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A Superb Tribute To A Cornish Legend

Tradewinds

Leo Sayer & Friends of Al Hodge


Bodmin musician/singer/songwriter Big Al Hodge left us for the great gig in the sky in 2006, but Al remains one of Cornwall’s favourite sons. Al’s reputation is not confined to Cornwall as he worked with a raft of much loved household names including Tina Turner, Suzi Quatro, Elkie Brookes, Linda Ronstadt and Clifford T Ward; Al also found time to score the music for a short film, an ABC Network series and a Carlton TV series.


Al formed partnerships with a number of successful writers and his work alongside

American Michael Dan Ehmig created a Platinum album for Meatloaf and John Parr.


Al and his band The Mechanics, with Alan Eden on drums and Dave Quinn on bass, were session musicians at John Cornfield’s Sawmills Studios, quickly becoming the house band; The Mechanics headlined several gigs at the Cornwall Coliseum and were regularly booked as support for a raft of superstar names appearing at the now defunct venue.


In 1980 The Mechanics became Leo Sayer’s backing band enjoying two world tours, appearing on Leo’s popular long running telly series ‘This Is Leo’ and performing on several of Leo’s albums.




Despite world tours, celebrity friends, successful albums and numerous telly appearances Al’s heart remained firmly rooted in his beloved Cornwall where he continued to gig and share his immense guitar skills with a raft of local up and coming musicians.


15 years after Al lost his battle with cancer, Tradewinds - a song Al co-wrote with Derek Fitzpatrick thirty years ago, has been revisited by Leo Sayer and Friends of Al Hodge and is now on general release. The new version came about over a pint (as do all the best ideas) when John Pearn mentioned to Derek F that Tradewinds would be on his Desert Island Discs wish list; from there the two friends started making calls to Al’s mates and fellow musicians who quickly jumped on board with the idea; the icing on the cake was a resounding ‘yes’ from Leo Sayer. The result is simply beautiful; Leo’s rich vocals are powerful and moving while Al’s Friends are an ageless mix of multi talented musicians and singers.

Tradewinds is a superb tribute to a Cornish legend, Big Al Hodge may not be in our midst, but his legacy lives on.


Friends / Musicians:

Leo Sayer - Lead Vocal

Andrew Murray - Piano / Keyboards

Steve Jackson - Drums / Percussion

Dave Quinn - Bass

Jo Partridge - Guitar

Melvin Duffy - Pedal Steel

James Hallawell - Hammond Organ

Treana Morris - Backing Vocals

Derek Fitzpatrick - Backing Vocals

John Pearn - Backing Vocals



John Cornfield - Final Mix & Engineer

Tam Johnstone - Video Production


Also involved in various ways - Pascal Magdinier, Gareth Young and The Nub Sessions - Airfield Studios

Alstock is an annual music festival, established in 2007 in memory of Al and is held in July at Priory Park, Bodmin with all proceeds going to local charities. For more info visit –

www.alstock.co.uk

www.facebook.com/Alstockfestival


Visit Al Hodge Music available on all streaming platforms including Apple and Spotify

Apple : https://music.apple.com/gb/artist/al-hodge/5556409

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/5hqtsKj6jf5PJA3rknxpSB


Sheila Vanloo

July 2021

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