Ascot Christmas Residency

24 December 2014

We’ve just finished one of our busiest Decembers yet, with a Christmas residency at Ascot Racecourse. Bells were jingled, halls were decked, and trees were most indubitably rocked around. Check out the highlights video below!

Christmas tunes a-plenty

We were most excited to dust off our cover of Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You, which we first played at Wembley Stadium back on Boxing Day 2010. Oh, and The Fairytale of New York got an airing too. Greatest festive song of all time? I daresay it is.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Chris Lightyear

Book us for your Xmas party

4 June 2014

I know, I know – it’s only June, and turkey, stuffing, mutant reindeer, poorly-manufactured remote control helicopters and confused elderly relatives are about as far from your mind as it’s possible to be right now.

But if you’re organising a Christmas event, you need to get festive… and quick.

We had an awesome time rocking a bunch of yuletide parties last December, and we’re looking forward to being busier than the fat man himself this Christmas. We already have a major corporate residency in the diary for Dec 2014, so if you want to book us for your Xmas event, don’t delay.

Call Amy on 0203 397 7440 to make your enquiry.

(Ho ho ho, etc.)

Chris Lightyear

Flowserve Annual Ball

3 February 2014

What a night! The good folks of Flowserve were splendidly suited-and-booted and up for a party when we turned up at the East Sussex National Golf Resort last Saturday, and what followed proved to be a real highlight of our year so far. Catch up on the action in the video below…

Non-stop rocking

We played one breathless, supercharged set of high-energy rock ‘n’ roll (including a cheeky number from Bugsy Malone that we threw in at the last minute to match the 1920s theme!) and by the time we left the stage, I think it was safe to say that 2014 had been well and truly ushered in. Packed dancefloor, happy people – that’s how we like it!

Who says February has to be depressing?! 🙂

Chris Lightyear

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Sahara Force India Christmas Party

8 December 2013

We were all very excited to be invited to perform at the Sahara Force India Christmas Event last night – and, as promised, the crowd were up for a serious party! Check out our highlights video below:

Filling the floor…

The dancefloor was full all evening, which I guess proves that the festive spirit is very much alive and kicking in the Force India camp…! There was the odd stage invasion too, which is always fun.

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Most importantly, I came away the next day with my very own elf’s hat, which is now hanging off the end of my treasured keytar at home. Here’s hoping we’ll be back at Silverstone again in the future. Merry Christmas folks!

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Chris Lightyear

Raising the roof at a private party!

20 May 2013

We just got back from an absolutely belting weekend playing at a private party in a teepee in the middle of the Yorkshire countryside. Here’s a video we shot from the stage… (If you haven’t seen us before, this should give you a pretty good idea of what it’s like to be in the crowd at one of our gigs!)

We could have danced all night…

Thanks to everyone who packed the dancefloor for what turned out to be a true corker of a night. Apparently every single table came equipped with a pitcher of single malt whisky, which may explain why half the guests were pretty worse-for-wear come midnight! Didn’t stop you all singing and dancing like lunatics, mind you, which is the important thing.

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The venue was provided by top teepee people Papakata, who we worked with a few years back at a celebrity party near Harrogate. Their tents are incredible – it’s a bit like being in Lord Of The Rings, but with slightly fewer wizards.

Until next time, Yorkshire!

Chris Lightyear

Lightyears sign with top events agency R&R

17 May 2013

We’ve VERY excited to announce that we have officially signed with a new management company – the amazing R&R Agency, headed by Rachel Gretton and Amy Long.

Rachel and Amy have had enormous success with the RPJ Band, and we’re thrilled to be joining their roster. They’re well-known in the industry for providing acts for high-profile events at places like Silverstone and the Dubai Rugby 7s, and we can’t wait to get involved over the coming months.

The RPJ Band

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In the past year, the RPJ Band – fronted by the charismatic Rick Parfitt Jnr – have been making an incredible name for themselves on the international events circuit. In fact, they’ve recently been appearing at worldwide events for IFS – a company who booked us to perform with members of The Who and Queen just last October in Sweden. So it seems our paths were destined to cross! Together we hope to set a new standard in the world of corporate entertainment.

Here’s to the future!

Chris Lightyear

Performing with Roger Daltrey in Gothenburg

17 October 2012

As an international event band, now and again you’re lucky enough to find yourself sharing the stage with bona fide rock legends – and this happened to us last weekend when we were booked to perform with The Who’s Roger Daltrey and Roger Taylor from Queen at the annual IFS Conference in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Starstruck, us?!

We often used to come onstage to the soundtrack of The Who’s Baba O’Riley, so to be standing in a soundcheck listening to Roger Daltrey perform it live was pretty surreal! We all did our utmost to come across as cool and aloof, of course, and not in any way starstruck – although our sound engineer Danny may have blown this when he asked Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson (who happened to be there as well) for a photo. To be fair though, it’s one to show the grandkids!

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A few hours later, we were standing backstage planning our set while the SAS Band whipped the huge crowd into a frenzy. To be fair I never expected to be having a discussion about whether or not to play Bohemian Rhapsody with Queen’s actual drummer standing right behind us – but it happened! Not only that, but when we asked Roger Taylor if he was cool with it, he graciously replied: “Sure, knock yourself out”. Then he walked onstage to perform We Will Rock You. Amazing.

The Lightyears hit the stage

SAS ended on We Are The Champions (you kinda have to, right?!) and left the stage to deafening applause from the crowd. It was getting late (1.15am – probably our latest ever start!) so we piled onstage and got rocking as quickly as possible. I had a whale of time up on my piano player’s riser – normally I’m stuck behind the speaker, so this was a real boon for me – and Tony thrashed away at the drums while John and George bombed about on the massive stage soloing like loons and grinning from ear to ear. In the end there wasn’t enough time for Bohemian Rhapsody, but we didn’t mind. The adrenalin rush was absolutely killer.

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Tumbling back into the wings at the end of our set, we concluded that there was only one thing for it – head backstage to party with The Legends.

Partying with the Rogers

Both Daltrey and Taylor took time to chat with us afterwards, and we asked Roger D how he finds performing Baba time after time, after all these years. “I just sing it like it’s the first time, every time,” he said, very simply, and you could tell he meant it. At the end of the day, I guess that’s the basic secret of performance – and there’s a man who should know.

Roger T was wearing an amazing fur coat and was, unsurprisingly, effortlessly cool. We had our photo taken together, shook hands with them and eventually parted ways, genuinely humbled by the experience.

Looking forward to hopefully being part of more IFS events in the future!

Chris Lightyear

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Click here to see The Lightyears Gothenburg photo album

Performing our Olympic anthem with 600 singers

5 July 2012

Last year we were commissioned to write an anthem for the 2012 Olympics – something with the universal appeal and singalongableness (not convinced that’s a word) of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone‘… but tempered with the uplifting joie de vivre of a Disney classic. We obliged with a song called ‘There With You’ and, for the past nine months, hundreds of people across Peterborough – from the ages of 6 to 76 – have been learning to sing it. A few days ago we opened Peterborough’s Olympic Torch Relay event with a 600-strong performance of the song, and the local singers certainly did their town proud. It was quite an experience!

A huge crowd gathered…

With the Olympic Torch soon to arrive in Peterborough, a large number of news teams descended on the Embankment to watch us open the show with our enormous choir in tow. Thousands of local people turned out too – and I took this cheeky snap from the wings just before we stepped out onstage…

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Braving the rain

No one was that surprised when the famous British weather let us down with a poorly-timed rain-shower, but hats off to the crowd for sticking to their guns, raising their umbrellas and displaying some of that good ol’ fashioned Blitz spirit. Here’s a pic taken from the crowd – loving the Union Jack!

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After we were done, we hotfooted it over to Peterborough Cathedral to perform the song all over again for the BBC, who were set to film the actual arrival of the Olympic Flame with our song as the backdrop. The cathedral was a truly stunning setting for what everyone agreed was a once-in-a-lifetime event. And even the rain held out this time! Check out the video below…

Chris Lightyear

Headlining at The Queen’s Jubilee

4 June 2012

Last weekend we played a good ol’-fashioned homecoming gig when we returned to Goring & Streatley – where the band grew up together – to headline at their Queen’s Jubilee Concert.

It wasn’t the sunniest of days. In fact, it hacked it down with the rain for hours on end, and I was quite worried this would dampen the spirit of the crowd. But Britain’s stiff-upper-lip prevailed, Blitz spirit shone through and, sure enough, when we started our set the audience of rather soggy but ultimately jubilant music fans gave us a hero’s welcome to the stage.

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Partying like the sun’s out

The crowd at the Goring Jubilee were one of the best we’ve played to all year, singing their hearts out to every tune and leaping around like crazy to numbers such as Forget You, Moves Like Jagger and Dynamite (you can see many of these performances on our VIDEOS page). I couldn’t help but think of our first gigs together as a band, in the village hall down the road, all those years ago. Being back to play to a huge crowd of friends, fans and former schoolmates was truly touching.

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Rule Britannia

Given the Britishness of the occasion, and the singalong spirit of the night, we simply had to end on The Beatles’ Hey Jude – and in fact someone in the crowd filmed it and stuck it on YouTube.

Enjoy – and thanks again to the fantastic residents of Goring & Streatley for braving the rain!

Chris Lightyear

Click here to view our Queen’s Jubilee photo album

Epic singalong in Cape Town, South Africa!

10 February 2012

It’s been four years in a row now that we’ve been invited out to South Africa to headline at the Cape Town Tens Rugby Tournament, and I think 2012 may well have been the best year yet. In a stolen moment in-between drum fills, Tony was able to capture a snippet of the incredible atmosphere at the Tens. This is the sound of about 8,000 pairs of lungs seriously giving it some…!

Our name next to Michael Jackson’s…!

We turned up at the Table Bay Hotel this year and were surprised – but really rather honoured – to find our name has been added to the legendary Golden Seal statue on the harbourside. The Table Bay has seen some pretty famous guests over the years, many of whom have golden plaques on the Seal. We were in the middle of marvelling at the extraordinary array of legends on show when, to our astonishment, we found a plaque with our name on it – just to the left of Barack Obama! So now there’s Michael Jackson, Maroon Five, Manchester United, Stevie Wonder… and then us.

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A sea of people

The gig itself was even bigger and better than last year. As you can see from this photo, the marquee was absolutely packed – as always – and the CT Tens once again proved itself to be the craziest party of the summer.

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Those Capetonians not only know how to drink, they know how to sing, and standing up onstage with thousands of people joining us on almost every single word was a pretty amazing feeling.

We’ll always have Cape Town

We were sad to leave South Africa, as we always are, but we left with some incredible memories and, perhaps most importantly, sun-tans all round. Thanks again to the organisers, sponsors Castle Lager and the incredible people of Cape Town for making us feel so welcome! We’ll see you again soon…

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Chris Lightyear

Click here to see The Lightyears’ South Africa photo album