Speedway star Jill Wynds down a gear

THE jump from rock to country music is not one often performed by musicans, but Jill Jackson is attempting to make the infrequently made leap across genres.

The former Speedway front woman will play at Melrose's Wynd Theatre this Saturday in a rare gig for this year.

However, the Paisley singer has every right to take it easy for a while after playing 50 states in the USA in just 50 days at the tail end of 2008.

The US tour was appropriate given Jackson's current acoustic Americana style, which is far removed from the music she made with rock band Speedway, with whom she scored two top-10 hits in 2004.

From rock chick to country performer, Jackson has been gigging and recording as a solo artist since Speedway disbanded in 2005. She has toured with Natalie Imbruglia and supported musicians such as Albert Lee, Roger McGuinn and Bryan Adams.

Jackson is also known for her work as a songwriter and former Spice Girl Melanie C used two of Jill's songs for her fourth solo album. Following her 50 states in 50 days tour, she went back into the studio in February to record her second album, which she plans to release later this year.

The new material, said to be influenced by Emmylou Harris, Shelby Lynne and Patti Griffin, reveals a musical style that has matured since her 2006 acoustic debut album.

Tickets are priced at 10 for Saturday's gig at 8pm, with tickets available from 01896 820028.