The Undercover Hippy
Free admission before 10pm, £4 thereafter
Billy Salisbury, a.k.a. The Undercover Hippy, is definitely not your average singer songwriter. His music brings together folk guitar, soulful vocals, infectious reggae rhythms, and the lyrical wordplay of a hip-hop mc. Political without preaching, his songs deliver a positive message that is hard to ignore.
Starting out as a dj and mc when he was 16, Billy finally returned to the music of his hippy upbringing and picked up a guitar again in 2002. His first songs were simply a combination of lyrics from his mc past sung over the guitar. This fusion of styles has now become what defines his music today.
The Undercover Hippy only started performing professionally in 2007, moving back to the UK from Barcelona to take the UK festival circuit by storm. In those three years he has gone from being a virtual unknown to being one of the most passionately championed acts of the festival scene. After starting out playing solo, Billy now has a four piece band consisting of James Pagella on drums, Alex Crane on bass, Andreas Millns on keys and Jona Ballard on percussion. Together they have performed at some of the UK’s best festivals, including Glastonbury, The Big Chill, Beach Break Live, The Secret Garden Party and Ireland’s Electric Picnic. They have played alongside bands like The Bays, The Dub Pistols, Pama International and The Portico Quartet.
A recent visit to The Gambia has seen Billy become a popular artist there also. Collaborations with local artists and producers such as Dr Olugander and Germany based Rebellion the Recaller, as well as live performances, have led to him getting regular airplay on Gambian Radio. A second trip is planned.
The overall response to The Undercover Hippy, both live and recorded, has been phenomenal. Recently featured as a potential candidate for next years Ivors Awards in M Magazine, he has received praise from all corners of the globe. Expect big things from this man!