ALABAMA, Chicago and Tipperary have all been immortalised in song.

But one example, a little closer to home, is Alhaurin el Grande.

Jazz singer Joanna Eden – described as ‘The UK’s answer to Diana Krall and Nora Jones’ by Time Out – was so moved by a stay in the Guadalhorce Valley town, she put her feelings to paper.

Finding the town and its 25,000 residents a ‘liberating influence’ after splitting from a boyfriend, she penned the three-minute ballad as a tribute.

“She arrived in Alhaurin feeling very upset and down,” explained her close friend Liz Ironside.

“Her boyfriend had knocked her confidence saying she was too old to keep on performing and she’s only 41.

“She arrived here at night feeling a sense of loss and melancholy. But walking down Avenida de Libertad, enjoying the sunshine, the next day really lifted her spirits.

“She realised her ex-boyfriend was holding her back…and ‘the street of liberation’ became a lyric,” added Liz, who first worked with the artist as an events organiser with the National Trust.

It is not the only rock and pop influence in the town. Status Quo’s Rick Parfitt has a house near the town and Neneh Cherry used to take her holidays there.


Alhaurin by Joanna Eden

A came to you in darkness

I think you knew my heart was broken…

Alhaurin, in streets of liberation

You welcomed me with arms wide open

Though I walk alone

I am not alone

Why is this my home


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