Reviews 2009 2010

3rd July 2010 - Guest Night No 40 with Jim Causley (Devon Incarnate)

JIM CAUSLEY, the Guest on 3rd July at THE ACORN FOLK CLUB, is one of nature’s blest. He has such an intelligence, charm, wit and insatiable curiosity about the songs he sings, their origin, anecdotes about writers, current and past singers, people and places, alongside his rich and sonorous voice, that his two forty minute sets were entirely engrossing.

It is easy to see why he has been twice nominated for the best Young Artist by BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. He is carving out a successful career, having toured for six consecutive seasons with Waterson-Carthy and worked and recorded with prestigious artists such as Phil Beer.

Too numerous to detail all within the review, the list can be seen below this article. He introduced his programme well, presenting songs with pathos and lively or amusing items, so that the audience were suspended between real tears and tears of laughter.

His first set included “Polly Vaughan” collected in the Appalachians by Cecil Sharp, the Devon version of the chorus song “Parson (sucking pig)” collected by Sabine Baring-Gould, “Royal Comrade” from the 90 year old Romany Amy Birch, descriptions of the Wassailing tradition of Whimple (his home village) Cider with “Old Uncle Whiteway”, finishing with Cyril Tawney’s “In the Sidings Now”.

His second set was equally enchanting – with the outstanding “Story of Snow White” displaying his prodigious memory and indeed, theatre skills, as well as his subtle accordion accompaniment and his a capella singing.

The Acorn was delighted to have fifteen floor spots, and Eileen Ann Moore, founder and compere for the evening, (in the absence of Mike Dibble the invited MC) was glad she had incorporated the words “There’ll be music and song, and friendship and rhyme” in her new song “Welcome to the Acorn Folk Club”, as the poet Katy Konrad (now living in Chester), was in Minehead visiting her parents, and rendered two of her own excellent poems, which attracted great interest. We were also pleased to welcome visitors from Weston Super Mare and South Somerset, as well as our regulars from Taunton, Bishop’s Lydeard, Monkton Heathfield, Tiverton and Minehead and outlying villages.

The evening opened at 6 pm with the Annual Acorn Folk Club Dinner to close this our 8th Season, with excellent food and service from the landlady and staff of The Old Ship Aground.

The end of the evening was moving with the spontaneous harmony singing of 14 singers (including the guest) for “Padstow Farewell” (It’s time to go now..), with Jim Causley giving a fine encore of “Down by the Old Riverside” collected from the Cornish traveller Sophie Legg.

Jim Causley - Set 1: Ralph McTell "Summer Girls" about life of Dylan Thomas; Appalchian folk song collected by Cecil Sharp - version of "Polly Vaughan"; Devon version Sabine Baring-Gould collected - chorus song - Parson "sucking pig"; Amy Birch, now in her 90s. traveller/Romany - "Royal Comrade"; Whimple Song - talked about Wassailing - "Old Uncle Whiteway"; Cyril Tawney - "In the Sidings Now".

Set 2: "Southern Girls Reply" - American Civil War (Tim Eriksen); Welsh Song - learnt from Julie Murphy; "Green Grows the Laurel"; Song of Transportation "Jim Jones"; Story "Snow White"; "When first I came to Caledonia" learnt from Norma Waterson; Encore: Sophie Legg "Down by the Old Riverside".

That is a lovely review Eileen, thank you. Jim Causley

5th June 2010 - Guest Night No 39 with Dan McKinnon supported by Eileen Ann Moore

At the ACORN FOLK CLUB on Saturday 6th June at The Old Ship Aground, Canadian singer/songwriter, Dan McKinnon, on tour from Nova Scotia, charmed the audience with his rich warm voice in two half-hour sets, giving us a backdrop of Halifax in Canada, where he was brought up, of his grandmother, his parents and family, and of the vastness of Canada. He opened with his own "Wandering Days" and "Kith and Kin", and closed the first half with "The Man of her Dreams" - written with his grandmother's stories in mind.
Dan is an extremely interesting man as well as a fine singer; his second set included "Aesop's Fables" - again a story of his youth, and also the traditional "Farewell to Nova Scotia" and "Ballad of the Simple Sailor" (J Stewart).
Ten regular floor spots also performed: Hannah S Wiseheart with the American writer Dave Carter's songs,
fine fiddle playing from her husband Andy Wilson, singalong tunes from Bertie Owen on trombone, lovely songs with guitar accompaniment from Geoff Williams, Tony Woollard and John Middleton, rousing choruses from the Acorn Crew with Mike & Di Dibble, an exciting guitar solo from Paul and the inimitable reading of hilarious poems by honorary club member Vera Dibble.
The evening was MC'd by Eileen Ann Moore, who also supported the guest with two of her own compositions, one being "Pony and Trap". which like Dan's songs, was inspired by her own childhood, and two traditional songs in the second set, with Jim Parham wearing "the yellow handkerchief" during "Flash Company" and bringing uproarious laughter to all.
The penultimate number drew together all of the performers and the guest to sing "Padstow Farewell", thus giving Dan a taste of the English tradition of singing and harmonizing together. Dan then closed the evening with "The Mary Ellen Carter" by Stan Rogers, such a well respected songwriter who was lost to the international folk scene at the age of 33 in a plane crash.
This was an especially magical night for a privileged audience, yet next morning Dan McKinnon wrote "Thanks for a wonderful evening at the Acorn". AD
1st May 2010 - Guest Night No 38 hosting MICK RYAN & PETE HARRIS

THE ACORN FOLK CLUB held its GUEST NIGHT NO 38 on Saturday 1st May in the Pier Room at The Old Ship Aground, hosting utterly superb singer/songwriter MICK RYAN dynamically accompanied on a Louden Guitar and a rare Cook Bouzouki by PETE HARRIS, who also sings excellent harmonies. Mick Ryan is hailed as one of the finest songwriters in the folk scene today, and by Mike Harding of Radio 2 Folk as a really acclaimed singer.
I have been aware of them as a duo for 20 years, but also of Mick's writing, as he wrote the folk operas, "The Tolpuddle Man" with Graham Moore, "A Day's Work" a story of the first world war, and "The Voyage" the story many Irish people having to emigrate to America due to famine. His most recent work "The Navvy's Wife", tells of how the Irish came to Britain to dig and build our canal/road/rail network and how hard it is for the women. This latter show is currently being booked at all the major folk festivals, and has already been shown at Sidmouth.
People left the Acorn on Saturday saying "what wonderful entertainers" and "it's the best evening yet", which indicates the magic of their performance, although the latter statement is not really correct as the Acorn has a fine reputation for presenting the very best artists, often award winners, on the folk circuit today.
Mick and Pete have a whacky sense of humour, and fill their introductions with spontaneous repartee, and the audience warmed to them and they built a tremendous rapport. Yet many of the songs are extremely emotional, such as "Poppies" (from The Navvy's Wife), which tells how poppy seeds can lie dormant for years but then when the earth is disturbed they spring to life, thus marking soldiers deaths in France and Flanders, but also the navvies who lost their lives working here. Another stirring song "Lying Down" from "The Voyage" simply has to be mentioned and "The Song Goes On", written by Mick to commemorate the life the the renowned folk singer Cyril Tawney. During their two 40 minutes sets, only one song was truly traditional, "Just as the Tide was Flowing", this beautifully sung, and one by Graham Moore "Tom Paine's Bones", Tom Paine being a respected working man's hero, and one from his sister. Otherwise the entire programme was Mick's own work, much enhanced by the superb musicianship of Pete. There were also hilarious items such as "Fresh Fish" and "Desperate Dan".
Too many songs to mention in a review, but I have listed them below for folk enthusiasts such as you who are reading this!
All charmingly MC'd by Terry Matthews, who had to be a "time management" expert, as there were eleven talented floor spots, and two who were prepared to stand down. It is wonderful that many of these travel real distances to be with us ... from Weston super Mare, Tiverton, Taunton, Coleford, even a couple from Yorkshire who come when on holiday here, also many from outlying villages, and a firm nucleus of Minehead supporters, of whom we would love to have welcomed more. Holidays, illness, sprained ankles ... hope to see you all back on 5th June for Dan McKinnon on tour from Nova Scotia!
Tom Paine's Bones - Graham Moore
The Man I Killed - Mick Ryan
The Song Goes on - Mick Ryan
Just as the Tide was Flowing - Trad
Here comes Mick - Mick Ryan from The Navvy's Wife
The Ballad Seller - Mick Ryan
Sons of the Land - Mick Ryan from A Day's Work)
Song for John (Prince) - Mick Ryan
Fresh Fish - Joanna Ryan (Mick's sister ... adapted by Mick ...)
Poppies - Mick Ryan from The Navvy's Wife
Desperate Dan - Mick Ryan (hilarious)
Lying Down - Mick Ryan from The Voyage
Holmes and Watson - Mick Ryan (silly song)

3rd April 2010 - Club Night featuring Minehead Senior Flute Choir and West Somerset College Folk Group

The first feature at the Acorn Folk Club at the Old Ship Aground on Saturday 3rd April was the Minehead Senior Flute Choir directed by Jeannette Owen. Normally classical players, they had rehearsed a 20 minute programme especially for the evening with "The Wild Horseman" by Schumann, a selection of Gershwin pieces and the traditional "Village Maid". A lot of work is required to get such a pleasing sound from a group of seven teenage musicians who all looked delightful with their shining hair and coloured accessories. Most of the Choir also perform with the Somerset County Youth Concert Band and one, Ellie Stone, is a flautist with the Somerset County Youth Orchestra. Their performance was almost too quickly over, but more can be heard when Jeannette stages a Summer Concert with the Flute Choir and Soloists.
The second feature, which included three pupils from above and three further pupils, formed the West Somerset College Folk Group, directed by Jeannette and her husband Steve Owen. This time with wooden flute, silver flute, two whistles, fiddle, electric bass and acoustic guitars. A hitch with the tuning of the electronic keyboard, disturbed in transport, meant that this instrument and player had to sit out of this set, which comprised fast finger work to perform music from Scotland - "Over the Moor to Maggie", and Irish Jigs and Reels with such titles as "Geese in the Bog" and "Morrisons"; and in a minor key "Old Grey Cat" and "Tamlin", finishing with "Butterfly" and "The Exile's Jig".
To supplement these two contrasting groups, there were two more college students: Ryan Boulton and Ali Poat, with great voices - both good guitarists, who performed three songs and would be welcomed to the Acorn Folk Club at any time.
Twelve other floor spots (too many to itemise) helped to entertain a substantial Club Night audience of over forty people, with Mike Dibble's "Twas on one April Morning" (trad) and Geoff Williams' "The Hands of the Carpenter" (McTell) being ideal choices for the time of year. Jim Parham gave a beautiful rendition of Ewan McColl's "The Joy of Living", the Acorn Crew roused the audience with good chorus songs - "The Rosabella" from Watchet being one, and some excellent fiddle playing from Andy Wilson made a very pleasant evening MC'd by founder Eileen Ann Moore. Please click on photos to view all.
The Acorn Folk Club was happy to make a donation towards the future purchase of an alto flute for the Minehead Senior Flute Choir, and for the purchase of a new whistle for the College Folk Group. The Club has also been able to make a donation of £50 to the Regal Lift Off project. EAM


6th March 2010 - GUEST NIGHT NO 37 with DAMIEN BARBER & MIKE WILSON

On Saturday 6th March THE ACORN FOLK CLUB hosted DAMIEN BARBER and MIKE WILSON, nominated for the best duo for BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2010. Both still young men, they have been singing and performing for twenty years, much influenced by their own rich heritage of folk music in their families, and by many renowned artists they have met over the years, but only touring as a duo occasionally in the last 5 years.

Both have “other lives” – Damien with his Demon Barber Roadshow, which won BBC Radio 2 Best Live Act Folk Award in 2009, incorporating clog, morris and rapper; his show is a hugely popular choice at large festivals and indeed he was invited to China to perform. About this Damien said very little, enjoying going back to his roots by performing in the extremely friendly ambience of the folk club. Mike, on the other hand, did speak of his “other life” – singing with four brothers, and occasionally includeing two sisters, as “The Wilson Family”, who are absolutely internationally acclaimed, and known much more in their own North East location, but, I believe, leaving us wishing we could invite them to perform here in Minehead. In both cases, look out for them on your travels.

They spoke of their influences, Peter Bellamy, Norfolk singer who gave Damien tremendous encouragement as a teenager, and Mike Waterson of the Waterson Family for Mike. Also for both of them - Stan Hugill, Dick Gaughan and Ewan McColl, whom many of us remember for his Radio 2 Ballads.

So, they were “re-reviving” the folk revival from the 70s, with Bellamy’s “The Santa Fe Trail”, Hugill’s shanty “Shiney O”, Guaghan”s “The Green Linnet”, Waterson’s “Down the Moor”. They lift the ceiling with their big voices, and completely fill the room with the depth of their singing. Alongside this, Damien is a wonderful instrumentalist, playing concertina extremely sensitively, and an excellent accompanist on guitar – none of your three chord tricks, but melodies and instrumental breaks to enthral.

The McColl numbers were outstanding: “My Old Man” at the beginning of the evening, and later “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” and the encore “The Joy of Living” brought their two forty-five minute sets to an emotional close.

Would that we could have heard more, but their introductions, whilst amusing and extremely interesting can steal from the music, so that they seem to keep their audience in suspense waiting for the thrill of the next song!

Sixty people attended, 19 of these being floor spots, with both traditional and contemporary items, some a capella, others with guitar accompaniment and there were two melodeon players and a fiddler, so there was a tremendous variety.

Organisers Eileen Ann Moore and Jim Parham, who also acted as MCs, wish to thank Brenda Freshwater and staff of the Old Ship Aground, for the use of this ideal venue, and for all the support from musicians, singers and listeners alike.

Damien’s gratifying remark: “There are not many folk clubs which get an audience as good as this .....” EAM

6th February 2010 - Special Club Night featuring BOB & GILL BERRY

Entertainment doesn’t come much better than the Special Club Night featuring Bob and Gill Berry at the Acorn Folk Club, Old Ship Aground on Saturday (Feb 6th.) The last time I saw Bob he was a nipper singing with the Portway Pedlars, the legendary family group launched by his Mum and Dad, Len and Barbara Berry.Now, here I was, comfortably ensconced on Minehead’s harbour, rejoicing in Bob and Gill’s mature and polished performance.

I loved the powerful singing, delightful harmony and precise guitar work.It was engaging right from the start; straight in with a rousing rendition of the traditional Mother, Dear Mother. Instant rapport! Bob and Gill are experts in gaining audience participation.And it just got better and better. With this pair you don’t get hackneyed material. They are masters at picking out the unusual, and each song is introduced with such fascinating off the cuff information.


I particularly liked the historic song, Suffer Little Children, written by Mary Foulkes to the music of Paul Flannery. It tells the story of the Fern Street Settlement’s charity in London’s East End. At Christmas the children have to pass through a painted wooden arch in order to receive a parcel of toys. Once they grow too tall, no parcel. The tradition still survives but tragically the settlement may face being razed to the ground to make way for the 2012 Olympics

And John Prosser’s Match Strike song, (This is the Age of Smoke and Fire) defining the terrible lives of the workers maimed by the dangerous chemicals at the first Bryant and May’s Matchstick factory.

But there was plenty of light material too, including one of my favourites, Jack in the Green. And I loved Bob’s version of ‘I Was Much Better Off in the Army,’ recalling his own days in the Army Catering Corps at Salisbury.

Oh! And by the way! Bob and Gill also run the Devizes Folk Club and Chippenham Folk Festival.

The talent was matched by a wonderful line up of floor spots, typical of the standard now accepted as norm at this great club.

The evening was further enhanced by the presence of members of the Yarn Market Hotel Choir, fresh from rehearsing Verdi’s Requiem to be performed with professional soloists in the Tithe Barn, Dunster.

Don’t miss out on the fun at the Acorn. The Club meets on the first Saturday of every month except August at The Old Ship Aground, Quay Street, Minehead. Singers, instrumentalists and listeners are all welcome. Great to see you there.

All details www.acornfolkclub.co.uk

2nd JANUARY 2010 - EIGHTH ANNUAL PARTY WITH PETE MORTON

THE ACORN FOLK CLUB's Eighth Annual Party on 2nd January in the Pier Room at The Old Ship Aground hosted the outstandingly original, talented and very personable PETE MORTON, who has travelled the globe with his self-penned songs with regular tours to Europe and America.
He spoke of writing spontaneously in all sorts of situations, for example, "The Post Office Queue" (in which he observes everyday life), "The Busking Song" (his earlier life story when songwriting was compulsive, but a harder route to take than a conventional job); "Further" (looking to the future), "The Shepherd's Song" (about the poet John Clare's life); "Six Billion Eccentrics" (...wander this earth) - alongside caring songs "The Great Gold Sun" and "There's Another Train" (giving hope for new opportunities). His encore "When we sing together" (... is the best time) literally brought tears to the eyes, and organisers Eileen Ann Moore and Jim Parham really value his contribution to the Acorn's party and to the wider scene of contemporary folk music.
A pity then, that although Susannah Billeter (Tiverton Club organiser) braved the journey as so esteemed is Pete Morton, generally due to the extremely cold weather, almost as many people rang to apologise with colds, illness or other engagements because of the proximity to the New Year, than were actually present. However, we were thirty in all, and those thirty were really glad they came and donated a generous spread.
Also there were ten absolutely superb loyal floorspots, including Benn Bancks, Mike Dibble and John Middleton springing to the occasion and being prepared to perform up to three numbers each! Notable of these was Geoff Williams' performance of a new song in his repertoire "Boat to Baru" by Tom Bliss, and lively sets "Father Kelly/Coolies" and "Spootiskerry/Willjaford" from Jeannette (wooden flute) and Abi (fiddle) Owen, with Pete Morton hi-jacked into accompanying them, as he is a family friend.
Perhaps next year we will delay the party by a week, as Pete was so much worthy of a much larger audience, but it was still a lovely evening thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended.
EAM & RJP
5th DECEMBER 2009 - CLUB NIGHT FEATURING IAN HUDSON
THE ACORN FOLK CLUB hosted IAN HUDSON (Ex Hearts of Oak) on Saturday 5th December in the festively decorated Pier Room at the Old Ship Aground. Ian, with his fine voice and sensitive guitar playing, performed a selection of Show of Hands songs together with traditional and other contemporary items including Ralph McTell material.
He had prepared a very thoughtful programme with a message of peace for Christmas incorporating Sydney Carter's "Crow on the Cradle" alongside Steve Knightley's "Man of War" and his well-known chorus songs "Tall Ships", "Crazy Boy" and "Cousin Jack". Ian's two sets were supported by sixteen enthusiastic floor spots, among them some vigorous singing from the Dunster Carolers, who arrived rather damp but rosy cheeked from Dunster by Candlelight in time for the mince pie break, and really enhanced the Christmas spirit of the evening, as did the distribution of percussion instruments for a fun Rudolf/Jingle set from Eileen Ann Moore and Gerry Mogg with his talented melodeon playing (also straight from his Dunster booking).
Ian's encore, "Banks of the Ohio", had everyone in the fifty-plus audience joining in, and the charming MC Terry Matthews called upon Eileen Ann and Mike Dibble with the guest, all the carolers and other floorspots to finish rather exuberantly with John Tams' "Rolling Home". The message of the evening was Peace, Love and Laughter.
Please click on photos and future programme. EAM

7th NOVEMBER 2009 - GUEST NIGHT NO 35 WITH RUTH NOTMAN www.ruth-notman.com

THE ACORN FOLK CLUB hosted RUTH NOTMAN on Saturday 7th November at The Old Ship Aground for its 35th Guest Night. Ruth has been hailed as the new voice in British Folk by The Independent, and in came the accolades for her from the seventy plus audience she attracted:

“Ruth was a delightful performer who brought a youthful enthusiasm to her performance. This was complimented by her guitar and keyboard skills that accompanied a beautiful and clear singing voice.” (GW);

“Ruth is simply amazing. Only 20 years old and so accomplished, and so wonderfully in tune with her audience. She has real star quality. The Acorn Folk Club can be rightly proud of booking her.” (MM)

“Many thanks for a most enjoyable evening last night - well worth the 160 mile round trip to be there.” (FE)

“We had a lovely evening, and enjoyed your guest's performance and also the others who performed. We shall visit you again in the near future.” (SB)

"We very much enjoyed Ruth’s performance. She is a very talented young lady and it is great to see a new generation taking folk music forward with a fresh interpretation of traditional, as well as presenting new material." (PH)

"Would like to say how much we enjoyed the Acorn on Saturday. Always a great pleasure to see you anywhere and your family`s music is always great but for me Bertie`s spot won the day." (JH)

Ruth remarked that the difference between a concert hall or arts centre and a folk club, is that there is an opportunity for amateurs to perform alongside professionals, meeting and talking in an informal environment.

Ruth performed eleven traditional songs, accompanying herself on guitar or keyboard, and sometimes singing a capella. She has an outstanding delivery for someone so young, opening one set with “The Holland Handkerchief”, and the second set with “Limbo”; in both 45 minute sets she immediately held the audience spellbound. Her own A Level composition “The Lonely Day Dies” stayed with me all night and into the next day – brilliant! Included also was contemporary material from Buffie Saint Marie, John Tams and Richard Thompson, all well-loved in today's folk scene.

Ruth is a very charming young woman and responded to requests “Lark in the Clear Air” (trad) and “Caledonia” (Dougie McLean). All these songs are available on her two CDs, “Threads” and “The Life of Lilly” – available at all good record stores and at Tesco, or she can be contacted at www.ruth-notman.com

Also drawing many compliments was Bertie Owen (11) with "I've Got Rhythm" on his trombone, and the Owen family, Steve (guitar), Jeannette (wooden flute) and Abi (fiddle) with Luke Trimmings (mandolin) giving three lively sets of Irish Jigs and Shetland Reels. With eleven other super floor spots - Paul Haines giving a great opening with a skit on the original – ‘I don’t like broccoli’. (Try this amusing link: http://quotationsbook.com/quote/15243/), Mike Dibble choosing as ever an apt song "There'll be rest for horse and men" for remembrance weekend, Marian Matthews' "All the joy that is mine today", celebrating her 49th wedding anniversary with husband Terry, and cake for two birthdays - the evening was really great and very encouraging for organisers Eileen Ann Moore and Jim Parham, whose own duo singing received enthusiastic comments!

EAM

3rd OCTOBER 2009 - CLUB NIGHT featuring THE SILVER STREET BAND

One of the interesting things about the Acorn Folk Club is that each occasion is different, and the Club Night held on 3rd October in the Pier Room at the Old Ship Aground, Minehead (pleased to be back in this regular excellent venue), was no exception.


Due to several people being on holiday, the evening was quieter than usual, although some newcomers were welcomed, with only seven floor spots, all of whom came up trumps when called upon to perform two or three numbers each. Of these - John Lennon's "Imagine" performed by John Middleton, "Ploughman Lads Are All The Go" (Trad) by Benn Banks and Ralph McTell's "Hands of the Carpenter" by Geoff Williams, all sensitively sung and accompanied on their guitars - were a real enhancement to the gentle atmosphere of the evening.

The highlight was the Silver Street Band, the booked feature, comprising two charming gentlemen, Tony Batten and his friend Bev, who run the Milverton Music Club, both very accomplished musicians. During their two sets they had everyone joining in, and smiling as they left, having enjoyed their wide repertoire of traditional and contemporary folk, blues, self-penned songs and humour. From their well chosen selection, Richard Thompson's "Galway to Gracelands" was beautifully delivered, "Denomination Blues" and "Good Girl Blues" were great fun and songs written by them - Tony (words) and Bev (music) - "Sandy Denny Days" and "Boots of Clay" were a delight. For more photos please click on Photographs in left hand margin.
Greshna Dibble and two of her three young sons, taught by Abigail Todd, were able to make their Acorn Folk Club debut on their violins at the very early stages of performance. Mike Dibble and Eileen Ann Moore shared the MCing of this very pleasant Club Night, and as ever, everyone helped to clear up and that is very much appreciated.

5th SEPTEMBER 2009 - OPENING OF EIGHTH SEASON - RICHARD GRAINGER AND CHRIS PARKINSON

THE ACORN FOLK CLUB'S opening of its EIGHTH SEASON ran out of tickets and extra chairs had to be hurriedly brought into the Skittle Alley of The Quay Inn, Minehead, on Saturday 5th September.

The attraction, drawing such enthusiastic support, was the quality of the guests Richard Grainger, known as "The Voice of Teeside" and Chris Parkinson, virtuoso melodeon player. The combination of songs with guitar from Richard, sensitively accompanied by Chris, sometimes on accordion, and lively tunes on melodeon from Chris, made for a very interesting and varied performance.
Richard's songwriting is much respected, not only in his North East roots of Whitby and Middlesborough, for which he has written a town project with moving songs such as "Diesel and Coal", "Ironstone Miner", "Celebrated Workman", "Pit Boots", "Scarborough Fisherman" - they are just too numerous to mention all, but also nationally and internationally, and he is about to tour Canada.
Contrasting tunes from Chris, Byrne's "Hornpipe"/"High Level" (Irish), Sonny's "Mazurka"/"Spanish Cloak", and "Butcher's Fancy"/"Paddy Durkins" (Trad), were a delight.
Richard drew in the listeners with his introductions of the hard life of mining, fishing, whaling and the "Trawler Gaul" lost at sea, but finished on a light note with "Day in Redcar". Throughout he encouraged audience participation and the roof was raised for his encore "Roll River Flow". All the songs were his own penmanship, except the stirring "Wild Goose" by Wade Hemsworth.
Exciting too, was the fact that there were no less than 16 floor spots, comprising 20 musicians in all as a duo and a quartet were included, all perfectly MC's by Terry Matthews.
Organisers of the Acorn Folk Club, Eileen Ann Moore and Jim Parham, would like to thank the landlord and landlady and staff of the Quay Inn who gave excellent service and accommodated the Club at short notice.
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