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The Church Tour

October 2015

In 2004, Civic Events produced a national acoustic church tour for Bic Runga around New Zealand, the idea springing from a show Bic had played in the Union Chapel in London in 2003. We have some amazing churches in New Zealand, beautiful places built for singing, soloists or choirs of voices. In that environment, perhaps accompanied by piano or organ, acoustic guitars, stand up bass and percussion, every note is crystal clear, at the front and all the way at the back; the sound is pure and magnificent. The tour was a huge success – the music, the leadlight and the bar heaters. It was a unique and special tour event.  From the seed of an idea in a serene chapel on a cold London night, through the national sell out success of this first tour of churches in 2004, and a few years of further germination, “The Church Tour” launched as an annual event in 2009.

  • Shows

    Thursday 1 October

    St John’s Cathedral, Napier

    Friday 2 October

    Holy Trinity, Tauranga

    Saturday 3 October

    Holy Trinity Cathedral, Auckland

    Sunday 4 October

    St Mary's, Auckland

    Monday 5 October

    Old St Paul’s, Wellington

    Tuesday 6 October

    Old St Paul’s, Wellington

    Thursday 8 October

    St Michael & All Angels, Christchurch

    Friday 9 October

    The Cardboard Cathedral, Christchurch

    Saturday 10 October

    Knox Church, Dunedin

  • Artists

    Delaney Davidson, Tami Neilson, Barry Saunders & Marlon Williams

    Delaney Davidson is a singer, songwriter, producer and travelling minstrel - ten years on the road, of no fixed abode. He’s inspired by icons from Hank Williams and Howlin’ Wolf down through Johnny Cash and back up to Buster Keaton. He is a three-time winner of the APRA New Zealand Country Music Song of the Year, has a Country Album of the Year Tui Award, has produced albums for tour mate Tami Neilson and had his Swim Down Low album trumpeted by the UK Independent as “a rattling, twanging celebration” (5 stars).

    Tami Neilson has a soulful voice straight from the golden age of country and rockabilly music. A winner of multiple Country Album of the Year Tuis and a prestigious APRA Silver Scroll for Song of the Year (2014) amongst many other career highlights, Tami has been described as a “red-hot honky-tonker, somewhere between Patsy Cline and Wanda Jackson with perhaps just a little bit of Peggy Lee sophistication.” (Nick Bollinger, NZ National Radio). Her last album Dynamite received a 5/5 star review in the NZ Herald, which praised “This world-class album is a major statement from an artist at the top of her lyrical and vocal game”.


    Barry Saunders adventured far and wide as a young gigging musician, playing in bands in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. When Barry pitched back up in Wellington some misty years ago, living on a diet of Hank Williams, Hank Snow, Jimmy Rogers, early Elvis and Chuck Berry, he formed The Warratahs and gave us songs that have become part of the national lexicon – from 'Maureen' and 'Hands of My Heart' to the 'Interislander Song' and 'Rescue Me'. The Warratahs continue to roam (having just released a brilliant new album Runaway Days), alongside and in tandem with Barry’s solo work, which has included the glorious Magnetic South (winner of the Country Album of the Year Tui) and Red Morning. Barry Saunders is an icon.

    Marlon Williams has been described as the impossible love child of Elvis, Roy Orbison and Townes van Zandt. At the age of 17 he exploded onto the NZ music scene, fronting  acclaimed alt-country band The Unfaithful Ways, then gathered a Country Album of the Year Tui with his tour mate Delaney Davidson and has just released his phenomenal self-titled debut album. Music industry bible Billboard Magazine has already tipped: “Expect to see and hear a lot more from this man with the voice of an angel”.

  • History

    2014

    dave-dobbyn-don-mcglashan_134_c2a92013-steve-dykes-edit-edit

    This was a very special year, as we paired two songwriters who through their stellar careers have chronicled just what it is to be a New Zealander. Dave Dobbyn & Don McGlashan own 5 Silver Scroll awards for “NZ Song Of The Year” between them and together in concert they were mesmerising, spine tingling and not least utterly uplifting. Very, very special.

    2013

    Dragon_130_©2013-Steve-Dykes

    One of New Zealand’s all time favourite pub bands, Dragon, reinvented their sound and their singalong anthems for the Church Tour, but lost none of their passion and commitment in the process as the rafters were raised and the leadlight rattled to hits stretching from “April Sun in Cuba” to “Rain”. Who knows what the clergy made of it – we didn’t wait to ask!

    2012 

    8245184

    This was a riot. Infectious, zany and comedic, but always glorious as the unique but beautifully complementary songwriting and vocal talents of Anika Moa, Boh Runga and Hollie Smith combined, together in concert. The three divas performed songs from their individual catalogues, as well as from their debut ‘AnikaBoh&Hollie’ album ‘Peace of Mind.’

    2011

    196713-111647-14

    Bic Runga returned to the Church Tour and the music scene after a five year break from music to be a full time mum. One of the very best songwriters this country has ever produced, owner of a voice gifted from God, she once again made the Church Tour her own, joined by former Mint Chicks Kody Nielson and Michael Logie.

    2010

    299782_174405782639238_441299566_n

    Dave Dobbyn headlined the 2010 Tour, a national treasure and a songwriter/singer and guitarist of extraordinary talent. In the magnificent Church environment his voice shone bigger and brighter than ever before. Dave performed with percussionist Ross Burge and, at times, members of Christchurch band Dukes who were also the opening act.

    2009

    53041-38100-34

    The Tour featured two of New Zealand’s most successful songwriting and performing talents – Greg Johnson and Boh Runga. The shows saw both artists on stage together for their whole set, performing their own and each other’s songs – together.  Joining them was Zed front man and solo hit-maker, Nathan King and the tour introduced a bright new talent in young Auckland singer/songwriter Lydia Cole.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    WHAT TIME DOES IT START/FINISH?
    For all shows doors open at 7.30pm and the show will start at 8.00pm, finishing at approximately 10.30pm.

    Doors open at 7.00pm at Holy Trinity Cathedral in Auckland.

    HOW DO I BUY TICKETS? 

    Tickets for all shows will be available for purchase from this this website & Ticketmaster  from 12pm on Monday 6th July.

    WHAT IS THE TICKET PRICE?

    The ticket price for all tickets purchased from Monday 6 July through to the relevant show date will be $69.50 plus booking fees.

    Door sales will be available for each show (if not sold out prior), the ticket price will be $80 flat.

    CAN I PURCHASE ALCOHOL/FOOD/DRINKS ON THE PREMISES? 

    Food and beverages will be available for purchase at Old St Paul’s (Wellington) – cash only and the Cardboard Cathedral (Christchurch) – credit card/eftpos only.

    Food and beverages will not be for sale or permitted at the remaining venues in Napier, Tauranga, Auckland, Christhucrch (St Michaels & All Angels only) and Dunedin.

    IS IT ALLOCATED SEATING?

    Seating is provided for this event, but tickets for the Church Tour are sold as general admission, so your seating location is based on a first come first served basis.

    CAN I BRING MY CAMERA?

    No professional cameras (SLRS or removable lens cameras) or recording devices are allowed. Camera phones or ‘point and shoot’ cameras are allowed. No flash.

  • News

    PRIME TV AND CIVIC EVENTS PRESENT: 

THE CHURCH TOUR 2015


    THE CHURCH TOUR 2015
    Delaney Davidson, Tami Neilson, Barry Saunders & Marlon Williams:
    THE LOST HIGHWAY

    7 magnificent churches and cathedrals across New Zealand.

    The Church Tour 2015 presents one of its most tantalizing artist line-ups in its already storied seven year history, with four of New Zealand’s most lauded, singular and extraordinary musical talents combining: Delaney Davidson, Tami Neilson, Barry Saunders and Marlon Williams: The Lost Highway.

    Country, Alt-Country, Spaghetti Noir, Country Rock, Rockabilly, Western folk, Americana, Honky Tonk…..The Church Tour 2015 will showcase the styles and genres that scatter loosely under the flag of Country Music, converging at a place where yarns, myths, tales, legends and fables come to life through exceptional songwriting delivered via the incomparable voices of four artists-in-arms.

    Delaney Davidson is a singer, songwriter, producer and travelling minstrel – ten years on the road, of no fixed abode. He’s inspired by icons from Hank Williams and Howlin’ Wolf down through Johnny Cash and back up to Buster Keaton. He is a three-time winner of the APRA New Zealand Country Music Song of the Year, has a Country Album of the Year Tui Award, has produced albums for tour mate Tami Neilson and had his Swim Down Low album trumpeted by the UK Independent as “a rattling, twanging celebration” (5 stars).

    Tami Neilson has a soulful voice straight from the golden age of country and rockabilly music. A winner of multiple Country Album of the Year Tuis and a prestigious APRA Silver Scroll for Song of the Year (2014) amongst many other career highlights, Tami has been described as a “red-hot honky-tonker, somewhere between Patsy Cline and Wanda Jackson with perhaps just a little bit of Peggy Lee sophistication.” (Nick Bollinger, NZ National Radio). Her last album Dynamite received a 5/5 star review in the NZ Herald, which praised “This world-class album is a major statement from an artist at the top of her lyrical and vocal game”.

    Barry Saunders adventured far and wide as a young gigging musician, playing in bands in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. When Barry pitched back up in Wellington some misty years ago, living on a diet of Hank Williams, Hank Snow, Jimmy Rogers, early Elvis and Chuck Berry, he formed The Warratahs and gave us songs that have become part of the national lexicon – from ‘Maureen’ and ‘Hands of My Heart’ to the ‘Interislander Song’ and ‘Rescue Me’. The Warratahs continue to roam (having just released a brilliant new album Runaway Days), alongside and in tandem with Barry’s solo work, which has included the glorious Magnetic South (winner of the Country Album of the Year Tui) and Red Morning. Barry Saunders is an icon.

    Marlon Williams has been described as the impossible love child of Elvis, Roy Orbison and Townes van Zandt. At the age of 17 he exploded onto the NZ music scene, fronting  acclaimed alt-country band The Unfaithful Ways, then gathered a Country Album of the Year Tui with his tour mate Delaney Davidson and has just released his phenomenal self-titled debut album. Music industry bible Billboard Magazine has already tipped: “Expect to see and hear a lot more from this man with the voice of an angel”.

    Renowned for curating inventive bills, twists and artist combinations on the Church Tour, Civic Events promoters Brent Eccles and Campbell Smith are thrilled with the line-up for the Tour in 2015. Eccles pronounces concert-goers are in for a real treat:

    “The bill for this year’s Church Tour is something very special, it has all the elements we think you need for a landmark tour – talent, camaraderie, passion and freshness, bound together by great songs and incredible voices in stunning venues. It is going to be epic.”

    Delaney Davidson is looking forward to the uniqueness of performing in some of New Zealand’s most spectacular churches, chapels and cathedrals:

    “I’m really looking forward to playing in these spaces. They are built with music in mind, so the sound should be phenomenal.”

    Tami Neilson cant wait to hit the road with her friends:

    “I consider these boys my musical brothers and look forward to hitting the road with them once again. I’m also honored to be representing the women of country music in this group of gorgeous guys. It’s a tough job, but somebody’s gotta do it!”

    Barry Saunders is equally enthusiastic about the Church Tour:

    “Four songwriter/performers on the road, playing in the church environment, it doesn’t get any better!”

    Marlon Williams agrees:

    “Having cut my musical teeth singing in churches, I’m relishing the opportunity to perform in what are undoubtedly the most acoustically rewarding spaces in New Zealand.

    Alongside close friends, long time collaborators and, in short, some of my favourite Kiwi songwriters, this will be a rare treat for all involved.”

    The Church Tour shows will run in two halves. Each artist will perform a set on their own, two artists per half, each backed by a multi-instrumentalist “house band” made up of Dave Khan, Ben Woolley and Joe McCallum. However the magic of The Church Tour is always in the collaboration and audiences can expect the artists to jump in and out of each other’s sets throughout.

    Now in its seventh continuous year, The Church Tour in 2015 will play 8 shows in  7 different churches between the 1st and 10th of October.

    DATES:

    Thursday 1 October Napier St John’s Cathedral

    Friday 2 October Tauranga Holy Trinity Tauranga

    Saturday 3 October Auckland Holy Trinity Cathedral

    Monday 5 OctoberWellingtonOld St Paul’s

    Tuesday 6 October Wellington Old St Paul’s

    Thursday 8 October Christchurch St Michael & All Angels

    Friday 9 October Christchurch The Cardboard Cathedral

    Saturday 10 OctoberDunedinKnox Church

     

    Tickets on sale from Monday 6th July, 12pm via www.churchtour.co.nz & Ticketmaster.

    Church Tour 2015 To Be Filmed For Prime Rocks Documentary

    church-tour

    This year’s annual Church Tour takes place this October throughout 7 of New Zealand’s most beautiful churches and this time it will be captured and made in to an in-depth documentary for all to enjoy.

    Prime Rocks: The New Sound Of Country is a NZ On Air funded hour-long music documentary shining a light on this year’s extraordinary line up; artists Barry Saunders, Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams and Tami Neilson. One astute veteran and three of the hottest emerging acts in New Zealand right now embarking on one of the most high profile tour brands: The Church Tour.

    The New Sound Of Country is a documentary about the new, cutting edge, country music revival that is taking New Zealand by storm. It’s a rare opportunity to document a music movement as it is happening and give these local artists some prime time television exposure.

    Prime TV’s highly successful series The Brokenwood Mysteries returns to our screens soon and the show has partnered with Civic Events to present The Church Tour – The Lost Highway to the kiwi public. Church Tour star Tami Neilson has had a large hand in theTV series. She and her brother Jay are composing the original score as well as Tami’s own music featuring throughout the soundtrack along with the other artists on The Church Tour.

    Civic Events is a concert, event and tour promoter, based in Auckland. It was founded in 2007 by promoters Brent Eccles and Campbell Smith, who continue to own and operate the company today. Civic produces the annual iconic national touring events “The Winery Tour” and “The Church Tour” providing the very best entertainment experiences. This is the 7th annual Church Tour. Previous artists have included, Bic Runga, Dave Dobbyn, Don McGlashan, Anika Moa, Hollie Smith, Dragon, Boh Runga, Greg Johnson and Lydia Cole but this is the first uniquely country line up!

    Tami Neilson took home the 2014 Apra Silver Scroll, NZ’s most prestigious music award for her song ‘Walk (Back To Your Arms)’ as well as multiple Vodafone NZ Music Awards over time and has most recently received 4 star’s in UK newspaper The Guardian for her last record Dynamite . Her new album Don’t Be Afraid comes out on September 25 and the first single ‘Lonely’ features Marlon Williams on vocals and was written by Tami’s father Ron Neilson in 1972.

    http://www.tamineilson.com

            

    Delaney Davidson is skilled as a performer, songwriter and also a producer having just completed working on Tami’s soon to be released album. He’s a 3-time APRA Country Music Song of the year recipient who has also collaborated with Marlon. The duo won a NZ Music Award in 2013 for their album Sad But True – The Secret History of Country Music Songwriting Vol 1. Known as a DIY troubadour, much of his time is spent playing around the world.His new album Lucky Guy is out Sept 4. http://www.delaneydavidson.com

    Barry Saunders is a stalwart of our music scene in a career spanning over 25 years, solo and with his band The Warratahs. Their latest and seventh studio album ‘Runaway Days’ was released in June this year and has received nationwide applause from media and fans. In celebration of the release The Warratahs have just completed an extensive nationwide tour of NZ. They’ve sold in excess of 86,000 albums and the charismatic frontman Barry is a major draw card on The Church Tour.

    http://www.thewarratahs.co.nz
    It’s been a massive 12 months for our youngest performer Marlon Williams. His debut solo album was released in April this year to critical acclaim. Following the release, his album tour was a complete sell out across Australasia. He’s since gone on to play across the UK, Canada and United States. Marlon’s song ‘Dark Child’ has recently made the Top 20 list for this year’s Apra Silver Scroll award. He has also been branching out as an actor and will appear in a TV production and start filming his first role in a feature film in NZ later this year.

    http://www.marlonwilliams.co.nz

    The Church Tour shows will run in two halves. Each artist will perform a set on their own, two artists per half, each backed by a multi-instrumentalist “house band” made up of Dave Khan, Ben Woolley and Joe McCallum. However the magic of The Church Tour is always in the collaboration and audiences can expect the artists to jump in and out of each other’s sets throughout.

    Now in its seventh continuous year, The Church Tour in 2015 will play 8 shows in 6 cities between the 1st and 10th of October.

    Dates:

    Thursday 1 October                        Napier                                  St John’s Cathedral

    Friday 2 October                               Tauranga                             Holy Trinity

    Saturday 3 October                         Auckland                             Holy Trinity Cathedral

    Monday 5 October                          Wellington                          Old St Paul’s

    Tuesday 6 October                          Wellington                          Old St Paul’s

    Thursday 8 October                       Christchurch                       St Michael & All Angels

    Friday 9 October                               Christchurch                       Cardboard Cathedral

    Saturday 10 October                       Dunedin                               Knox Church

    Tickets:

    Tickets are on sale now and available from the Church Tour website www.civicevents.co.nz/churchtour and Ticketmaster.

    Full tour, date and venue details can be found at www.civicevents.co.nz/churchtour

    CHURCH TOUR - SECOND AUCKLAND SHOW ADDED

    The Brokenwood Mysteries, Civic Events and Sunday Star Times presents – 

    church-tour

     

    Delaney Davidson, Tami Neilson, Barry Saunders and Marlon Williams: 

    The Lost Highway

    SECOND AUCKLAND SHOW ADDED DUE TO POPULAR DEMAND!

    This year’s annual Church Tour is off to a rollicking start and now, due to popular demand, a second Auckland concert has been announced! Delaney, Tami, Barry and Marlon will treat Auckland audiences to a slightly more intimate evening at St Mary’s at the Holy Trinity Cathedral (Parnell) on Sunday 4th October.

    The Church Tour: The Lost Highway begins Napier on Thursday 1st October and travels throughout the country for back to back shows in some of New Zealand’s most iconic churches.

    In recent news it has been announced that there will be a documentary made about the uprising of country music in New Zealand. Prime Rocks: The New Sound Of Country is a NZ On Air funded hour-long music documentary shining a light on this year’s extraordinary line up; artists Barry Saunders, Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams and Tami Neilson. One astute veteran and three of the hottest emerging acts in New Zealand right now embarking on one of the most high profile tour brands: The Church Tour.

    And in even more recent news, one of the Church Tour stars Marlon Williams has just been announced as a 2015 finalist for the prestigious APRA Silver Scroll Award for his beautiful song Dark Child (something that each of his Church Tour band mates have previously enjoyed!)

    The Church Tour shows will run in two halves. Each artist will perform a set on their own, two artists per half, each backed by a multi-instrumentalist “house band” made up of Dave Khan, Ben Woolley and Joe McCallum.

    Tickets for St Mary’s at the Holy Trinity Cathedral show on Sunday 4th October go on sale at 12pm Tuesday 1st September from Ticketmaster.

    Now in its seventh continuous year, The Church Tour in 2015 now plays 9 shows in 6 cities between the 1st and 10th of October. It’s a one in a million line up and a tour you’d be absolutely crazy to miss!

    church-tour

     

    Dates:

    Thursday 1 October Napier St John’s Cathedral

    Friday 2 October Tauranga Holy Trinity

    Saturday 3 October Auckland Holy Trinity Cathedral

    Sunday 4th October Auckland St Mary’s @Holy Trinity Cathedral

    NEW SHOW ON SALE 1st SEPTEMBER!

    Monday 5 OctoberWellingtonOld St Paul’s

    Tuesday 6 October Wellington Old St Paul’s

    Thursday 8 October Christchurch St Michael & All Angels

    Friday 9 October Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral

    Saturday 10 OctoberDunedinKnox Church

    Tickets: Tickets for all shows available from the Church Tour website www.civicevents.co.nz/churchtour and Ticketmaster.Full tour, date and venue details can be found at www.civicevents.co.nz/churchtour

    For more info, biographies, interview requests or access to images contact:  

    Maria Robinson, + 64 9 849 7707, + 64 21 525405

    maria.robinson@mushroomgroup.com

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