This is my version of the old traditional song ‘Cold Blow and the Rainy Night.’ It appeared on my 2013 album ‘Folk Songs and Renovations.‘ The words are traditional but I wrote a new tune for them which was inspired by a guitar riff by my friend Carrie Day!
Cara Dillon and her husband and musical partner Sam Lakeman have produced a number of beautiful CDs over the years, including some with a little more instrumentation. But this stripped-down concert demonstrates what brilliant musicians they are. Cara’s voice is wonderfully expressive and she’s definitely at the top of her game. Sam’s piano and guitar arrangements are always just enough and never too much, and occasionally Cara throws in a little tin whistle for good measure.
And what better to give us during a time of pandemic than a concert with a healthy dose of traditional Irish folk songs, which probably express love and loss better than any other body of music on the planet?
Some of the media reactions:
“It is an inspiring and intimate delight from start to finish, the purity of Cara’s voice elegantly complemented by Sam on the venue’s Steinway grand piano and guitar”
“In the familiarity of her melody and emotive vocals, Dillon gave comfort to her online audience, creating togetherness across time and distance.”
“And what a glorious 75 minutes it was, beautifully set and staged, the music an exquisite patchwork of different hues”
Oh – and if you enjoy this concert, read this note from Cara and Sam and send them a donation. Like all folk musicians, their income has taken a huge hit during the pandemic.
Here’s an old American folk hymn; it seems appropriate for Good Friday.
You can learn more about the history of this hymn here.
Here’s my version of the old traditional English folk song ‘The Week Before Easter’. My guitar arrangement is inspired by an instrumental version recorded by Martin Simpson. The tuning is CGCGCE.
You can find out more about the song and its recording history on Mainly Norfolk. A lit of people seem to have done it!
…was Megson’s brilliant ‘A Yuletide Carol’!
The blurb says: ‘It features a sparkling mix of traditional carols, Elizabethan yuletide songs as well as two Megson original tracks all arranged for mandolas, guitars, banjos and Megson’s trademark soaring vocal harmonies.’ And sparkling is truly the right word!
Find out more about Megson on their website here.
Speaking of Matthew Byrne, here he is with his band, the Dardanelles, singing ‘Eastern Light’. The Canada Day fun continues!
Matthew Byrne is the finest interpreter of traditional folk songs in Canada today. Here’s a good example of his playing and singing, Canada Day folk music continues!
The Canada Day song gala continues. Newfoundland has some of the best Caandian folk songs, and here’s one sung a capella by the inimitable Great Big Sea.
Well, it’s time to start the Canada Day weekend music rolling! Here’s Gordon Lightfoot with a great version of ‘Farewell to Nova Scotia’ from 1972.
A couple of Steeleye Span tunes to wake you up on a Saturday morning! The first is a fiery instrumental, the second demonstrates conclusively (in my view) that vocally, this current lineup is one of the strongest in Steeleye’s fifty-year career.
Oh, and in my opinion Maddy Prior is the reigning queen of current English folk music!