One of Britain’s great singer songwriters, Joan Armatrading, celebrates 50 years in music this year with the release of the album ‘Live at Asylum Chapel’ on November 18th on BMG.

The BBC recently honoured Joan with a special screening of the show, which was streamed worldwide during lockdown last year for one night only, followed by the documentary about her life and career – ‘Me Myself I’.

The concert, from south London’s historic Asylum Chapel, features some of Joan’s most famous songs from her 50 year career, with ‘Drop The Pilot’, ‘The Weakness In Me’, ‘Me Myself I’ and ‘Willow’ sounding as vital as ever performed live.  In addition, songs from her latest and acclaimed Top 10 studio album ‘Consequences’ are given their live debut – ‘Natural Rhythm’, ‘Consequences’, ‘Already There’, ‘Better Life’,  ‘Glorious Madness’ and ‘To Anyone Who Will Listen’.

50 years is a long time but for me it’s flown by and I still get the same thrill from writing songs as when I started. This live album is a great way to look back and also bring my story right up to date by including songs from the latest album. I’m really happy that so many people still want to listen to them and sing along.” – Joan Armatrading

Joan is celebrating 50 years in a career that has effortlessly crossed boundaries of genre and impacted on many areas of public life, since the release of debut album ‘Whatever’s For Us’ in 1972.

Arriving on her own to join her parents in Birmingham from St. Kitts at the age of 7, Joan taught herself to play piano and then guitar before becoming Britian’s first female singer songwriter to gain international success.  She has produced and played every instrument on her records since 2003.

Her songs have brought her many admirers, from Bob Dylan to Arlo Parks. She is the 1st UK female artist to debut at number 1 in Billboard’s Blues charts and the 1st female UK artist to be nominated for a Grammy in the Blues category.  She has an Ivor Novello Academy Fellowship Award, Lifetime Achievement from the Radio 2 Folk Awards and an MPG Outstanding Contribution Award to UK Music.

Awarded an MBE by the Queen in 2001, she was given the CBE in 2020.  The same year, she was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award from Woman Of The Year.  She is a Trustee of the Princes’ Trust and has supported King Charles’ charity since 1982, mentoring many young people.  She also holds 6 Honorary Degrees, Doctorates or Fellowships from various universities and has proudly appeared in The Beano!

Her empathy and insight is clear to see in a new book of her lyrics.  Faber will publish ‘The Weakness In Me: Selected Lyrics’ on November 3rd, featuring a foreword by revered record producer Glyn Johns. It contains an introduction by Armatrading and annotations to a number of songs as well as handwritten lyrics and scores, giving a rare, personal glimpse into the creative process of a true pioneer.

Joan will be at Waterstones bookshops for an in store book signing tour in November (

Comments are closed.