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Retune puts international talent centre stage at The Horn at the Half Moon: Sabrina, Nadia Sheikh and Ben Camburn



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Bishop's Stortford singer-songwriter Tom Ryder – who performs with The Kazans, KOasis and The Retuners – is the founder of Retune, a charity which promotes good mental health and wellbeing through the creative arts, especially music...

This Sunday (November 14) will be one of our most exciting Retune live shows to date as we welcome Sabrina Francis from Grenada in the West Indies, Spanish songstress Nadia Sheikh and local piano maestro Ben Camburn.

The show will take place at The Horn at the Half Moon in North Street, Bishop's Stortford, with doors opening at 6.30pm. As ever, it is donate what you can on the door.

Sabrina is adding Stortford as a leg to her European tour, supported by her full Grenadian band. Picture: Terell Moore (52937045)
Sabrina is adding Stortford as a leg to her European tour, supported by her full Grenadian band. Picture: Terell Moore (52937045)

It is almost exactly two years since Sabrina last wowed us with her Caribbean soul and wondrous songwriting, and now she is back once more, adding Stortford as a leg to her European tour, supported by her full Grenadian band.

Nadia Sheikh was the original headliner for the evening – she opened for Stereophonics in her home country's cities of Barcelona and Madrid before the pandemic took hold – so we will be treated to an acoustic set from her as part of this formidable bill.

Piano virtuoso Ben Camburn completes the line-up. Son of Retune charity CEO Greg, Ben specialises in composing atmospheric pieces that are as complex as they are emotionally moving.

During the pandemic last year the singer-songwriter came up with ‘Sabrina’s Treehouse Concerts’, an exclusive one-hour show at her Treehouse in the mountains of Grenada. Picture: Dieter Burkhalter (52937069)
During the pandemic last year the singer-songwriter came up with ‘Sabrina’s Treehouse Concerts’, an exclusive one-hour show at her Treehouse in the mountains of Grenada. Picture: Dieter Burkhalter (52937069)

Sabrina challenged herself to release one song and video every month for the first six to ten months of lockdown.

“It was a matter of remaining consistent and fighting against the crippling effect that this pandemic had on musicians, and to close off the year,” she says. “These songs make up my Million Moments EP.

"The pandemic forced my team and me to be creative. I hosted some fundraising live-streamed concerts to raise money for the Grenadian artistes who couldn’t earn a living.

"And when it was mandated that only 20 people could gather at a time, we came up with ‘Sabrina’s Treehouse Concerts’, which is an exclusive one-hour show at my Treehouse in the mountains of Grenada. And that has proven to be quite the success.”

Nadia Sheikh opened for Stereophonics in Barcelona and Madrid before the pandemic took hold
Nadia Sheikh opened for Stereophonics in Barcelona and Madrid before the pandemic took hold

Retune is all about connecting creative outlets such as music and the arts with mental wellbeing. It is a cause that Sabrina holds dear.

“Music is the outlet I use to remain sane. It makes sense of the world around me and helps me manage otherwise unmanageable emotions. It was especially helpful throughout the pandemic and I was blessed to have it.”

Nadia Sheikh’s new EP, Undefined, comes out on Tuesday November 16, two days after the Retune show. It’s a four-track record produced by Brett Shaw (FOALS, Florence and the Machine) and it’s some of the work she is proudest of.

Nadia's new EP, Undefined, produced by Brett Shaw (FOALS, Florence and the Machine), comes out on Tuesday November 16
Nadia's new EP, Undefined, produced by Brett Shaw (FOALS, Florence and the Machine), comes out on Tuesday November 16

“It’s a sound my band and I have been working on tirelessly and some of my most honest and vulnerable work as a songwriter," she said.

“The first lockdown was actually a hugely creative period for me, I went into a flow with songwriting and was my most prolific time ever. I suddenly had time to focus on developing my skills, not only as a songwriter but also as a musician.

Tom Ryder performing as support for James Morrison at Down Hall Hotel in Hatfield Heath in June 2019
Tom Ryder performing as support for James Morrison at Down Hall Hotel in Hatfield Heath in June 2019

“Music is the reason I am, and I am who I am. Whenever I’m not active with my music, I get moody and anxious. Whenever I’m sad or in a bad place, hearing the right song will instantly change my mood or just make me feel warm. A song can literally change someone’s life and I think that’s so powerful.”

* Retune at the Half Moon, featuring Sabrina Francis, Nadia Sheikh and Ben Camburn, takes place Sunday November 14 from 6.30pm to 9.30pm. Donations on the door will go to Retune’s charity.

Retune's Tom Ryder doing a workshop with Year 5 Banksy class pupils at Windhill21 Primary School. Pic: Vikki Lince
Retune's Tom Ryder doing a workshop with Year 5 Banksy class pupils at Windhill21 Primary School. Pic: Vikki Lince
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