasses the energetic and the lyrical, delivered with passion and a little humour.

Image representing CJ and Dave Reay from Rosslyn Court