Page 4 of 9

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 5:03 pm
by Gordon Neill
I'm confused. I thought the Archbish had recently suggested that we should incorporate Sufi records into our CD collections.

Re: I KNOW THIS ONE

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 6:33 pm
by Chris P
nigel w wrote:Jonathan wrote (although not sure that's the right word!) :

ROTFLSJOOMVLAC!


I'm terrible at acronyms but actually I know this one (all right, only because Jonathan messaged me and told me...). V is for Valves ; C is for Clam. If you can work the rest out, I'll think of a suitable prize .


Rolls On The Floor Laughing So Juice Oozes Out My Valves Like A Clam ?

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 6:50 pm
by Nigel w
Cheat ! Sorry, I know we shouldn't use words like that in the current climate but Jonathan told you , didn't he?

If not, I'm going to send you some lovely ISB music with personal endorsements from Rowan Williams and Kate Bush, who you were dead right about: it is said she ran away from home at 15 to go and live in the ISB's commune on the Glenconner estate, until the police brought her back (may or may not be true and Paddy B probably won't tell us...)

But with the threat of an ISB package winging its way to you, you may just want to own up to cheating , even if you didn't...

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 7:00 pm
by will vine
Nigel wrote:realistically life is too short for The Incredible String Band
wonderful, magical, mystical music. first saw them at the Festival Hall in '68 when I was 14


Probably the same time I last saw them too; with my schoolmate Tom Brook ( now big cheese Hollywood tv correspondant) who was so overcome by their music he actually passed out.

Ted, I've got a couple of Norma Waterson cds.....one is called "The Very Thought of You" and the other one isn't (can't remember). They are excellent entertainment. She has a wonderful unique voice.....but Ian A. will be along any time now to tell you it's not the real thing because it features her doing stuff by contemporary writers, as well as people like Harold Arlen and Ray Noble. But they are great songs, beautifully sung.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 7:02 pm
by Chris P
nigel w wrote:Cheat !


No way ! (ask Jonathan E ), merely elementary my dear Nige

Really appreciate your offer of ISB boots, but being the ISB anorak I am, I already have all the ones I need. But well chuffed by your offer all the same - cheers Nigel !

yours stringily

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 7:25 pm
by Ian A.
will vine wrote:Ian A. will be along any time now to tell you it's not the real thing because it features her doing stuff by contemporary writers.

No need as you did already - but I'm just popping back to get you slackers back on the EF track, jack, by once again urging you to listen to this morning's Shirley Collins Radio 4 programme - it has a link now: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/arts/pip/ozq1j/

Also to tell you that I got an advance of the new Spiers & Boden album Vagabond today and it has '(folk) album of the year contender' written all over it (figuratively speaking - it would be damned pretentious and presumptios if it really did, but I'm allowed to say so).

(That's enough Scottish scientologist world music bands in the English folk thread . . . pedantic Ed.)

(And yes, smartarses, I know the blessed Shirl once recorded a Robin Williamson song. Very nice it was too.)

Re: I KNOW THIS ONE

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 7:38 pm
by That Was Jonathan E. Then
Chris Potts wrote:
nigel w wrote:Jonathan wrote (although not sure that's the right word!) :

ROTFLSJOOMVLAC!


[ . . . ]


Rolls On The Floor Laughing So Juice Oozes Out My Valves Like A Clam ?


Close, very close — and just to allay all rumour and innuendo, no Chris did not ask me. He's just very, very clever or has weird insight into my life. Probably the former.

It's Rolling On The Floor Laughing Squirting Juice Out Of My Valves Like A Clam.

I was walking on the beach at a very low tide a few weeks ago and the clams were fountaining as we walked over their beds. It was hard to stay dry and they make a funny noise when they do it. Sort of makes you jump.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:16 pm
by c hristian
this thread has led me to discover the existence of Mustique. An island. In the Carribean. Very pretty. thank you.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 8:51 pm
by Nigel w
I know the blessed Shirl once recorded a Robin Williamson song. Very nice it was too.)


God Dog, it was called. The ISB never released it at the time. Robin eventually sang it with Shirley a decade after she had recorded it - sometime circa 1978 and he'd forgotten the words of his own song and she had to teach them to him.

Picking up on Charlie's comment several pages back that the best English folk music is Squeeze/Beatles/Blur, Shirley's son used to (may be still does) manage Asian Dub Foundation. I remember Martin Carthy saying to me at the Mercury awards one year that ADF were 'modern English folk music'.

And if you want to return to the specific subject at the start of the thread (although there's no reason why we should), nobody ever offered an answer to my question some way back about why so many English folk records just sound so bad as records, even when the song is great and the performer is an acknowledged class act...

PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 9:00 pm
by Chris P
nigel w wrote: nobody ever offered an answer to my question some way back about why so many English folk records just sound so bad as records, even when the song is great and the performer is an acknowledged class act...


to answer your question with a question : who are the great engineer/producer teams of English folk ? (apart from John Wood/Joe Boyd)

Re: English Folk Music

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 3:11 am
by MurkeyChris
Ian A. wrote:Among those which have found favour with audiences and critics alike in the past few years are both Chris Woods' albums The Lark Descending and the recent Trespasser; Eliza Carthy's Anglicana and Rough Music (though you may struggle with the slightly lower production values of the latter); Tim Van Eyken's Stiffs Lovers Holymen Thieves; Bellowhead's Burlesque; the matching pair Songs and Tunes by John Spiers & Jon Boden; Rachel Unthank & The Winterset's The Bairns; Alasdair Roberts' No Earthly Man* and the debuts by Bella Hardy (Night Visiting) and Lisa Knapp (Wild & Undaunted), the latter somewhat Irish inflected. There are plenty more, some by established names like June Tabor or Kate Rusby, others more esoteric and perhaps a taste you will acquire. And then there's the whole English dance music area. But that's probably enough of the centre & quality field to be going on with.


Good list there Ian, most of those I would wholeheartedly recommend myself. Personally I'm yet to be entirely convinced by Rachel Unthank and the Winterset or Van Eyken, and would (very tentatively) say that their attempts to bring a new dimension to the tradition may not be quite so impressive to those with a wider palette of modern musical tastes than your average folky!

(As an aside, it is really awkward saying anything critical about anyone in the folk scene due to how small it is. For example I am on friendly associate terms with a couple of musicians in the above bands, and have genuine respect for the musicians in both bands, most of whom have done lots of good stuff in other contexts! Worse still, half of them read Internet forums!)

My recommendation to bring to the table is Julie Murphy. She's criminally underrated (possibly because her day job involves singing in Welsh with Fernhill), but has released two absolutely astounding English-language solo albums, the largely traditonal Black Mountains Revisited and her songwriting album, Lilac Tree. She's got a beautiful, full voice without being wispy or twee, and coming from an art-school rather than folky background is perhaps more direct and accessable than some of her peers. The arrangements are fresh and inventive, but not a forced attempt to be cool or different. Anyone with the Afro Celt Sound System's third album in their collection can hear her singing on 'Life Begin Again' (she's the one that sings in Welsh near the end, and isn't Robert Plant...).

I think it is easy for us converts to forget how odd and often silly English folk can sound to those who aren't acquainted to it! I'm listening to Martin Carthy's Waiting for Angels in awe as I type, but it wasn't that many years ago that I thought Martin Carthy was far too folky and for the real beardy hardcore types.

For me entry came through the more song-based acts like the Albion Band and Show of Hands (I prefer the earlier stuff, try Lie of the Land), who would put on great shows at the local Arts Centre. Then came the younger singers like Kate Rusby (try Hourglass or Sleepless) and Bill Jones (Panchpuran) who focussed more on traditional material, and Scottish acts mixing trad. music with electronics like Shooglenifty, the Peatbog Faeries and Martyn Bennett. By going to festivals like Sidmouth I really started to understand and appreciate the music and then I went and threw myself in the deep end by starting a radio show dedicated to the stuff!

What will appeal to Ted and draw him down the slippery slope really depends on his taste. A lot of people hear one bit of English folk and write it off, which is a bit like me saying I was bored by Toumani Diabate's Symmetric Orchestra at Glastonbury (sacrilege, I know) and therefore I don't like African music. Seth Lakeman is attracting a lot of newcomers, but is too poppy for my tastes. I've just come back from a Martin Simpson concert and I can see how his noodly guitar style could draw in the jazz fans just as easily as scaring off the rockers. Although the modern versions tend to be fairly mundane, peak-era Fairport, Steeleye Span and Pentangle are still a great entry point, plus there's the whole alt. folk thing crossing over at the moment. Or if you if find all the fol-de-rol-isms a bit much you might want something a bit more scholarly and classically-influenced like Horses Brawl (Dindirin) or 1651 (Cast a Bell). Plus I can't see how anyone could not find Linda Thompson's Fashionably Late incredible.

Okay, I'll stop myself now...

Chris

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:26 pm
by Ronald
nigel w wrote:And if you want to return to the specific subject at the start of the thread (although there's no reason why we should), nobody ever offered an answer to my question some way back about why so many English folk records just sound so bad as records, even when the song is great and the performer is an acknowledged class act...


Nigel

Could you give some examples of badly produced albums? Are you talking about recent or older ones?

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:32 pm
by Nigel w
Could you give some examples of badly produced albums? Are you talking about recent or older ones?


Well if you look back at the original post, I talk about large chunks of the Transatlantic catalouge from the 1960s and 1970s. I also give a recent example with Devil's Interval who gave me a brilliant night out in a folk club, but whose album when I got it just didn't sound right at all or really reflect how good they had been on the night.

Again, if you look back at the original post, I say I'm not sure if it is just about production, because lots of other forms of music suffer from shoddy production values but still sounds great on a jukebox or blaring out of a transistor radio in a Cairo taxi cab, or whatever...

I don't kow what it is !

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 12:54 pm
by joel
Gordon Neill wrote:I'm confused. I thought the Archbish had recently suggested that we should incorporate Sufi records into our CD collections.

Gordon, would you like some recommendations for albums of Turkish sufi music :-)

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 8:54 pm
by Chris P
will vine wrote:As someone who wouldn't normally have crossed the street to find english folk music, I don't know what sent me off to buy "Rogues Gallery" a 2cd set of pirate ballads, and sea songs, featuring a host of big name artists, but I'm glad I did.
It's stunning entertainment. Start here.


Or go for the non rock stars and celebrities version of the same stunning stuff. I've found it a very enjoyable and cathartic experience to be pinned to the wall by Johnny Collins and massed chorus at shanty sessions. He has a few Cds that are worth hearing.
The one I was going to recommend has the (fake ?) rustic warbles of AL Lloyd and Ewan MacColl, but it also has plenty power and passion (in my mind's ear I hear them being sung by the English equivalent of Shane McGowan though), and is also endorsed by Captain Beefheart* (via Zappa) on the back cover.

"Blow Boys Blow" - Ewan MacColl and AL Lloyd


(keeping mi thick donkey jacket always at my command)

* Turns up at shanty singaround : this ere next un I's gonna sing is by thaht fine nortical man Cap'n Beefheart - launches into rendition of 'Orange Claw Hammer' "Uh thick cloud caught uh piper cub's tail..".
Yep, I think that one would go down well.