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November 21st - Jim Moray

13 years ago Jim Moray released an album that changed the way people perceived, played and presented English folk music. Sweet England arrived at a time when, with just a few notable exceptions, traditional music was performed much as it had been in the 1970s to an audience of insiders and aficionados. The album was received with open arms by those who understood that the music of the people has survived for centuries by being just that – an expression of the times. Absent were the familiar affectations of those who sought to preserve an invented historical aesthetic, Jim Moray was a Bowie and Blur fan singing ballads with all of his influences unfurled.

The records that followed (Jim Moray, Low Culture, In Modern History, Skulk) embraced everything from electronica to Johnny Marr-esque guitar rock via symphonic pop, an award winning XTC cover and grime. But at their heart has always been Jim’s unmistakeable soulful and yearning voice; singing old songs in a new way.

As awards and rave reviews stacked up, much was made of Moray’s fearlessness in pushing the boundaries of traditional music. But it’s an accolade he’s always refuted. “I don’t see any boundaries,” being his oft-repeated response. “This is popular music and I love popular music.”

Festival and folk club crowds clearly felt the same way, never more so than in 2014 when Jim joined up with the ardently admired songwriter and guitarist Sam Carter to form the band False Lights. On a mission to make a glorious folk rock ruckus that owed more to Radiohead and Queens Of The Stone Age than Steeleye Span, False Lights quickly became one of the most in demand groups on the circuit. They also picked up a Best Album nomination in the 2016 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards for their debut LP Salvor.

In recent years Jim has collaborated with such folk music luminaries as Andy Cutting, Patsy Reid, Martin Simpson and Nancy Kerr on the hugely successful Cecil Sharp Project and similarly acclaimed Elizabethan Project. He’s also been making a name for himself as a producer working with Maz O’Connor on her last album This Willowed Light and her most recent release The Longing Kind, as well as mixing the latest record by Jamie Smith’s Mabon. And this year he presented a documentary on BBC Radio 3 about the traditional song Brigg Fair, which saw Jim use cutting-edge sound technology to recreate the apocryphal moment when farm bailiff Joseph Taylor spontaneously added his voice to the premiere of Delius’ An English Rhapsody, which was inspired by a wax cylinder recording of Taylor’s singing. A more appropriate subject for Moray to tackle is hard to imagine.

At a time when the bright new lights of traditional music include Stick In The Wheel and Lynched, who come from the distinctly un-folk worlds of drum ‘n’ bass and punk respectively, Jim Moray’s dream that more people would discover and play these songs on their own terms in their own voice is steadily becoming a reality.

As for the future, Jim believes it’s time for him to start a new chapter. He’s described the making of his forthcoming album Upcetera as being like “learning to do it all again from scratch”. Drawing influence from the systems music of composers like Nyman and Reich (another of his formative passions) Upcetera features dramatically orchestrated Child ballads reimagined as torch songs or a kind of English Fado. It’s an album that places the narrative element of these songs centre stage, with Jim Moray’s supple soaring vocal leading the listener by the hand through strange old stories.

Making them new.

Admission: £12.00 & £10.00

13th February - Honey and the Bear

British folk and roots inspired duo, Honey & the Bear, combine delicately interweaving vocal harmonies with powerful guitar riffs, foot stomping rhythms and catchy melodies.
The multi instrumentalist pair, comprised of songwriters Jon Hart (guitar, bass, mandolin) and Lucy Sampson (guitar, ukulele, bass, banjo & percussion), have been writing together since early 2014, having met at a songwriting event two years previous. Since then, they have played many venues across East Anglia as well as travelling to Germany for their first European tour.

Together they have played an array of fantastic UK festivals including Ely Folk, FolkEast and Maverick. 2016 saw the release of their debut EP ‘About Time’, which received airplay on BBC Radio Suffolk, as well as Cambridge Radio & Norfolk Radio.

Born and raised in Suffolk, Lucy learned violin and drums at school, sang in the Suffolk Jubilee choir and started songwriting at age 15. She taught herself guitar whilst at university in Canterbury, and began performing her creations not long afterwards. At 27, she released her debut band album ’Step Right On’, songs from which you now hear her perform with Jon. Jon, a Yorkshire boy, raised in Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk, has been performing his own songs since his teens. A self taught guitarist, his love of driving guitar riffs is a core aspect of his song writing process. He has released three band albums, the latest of which was entitled ‘Level with me’, featuring ‘wristburner’ which is a gig favourite. The amalgamation of both their unique musical styles makes for a dynamic and ever-changing live performance.

New to St Neots Club - do not miss this evening!

30th January - Round the Room

 Friendly singaround atmosphere, performers and audience very welcome.

Come along and strut your stuff or enjoy others doing just that!

£2.00 entry for all.

20th February - North Sea Gas

North Sea Gas are Ronnie MacDonald, Grant Simpson and Dave Gilfillan
Over thirty years and stronger than ever!! One of Scotland's most popular folk bands with great vocals and tremendous three part harmonies. Guitars, Mandolin, Fiddle, Bouzouki, Whistles, Bodhrans, Banjo and good humour are all part of the entertainment. They have received Gold and Silver disc awards from the Scottish Music Industry Association and regularly have sell out shows at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe!!
They have recorded 16 albums and are constantly adding new material to their show. One of their latest albums, "The Fire and the Passion of Scotland" won the 2013 Album of the Year award from Celtic Radio in the U.S. as well as first place in the "Jigs and Reels" category for the set of tunes on the album. Celtic Radio says, "The band displays an attachment and a reverence for their roots from the very start. The music feels genuine, unpretentious and spontaneous, with a fondness for storytelling and beautiful harmonies."

They went down a storm last time and this is a night not to miss!

ST NEOTS 35TH FOLK FESTIVAL June 9th 10th & 11th 2017

THANKS TO ALL WHO SUPPORTED THIS EVENT

NEXT YEAR'S DATES FOR YOUR DIARY:

8th 9th & 10th JUNE 2018

November 28th - Round the Room night!

Come along and strut your stuff or enjoy others doing just that!

Friendly singaround atmosphere, performers and audience very welcome.

£2.00 entry for all.

19th December - Christmas Party night!

Seasonal music and songs with delicious refreshments and charity raffle!

Friendly singaround atmosphere, performers and audience very welcome.

£2.00 entry for all.

December 5th - Paul Downes & Mick Ryan

MICK RYAN is well known on the folk scene as a fine singer of traditional and original songs. Having written both comic and serious material for the very poular band “Crows” in the 1980’s, and his duo with Pete Harris which appeared at every major club and festival in the country, he has since written for radio and a series of highly successful folk musicals: ‘A Tollpuddle Man’ (with Graham Moore); ‘A Day’s Work’ ; ‘The Voyage’; ‘Tanks for the Memory’, ‘The Navvy’s Wife’ and ‘Paupers Path’.

PAUL DOWNES has a sensitive, yet fun approach to live performances which puts him among the most respected artists on the British acoustic music scene today. He has been introduced (to his embarrassment) as one of the greatest acoustic guitarist in the world. It is easy to see why when you see the dazzling array of styles he performs with effortless brilliance, but, at the same time, considers himself a singer of songs rather than a guitar technician.
Paul has a rich musical background that has progressed through working with Phil Beer, The Arizona Smoke Revue, Pete Seeger and, The Joyce Gang. Nine albums with bands, four highly acclaimed solo albums and over two hundred session credits have still left time for Paul to tour every concert venue, theatre and festival in Britain (including two appearances at the Royal Albert Hall with Show of Hands); plus many tours in the USA and Europe.
Together, Mick and Paul provide singing, music and entertainment of the very highest quality.

Do not miss this superb evening of quality singing and musicianship!

December 12th - Vicki Swann & Jonny Dyer's Christmas Show

Our Christmas Special!!!

A seasonal mix of song and tunes of quality from this stunning duo!

Vicki & Jonny effortlessly blend traditional material with contemporary interpretations whilst equally creating original self-penned tunes and songs that are entirely at home in the tradition. Out of this combination they have developed a sound that is both familiar and fresh. Strong believers in letting the music tradition live and breathe through sensitive interpretation they allow the melody to sing without any constraints. This is their Christmas Special for your seasonal taster!

Admission: £11.00 & £10.00

 

9th January 2018 - Jon Betmead &Tom Ling

Jon and Tom are well known at the Club and will give a very entertaining and varied evening of songs and tunes played on guitar and fiddle. Last seen at the Club as support to Vin Garbutt.

Do come along and help us open the New Year with lots of you there! to hear Jon and Tom.

November 14th - Dave Ellis & Boo Howard


Dave Ellis came down from Liverpool for the London folk club scene in the 70’s. He released a solo album on Sonet records, which some consider to be a classic guitar record of its time and which gave him national exposure on the Old Grey Whistle Test and In Concert.
Dave became a regular at various London haunts such as the Marquee, the Roundhouse and the Lyceum and also played some higher profile gigs, opening for the Edgar Broughton Band at the Rainbow and Rod Stewart at Reading Festival.

In 1979 Dave formed his electric band ‘The Reactors’ which incorporated guitar, drums and keyboards with Boo Howard playing bass and handling most of the vocals.
The band was eventually trimmed down and developed into an electric duo (comprising Dave and Boo) which was renamed ‘Brave Lucy’, and the pair produced their only electric album ‘Snaps’ in 1996 under that name.

In 1998 they combined Dave’s intricate guitar work with Boo’s mellow vocals to create something very different and entirely new in the folk and acoustic clubs. Their debut acoustic recording was ‘Maybe I Might Fall’ in 1999.
The songs are intelligently constructed, elegantly articulated and never less than entertaining. The mix is eclectic (from folk to jazz to blues to bluegrass) but the songs are at the heart of it all, served by imaginative and stylish arrangements and by the singing and playing of two seasoned, wholly in tune musicians.

Their CDs have a classy polished sound - testament to the pair’s familiarity with the recording process and of their ability to write and perform at a level every bit the equal of their major label peers.
Their live act has now been honed to perfection in the folk clubs where they have developed a large faithful following in the south of England.

Regulars at St Neots - not to be missed!

27th February - Round the Room and AGM

AGM at 8.00pm followed by Round the Room.

Any items for discussion to Di Rockett (secretary) by 20th Feb please

 Friendly singaround atmosphere, performers and audience very welcome.

Come along and strut your stuff or enjoy others doing just that!

£2.00 entry for all.


January 23rd - Barron Brady

Barron Brady comprising Ros Brady and Si Barron are contemporary songwriters and interpreters of traditional English folk song. They live in Devon and perform nationwide.

Drawn to strongly narrative songs with subjects ranging from Devon legend to contemporary rural reportage they invite the listener to accompany them through strange landscapes whose denizens include coffee drinking Mermaids, corn mowing Devils, flying highwaymen and disappearing Hedgerows.
They have a dynamic acoustic style combining joy and verve in performance with an assured stage presence garnered from five years of performing nationwide.
Simon’s ballistic fingerstyle guitar complemented by Rosalind’s harmonium and whistles underlines their harmony singing.
Barron Brady are touring extensively across the UK promoting their new album

"These two artists demonstrate most clearly in their work the relevance of an old tradition expertly employed to reflect a modern world, appealing to both the intellect and the heart."

Si and Ros have been writing and touring as the folk duo Barronbrady for ten years and have released three albums during that time.

'Two performers who confidently uphold the richness of the British folk tradition with superbly crafted self-written songs and fine interpretations of English folk song, beautifully sung with great sincerity and with impeccable musical accompaniment. Their beguiling lyrics often draw upon the stories, legends and folklore of the South-West. These two are well loved by our audiences and we strongly recommend them to all other clubs, large or small.'

Della Hooke, Red Lion 'Folk Club of the Year' BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2006

A welcome return for Ros and Si to St Neots

Please note - Club closed December 26th and January 2nd

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!

20th March- Open Stage

This is your chance to shine and be the guest!

E mail- stneotsfolkclub@aol.com or ring 01234 376278 to book your spot (approx.20-25 mins) on a first come first served basis so don't leave it too late!!!

Order of play is sorted on the night.

Admission: £2.00 performers £5.00 audience

6th February - Ninebarrow

NINEBARROW are a multi-award-winning folk duo, who are impressing audiences across the country with their innovative and captivating take on the folk tradition. Described by Mike Harding as sounding ‘damn fine’ and by Kate Rusby as ‘absolutely amazing’, Jon Whitley and Jay LaBouchardiere combine breath taking vocal harmonies and melodies, delivering original songs that are inspired and rooted in the landscape and history of the British Isles. As well as crafting unique and engaging original material, Ninebarrow also take a wide-range of traditional folk songs and rework them in their own, distinctive way. Not only exceptional singers and musicians, Ninebarrow are also equally passionate about the stories behind their songs - combining their music with history, folklore and storytelling.

The duo were nominated in the 2017 BBC Radio 2 Folk Award ‘Horizon’ category for Best Emerging Artist and also for ‘Best Duo’ in both the Fatea Magazine Awards 2016 and the Folking.com awards of 2017. In March 2017, the duo were invited to perform a live session on Mark Radcliffe’s BBC Radio 2 Folk Show, where the presenter described their singing as ‘A rather lovely thing...like two halves of one voice’.

 

16th January - The Shackleton Trio


The Shackleton Trio (formerly The Georgia Shackleton Trio) play an exciting blend of Americana, folk and self-penned material. Accompanying herself on the fiddle, Georgia writes and performs 'wordy songs about other people’, instrumentally influenced by British, American and Scandinavian folk traditions, with a regional twist from her native East Anglia.

Georgia’s skills as a singer and instrumentalist have been put to the test in numerous different contexts, and this trio sees her teaming up with guitar powerhouse Aaren Bennett and mandolin ace Nic Zuppardi. Together they have toured the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands, appeared at Rotterdam Bluegrass Festival, Cambridge Folk Festival, Towersey Festival, Broadstairs Folk Week, Folk East, and concert halls and folk clubs across the UK.

A new act for St Neots and one to watch for the future!