Sunday, 18 December 2011

I thought you said we could fix it in the mix? - photo courtesy of Sue Richards

As you can see from the picture, the new album is in the final stages of mixing. "Turn it up" "No, turn it down". As you can see, Alice has the right idea, carry on with her Viking weaving until the rest of the committee have argued themselves to a standstill and then give the casting vote.

For a change the majority of the album comprises traditional songs. Traditional material has always made up a significant part of our repertoire so it seemed appropriate to feature more of it this time. In doing research for the CD notes I realised that my exposure to English traditional song dates back to 1969 and the release of three albums that had a great influence on my musical outlook from then until the present day.

The first was 'Liege and Lief' by Fairport Convention. It marked their move from contemporary American West Coast singer/songwriter material to find a more 'English' sound and in turn set off the folk rock genre. We had already been covering a number of their earlier songs so it was logical to explore the origins of the songs on their ground-breaking album.

The second was 'Anthems in Eden' by Shirley and Dolly Collins. Not only did it feature wonderful songs sung by Shirley in her natural Sussex accent and Dolly's distinctive instrumental settings on portative organ and piano, but it also featured the Early Music Consort lead by David Munro and began my love affair with the sound of medieval instruments and trying to play them!

The third was 'Galleries' by the Young Tradition which introduced me to the more than distinctive voice of Peter Bellamy. This album was released shortly before they broke up but it started off my interest in unaccompanied singing which in turn led to discovering The Watersons and back to the Copper Family. The 'Galleries' album also featured the Early Music Consort.

That's enough for now. So I will conclude by wishing you all, on behalf of everyone in Childe Rolande, a merry Christmas and a very happy New Year.

Regards - John