1ELIO Pace is a dazzling, incredible talent and one of the most dynamic performers around. Tonight (Wednesday) he brings his fifth UK tour of The Billy Joel Songbook to Barrow’s The Forum. In 2013 and again in 2014, piano-playing Elio was invited to “fill Billy Joel’s shoes,” starring in five very special reunion concerts in the United States with Joel’s original 1971-72 touring band. Elio and his magnificent six-piece band took to the road in 2014 with the first ever Billy Joel Songbook national theatre tour anywhere in the world, enthralling audiences at 70 venues around the UK and Ireland.

2THE next Lake District Folk and Acoustic Club gig is at Staveley’s Ayland Pavilion on Friday (October 12). On stage will be Al Hughes of Fife, who brings his first rate acoustic blues to the pavilion. building on the success of the Blues Cafe event at the Lake District Folk Weekend in August. Rooted in the blues and soul tradition like so many Scottish singers, Al writes from his own perspective on topics which are very much of today. His music is modern, relevant and gathering praise from a growing number of well respected figures on the British music scene. Tickets at the door.

3THE area’s quirkiest and most alternative music venue, Barrow Underground Music Society, (BUMS) opens its doors for the first of its new series of live sessions tomorrow (Thursday), with highly regarded writers and artists, O’Connell and Love, a collaboration between Larry Love, lead singer of South London outlaws Alabama 3, and songwriting partner Brendan O’Connell. Larry Love, best known for Woke Up This Morning, theme tune to The Sopranos, is an Ivor Novello Award-winning songwriter. He and Brendan have known each other since Brixton nights in the 1990s, when Alabama 3 were starting out. Larry regularly did guest vocals for Brendan’s band, Past Caring, and Brendan’s guitar can be heard on some Alabama 3 tracks.

Their 2015 album, Minesweeping, was well-received in national and local press and was voted Album of the Year by music journalist Sean Hannam. The sought after pair are preparing to release their third album, and will be showcasing material from this, as well as playing favourites from Minesweeping and Ghost Flight, at the BUMS gig.

4FROM the Jam band embark on their All Mod Cons 40th Anniversary Tour, playing Kendal’s Brewery Arts Centre on Thursday, October 25. As well as bassist Bruce, the band includes guitarist, Russell Hastings, who has been working with Bruce Foxton since 2007 when Russell and Rick Buckler were touring with The Gift which was formed in 2006. Russell was also co-writer on Bruce’s last album Back In The Room.

5YOUNG Somerset duo, The Drystones, bring their big folk sound to Sticklebarn Sessions at Langdale on Friday (October 12, 8pm), the third date on their exclusive We Happy Few mini-tour. With Alex Garden on fiddle and Ford Collier on whistle and guitar, the duo are able to navigate different traditions, introduce instantaneous changes of pace and stitch together tunes and songs into an eclectic live set. Tickets for The Drystones at Sticklebarn Sessions, Langdales National Trust, are available on 015394-37356.