A guitarist who has spent the year on tour with one of the world’s biggest rock bands is preparing for his next gig – a charity concert at a Derbyshire working men’s club.
Richard Shaw has recently returned from flying around the world playing in front of thousands of people as lead guitarist for bill-topping metal superstars Cradle of Filth.
Next month, he will take to a very different stage at the Shipley Working Men’s Club in Marlpool, performing with Heanor band NG26 as part of the H Stock 12 festival, which is being held on November 24 to raise funds for the children’s charity PASIC.
It will be the first time that NG26 have performed for three years, during which time 33-year-old Richard has been on tour and recorded with Cradle of Filth, which he joined in 2014.
He’d helped form NG26 back in 2006 alongside his brother, bassist Rob, and two others brothers Chris and Jon Topley – the band’s singer and drummer – years after they’d all started playing music together while still at school.
While Cradle of Filth are famous for their extreme metal sound, entertaining their millions of fans with their heavyweight blend of Gothic influences and Satanic references, NG26 are more melodic hard rock, citing their influences as Queen, Thin Lizzy and Kiss.
The music, and the venue, are therefore somewhat different to what Richard, who is also a guitar tutor, has been playing, while the lifestyle of being an NG26 member is also a different experience to touring with Cradle of Filth, where he travelled on tour buses and aeroplanes, with his management making all the arrangements and roadies caring for and tuning up his guitars.
At H Stock, Richard will make his way to the gig carrying his guitar himself.
He said: “Touring with Cradle of Filth has been everything I have ever dreamed of and I’ve ticked off so many things on my bucket list that I need a new list now.
“I’m extremely lucky to have experienced it and have a whole host of high points, not least appearing at Donington, which is something I never thought I’d ever get the chance to do.
“There is a lot of theatricality involved with Cradle of Filth and we wear make-up on stage because we all have different personas as part of the act.
“Performing with NG26 will be a real contrast but I can’t wait.”
All of the band members were in their early 20s when they formed NG26, which released its first commercial album in 2011 and has toured all over the UK. Its videos have been played on Kerrang! TV! and a former single, Bring Back The Day, featured on a promotional CD mounted on the front of Classic Rock magazine.
“The band is very special to me, because without NG26 I would not have had the chance to play guitar for a living,” Richard said. “We worked extremely hard to become a really good band, but eventually over time life got in the way and we stopped playing together.
“We agreed to get back together earlier this year and we’re now rehearsing hard to get ready for H Stock. We’re a bit rusty but we’ve got a set in mind and I’m really enjoying playing with them again.”
H Stock was first held 12 years ago, when local dad Andy Whitt decided to raise money as a thank you to PASIC, which stands for the Parents Association for Seriously Ill Children and provides financial and social support for local families of children with life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, leukaemia and brain tumours.
The charity supported his family after his daughter, Molly, was diagnosed with a Wilm’s tumour at the age of just nine months.
Wilm’s tumour is a rare type of kidney cancer that only affects children and her treatment involved surgery to remove the tumour followed by a course of chemotherapy.
She is now a 22-year-old teacher living in Leeds, but Andy has never forgotten his debt to PASIC.
Last year’s event raised around £1,300 for the charity and with tickets priced at £5 and the performers and venue giving their services for free, Andy is hoping to beat the total this year – not least because he has a world-famous guitarist on the bill.
He said: “I’ve known Richard and NG26 for many years and so when I heard that they had got back together I hoped that I could get them involved. It will be fantastic to see them all back on stage and I can’t wait.
“Richard has been living the dream and everyone is delighted for him. He’s a smashing lad, very down-to-earth and he’s thoroughly deserved the opportunity to travel around the world and play with a top stadium band.
“H Stock has got bigger every year and we’ve got a great line-up this year. There’s more rock than in previous years and it promises to be a great night.”
The other groups appearing at the event are Grand Ultra, Crazy Diamonds, Sandfly and These Wicked Rivers and doors open at 5pm.
Tickets cost £5 and are available by ringing Andy Whitt on 07722 828358 or Shipley Working Men’s Club on 01773 712400
For more information on the event contact Andy Whitt on 07722 828359 or if you would like to know more about NG26 then please contact Anthony Topley on 07710 161295 or Anthony_Topley@yahoo.co.uk