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Popular folk singer-songwriter Beans on Toast set to come to Cambridge later this year

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Beans on Toast, the stage name of folk musician Jay McAllister, is hoping to undertake a tour of independent venues familiar to him this December. The one venue on the list that he has never played before is Storey’s Field Centre, Cambridge.

Beans on Toast. Picture: Curtis Walsh
Beans on Toast. Picture: Curtis Walsh

The 40-year-old festival favourite and veteran of the road says he can’t wait to get back to doing what he loves. Hugely prolific, the Essex-born musician has put out an album every year since 2009 and in December 2020, he released two: Knee Deep in Nostalgia and The Unforseeable Future.

Jay has already started work on the next one. “It’s still in the early process,” he explains. “I have the name but we’re still not rolling... The tour will be rebranded at some point down the line, when all the news for the album comes out with it, but I’m just excited to announce some shows at the moment.”

Such an impressive work rate must lead to comparisons with Prince? “That’s the first time I’ve ever been compared to Prince!” laughs Jay. “It comes up a lot, being prolific, but as a songwriter what else am I going to do apart from write songs? To me it feels really natural, the yearly album output.

“I don’t know whether having that has almost trained me into constantly writing? But I never force any songs out – I wouldn’t do it [put out an album] if it wasn’t ready.”

Beans on Toast. Picture: Curtis Walsh
Beans on Toast. Picture: Curtis Walsh

Jay continues: “I’ve never struggled to find subject matter. As far as coming at things from a political perspective or singing about your concerns for the world, it feels that it is getting more worrying by the second, and there’s almost too much to write about.

“On this new album, I’m trying to take a step back and look at a larger perspective because I just felt that I was getting a bit whingy and a bit worried almost. But songwriting just comes really, really naturally to me and now I find it more therapeutic, I guess – certainly in the last year where there’s been a lot to think about.”

Beans on Toast is scheduled to play Storey’s Field Centre on Thursday, December 2.

For more information, visit storeysfieldcentre.org.uk.

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