Local punk legend Phil Ram and his band The Mañana Kids are set to perform in New Radnor on Saturday March 2nd. The gig will coincide with the pre-launch of the share offer for The Radnor Arms Hotel.

The band will be performing at the local community hub with the aim of fundraising money towards the reopening of The Radnor Arms Hotel. It is the last remaining pub located in New Radnor but closed in 2016.

Phil’s love for music began when his brother at 14 bought a guitar into the home. His brother introduced him to blues music and musicians such as John Mayall, Peter Green and Eric Clapton. As a child, Phil spent a lot of his time in his bedroom and quickly learnt how to play the guitar in a bid to escape his bad-tempered father.

Phil said: “After hearing bands like Jimi Hendrix, Crosby Stills, Nash and Neil Young, songwriting became my thing and at 16 I left school and went to London to play in clubs and bars pretty much a solo acoustic player.”

Rock legend Phil Ram to perform in New Radnor
Rock legend Phil Ram to perform in New Radnor (Phil Ram)

After performing solo throughout clubs and bars in London, at 19, Phil was invited by close musician friends to go to Los Angeles, where he quickly secured a management deal. Phil said: “Being alone and 19 I basically had a grand time jamming with all manner of musicians from the LA scene and finally after four years returned to London not much wiser than I when I left but a good deal better on guitar.”

Upon returning to the UK, Phil was spotted playing upstairs at Ronny Scotts Hide Away for up and coming bands. It was here he quickly landed a deal with Polydor Records (later PRT), under the name Able Ram. Phil co-produced two singles and an album with his long life friend Steve James. Phil then joined the punk band ‘The Vibrators’ as their guitarist.

Phil said: “This is when my track Disco in Mosco first emerged. In 1980, the producer Richard Perry invited me to Los Angeles to discuss an album but times they were a changing and upon arriving back in London I was invited to join the Vibrators under the pseudonym ‘The Birdman’ to record two singles and go on the road. This line up only lasted a year but out of it came ‘The Shots’, the power trio featuring Eddie and Ian from the Vibrators, which toured the UK and bizarrely did a month tour with cheeky heart throb David Essex. Children, Cornwall and a passion for gardening followed and I now had 2 careers: Music and Gardening for the great and the good.”

Rock legend Phil Ram to perform in New Radnor
(Phil Ram)

After being a member of the Vibrators, in 2000 Phil met his distant cousin, Adam, who played bass guitar, they subsequently formed a band called ‘Great Outdoor Experience’. Recording two albums called ‘Time to go Wild’ and an EP titled ‘Don’t just do something sit there’ produced by Pat Collier, who was a bass player with the ‘Vibes’ and who produced ‘Walking on Sunshine’.

Phil and his cousin toured extensively around the UK, which included charity gigs such as Brian May’s ‘Save Me’, performing with Brian May himself and other named musicians on a couple of occasions. This band eventually formed into a solo venture in Phil’s name only, where he recorded the album ‘Ramification’ in 2016.

Phil, who also resides in New Radnor was asked why it is important to him to help save the pub and said: “I, and my artist wife Rachel moved to New Radnor in the winter of 2019. The derelict pub near us was a sad sight and a project I was very keen to be involved with and help restore. This gig on Saturday 2nd March is a benefit for this pub.”

Rock legend Phil Ram to perform in New Radnor
Rock legend Phil Ram to perform in New Radnor (Phil Ram)

He continued: “The project is in its final stages of becoming a reality. A long slog but worth all the effort!” The closed pub is currently owned by an interim owner. The community is working hard to match fund a grant awarded by The Community Ownership Fund (COF) managed by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) of £240,000.

With his latest band, The Mañana Kids, Phil said: “It was over a year or so ago that I was introduced to the two musicians who now make up The Mañana Kids. Lol and Luc. We haven’t looked back and being from the same punk origins our style can be described as high energy rock with a prog punk twist! I have christened this ‘Prunk’, a beautiful word in German meaning Splendor in English. I like it! We are currently embarking on a few local gigs and recording.”

Phil Ram and The Mañana Kids will be performing at the New Radnor community hub on Saturday March 2nd 2024. Tickets are £10 on the door, concession £6. Book by calling 07870 752325. All proceeds raised will go towards The Radnor Arms Hotel.