Frankie Lee isn’t your average Americana singer-songwriter: his latest job involved the herding of 20 sheep on a small farm in Afton. For the recording of his latest album he retreated to his hometown of Stillwater and found that the house he grew up in was still available. In a backwoods setting and resembling a log cabin, he converted the property, Bon Iver style, into a recording studio, gathering fellow musicians to record the eponymously titled record over a mere three days. Continue reading “Frankie Lee + Native Harrow, Paper Dress Vintage, Hackney, London, 4th September, 2019”
Tonight was not only a celebration of great music but was also a testament to two artists who’ve triumphed in the face of adversity. For Jaime Wyatt, any suggestion she might want to put the eight months she was incarcerated in jail for ripping off her drug dealer behind her are swiftly assuaged, her reflections on this period of her life put front and centre stage during her performance tonight – tackled with both candour and humour. Her 7 song ‘Felony Blues’ EP made a major impact when it was released in 2017 and demonstrated a great knack for catchy tunes with memorable song lyrics. This performance also showed her no less capable as a singer and raconteur.
Continue reading “Charley Crockett + Jaime Wyatt, Oslo, London, 1st September, 2019”
For Over The Hill’s inaugural festival you couldn’t hope for a more bucolic setting than Cogges Manor Farm. Set in the outskirts of Witney in Oxfordshire, its grounds comprise a beautiful manor house made of Cotswold stone, surrounded by common land and with farmyard animals in situ. The festival is simply but elegantly accommodated in two tithe barns, with the musical turns alternating between the two stages. Continue reading “Over the Hill Festival, Witney, Oxfordshire, 26th August, 2019”
Singer-songwriter and folk-rock icon Don McLean is set to perform four UK dates later this month as part of his current transatlantic tour. McClean, responsible for ‘American Pie‘, which was listed as the number 5 song of the century by the Recording Industry of Association of America, is one of the most renowned country artists and with over 40 gold and platinum records worldwide, is also regarded as one of the most prolific songwriters of all time.
Continue reading “Grab a slice of American Pie – Don McLean heads to the UK this month”
The last release by Birds of Chicago ‘Love In Wartime’ may prove to be a prescient title before too long given reports from the UK food industry that in the event of a no-deal Brexit the Government will have to put the population on a command-economy war footing for the purposes of rationing and co-ordination of food resources. Quite how the British public will respond to such circumstances is uncertain, although expecting some kind of stoical response along World War II lines is probably fanciful seeing as the Police had to ask people to stop calling 999 when KFC ran out of chicken last February.
Continue reading “Birds of Chicago set to tour through the Brexit deadline”
A few years ago, Texas country-blues singer Charley Crockett wrote a song called ‘How Long Will I Last’ about an uncertain love affair. Little did he know the song title would also prove a prophetic metaphor for his recent struggle with heart disease. Purely by chance when he was seeking medical advice for repairing a hernia in January, Crockett learned he also had bicuspid aortic valve stenosis, a disease where, instead of having three aortic flaps that allow the blood to flow, two are fused together. “The cardiologist determined I was one year away from heart failure. It was really, really good luck that I found out what was wrong with me.” Continue reading “Charley Crockett tours with Jaime Wyatt following major health scare”
An album that’s gained increasing acclaim through five star reviews and word of mouth is Ohtis’ ‘Curve of Earth’. What makes the back story to this debut release so compelling is that it’s an album fully 15 years in the making. Continue reading “Illinois’ Ohtis set to tour UK for the first time”
Following a sold-out show at The Lexington in London on July 31st and an appearance at the Cambridge Folk Festival the following day, James Walbourne and Kami Thompson, aka The Rails, head out on a UK headline tour in October. Continue reading “The Rails announce new album and tour dates”
Following the release of her third studio album, ‘Mint Condition’, Caroline Spence returns to the UK for seven dates in October. Having won numerous songwriting awards from industry mainstays like the Kerrville Folk Festival, Spence has long been regarded as a well kept secret on the Americana scene, but the cat is now well and truly out of the bag, with Rick Bayles of Americana UK recently describing ‘Mint Condition’ as a potential album of the year contender: “Repeated listening to this new work reveals it to be a pretty much flawless set of eleven songs, ten of them written by Spence and the eleventh a co-write with fellow artist Ashley Ray.” Continue reading “Caroline Spence has tour dates in October”
When folk royalty such as Richard Thompson venture into the adjoining pub before this sold out show, it tends to ramp up the pressure somewhat. It’s a challenge that his daughter, the prodigiously talented Kami Thompson and her husband, James Walbourne, seem more than ready to meet, however, as they perform an excellent show, showcasing no fewer than eight of the ten songs from their forthcoming release, ‘Cancel the Sun’. Continue reading “The Rails, The Lexington, London, 31 July 2019”