This was our annual French evening leading into our weekend of workshops music and dance. There were no floor spots this evening, but performances from two local bands and one from France.
We kicked off the evening with Breton and French songs from Gwendal Moële and Bof! Check out their website.
Next came a new trio: Shepherd, Pack and Veal – from various parts of the UK – playing a variety of instrumentals on violin, accordion and clarinet. Dave Shepherd and Anna Pack have played for us before, but this year they were joined by Jo Veal from Sheffield.
Top the bill this year will be the wonderful La Chavannée from Château-sur-Allier in central France. The 8-piece version of the band included some of the most respected traditional musicians in France, including two generations of the Paris family: Frédéric, Manu and Eveline, Catherine, Gabrielle and Mathilde with Maxou Heintzen and Patrick Bouffard. La Chavannée have not visited the UK for several years, so this was a very special night. Here they soon after their arrival.
On Saturday April 7th La Chavannée led two workshops – music and dance – during the day a played for a dance in the evening. Here’s what they sound like:
There are plenty more YouTube clips of the band. You can find out more about La Chavannée on their website.
Sadly, for the time in our seven years we had to cancel one of our evenings due to bad weather. Below is the programme you would have seen and will now see next season.
This is another of the occasional evenings when we have two main guests. This time it’s Rosewood and Walker & Cambridge.
Rosewood comprises Phil Lyons, Simon Haines and Val Woollard.
Determined not to be pigeon-holed, they include in their set a wide range of songs and tunes that can be described as “folk” in the broadest sense. These are played on a collection of acoustic instruments. There’s loads more about Rosewood on their website here.
Cambridge & Walker are a duo from Cambridge who are making a reputation for themselves throughout East Anglia.
David Cambridge sings and plays guitar in Cambridge and the surrounding area. Jenna Walker sings and plays squeezeboxes and has been singing solo for many years. During the 2016 festival season , David and Jenna decided to try try working together as a duo. They went public in the autumn at Black Fen, Cambridge and Bury Folk clubs and friends and audiences convinced them to carry on.
Our featured guests are a trio called Crayon Angels from deepest Essex. Here they are performing one of their songs:
This is how they describe themselves:
Crayon Angels are an acoustic guitar-driven trio combining songs influenced by some of the British greats (Richard Thompson, Ray Davies, Andy Partridge etc.), delivered by a soulful female vocal and coloured by atmospheric electric and slide guitars.
Sadly, for the fiOur main guests for February were to have been Andy Matthewson and Lisa Winship, a duo from Reading , but unfortunately Lisa couldn’t make it so Andy played once more for us as a solo singer/guitarist. Despite this and the fact that he had to borrow Jeremy Harmer’s guitar, his 60 minutes was much appreciated by our audience. Here’s a reminder of Andy’s playing and singing.
There’s more about Andy on his website.
Our Featured guests are Capstan Full Strength, an East Anglia group originally formed to sing sea shanties. Since those early days, they have branched out and now sing a wide range of folk-related songs, many of which have choruses for audiences to join in with. Here’s a sample recorded last year at a day organised by Suffolk Folk.
There were floor spots from duo The Half-Hardy Perennials, Annie Meehan and Jeremy Harmer and Josh.
Happy New Year – to all our loyal audience
Main guests on our first night of 2018 were Bijoux Toots a group based on the Suffolk/North Essex border. They’re a talented bunch of musicians who focus on strong vocal harmonies, combined with accordion, mandolin, fiddle, bouzouki, guitar, ukulele and double-bass. They play the widest range of material you can imagine – and got the audience joining in on songs by David Bowie and The Rolling Stones. Watch them below.
Our Featured Guest was Stan Harvey who did a floor spot for us last year and impressed us with his rendition of songs by American songwriters from the 1940s to the present day. In this longer set he sang some great songs. His Woody Guthrie song, Talking Dust Bowl Blues was a revelation. Interestingly, Stan avoided the well-known American songs – wisely in my opinion.
You can find out more about Stan on his website here.
Our evening opened with excellent floor spots from three local singers: Hazel Bradshaw, Alice Martin and Jackie Ord, whose song “Two River View Wrabness” is always a hit with our audience.
In December our main guests were ALDEN, PATTERSON AND DASHOWOOD, a trio from Norwich who proved very popular indeed. Their music is clearly influenced by folk traditions from both sides of the Atlantic.
There is much more to read on their website here.
Our Featured Guest was Alan Day. Alan played tunes on his anglo concertina and dipped into his impressive collection of monologues, three of which he managed to cram into his set. Here’s one of the monologues he didn’t perform for us.
The evening began with floor spots from Mike Green & Dave Tricker, JP on his Scottish small pipes, and Simon and Val Haines.
Our main guests on November 3 were the four-piece TWO COATS COLDER. Since playing for us a few years ago, they have performed at clubs and festivals all over the country.
Watch and listen to them playing at Moira Folk Festival in 2016. They did another great set for us and were much appreciated by our audience.
As expected the band got our audience you singing along to their melodic and laid-back mix of original and traditional songs featuring guitars, bass, mandolin and harmonium.
Our Featured Guests were father/daughter duo The O’Driscolls. Stephen plays guitar and Hannah percussion. Their unique vocals are characteristed by unusual harmonies.Watch and listen here.
If you would like to hear more, go to Resonance fm radio and listen to half an hour of Stephen and Hannah talking singing. Click here.
There were floor spots from Will, PJ, Tony Winn and Rachel Hack’s trio Revival.
In October we had two main guests Paul Scourfield and Phil Lyons.
Paul is a stylish melodeon player and singer from Hertfordshire who performs material mainly from the English tradition. He has appeared at major festivals including Sidmouth, and Towersey, as well as folk clubs around the country. Paul is also a member of the English dance band Chalktown.
In his 45-minute set, Paul alternated between songs and tunes.
Find out more about Paul on his website at: http://www.paulscourfield.co.uk
Phil Lyons is an accomplished guitarist and singer of traditional and contemporary songs. He has appeared solo at the club in the past as well as with Bof! and Rosewood.
At the club on October 6th he’ll be treating us to “A Sailor’s Life” his compilation of songs and talk about life in the British navy. Phil is interested in naval life at the time of Nelson.
Find out more about Phil and listen to samples of his songs here.
Our main guest on the first evening of our seventh season was Terence Blacker, now a firm favourite at our club. In addition to singing what are probably his three best–known song: Sad Old Bastards with Guitars, I’d Rather be French, and The Young Girl with the Ukulele, Terence sang Still Searching for that Heart of Gold, another of his bitter-sweet songs referring back, with multiple musical references to hippy days of the early 1970s.
As usual, Terence had our audience in stitches. Find out more about this English Georges Brassens on his website at: http://terenceblacker.com/music
Our Featured guests were The Columbines, a local Folk / Americana group playing original songs and their own unique arrangements of folk songs. They sang a couple of songs with Terence Blacker during his set.
We started the evening with three excellent floor spots from John Hughes and friends, newcomer Anni Meehan and Megs Martin.