Back in the 70s and 80s, Tom Robinson was singing his anger and outrage at social, sexual and political injustice.
His great hits 2-4-6-8 Motorway, Glad To Be Gay, and War Baby, were songs which won major airplay while getting across some serious intent.
Now he is back out on tour and Tom plays Hailsham Pavilion on Sunday October 25 from 8pm.
He has also released his first album in 20 years, Only The Now, and the good news is that Tom feels things have improved considerably.
He commented: “Yes, in many ways, it is a better world...certainly this is now a more tolerant country than the one I grew up in.”
He doesn’t however see performers as that influential in shaping change and said: “Billy Bragg is on the new album, and we were talking about this. I think at gigs it is more a question of a tonic for the troops. The big accusation against political pop is that you are singing to the converted. Your audience already shares your thoughts against prejudice, and the people that don’t share those thoughts won’t come to your gigs. But I think that’s OK. I think that’s its great strength. The fact that your audience has a certain world view means that you can give them real heart at gigs and the courage of their convictions. It’s the members of the audience that can then go out and change the world one by one.”
He’s back with this new album, but Tom certainly isn’t wishing he had done it sooner: “I am glad that I was away because by the time I had made my last album, there was a real danger of just getting into the nostalgia circuit and performing the same old songs and people just coming along because they wanted to remember their youth. I had these songs on the backburner. I hadn’t stopped writing, but after my second child was born in 97, I just had an album out and it just seemed like a good time to move and on try out other things. I moved on to the broadcasting.”
Only The Now sees a star-studded cast join Tom with guest spots from Sir Ian McKellen, Colin Firth, and John Grant. The album is released by Pledge Music and the first track taken Don’t Jump, Don’t Fall is already out. Tickets £22.50 from 01323 841414.