Saturday 18 September 2021

IN THE ROOTS OF MUSIC

Newsletter SIGNUP

spiral earth

FEATURES

The Show Will Go On.

The Show Will Go On.

As the folk world slowly opens to a musical landscape constantly shifting and coming to terms with the limitations of a continuing pandemic, amidst festival cancellations galore, Simon Jones ventures to one of the few, brave survivors, Shrewsbury. “The weather’s been...

Greg Hancock – His Sure Fingers

Greg Hancock – His Sure Fingers

Comparisons with Al Stewart, John Martyn and a whole host of other acoustic troubadours along with a rave review for his latest recording, something's brewing in the far corners of Devon. Phil Thomas was dispatched to locate and question Greg Hancock.  I recently had...

Earworms For The Thinking Generation

Earworms For The Thinking Generation

With current circumstances you’d think that we’d be awash with decent social commentary and bands who’d want us all to think before we act. Merry Hell do great work but they could do with a hand. Enter Headsticks with C.O.W. the first album of 2021 to delve deeper in...

From Wandering Troubador to Scottish Laird

From Wandering Troubador to Scottish Laird

Born in Massechusetts in 1945, Marc Ellington lived an unusual life; to say he was a colourful character would not be an exaggeration. The early 1960s saw him as a fully paid up member of the American folk boom, singing with The Highwaymen in Oregon. By the middle of...

What do the four steps to lockdown lifting mean for gigs and festivals?

What do the four steps to lockdown lifting mean for gigs and festivals?

On the 22nd February the government announced its roadmap to lifting lockdown, with a potential complete lifting of restrictions for theatres, venues and large outside events by late June - so we seem to be on course to be enjoying gigs and festivals across the summer...

When You Can’t See The Wood For The Trees

When You Can’t See The Wood For The Trees

Mysterious and enigmatic the music of Trees has historically been hard to find and expensive, yet has become the stuff of legend. A new 50th Anniversary box set from Earth Records, creatively titled ‘Trees,’ collects everything worth hearing by this iconic band. Folk...

Shiny Things, The Magpie Arc bring back sunnier times

Shiny Things, The Magpie Arc bring back sunnier times

Just when you were thinking these strange times had wiped out all the decent things about music, along come a band to flip your wig. The Magpie Arc are exactly what’s needed to bring back sunnier days. Simon Jones checks out their fine feathers. “Alex is the biggest...

Robert Jon: Wreckless!

Robert Jon: Wreckless!

With a terrific new album ‘Last Light on the Highway’ ROBERT JON & THE WRECK have realised their potential and left rivals to the Southern Roots Rock crown in their slipstream. On the line from California ROBERT JON BURRISON talks to Lyndon Noon about his latest...

Rory Block Interview

Rory Block Interview

What did a young girl find in the blues which makes it a lifelong passion? The music was filled with intense passion and spoke directly to what was in my heart. Your guitar style is pretty unique how has that been shaped and changed over time? I started out with folk...

Kirsty Merryn Interview – One Bright Star

Kirsty Merryn Interview – One Bright Star

Kirsty Merryn arrives with a woozily gorgeous second album tucked under her arm, a steadily growing reputation for creating atmospheric and meaningful songs as well as totally refitting traditional material with contemporary relevance. She’s earning plaudits from...

Jonathan Kelly: 8th July 1948 –  May 2nd 2020

Jonathan Kelly: 8th July 1948 – May 2nd 2020

It’s 2008 and the clock’s ticking, Jonathan Kelly has been on stage for well over three and a half hours and he shows no sign of stopping. In the end just shy of four hours, with midnight close at hand he finally waves his acoustic guitar to acknowledge a full house...

Pete Mortons Top Protest Songs Of All Time!

Pete Mortons Top Protest Songs Of All Time!

Here troubadour/singer and commentator Pete Morton takes us through his list of the most effective ‘finger pointing songs’ as a certain Robert Zimmerman used to call material of social commentary. “Most of them are folk - the list could have been a hundred or more. I...

Interview with Pete Morton

Interview with Pete Morton

Always a restless spirit has claimed Pete Morton, his albums filled with songs of the here and now, the human condition as well as traditional refits and relevant covers. His own material has long been celebrated for inherent hope and honesty, yet his new collection...

Julie Felix 1938 – 2020 obituary

Julie Felix 1938 – 2020 obituary

It’s not often remembered that Julie Felix, who passed away on March 22nd aged 81 years, was a major force in music and television during the swinging 60s, a face as familiar as Cilla Black or Twiggy. She had a BBC show after being a member of David Frost’s satirical...

Golden Horizons, Benji Kirkpatrick interview

Golden Horizons, Benji Kirkpatrick interview

With a brilliant, melodic, hard hitting new band /album and membership of the most enduring of British roots rock groups, Benji Kirkpatrick is without question one of the hottest artists on the roots scene at the moment. Putting his past, present and possible future...

Dodge Brothers Drive Train interview

Dodge Brothers Drive Train interview

The Dodge Brothers recent album Drive Train is a seriously great slice of blues drenched rock and roll, check out our review here. We recently interviewed the band; Mike Hammond (guitars, lead vocals, banjo); Aly Hirji (guitars, mandolin, vocals); Mark Kermode (bass,...

Folk awards 2019: And the nominations are…

Folk awards 2019: And the nominations are…

It’s the night when the folk community goes all Hollywood and glitzy, sporting suits and sparkly frocks... or at least a pair of ironed jeans and a proper shirt.  As the bespoke trophies are handed out Simon Jones mingles with guests, musicians and the paying public...

Kim Edgar – A Question of Firsts

Kim Edgar – A Question of Firsts

The latest artist to bare their soul for Spiral Earth and give us their list of firsts is singer/songwriter Kim Edgar. Actually, singer/songwriter as a description doesn't really give her credit for the range of projects she gets herself involved in, from directing...

Amy Montgomery Interview

Amy Montgomery Interview

Thanks for talking to us Amy! You and the band caused quite a stir at the Cambridge Folk Fest, are you used to getting such a positive reaction from audiences the first time people hear your music? Cambridge Folk Fest was a truly incredible experience for me. Everyone...

Interview – Ajay Srivastav, part 2

Interview – Ajay Srivastav, part 2

All too often a fusion of musical styles can feel forced or somehow artificial. Ajay has avoided that completely, when a musical fusion truly works it reveals hidden parts of both traditions, illuminated by each other.  As our talk progressed it became evident that...