Claire Ashton
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Claire Ashton

Newcastle, N Ireland, United Kingdom

Newcastle, N Ireland, United Kingdom
Band Country Singer/Songwriter


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"(Bad,) Bad Girl EP - 22nd August 2008"

Although still mainly acoustic, Harrogate band Hargreaves’ debut release on local label Straytown Records isn’t quite as “late 60’s Woodstock” as their demo of last year.

The four-piece’s two openers; the bluesy title track, co-written by lead singer Claire Ashton and bass player Chris Webb, and poppy Kiss Me Better (penned by Ashton herself) aren’t quite as good as the covers Passionate Kisses or the real standout Life By The Drop (made famous by Stevie Ray Vaughan) – though they run them close. Then the key to Hargreaves is the incredibly well-judged delivery. Topped off as always by Ashton’s impressive vocals, this breezy band sound as natural as honey on buttered toast.
- Graham Chalmers - Harrogate Advertiser

"Sunday, October 12, 2008 CLAIRE ASHTON & HARGREAVES"

To be the lead singer of any band, takes a monumental amount of effort, determination and talent, being a female lead singer, the scrutiny and demands are raised even higher. Claire Ashton has all the qualities required and more besides as she leads with passion, vigour and class. With an easygoing persona which never reduces her professionalism, she helps four-piece Harrogate band Hargreaves produce superior performances in both “Live” and “Studio” work. Covering Blues, Soul and Country themes, including many of their own songs and also some classic cover versions, the band consists of Claire, James Healey on Guitar, drummer Steve Shelley and Bassist and backing vocalist Chris Webb. Their highly acclaimed and recently released EP is a wonderful introduction to what the band is all about, with the bluesy title track, “(Bad,) Bad Girl”, an uplifting and toe-tapping “Kiss Me Better” and covers of Stevie Ray Vaughan’ “Life By The Drop” and finally Mary Chapin Carpenter’s “Passionate Kisses” which this reviewer felt was the equal at the very least to the original recording. The EP is very good, catch them live and you will be very, very impressed, if America is looking for a favourite UK acoustic/blues/country band, then look no further than Claire Ashton and Hargreaves. - Paul Abrahams - Keep Music Live blog at


(Bad,) Bad Girl EP - released in September 2008



Hargreaves started playing live in March 2007, encouraged by Paul Fedorenko, Laurie Hopkins and Sharon Colgan of Bluesville. We've since recorded demo tracks with Ian Hardcastle (Shotgun Universe) and Tom Weldon at Straytown Studios, and mixed them with Laurie who also runs Straytown Records. Ian Hardcastle is currently producing an album of our material.

Our first headline gig was at the fabulous Blues Cafe Bar in Harrogate on the 1st May 2007. We thoroughly enjoyed it - and judging by the number of people dancing to "(Bad,) Bad Girl" played as an encore, so did most of the people who came to hear us.

We were the first live band in the 2008 series of gigs at The Black Swan in Harrogate on the 16th February, and we've also played other gigs at The Blues Bar, and at The Black Bull in Ripon, The Primrose in Leeds, plus open mic nights in Leeds and Gateshead. Claire and Chris (the main song writers) also perform as the duo 'Ashton and Webb', and Claire also sings in choirs, stage shows and solo. We're planning more gigs for the autumn at a wider variety of venues.

We have just released our first commercial recording - the (Bad,) Bad Girl EP, available from and iTunes - and we are currently finishing off our debut album and planning how we promote that through gigs etc. around Yorkshire and Tyne-side.

We're trying to do something just a bit different with Hargreaves. This is a blues band that focuses on vocals - a country band that focuses on emotions - a soul band that focuses on instruments and arrangements. We've got a laid back sound that let's Claire's voice shine out, helped along by Chris' backing vocals and direct bass, Jaymz's energetic guitar, and Stevie D's jazz influenced drumming. We are all passionate about different and similar genres of music and try and let those influences shine through in our music. We don't look like a conventional band or act like a conventional band but we that this sets us apart and makes us original in our own, very grown up, way!