A GUITAR-slinging Kenilworth schoolboy is following quite literally in the footsteps of his blues idol.
Ten year-old Crackley Hall pupil Toby Lee has been invited Stateside to play at the B.B King Blues Club in Memphis on Thursday (October 22).
BB King, who died earlier this year, was known across the world as the ‘King of the Blues’, and young Toby’s growing reputation has already seen him dubbed the ‘Prince of the Blues’.
He will taking to the very stage with his Gibson Bonamassa guitar where the legendary BB King played his cherished Gibson guitar which he called Lucille.
The performance at the famous Beale Street venue is attracting a lot of interest especially from those in the guitar know who see similarities between Toby and a young Joe Bonamassa, who at the age of 12 opened a gig for B.B King heralding the start of his phenomenal career.
During his visit Toby is also looking forward to a VIP tour of the Gibson guitar factory as well as a visit to the Graceland home of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll Elvis Presley.
Toby told The Observer: “I’ve always wanted to go to Memphis, the home of the blues so it will be a dream come true.”
The young guitar star has a growing fan base across the globe with many following his performances through social media.
Such is the weight of this precocious talent he has recently been tracked down by legendary broadcaster ‘Whispering’ Bob Harris at the recent Cropredy Music Festival, and also approached to perform on the forthcoming series of T.F.I Friday after impressing presenter Chris Evans.
The jet-set life of a music legend in-waiting does have its drawbacks when also having to fit in school lessons.
“I don’t get as much time to practise my guitar as I’d like because of all my homework,” admitted Toby, “so I’m really looking forward to getting to America where it will be all about the blues.”
Crackley Hall headteacher Rob Duigan said the school was delighted to support Toby’s music-making.
He added: “Toby is a very modest young man who manages to balance the rigours of academic work alongside his additional commitments. This promises to be a trip of a lifetime and we look forward to hearing how the Memphis session goes.”