HOMEGROWN acoustic duo Just By Chance will be back in Wirral next month to support former Ultravox frontman Midge Ure.
Singer-songwriters Liz Owen and Andy Jones met in Liverpool three years ago while both were looking for bands to join.
Drawing on a wide range of influences from folk and bluegrass to more modern pop and rock, they have been touring extensively across the UK since March 2010.
They have appeared at festivals, been played on BBC 6Music, played at Parkgate Folk Club – and supported Joan Armatrading at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall last winter.
They will open for Midge Ure at the Floral Pavilion Theatre Blue Lounge in New Brighton on February 16 and at another show in Settle, Yorkshire, on February 15.
The Wirral half of Just By Chance is Liz, who comes from Heswall, while Andy is from Southport.
He said: “We were both looking on a website for bands to join. I messaged Liz and we said ‘let’s meet up in Liverpool’.
“I’d been in lots of bands and it can be a nightmare trying to find people who can do the musical side of things and who you can get on with.
“We started writing stuff straight away and it went really well, so we decided to form a band.
“We practised a bit, then did our first gig in March 2010.”
That first public performance came about – as their name suggests – by chance.
“It happened a bit by accident,” Andy recalls.
“We ran into someone who didn’t want to play that night and he said: ‘can you guys do it?’ so we did!
“We didn’t have any kind of vision for what we wanted to do at the start.
“We’re both really into our rock music but because we’re an acoustic act we are lumped in with folk.
“I just love music in general. We write and play what comes out!”
Last year Just By Chance released their first album, Upbound, and Liz and Andy hope to record their second this year.
Their growing reputation on the Merseyside music scene bagged them their support slot for Joan Armatrading in November.
“That was amazing,” says Andy. “There has been an element of being in the right place at the right time but at most gigs we’ve done, someone’s seen us and asked us to play.
“We spent most of last year in Liverpool but if we play in the same places twice a week it’s not as special for people.
“I’m trying to get more dates in the diary for us this year and we’ll probably go further afield.”
Tickets for Midge Ure are £16.50/£14.50 concessions from 666 0000.