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Bartlett’s Beat
Posted by editor_usa

Talking With One of Elton’s Former Promoters

Thursday 13
March 2008 @ 16:12
– GMT

Gray Bartlett is a New Zealand resident with a broad resume.

A former Auckland City Council Official and Electoral Councillor, past board member of the Aotea Centre for performing arts, and concert promoter (who has been involved with two of Elton’s tours, one of which was with Billy Joel), Gray was awarded the MBE for his services to music/art and the Multiple Sclerosis Society of New Zealand.

He also co-founded Pacific Entertainment, specialising in the production and promotion of concert and theatrical activities in Australasia. Although he recently sold the company, Bartlett is still a viable part of numerous festivals and tours.

Credited with discovering Hayley Westenra, Gray is an admirer of Elton’s, and calls his shows ”mighty.”  Besides all this, Bartlett is an entertainer in his own right. He tells EJW that his music is ”crossover, featuring county/jazz/popular, and some crossover-classical.”  The songwriter and guitarist, who plays styles ”like Chet Atkins/George Benson/Eric Clapton/Hank Marvin and pure classical,” will be touring to mark 50 years in the business. Appropriately enough,  a new double CD of 50 tracks, many of which are self-penned instrumental tunes, will be released by EMI on April 21, ahead of  his May/June performances.

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