IAN Prowse is no stranger to playing gigs in unlikely venues and he can’t wait to clock up his second Ribble Valley visit in just over 12 months.

On Saturday the songwriter best known for his work with Pele and Amsterdam heads to Hurst Green Village Hall — the latest well-established artist to play the intimate venue.

“When I’m with the band I tend to play more traditional venues,” said Ian, “but when I’m out on my own I do tend to get to the back end of nowhere quite a lot.

“That’s not being disrespectful in any way as I love these unusual, smaller venues as the people are invariably lovely and we have a great night.

“I think audiences also enjoy it as, when they look back, these tend to be the shows they remember.”

Ian will be coming to Hurst Green with his first solo album Who Loves Ya Baby having received some of the best reviews of his career.

“It might say Ian Prowse on the cover but it’s still got a full band sound. There’s a big horn section and a full band on the album so people will certainly recognise the style.”

Even for Hurst Green, although technically a solo show Ian will have one or two musicians around him.

“I think there might be a fiddle and accordion for Hurst Green, we’ll see,” he said.

Ian’s ability to combine infectious hooks with socially-aware lyrics have become something of his trademark.

“The irony is I tend to be playing all these posh places,” he laughed. “I think some of it is that Pele were very popular with the university crowd back in the day and they have all gone of to run things and be successful.

“They’ll come and say ’I still feel it Ian but life and kids have sort of changed things’.

“I have no problem with that at all. You can still retain your integrity and earn a living. There is nothing wrong with the legitimacy of labour. When I do a gig and then get paid for it it’s still a wonderful feeling.”

“I really can’t complain about how things are going at the moment. I’ve had some of the best reviews I’ve ever had for Who Loves Ya Baby.

“I started the album tour off in New York where I’ve never played before on St Patrick’s Day of all days so that was pretty wild and after a lot of shows we’re sort of coming in to land now with just a handful to go.

“But I’m really looking forward to playing Hurst Green. I like the idea of it.

“To me it doesn’t matter how many people are in an audience or where the gig is, you still treat people with respect and if you turn up and give it 100 per cent people respond to that a a great night is usually on the cards for all of us.”

Ian Prowse, Hurst Green Village Hall, Saturday, May 17. Tickets are £10 in advance from 07824 488410 or £12 on the door.