12 Jun 2020

Scarcely prolific in terms of recorded material, but invariably high on quality, Andrew Maxwell Morris has announced a new album, Save The Light, available now digitally with a vinyl release to follow soon. A criminal lawyer by day, Morris was born in Australia but for some years has settled in suburban Surrey, a m...

5 Jun 2020

"Let’s move on." We’ve heard that a lot recently from the UK Government in relation to the travels and travails of one Dominic Cummings while the phrase can now even slip into to discussions about Covid-19 fatalities. Such pronouncements are sweeping only in deference to carpets but in a world where populism is rea...

29 May 2020

In an attempt to impose some discipline on the writing process and get some new music out there more often than has been my wont, Friday seemed as good a day as not to begin; Friday 29 May in particular as it ties in with the release of a simply stupendous song, “Café Disco” – the first single from the forthcoming...

22 May 2020

There may be no live final this year but there’s still a final eight. After three weeks of deliberation, the Glastonbury Emerging Talent judging panel has made its collective call which is great news for eight of my Round 1 colleagues who each have an act represented. And, of course, for the artistes themselves. Al...

4 May 2020

Somewhat naively, I held out the hope that writing about music might eventually lead to paid work. Then, in this imaginary scenario, that a regular column might materialise, a screenplay or two and even a novel. Well, you have to start somewhere so here is an attempt at topical humour coupled with the opportunity t...

29 Apr 2020

No social distancing here? Photo by Maja Smiejkowska

Perhaps inspired by the knowledge that this summer would have marked the festival’s 50th anniversary, over 6,300 acts entered this year’s Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition. As we all know Glastonbury now has to miss its 2020 birthday party but the good news...

22 Jan 2020

Glastonbury Festival has revealed that its Emerging Talent Competition 2020, once again generously supported by PRS for Music and PRS Foundation will be open for entries from Monday 27 January. The free entry competition offers new UK and Ireland-based acts of any musical genre the opportunity to compete for a spot...

16 Dec 2019

It’s hard to believe but this album, often lauded as the greatest folk-rock record of them all, is 50 years old this month. It is up there, too, in my all-time greats list, so it was a pleasure to blow cobwebs off this particular masterpiece and remind myself just how good it really was, and indeed still is. At thi...

29 Apr 2019

After an evening of varied live performances at Pilton Working Men’s Club from an eclectic line-up of eight finalists, Hastings singer-songwriter Marie White was announced the winner of the Glastonbury 2019 Emerging Talent Competition, supported by PRS for Music and the PRS Foundation. Marie won a prestigious spot...

3 Apr 2019

I received the announcement of who has made the final cut in this year’s Glastonbury Emerging Talent Competition with the usual mix of pleasure and trepidation. Sadly, there was no room at the inn for the three wonderful acts – Sophie Morgan, The Harriets and Truly Ford - I chose from the 172 I listened to but all...

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FIFTY3 champions

outstanding contemporary music through news, album and live reviews, features and interviews. 


Music is a great passion of mine. In my teenage years I was an avid record collector and concert goer. Stints as a booking agent, running folk clubs, promoting gigs and even a crack at artiste management followed. While it never became my main occupation, music was always on my personal radar.


During the past 10 years I have written for the leading US music website Consequence of Sound and breakthrough act site, BestNewBands. I am a judge for Glastonbury Festival's Emerging Talent Competition and have reviewed the festival for both the above sites.


Nothing gives me more pleasure than unearthing good, original new music and championing independent musicians. You’ll find many of them on this site alongside some legends of times past and I hope they will bring  you as much joy as they give me.


Tony Hardy



Covid-19 has rather put paid to them but may I commend:

Mondays at 8pm: Cressida Ford's Almost Acoustic Show on Radio Scarborough


Wednesdays at 6pm: Hattie Briggs - live stream on FB & Insta


Daily on Twitter: Tim Burgess' Listening Party

Anytime for great live sets: KEXP's YouTube channel 

banquetrecords.com: Kingston store may be physically closed but please support online. Check out live streaming shows too!

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