Country legend Glen Campbell dies at 81

Sad news overnight with the death of country legend Glen Campbell who has died after a battle with illness for many years. Billboard reported the family as saying: “It is with the heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of our beloved husband, father, grandfather, and legendary singer and guitarist, Glen Travis Campbell, at the age of 81, following his long and courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease.” Continue reading “Country legend Glen Campbell dies at 81”

Amelia White “Rhythm of the Rain” (White Wolf Records, 2017)

White’s patternation of voice might not be to everyone’s taste – but those that don’t ‘get it’ are just wrong or maybe ill informed – or both.  This is the real deal, full of juicy tunes; all in her lazy broken style, the woman just oozes cool. Her last record, Home Sweet Hotel was a real tour de force and this is no exception – White is in a real rich vein of form, the production is snappy, the band taught and on the money.  Her art is prospering, and making the world richer.  Continue reading “Amelia White “Rhythm of the Rain” (White Wolf Records, 2017)”

Tony James Shevlin “American Odyssey” (Oh Mercy Records, 2017)

Well-respected Anglo-Irish songwriter Tony James Shevlin spent several months on the road in the US back in 2015 covering 17 States and 11,000 miles, notebook in hand. American Odyssey is his tour diary translated into song, name checking iconic cities and their associated local heroes. Think of a place and he’s been there and think of a rootsy American musical style and he probably has a go at it here. Continue reading “Tony James Shevlin “American Odyssey” (Oh Mercy Records, 2017)”

The Turnpikes “Band From The North Country” (Independent, 2017)

The Turnpikes are a five piece band hailing from Sweden and have been going since 2000. This is their third full-length album having thirteen songs, two of which are original, the rest being a collection of classics that they like and have been performing for many years. The songs picked are top drawer and the originals aren’t bad either. So far so good – but that unfortunately is pretty much where the good bit ends because this really is a disappointing album in many ways. Continue reading “The Turnpikes “Band From The North Country” (Independent, 2017)”

Rainbrother, Paper Dress Vintage, London, 31st July 2017

Paper Dress Vintage is a relatively new venue in Hackney, downstairs is a vintage clothing shop cum bar, by day upstairs is more clothing and a yoga studio but by night it’s an intimate venue to catch a mix of new and upcoming bands as well as the occasional better known visitor. Like Rainbrother. Continue reading “Rainbrother, Paper Dress Vintage, London, 31st July 2017”

Sturgill chats to RS: “It’s the worst being sick on the road”

Amen to that.  Better sick on the road than in the car though, golden rule of travelling.  Rolling Stone County had a little chat with poor Sturgill on his current US tour supporting Guns and Roses: “”It’s the worst being sick on the road,” Sturgill Simpson tells Rolling Stone Country, texting from a tour bus on a 1,600-mile haul from Arkansas to South Florida, where, Tuesday night, the unconventional country singer plays the last of three stadium dates supporting his childhood heroes Guns N’ Roses. He’s hoping the case of “road gut” that afflicted him before the first gig in Denver subsides before the last hurrah in Miami.  Continue reading “Sturgill chats to RS: “It’s the worst being sick on the road””

Minor Poet “Judith Beheading Holofernes ” – Listen

Minor Poet is Richmond (Virginia) based musician Andrew Carter who has recorded an album – And How! – which is a testament to the beauty of music found in the most unexpected places.   It’s his debut solo album and was written, performed, and recorded entirely by him over roughly two months.  Judith Beheading Holofernes is the first track to be shared – there are hints of the harmonies of the Beach Boys or The Zombies, and more than a touch of Josh Ritter in the lyrics.  It’s lethargically melodic, and completely devoid of graphic descriptions of head removal (which is something of a bonus).

Cambridge Folk Festival, Cherry Hinton Hall, 27-30 July 2017

Every festival, everywhere, delivers a special moment or two, things that it will be remembered for in years to come.  This year’s Cambridge Folk Festival was no different, with two hugely significant moments.

The first was the sad death of Joan Woollard a few days before the start of the festival.  The widow of Ken Woollard, who started the festival back in 1965 and was its director until his death in 1993, she was a huge folk music fan and hugely instrumental in helping Ken establish and run it.  A round of applause from the crowd on Saturday night in the main stage marquee and a lower key singaround by Ken’s commemorative bench on Sunday were fitting tributes.

The second took place on Friday, when the entire main stage bill was female, as were the comperes.  No tokenism here, the artistic ability and commercial clout of all nine acts meant that their slots were completely merited.  There has been much debate about female musicians, or rather the lack of them, on festival bills generally and Cambridge showed that in its 52nd year it can still show the way to other events in any genre and the programmer, Bev Burton, deserves massive props. Continue reading “Cambridge Folk Festival, Cherry Hinton Hall, 27-30 July 2017”