A talented schoolboy guitarist played with members of rock band McFly to his largest ever crowd while on a TV variety show.
Toby Lee, 11, who attends Crackley Hall School in Kenilworth, showed off his guitar-playing skills to a 2,200-strong audience during the recording of the ITV show ‘Tonight at the London Palladium,’ broadcasted on Wednesday April 13.
Toby thought he would be playing the McFly song ‘Five Colours In Her Hair’ on his own, but after he started playing he was joined onstage by two of the band’s members, Tom Fletcher and Danny Jones, much to Toby’s visible surprise.
Toby took it in his stride and carried on playing while Tom and Danny sang the rest of the song alongside him.
After his performance, Toby received a standing ovation from the audience, with Tom describing him as “insanely talented.”
He invited Toby and his family to see the band play when they tour later this year and also asked Toby for a backstage guitar lesson.
He did really, really well and we’re very proud of him.Terry Lee
Toby’s mother and father, Tracey and Terry, were in the audience during the recording, and praised Toby for playing so well in front of such a large audience and coping with Tom and Danny’s unexpected appearance.
Terry said: “He did a great job with the song and I’m glad he carried on playing when Tom and Danny came on - we thought he might stop.
“It was quite difficult keeping it a secret from him even up until the moment they came on.
“It was his biggest audience so it was quite daunting for Toby, but he did really, really well and we’re very proud of him.”
He also said Toby would probably take McFly up on their offer of seeing them on tour if he got to play with them.
Toby’s love for music started when he was given a ukelele as a toddler by his granny, and he progressed to electric guitar soon afterward.
His skill with the instrument was exposed to the world last April when he posted a video of himself playing the BB King song ‘The Thrill is Gone’ online.
The video was seen by Joe Bonamassa, a famous blues guitarist, who then shared it amongst his many fans, helping the video amass 5.7 million views.
On the back of this success, Toby subsequently built a large following on social media and began playing in bigger venues.
Last year, he played at the BB King Blues Club in Memphis, Tennessee, and made an appearance on the Channel Four show ‘TFI Friday’ hosted by Chris Evans.
The episode is available to watch online by visiting www.itv.com/hub/tonight-at-the-london-palladium