Cult musician John Otway has a huge fan base. / SUR

'Rock and roll's greatest failure' to perform in Gibraltar next year

John Otway, one of the UK's most eccentric singers, made his mark after appearing on the Old Grey Whistle Test

Tony Bryant
TONY BRYANT

One of the UK's most eccentric singer/songwriters is heading to Gibraltar to perform a one-off concert at the Ivy Sports Bar on Saturday 28th January.

Born in Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire in 1952, John Otway has built a cult following through extensive touring. He made his mark performing alongside the virtuoso folk musician, Wild Willy Barrett, on the Old Grey Whistle Test in 1977.

Otway went on to find relative fame with Barrett after his single, Really Free, reached number 27 in the UK Singles Chart. This was followed by several albums, the first of which was produced by Pete Townsend from The Who; along with other singles, which included the post punk anthem, Beware of the Flowers (cos I'm sure they're gonna get you).

The 70-year-old musician's live shows are celebrated for his surreal sense of humour and his self-deprecating underdog persona, and it has been his extensive touring, and his love of publicity stunts, that has afforded him a huge fan base.

A grassroots campaign in the '90s saw his Beware of the Flowers song voted the seventh greatest lyric of all time in a BBC poll.

In 1998, more than 4,000 fans helped him celebrate his birthday at a concert at the Royal Albert Hall, which coincided with the release of Premature Adulation, his first album of new material for more than ten years.

To celebrate his 60th birthday, Rock and Roll's Greatest Failure - Otway the Movie was released: the following year the movie was featured at the Cannes Film Festival, and also had its theatrical release at the Glastonbury Festival, before going on a national cinema tour.

Tickets for the show in Gibraltar, which starts at 8.30pm, cost 16.50 euros and are available from www.buytickets.gi, or see the Ivy Sports Bar and American Grill Facebook page.