Here we have listed
some of the recent performers that we have promoted at North
Shropshire Folk which demonstrates that we have many of
the best musicians in the folk world at our gigs.
February 2023 Atlas Bridge
Exciting acoustic 3-piece
band Atlas Bridge bring together the tuneful talents of Uilleann Piper &
Multi-instrumentalist Becky Taylor, with sensitive, honest vocals and
melodic 5-string banjo from Madeline Andrew underpinned with inventive
and energetic accompaniments by Steve Lacey who also adds a song or two
to the mix.
engaging, high energy, lively tune sets interspersed with
thought-provoking songs. With a multitude of different instruments
between them and a fresh approach to more familiar material as well as
vocal variety, there is plenty of interest here!
December 2022 Awake Arise
unmissable collaboration, five of the English folk scene’s most
inventive artists bring you Awake Arise – A
Christmas Show For Our Times; celebrating the riches of our varied
winter traditions and reflecting upon the hope and resilience in music
and song that can bring joy to us all in the darkest season.
Award-winning trio Lady Maisery (Hannah James, Rowan Rheingans and Hazel
Askew) have produced ‘some of the most exquisite, thrilling vocal
harmony work in the English folk scene’ (The Guardian), for nearly a
beguiling musical partnership of Jimmy Aldridge and Sid
Goldsmith complete the powerful line-up, bringing the outstanding
vocals, sensitive instrumentation and powerful social conscience that
has won them widespread critical acclaim.
Featuring traditional songs, folk carols, spoken word and newly written
music to galvanise and brighten this darkest season, Awake Arise is a
warm gift to the wintertime from five of the most engaging and
celebrated performers on the English folk scene.
the reputations of both acts as out-spoken voices on the folk scene,
this collection is also a rallying cry to embrace the power of
collective endeavour as a vital support during times of hardship and
loneliness. In this most uncertain of winters, Awake Arise is more than
just a great night out; these are essential songs which remind us who we
are and why we matter to each other.
November 2022 Calan
welcome the return of Calan who played for us in 2018.
CALAN are a multi award-winning Welsh folk band comprising of five
virtuoso musicians formed after they met at a folk music course in
Sweden. They won international acclaim at the world-renowned
Inter-Celtic Festival in Lorient, France, where they would eventually
become the first Welsh ensemble to win the coveted International Band
Trophy. In April 2019, they were voted Best Band at the inaugural Wales
Calan are: Bethan Rhiannon (accordion, vocals, clog dancing); Patrick
Rimes (fiddle, Welsh bagpipes); Angharad Jenkins (fiddle); Sam Humphreys
(guitar); and Shelley Musker-Turner (harp). Since they were formed the
band has played to audiences numbering from 40 at a garden fete to
26,000 at Fairport Convention’s Cropredy Festival in Oxfordshire, but
perhaps the most visible was their televised performance from a packed
Royal Albert Hall alongside Sir Bryn Terfel and Sting.
October 2022 Jimmy Aldridge and Sid
Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith are one of the most celebrated duos to have
emerged onto the British folk and acoustic scene in recent years. Their
combination of outstanding vocal work, sensitive instrumentation, and a
powerful social conscience has brought them widespread critical
acclaim. The songs themselves are always given centre stage but they are
brought to life with stunning musical arrangements and vocals. There is
an integrity that shines through their performances and a common thread
of political struggle, resistance, and justice.
To be a great folk singer, you have to be a great storyteller, as Jimmy
Aldridge and Sid Goldsmith are clearly aware. The duo are both fine
singers and multi-instrumentalists
The Outside Track
of 'Best Group' in both the Live Ireland awards and the Tradition In
Review awards, The Outside Track are one of the top Celtic acts in the
world. They were 'Best Live Act' nominees in the MG Alba Scots Traditional
Music Awards, and won the German Radio Critics Prize, for their album
Flash Company. Live Ireland called them, 'Among the top bands in the world
- stunning on every cut!'.
Outside Track’s marriage of Celtic music, song and dance has been
rapturously received around the world. Hailing from Scotland, Ireland, and
Cape Breton, its five members are united by a love of traditional music
and a commitment to creating new music on this as a foundation. They blend
fiddle, accordion, harp, guitar, flute, whistle, step-dance and vocals
with breathtaking vitality. Their blend of boundless energy and
unmistakable joie de vivre has won them a large following around the
Folk Awards Best Musician nominee Dan Walsh combines ‘virtuoso
playing and winning songwriting’ Describing what Dan does is
no easy task but at the heart of it is British, Irish and American
folk music delivered with a healthy dose of funky grooves – all
performed with his unique and dazzling take on clawhammer style
banjo helping to challenge all preconceptions about the instrument.
Add to all that poignant songs, astonishing musical departures and
lively humour and the result is a truly memorable live show which
has wowed audiences across the world from intimate seated rooms to
huge dancing crowds in festival fields.
is one of the UK’s leading lights in melodic clawhammer banjo. Clawhammer
banjo refers to playing with the back of the index or middle finger
nail in a downstroke movement while the thumb concentrates
principally on the 5th string which is a drone string but also picks
other strings using a technique called drop thumbing. The hand
assumes a claw like shape while the movement comes primarily from
the elbow. The style is a very old one used primarily in American
Old Time music though players like Ken Perlman, Michael J Miles and
others have experimented with other genres using the technique. The
good thing about the style is it can cover lead, chords and
percussion all in one so it makes a great solo style.
has recorded five albums to much critical acclaim and he is an in
demand performer with a hectic touring schedule in the UK, USA,
Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India and throughout Europe. He has
also released two banjo tablature
books. This unique and eclectic musician has stunned
audiences across the world.
February 2022 The Jeremiahs
The Jeremiahs is an Irish folk band
that comprises four musicians who have come together with the
common goal of writing, composing and performing folk songs and music. They have travelled
extensively, bringing their music far and wide and are heralded as a live
band not to be missed. With a wonderful mixture of newly composed songs
and tunes in the folk genre and a well selected catalogue of older folk
songs, they are sure to rouse all the emotions.
Hailing from County Dublin is singer
Joe Gibney on vocals. On fiddle, viola and vocals is County Cork’s Niamh
Varian-Barry (formerly of Solas). On flutes and whistles is the French
born Julien Bruneteau and on Guitar is Dublin born James Ryan.
Winners of the 2015 Best Vocal & Instrumental Album Live Ireland. Male
Vocalist of the Year 2015 Chicago Irish American News. Winners of the 2015
Christy Moore Songwriter Showcase. Winners of the 2013 Ballyshannon Folk
Jack Rutter, folk singer, bouzouki player, multi instrumentalist is one of
Britain's finest traditional singers.
Jack grew up in the Holme Valley area of West Yorkshire, a place steeped
in a wealth of traditional song, and following a BSc degree in Countryside
Management at Newcastle University has forged a highly successful career
playing music across the UK and Europe. In addition to his acclaimed solo
work, he has become a highly sought after collaborator for a host of the
biggest names in folk music such as Seth Lakeman, Sam Sweeney and Jackie
Oates as well as playing in the celebrated instrumental trio Moore Moss
December 2019 A Winter Union
WINTER UNION - Jade Rhiannon (Vocals, Shruti Box), Katriona
Gilmore (Vocals, Mandolin,
Fiddle), Jamie Roberts (Vocals, Guitar), Hannah Sanders (Vocals, Guitar,
Dulcimer) and Ben Savage (Vocals, Dobro, Guitar).
Five leading lights of the British roots
scene join forces to create a festive folk band like no other. Expect
soaring harmonies and exquisite musicianship as the 5-piece blast through a
repertoire of brand new, specially written songs, fresh arrangements of
traditional carols both well-loved and little-known, and seasonal classics
from both sides of the Atlantic.
Originally formed in 2015 for a one-off yuletide concert, A Winter Union
returned in 2016 for more shows including London’s Cecil Sharp House and a
live session on BBC Radio 3. This year brings the band’s first line-up
change with BBC Folk Award nominees Gilmore & Roberts joining members of The
Willows and Hannah Sanders.
November 2019 and 2016 Daoiri Farrell
former electrician, who decided to become a musician after seeing Christy
Moore perform on Irish TV, Dublin-born traditional singer and bouzouki
player Daoirí (pronounced ‘Derry’) Farrell has been described by some of the
biggest names in Irish folk music as one of most important singers to come
out of Ireland in recent years.
After a promising debut album, ‘The First Turn’, back in 2009, Daoirí spent
several years studying
traditional music and performance at respected colleges across Ireland.
While at the University of Limerick, Fintan Vallely introduced him to the
singing of the late Liam Weldon, an encounter that was to prove formative to
his sound and his approach to folk song.
Daoirí had cut his teeth as a singer in Dublin’s famous Góilin Singers Club
and at other sessions across the city, many of which he still visits
regularly. Following his studies he quickly found work accompanying artists
including Christy Moore, as well as a list of names that sounds like a who’s
who of folk music: Dónal Lunny, Martin Hayes, Dennis Cahill, Alan Doherty,
Danú, Dervish, Julie Fowlis, Arty McGlynn, The John Carty Big Band, Kíla,
Sean Keane, Gerry O’Connor (Banjo), Gerry O’Connor (Fiddle), Lankum and
more. In 2013 he won the All Ireland Champion Singer award at the Fleadh in
Co. Derry, and in 2015 won the
prestigious Danny Kyle Award at Celtic Connections in Glasgow with the
Daoirí finally stepped into the limelight in his own right, launching his
own solo live career at Celtic Connections, in January 2016. In May the same
year he was invited to fly to Manchester to do a live session on the BBC
Radio 2 Folk Show with Mark Radcliffe just a week before his first UK tour.
His name was suddenly everywhere and festival and show dates started to
stream in from across the world.
His long-awaiting follow-up album to ‘The First Turn’, ‘True Born Irishman’
was released in October 2016. The following spring his won two BBC Radio 2
Folk Awards – Best Traditional Track and Best Newcomer – and performed with
a six piece line-up at the awards ceremony at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
He has since performed in Australia, Canada, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, The
Czech Republic, USA, Portugal and more and played festivals including
Cambridge Folk Festival, Milwaukee Irish Festival, Vancouver Island Folk
Festival, the National Folk Festival of Australia and many more. In 2018 he
toured the UK with Transatlantic Sessions and recorded his next album with
Dónal Lunny in the producer’s chair. His new album was released in February
October 2019 and 2017 The Leylines
welcomed back the The Leylines who entertained us wonderfully n 2017.
West-country collective established in 2013, with a genre-defying, eclectic
sound that ranges from traditional folk to full blown festival rock. The
Leylines are: Steve Mitchell (Vocals/Guitar), Hannah Johns (Violin), Dan
Thompson (Electric Guitar), Sean Booth (Bass) and Dave Burbidge (Drums).
The Leylines was founded by a group of musicians in Weston-super-Mare (via
Bristol), wishing to combine their individual musical styles into something
that isn’t quite folk, sort of punk, 100% heart-pounding revelry. This
unique sound, combined with Steve’s lyrics centred around life on the road
and the state of society, has launched the band into the heart of the live
music community and made them firm favourites of the festival circuit.
The band released their debut album, ‘Along The Old Straight Track’ in June
2016, produced by Sean Lakeman, recorded at The Metway studios in Brighton
and mixed by Al Scott. With this team on board, inevitably the record has
drawn strong comparison to the likes of The Levellers, Mad Dog Mcrea and
Ferocious Dog, whilst remaining an album by a band which have forged their
own sound and identity.
In the following years The Leylines went on their first of many national
tours, and were booked for Glastonbury Festival, where they performed six
sets in as many days. They also played stages at Beautiful Days, Goldcoast
Oceanfest, Something To Smile About Festival, The Godney Gathering and Big
Feastival, as well as many other music festivals across the UK.
The band then released their second studio album Recover Reveal, in March
work on it almost immediately after the release of ‘Along The Old Straight
Track, their second record was nearly three years of honing and crafting,
with a number of tracks crowd-tested at numerous venues and festivals across
the UK. The result is a collection of sincere, straight-from-the-heart
performances, constructed with care, and played with passion.
The Leylines then took Recover Reveal across the country, before heading
into festival season to play everyone’s foot stomping favourites from both
With a fiercely loyal and ever-growing fan base, The Leylines guarantee to
have their audiences up on their feet – and they will be having as much fun
as their audience while they’re doing it!
creative, and original; Tannara (Owen Sinclair, Robbie Greig, Becca Skeoch
and Joseph Peach) have established themselves as one of the UK’s most
interesting and unique contemporary folk groups.
Formed in 2014, the band came about as a natural extension of the four
members’ love of making music together. Fuelled by this, they’ve covered
considerable musical ground over the past five years. With a background in
Scotland’s native traditions, their ceaseless musical development is a
melting pot of ideas, genres and sounds: From indie rock to electronica, as
well as Scotland’s vibrant and diverse folk scene. Unafraid to experiment,
their music is an electrifying
place for a world of sounds: Punchy and clean, riotous and gritty, tender
and honest. On fiddle, harp, guitar, accordion and vocals, Tannara make an
intensely considered musical world which is uniquely theirs. Their debut
album “Trig” was released in 2016. Produced by Rachel Newton, their first
offering as a band was a raw, joyous, reflection of a band finding its
sound. It was received to great acclaim, from critics and audiences alike.
Described by Living Tradition Magazine as “Simply Outstanding”, it was
longlisted for “Album of the Year” at the 2016 Scots Trad Music Awards, the
same year in which the band were nominated for “Up and Coming Artist of the
Year”. From open air festivals, to intimate housconcerts, and everything in
between, the band love playing live. A fact that’s reflected by their so far
busy schedule of performances and radio appearances across Europe, with
highlights including Cambridge Folk Festival, and Festival Interceltique de
Lorient, a performance described as “Fiery and Graceful” by The Herald.
The year ahead will be the biggest yet for Tannara, with the release of
their second album “Strands” at Celtic Connections Festival 2019. The album
represents a significant development for the band, who’ve spent the past two
years writing and recording it.
Josie Duncan and Pablo Lafuente
BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award Winners Josie Duncan and Pablo Lafuente are a
vocal/guitar duo like no other. Calling the Isle of Lewis and Glasgow/Spain
home, it's no wonder their music doesn’t focus on one place or on one of the
many strands of Scotland’s web of traditions. They are well travelled, and
well versed in music from across the land. On guitar and vocals in Gaelic,
Scots and English, their music is a round tour, where centuries old ballads
meet Gaelic Puirt A Beul, songs from the mines and cotton mills, as well as
some original writing. Josie's voice, crystal clear with its slight island
twang, is equally at home in any of these domains. Accompanied by Pablo's
dynamic, sensitive guitar playing, they illuminate the lyrics. Their music,
at times sparse and haunting, at others driving and all consuming, leaves
audiences stunned. They are both accomplished musicians in their own right.
Josie is a recent graduate of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where she
studied with some of the masters of the Scottish and Gaelic traditions. She
has toured extensively, performing at festivals and venues in Europe, Canada
and America. Her other projects include a collaboration with innovative
Gaelictronica band Inyal, and Blasta, a showcase of singers of the Isle of
Lewis commissioned by this year's Festival Interceltique de Lorient. Pablo's
experiences are no less varied. Of Spanish origin, he has put down cultural
roots in Scotland, exploring the tradition to its deepest core. Since
completing his studies of guitar and fiddle at the National Centre for
Excellence in Traditional music Pablo has been in high demand, playing,
recording and touring internationally with artists including: The Outside
Track, Barluath, Sketch and Spanish Gaita extraordinary Anxo Lorenzo. Since
joining forces in 2016 Josie and Pablo have taken the scene by storm,
quickly becoming one of Scotland’s most in-demand live acts at festivals and
venues across the country and in 2017 were nominated for ‘Folk Band Of The
Year’ at the ‘MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards’. In their short time together
they’ve delighted the audiences of BBC Radio 2, Celtic Connections, BBC
Proms In The Park, Cambridge Folk Festival, Sofar sessions, and a host of
venues across Scotland.
2019 Jackie Oates
Jackie Oates is a singer and fiddle player hailing from Staffordshire.
unique treatment of English ballads and songs, and pure, haunting singing
style has established her at the forefront of the new English folk revival.
Since appearing as a finalist in the BBC
Radio 2 Young Folk Awards 2003, she has performed extensively at festivals
and venues across the country and beyond, in a solo capacity and with her
band. She was a founder member of Northumbrian group and Mercury nominated
Rachel Unthank and the Winterset, Jackie is now a permanent member of the
folk super-group The Imagined Village as well as touring in her own right.
2008 she released her second album ‘The Violet Hour’ which was followed by a
swathe of glowing national reviews, with the album going on to be one of
Mojo’s top ten folk albums of the year.
times nominated in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and
winners of the Spiral Earth Awards Megson draw heavily on their Teesside
heritage to create a truly unique brand of folk music. The husband & wife
duo bring an infectious mix of heavenly vocals, lush harmonies and driving
rhythmic guitars. Comprising Debs Hanna (Vocals, Whistle, Piano Accordion)
and Stu Hanna (Guitar, Mandola, Banjo) Megson have gained fame on the
British folk scene, not only for their arresting & intelligent songwriting,
but for their exquisite musicianship and northern humour. As fRoots Magazine
puts it ‘if you don’t like the music here then you have a problem’ .
Calan, December 2018
Katriona Gilmore and Jamie
Roberts November 2018 and
Since then, the duo have toured Canada and mainland Europe, played some of the UK’s biggest acoustic festivals, toured with folk rock legends Fairport Convention and won countless accolades for their genre-spanning work.
Lucy Ward is an award winning singer-songwriter from Derby. She plays guitar, ukulele and concertina but considers her voice to be her first instrument.
After getting her first guitar at the age of 14, Lucy ventured into acoustic clubs, it was there that she first heard the traditional music that she now loves. Captured by the lyrics and stories of traditional song Lucy delved further into the world of folk music, visiting clubs and sessions up and down the country before getting booked to play gigs in her own right. In 2009 Lucy reached the final of the BBC Young Folk Award and she hasn’t looked back since!
After winning the Horizon Award for best newcomer at the 2012 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, Lucy’s career has gone from strength to strength establishing her as one of the hottest performers on the UK Folk scene, pulling a full capacity audience for her Cambridge Folk Festival debut.
Jimmy Aldridge and Sid Goldsmith
Jimmy Aldridge and Sid Goldsmith are one of the finest duos to have emerged onto the British folk and acoustic scene in recent years. Their combination of outstanding vocal work, sensitive instrumentation, and a powerful social conscience has brought them widespread critical acclaim.
In the main they play traditional music that originates from the British Isles on guitar and banjo, the combination this and their great vocal harmonies are really superb. Their performance of these songs is top notch and they are genuinely a real joy to listen to…In short, they’re brilliant!
The Outside Track
A stunning synthesis of
virtuosity and energy, The Outside Track’s marriage of Canadian,
Scottish and Irish music and song has been rapturously received
around the work. Hailing from Scotland, Ireland and Cape Breton, its
five members are united by a love of traditional music and a
commitment to creating new music on its foundation. Using fiddle,
accordion, harp guitar, flute, step-dance and vocals, these five
virtuosos blend boundless energy with unmistakeable joie de vivre.
The line-up comprises Teresa Horgan, Mairi Rankin (Beolach), Ailie
Robertson (Live Ireland Winner, BBC Young Trad finalist), Fiona
Black (BBC Fame Academy Winner) and Cillian O’Dalaigh.
Jim Moray March 2018
welcome return of Jim Moray. After ground-breaking and award-winning
albums, including winner of BBC Radio 2 Folk Album of the Year 2003
(Sweet England) and Mojo Folk Album of the Year 2008 and 2010 (Low
Culture and Modern History), Jim now finds himself hailed as a
pivotal influence by a new generation of folk musicians. Jim’s
latest album Upcetera places the narrative element centre stage,
with supple soaring vocal leading the listener by the hand through
strange old stories.
MOORE MOSS RUTTER
series of remarkable gigs has heightened the sense of anticipation
around the reunion of Tom Moore, Archie Churchill-Moss and Jack
Rutter in the trio that won them the 2011 BBC Radio 2 Young Folk
Award. Now seven years on, having toured with with some of the
biggest and best acts in contemporary folk music, they now reconvene
to release their third album together. Widely regarded as
three of the best players of traditional folk amongst a precociously
gifted generation, their finely-crafted arrangements wield a rare
potency. Their music features new compositions as well as ancient
traditional material from Britain and Europe, this record focuses on
their own movements from the countryside to large cities and the
contrasts that come into play. Liberally sprinkled with a modern
electroacoustic grit, this trio has as much to do with contemporary
music as it does with folk or baroque.
Rutter plays Atkin and Martin Guitars, Tom Moore plays a Rod Ward
Violin and Archie Churchill-Moss plays a Castagnari Melodeon
December 2017 The
Melrose Quartet are truly an
all-round folk act, with both tight a capella harmony and
energy-packed instrumentals. They comprise
leading English musicians Nancy Kerr (2015 BBC Folk Singer of the
Year), James Fagan, Jess & Richard Arrowsmith with twin fiddles,
guitar and bouzouki, melodeon and four strong voices. The band
present a bold take on old and new English songs and tunes, with a
powerful treatment of traditional material alongside some of the
best modern song-writing in the folk world. They reliably delight
and tantalise their audiences with the infectious warmth and sparkle
these four seasoned musicians feel when they unite.
In concert, Melrose Quartet perform a diverse repertoire, featuring
music from their acclaimed debut album ‘50 Verses’ . There are
carousing chorus songs, lively dance tunes, ancient stories and
modern pieces written in celebration of everything from weddings &
birthdays to issues that affect all of our 21st century lives. This
is music for everybody.
November 2014, April 2009, October, 2005,
2003, and 2002
So how do you like your musical cocktail? If it is shaken, not
stirred then catch the Paperboys whilst you have the chance. This
acclaimed Canadian-based band serves up a heady blend of
country-folk-celtic -bluegrass-rock with a bit of traditional
Mexican music thrown in for good measure. It defies labelling but
hey, who cares, it is just brilliant music! Those of you who have
seen this amazing band on their previous gigs here at Whitchurch
will know what we mean.
The Paperboys are renowned for their energetic live performances and
have wowed festival goers the world over. They create a buzz
wherever they play . Lead singer is Tom Landau who is the only
current band member to have been there from the start. Born in
Mexico to a Canadian mother of Irish ancestry – thus accounting for
at lest two of his musical influences - he later moved to Canada
where he founded the Paperboys in 1992.
To say their music is versatile is to put it mildly and they have
successfully blended many influences that recall bands like Horslips,
the Waterboys and the Pogues.
Songs from the band’s fifth studio album, The Road to Ellenside,
include Tom Landa’s richly
expressive vocals backed by a combination
of whistle and flute (Geoff Kelly is amazing), banjo, percussion,
guitar and not to mention the jarana, a small Mexican guitar which
Landa plays to great effect. The excellent musicianship creates a
sound that fills the venue and the overall effect is exhilarating.
The distinctly Celtic flavour that emerges time and time again sets
the overall tone for the evening.
Click here to see the
2017 and 2013 FAUSTUS
together in 2006 as an evolution of the award winning band Dr.
Faustus. They made an
eponymous debut album in 2008, produced by Stu Hanna and released by
Navigator Records, which saw them nominated as the Best Group in the
BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Touring saw them headlining at festivals,
as well as playing sell-out concerts at arts centres and clubs.
After a two year break they returned in 2011 and released the new
album ‘Broken Down Gentlemen’ (Navigator Records) in spring 2013.
Faustus are three of the leading lights of their generation: Benji
Kirkpatrick (Seth Lakeman Band, Bellowhead), Saul Rose (Waterson:Carthy,
Whapweazel) and Paul Sartin (Bellowhead, Belshazzar’s Feast). They
have a plethora of experience between them, brought together here in
a virtuosic display of musicianship and testosterone. Rooted deeply
in the English tradition, in 2007 they received a 75th Anniversary
Award from the English Folk Dance and Song Society.
’One of Britain’s outstanding folk bands.’
**** The Guardian
2017 Chris Wood
the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2006, the Best
Original Song category was won by Chris Wood and
storyteller Hugh Lupton for "One in a Million". He
was also nominated in three other categories: Best
Album (for The Lark Descending), Best Traditional
Track ("Lord Bateman"), and Folk Singer of the
In 2009, the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards recognised
Wood as 'Folk Singer of the Year', and Trespasser
was also recognised as Album of the Year.
In March 2009, Chris took part in the Darwin Song
a multi-artist songwriting retreat organised by
the Shrewsbury Folk Festival to create songs that
had a "resonance and relevance" to Darwin. A CD
was released in August 2009.
In 2011, Chris again tasted success at the BBC
Radio 2 Folk Awards, where he was recognised as
Folk Singer of the Year as well as winning Song of
the Year for his song "Hollow Point", from The
Handmade Life, a song about the shooting of Jean
Charles de Menezes in 2005.
In 2012, the singer-songwriter Joan Armatrading
asked him to appear as support act on the British
leg of her Starlight tour.
FEBRUARY 2017 AND
times nominated in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and double winners of
the Spiral Earth Awards Megson draw heavily on their Teesside
heritage to create a truly unique brand of folk music.
The husband & wife duo
bring an infectious mix of heavenly vocals, lush harmonies and
driving rhythmic guitars. Comprising Debs Hanna (Vocals, Whistle,
Stu Hanna (Guitar, Mandola, Banjo) Megson have gained fame on the
British folk scene, not only for their arresting & intelligent
songwriting, but for their exquisite musicianship and northern
humour. As fRoots Magazine puts it ‘if you don’t like the music here
then you have a problem’ .
Summer 2016 saw the
release of their much anticipated new studio album GOOD TIMES WILL
COME AGAIN gaining them much critical acclaim. “One of the most
original political folk sets of the year. Ewan MacColl would have
been impressed.” said The Guardian. “Relevant, thought-provoking
songs that would make Woody Guthrie proud” said Acoustic Magazine.
While folk broadcasting legend Mike Harding described it as “One of
the top albums of 2016.”.
December 2016 and May 2014 Belshazzar's Feast
Hutchinson (accordion) and Paul Sartin (oboe, violin and
vocals) shared a musical passion borne out of the desire to
earn sufficient money to support their extravagant
lifestyles. Their amazing musicianship coupled with wry
humour stunned audiences around Europe and the States. After
a brief sabbatical, they’re back! If you like Mozart,
Beethoven, Elvis Presley and The Spinners avoid them – you
have been warned!
Paul Sartin is a member of BBC Radio 2 Award-winning big
band Bellowhead and English music trio
Faustus. He combines his busy performing career with
teaching and outreach work, at St Edward’s School in Oxford
and for community organisations, most notably Live Music Now
and SuperAct. He dabbles in academia, recently assisting on
a number of publications of old tune manuscripts, and
regularly deputises with the Choir of Winchester Cathedral,
where he gets to wear a dress to work.
Paul Hutchinson is a member of the innovative and
progressive folk trio, Hoover the Dog as well as Okavango –
the collaboration between Hoover the Dog and Fluxus
(Belgium). Paul is also a seasoned accordion tutor for
Folkworks, Hands On, British Council (in Czech Republic and
Belgium), Birmingham Conservatoire and University of
Limerick. His favourite colour is pink.
Belshazzar’s Feast start with traditional folk music, add a
touch of classical and jazz, throw in a bit of pop and music
hall, and top it off wry humour for a unique live
experience. In November 2009 they released ‘Frost Bites’,
the follow up to the successful ‘Food Of Love’. ‘Frost Bites
is a collection of winter and Christmas material and its
release was followed by a national tour. Belshazzar’s Feast
received a coveted nomination for the Best Duo Award at the
2010 BBC Folk Awards.
September 2016 and March 2015 O'Hooley and Tidow
& Heidi Tidow are regarded as lionhearted trailblazers of
contemporary music and songwriting. Having the originality and skill
to invite comparison with the most celebrated harmony duos, from
early Simon and Garfunkel to the iconic Kate and Anna McGarrigle,
Belinda and Heidi’s powerful, deeply moving, and at times
spine-tingling performances are infused with an honesty and empathy
that will disarm even the hardest of heart.
Their album 'The Hum' was voted the Folk Album of 2014.
Boundless songwriting and exquisite harmonies that truly shine’ * *
* * * Guardian
2016 Sam Carter
Since Sam Carter released
his debut album
in 2009, there has been a mounting excitement about this
songwriter, guitarist and singer. At the time he was an
Emerging Artist In Residence at The Southbank Centre in
London and has since supported Bellowhead on a UK tour,
performed in the Middle East and UK with the British
Shifting Sands project, played to thousands as part of
the all-star line-up for the tour ‘The Lady: A Homage To
Sandy Denny’, performed on major venue and festival stages
in his own right and walked away with Horizon Award for best
newcomer at the 2010 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards.
‘The finest English-style finger-picking guitarist of his
generation’ Jon Boden
April 2016 Stick In The Wheel
Stick In The Wheel's debut album From Here is a raw, fresh take on
English Folk music. Their now-trademark abrasive delivery of both
original and traditional tracks, is not bland retroism, or empty
nostalgia, but a voice linking now to then. Addressing issues
that still have relevance today, re-visiting traditions long-lost,
as well as those disappearing right before us, in a way that has
more in common with Sleaford Mods than with Bellowhead. The
band is spearheaded by Nicola Kearey's fierce uncompromising vocal
delivery, accompanied by Fran Foote's harmony vocal and underpinned
by sparse taut arrangements. Brought up in the thriving
culture of working class London and cutting their teeth in its
diverse musical landscape (Dobro player Ian also producing music for
GhostPoet, Context and for labels such as XL, Brownswood and Cosmic
Bridge), they now bring those influences and attitudes to their
December 2015 The East Pointers
East Pointers are three young men whose talent and penchant for
traditional Celtic tunes of decades past greatly belie their
respective ages. And while each member of the freshly formed trio –
banjoist/vocalist/step-dancer Koady Chaisson, fiddle player/vocalist
Tim Chaisson, and guitarist/vocalist Jake Charron – is an
accomplished musician in his own right, their recent union is a
testament to their shared output being, to borrow a common adage,
greater than the sum of its parts.
The cousins Chaisson hail
from Prince Edward Island, Canada, part of
generation of a heralded legacy of fiddlers
and folk musicians. Tim tours the world as a
performer/songwriter with a pop and
country-tinged take on contemporary folk,
with Koady often at his side or supporting
other touring trad acts with his banjo,
bass, and six-string. Jake, on the other
hand, is based in Ontario and has strummed,
plucked, and played piano alongside a
laundry list of award-winning performers
from around the globe.
When Jake would visit PEI with any of his
collaborators or the Chaissons were passing
through Ontario on tour, a late-night
kitchen party was sure to follow – fiddles
and friends, guitars and Guinness, banjos
and bad jokes. As their trunk of traditional
and original tunes – some with an Irish
influence, some Scottish, others rooted in
the Maritimes – started to fill up, the trio
realized it was time to put some to tape and
take them on the road.
The East Pointers’ slew of
tunes carries a diverse mix of influence,
but regardless of their age or origin, what
they all share in common is the undeniable
ability to get hands clapping, feet
stomping, and bodies of all ages bouncing in
November 2015 - Merry Hell
in their native North West of England, Merry Hell is an eight-piece
folk-rock band with a history, a pedigree and a bright future. In
four short years they have risen to become festival favourites,
their first two albums finding favour with critics, broadcasters and
music fans alike. They are continuing to develop an enviable
reputation for the quality of their song writing, recorded work and
The band was forged in the smouldering embers of
90s Folk/punk band, The Tansads. Following an emotional series of
reunion concerts in 2010, its members chose to tread the boards
under a new name, 'Merry Hell', in order to reflect their new
impetus, new hopes and, most importantly, new songs. While Merry
Hell retains a nucleus of five former
Tansads members, brothers John, Bob and Andrew Kettle (guitar,
mandolin and vocals respectively), along with keyboard player, Lee
Goulding and drummer Andy Jones, the addition of vocalist, Virginia
Kettle (wife of John), has helped create a new identity, purpose and
spirit, in their music. She took little persuading to trade in her
solo singer-songwriter past for a future in the band. Her prolific,
ingenious and insightful song writing is one of the focal points of
Merry Hell's recordings and live performances – her presence has
perfectly complemented a group which has taken particular pride in
penning original material (Bob, John and Lee have also been
consistent contributors of new songs).
May 2015 Philip Henry and Hannah Martin
Winners of the 2014 BBC Radio Two Folk Award for Best
Duo, Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin are one of the most exciting
and innovative duos to appear on the folk/roots/acoustic scene in
recent years. With a rapidly expanding following and a truly unique
sound that effortlessly spans many genres, the duo have been touring
constantly for the past three years, winning new fans of all ages
wherever they go. Festival appearances have included regular
Glastonbury slots; all the major folk festivals including mainstage
slots at Sidmouth Folk Week; Broadstairs; Warwick; Shrewsbury; Gate
To Southwell; Shepley Spring; Priddy; and a constant presence on the
greenfield festival circuit, at events such as Larmer Tree (mainstage);
Sunrise Celebration (mainstage); and Green Man.
April 2015 Gren Bartley Band
Gren Bartley is a prolific and exceptional
songwriter. Releasing a new album in the Spring of 2015 from
renowned producer Gavin Monaghan (Robert
Plant, Ryan Adams, Nizlopi, Ocean Colour Scene etc...),
the new record builds further on the reputation from the previous
two albums out in the last two years.
Gren is truly the future of folk songwriting, using his influences
from folk and world music traditions to bring something unique to
this modern day troubadour. He is an artist not to be missed. Showcasing
his “phenomenal” guitar playing and poetry driven lyrics, the Gren
Bartley Band's stunning harmonies, driving percussion and intricate
string arrangements for cello and violin, have been captivating
audiences across the UK
February 2015 Chris Sherburn and Findlay Napier
Chris Sherburn is one of the best anglo-concertina players in the UK. He is renowned for his great playing and mighty craic! He is also well known for his longstanding musical partnership with Denny Bartley. They toured worldwide and released numerous albums. They formed band extraordinaire “Last Night’s Fun”, and it was here Findlay and Chris met. In recent years Chris has also toured extensively with Bella Hardy. Findlay Napier is a Scottish singer, guitarist and songwriter based in Glasgow. After attaining his BA in Scottish Traditional Song Findlay formed a traditional folk band called Back of the Moon which performed all over the world and released three albums. They were awarded ‘Best Up and Coming Act’ at the Trad Music Awards in 2003 and ‘Folk Band of the Year’ in 2005.
The Carrivick Sisters
Carrivick Sisters are one of the
UK's top young bluegrass and folk
acts. Twins Laura and Charlotte
perform their original songs and
instrumentals along with a few
carefully chosen covers on guitar,
mandolin, fiddle, dobro, and
clawhammer banjo. Their busy touring
schedule is rapidly building them a
reputation for engaging and
entertaining live performances with
tight sibling vocal harmonies and
Having grown up in South Devon, an
area rich in folk lore and legends,
much of their original material is
inspired by their local surroundings
As well as touring
all over the UK, the Carrivick
Sisters have performed at major
festivals in Canada and mainland
Europe. They have released four CDs
("My Own Two Feet" - 2006, "Better
Than 6 Cakes" - 2007, "Jupiter's
Corner" - 2009, and "From the
Fields" - 2011) to much critical
acclaim, with "From the Fields"
having been played on national
radio. Their fifth, "Over the Edge"
is due for release on the 7th of
“I am very
impressed by The Carrivick
Sisters, one of the best
young duos I’ve heard. The
girls sing and play as one
and their work is
characterised by great
musicality. They are not
only very talented
instrumentalists and singers
but they write really good
songs as well.”
superbly talented pair o’
lasses” - Mike Harding, BBC
…their already formidable
and songwriting maturing at
such a steep curve they’ll
soon be orbiting far beyond
anyone else.” -
Q Magazine ****
Sisters are pick of the
crop.” - The
Jackie Oates and Tristan Seume
Jackie Oates is a singer and fiddle player hailing from
Staffordshire. Her unique treatment of English ballads and
songs, and pure, haunting singing style has
her at the forefront of the new English folk revival. Since
appearing as a finalist in the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Awards
2003, she has performed extensively at festivals and venues
across the country and beyond, in a solo capacity and with
her band. She was a founder member of Northumbrian group and
Mercury nominated Rachel Unthank and the Winterset, Jackie
is now a permanent member of the folk super-group The
Imagined Village as well as touring in her own right.
‘Oates has emerged as a
frontrunner among the new generation of Brit
folkies, marked out by the purity of her voice…An
exquisite piece of chamber folk……makes for an
atmosphere of rare enchantment’ The Observer
‘Standing out from English folk’s
remarkable new wave, Oates has the finest voice of
them all…Saturnine shows Oates at the top of her
On Saturday [album of the week].
As a soloist, accompanist,
writer and session musician, Tristan Seume
is one of the UK’s leading acoustic
guitarists. Strongly influenced by folk,
country, he has released two instrumental
solo albums, You Just Know and
Middle Child, featuring a mixture of
original compositions, traditional tunes and
a few choice covers.
Tristan also plays guitar and bouzouki
with BBC folk award-winning singer, Jackie
Oates in her band, appearing at arts centres
and festivals across Europe.
For many years, he has been a contributor to
two of the UK’s biggest selling guitar
magazines, Guitarist and Guitar Techniques,
and lectures at the Academy of Contemporary
Music in Guildford, Surrey as well as at the
annual International Guitar Festival in
superb fingerpicking talent and ease of
drifting between styles drives you to a
state of listening compulsion” – Acoustic Magazine
“I believe he is one
of the finest of the new acoustic
Acoustic guitar legend, Gordon Giltrap
Bella is one of the finest young folk acts around, singing
unaccompanied ballads, or entwining her hypnotic voice with her own
fiddle accompaniment to breathtaking effect. Three times nominated
in the BBC Folk Awards, she has a voice marked as '...mesmerising'
and '...faultless'. Her songs touch on both the fantastical,
storytelling elements of Kate Bush and the lovelorn song writing
craft of Carole King, ranging in subject matter from fairytales to
English working class history via childhood nostalgia, myths, murder
and the human condition.
Bella Hardy and her 'Bright Morning Star Christmas Show' - four
star review from the Times described this Christmas collection as 'a
quiet, unassuming treasure trove'. Contemporary folk musician,
singer, songwriter and winner of best original track 'The Herring
Girl' BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2012.
Seth Tinsley, Guitar and Vocals
Heather Gessey, Fiddle and Vocals
Andrew Waite, Accordion
Heather and Andrew formed the trio Tyde in April 2008
whilst on tour in Madrid as members of Folkestra the
North-East regional youth folk ensemble based at The
Sage Gateshead . In July 2008 they played in the first
and only Folk Prom at the Royal Albert Hall and by
December they were playing in the finals of the BBC
Radio 2 Young Folk Awards.
Whilst playing at Warwick Folk Festival in 2009 they
were approached by Mrs Casey Music and by Christmas
their first album, Tyde, had been recorded. With CD in
hand, and on the back of an acoustic coffee break
performance at the Association of Festival Organisers
Conference, a full summer of festivals and folk clubs
followed in 2010. After much critical acclaim for their
first album and year touring, recognised by PRS for
Music as one of the years hardest working bands, 2011
was similarly hectic with another summer full of
festivals and club appearances.
music is really dynamic with a unity of playing rarely
seen on the live music scene. Centred in English
tradition but with a contemporary edge, Tyde deliver
modern, punchy, danceable tunes, carefully arranged
songs and intricate, emotional slow sets and as to the
bands song writing skills there is really something
remarkable going on. It’s the mixture of raw energy,
prodigious musical ability and clever, fresh
arrangements that make Tyde something different.
Over the spring 2012 Tyde have been recording their
second album, 'The Hidden Spoon', which was released in
Tyde have recently linked up with a new agent, Hannah
Bright, at Haystack Music and are looking forward to
touring with the new album in the spring and another
summer of festival performances across the country in
"If you get the chance to see them live then take it -
you won't be disappointed" Folk Radio UK.
in the 2009 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, the Faustus truimvirate are
three of the leading lights of their generation: Saul Rose (Waterson;Carthy,
Whapweazel), Benji Kirkpatrick (Seth Lakeman Band, Bellowhead) and
Paul Sartin (Bellowhead, Belshazzar’s Feast). They have a plethora
of experience between them, brought together here in a virtuosic
display of musicianship and testosterone. Rooted deeply in the
English tradition, in 2007 they received a 75th Anniversary Award
from the English Folk Dance and Song Society.
music, superbly and tastefully performed . . . a folk essential’
**** Sunday Times
‘Dynamically fascinating to watch, entertaining and
intriguing. Their ability to switch from song to tune,
from instrument to voice, from traditional tune to
modern arrangements made seeing them again a
necessity’Folk and Roots
playing; lovely arrangements; great material’Living
Benji: Son of the famous folk melodeon and
accordion player John Kirkpatrick, Benji
Kirkpatrick a key member of folk big band
Bellowhead who have appeared regularly on Later
with Jools Holland and have been enjoying sell
out tours throughout 2011. Benji also
plays with the Seth Lakeman Band who shot to
fame when Seth’s album ‘Kitty Jay’, featuring
Benji, was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize
in 2005. The follow up to ‘Kitty Jay’, ‘Freedom
Fields’ has sold more than 100,000 copies and
led to a hectic touring schedule and sold out
shows in the UK and beyond. Benji’s has
also performed with numerous other artists
including Oysterband, John Jones and Maddy Prior
(Steeleye Span), and has also found time to
release three solo albums.
Saul: Saul Rose was a long time member of
Waterson:Carthy, winning two BBC Radio 2 Folk
Awards with Waterson:Carthy’s album ‘Broken
Ground’ and eventually forming a successful duo
with Eliza Carthy. The double album ‘Red Rice’,
of which Saul was an integral part of the ‘Rice’
half, was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize
in 1998. More recently Saul has joined
Whapweasel, played in Ruth Notman’s band, and
re-launched his duo with hammered dulcimer
player with Maclaine Colston and in summer 2009
he joined Jim Moray’s regular band. He has
played on several albums as a guest, including
Jackie Oates’ album ‘Hyperboreans’, Norma
Waterson and Eliza Carthy’s album ‘The Gift’ and
the soundtrack for the film ‘Morris- A Life With
Bells On’. He was nominated for the
Musician of The Year award in the 2010 BBC Folk
Awards and in 2011 took the part of Songman in
the West End play War Horse.
Paul: Paul Sartin is also a member of BBC Radio
2 Award-winning big band Bellowhead along with
Benji, as well as award-nominated duo
Belshazzar’s Feast. He is also director of the
Andover Museum Loft Singers, is a consultant for
the charity Live Music Now and is a composer of
note with recent compositions including ‘The
Hartlepool Monkey’ for Streetwise Opera,
‘Anthony and Cleopatra’ for the Central School
of Speech and Drama, and ‘Changing Landscapes’
for Broadstairs Folk Week.
Faustus came together in 2006 as an evolution of
the award winning band Dr. Faustus, when Tim Van
Eyken and Rob Harbron left to pursue other
projects. They made an eponymous debut
album in 2008, produced by Stu Hanna and
released by Navigator Records, which saw them
nominated as the Best Group in the 2009 BBC
Radio 2 Folk Awards. Subsequent touring
saw them headlining at festivals, as well as
playing sell-out concerts at arts centres and