Reg Meuross announces new album and tour

Reg Meuross

In 2011 Stephen Jordan, the Head Librarian at The Bodleian Music Library in Oxford, approached Reg Meuross with the idea of commissioning a compilation of unreleased material. After a cursory search down the back of the sofa Reg managed to find 20 songs that he had recorded to various stages of completion between 2006 and 2011 but which had failed to make the final cut onto albums. Stephen reduced the list to 13 and the result was the signed limited edition album The Dreamed And The Drowned.

Surprisingly to Reg that collection of songs which he had considered unsuitable for the various designated albums at the time of release attracted some of the best reviews of his career: “There is no doubt after listening to this selection of Reg’s unreleased songs that my view of him being one of our best singer/songwriters of our time is reinforced still further.” Alex Gallagher, Folk Radio UK. Anyone who is lucky enough to own a copy of The Dreamed And The Drowned will know very well that a rejected Reg Meuross song is in no way a reflection of its quality – but more a question of its suitability to the collection, or as (the now late) Stephen Jordan said himself “some songs are right books put on the wrong shelves.”

Now, with two successful solo albums under his belt (December and Faraway People) and a third on the way to complete the trilogy and as a nod in honour and appreciation of Stephen, who died in 2015, we felt it would be a good time to have a scratch around and see what else may have been overlooked. The resulting album Songs About A Train is a limited, signed release comprising eleven songs recorded by Reg between 2013 and 2017. Release date February 2nd 2018 (via Proper Records).

Reg will be touring with this album, plus previous release Faraway People, throughout the first half of 2018 in a Two Albums Tour.

“Some songs don’t stay still long enough and scamper off, some are dazzled by the dragonfly’s gleam. Some songs are right books put on the wrong shelves.” Stephen Jordan (1957-2015)

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click below to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website.

Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

Artist’s website: regmeuross.com

‘Letting Go’:

Tour Dates

JANUARY

12 Roots Music Club, Doncaster, S. Yorkshire
13 Cruck Barn nr Skipton, N. Yorkshire
14 Kardomah94 Hull (12 Silk Handkerchiefs preview show) narrated by Brian W Lavery
17 Live Session Radio 2 Folk Show
19 Private gig Priston, Somerset
20 House Concert, Maidenhead, Berkshire
24 Cheese & Grain Frome, Somerset
26 Burton On Trent Folk Club, Staffordshire
30 Dartford Folk Club, Kent

FEBRUARY

2 Bridport Town Hall Songs About A Train SOUTH WEST ALBUM LAUNCH
3 Langfords Acoustic Cafe, Salisbury, Wilts
11 Raven Folk Club, Chester, Cheshire
14 Old Cinema Launderette, Durham Songs About A Train NORTH EAST ALBUM LAUNCH
15 British Legion Club, Coldstream, Scottish Borders
17 Ardross Hall, Ardross, Ross Shire
20 Glachbeg Croft Folk Club, Inverness Shire
21 Edinburgh Folk Club, Pleasance Festival Theatre, Edinburgh
22 Biggar Folk Club, South Lanarkshire
23 House Concert Blackpool, Lancashire

MARCH

1 Green Note, Camden, London Songs About A Train LONDON ALBUM LAUNCH
2 George Hotel, South Molton, North Devon
3 The David Hall, South Petherton, Somerset
10 Keynsham Space, Bath Festival
11 Osmington Village Hall, Weymouth, Dorset

APRIL

5 Hove Folk Club, East Sussex
6 Village Pump Folk Club, Trowbridge, Wilts
10 Fishponds Folk Club, Bristol
12 Pebbles Tavern, Watchet, Somerset
15 Salem Chapel, East Budleigh, Devon

MAY

2/3 Private storytelling through song workshop, Barcelona, Spain
5 Solidarity Festival, Barnsley
12 Wedding party, Somerset
13 Hebden Bridge Folk & Roots Festival
16 Epping Folk Club, Essex
17 The Stables, Milton Keynes
18 Chettle Village Hall, Dorset
26 with Anna Tanvir, Heart of Devon, Bow
27/28 Bude Festival, Cornwall
30 with Anna Tanvir, St Anne’s Barnstaple, North Devon
31 with Anna Tanvir, Chapel Arts, Bath

JUNE

1 with Anna Tanvir, Kingskerswell, Devon
6 Faversham Folk Club, Kent
21 The Old Stables, Cricklade, Glos

JULY

3 House concert, North Devon
6 Americana Fest 2018, Kelham Hall Notts
7 New Forest Folk Festival, Hampshire
12 Frome Festival + The Portraits Somerset
13 Holywell Music & Folk, Oxford
21 House party, Portsmouth, Hampshire
26 Orpington Folk Club, Kent
27 Coastal Connections, Brighton, East Sussex

REG MEUROSS – Faraway People (Hatsongs HAT011)

Faraway PeopleI enjoyed Reg’s previous album, December, and Faraway People is more of the same and even better than its predecessor. Once again Reg has stripped himself back to the basics of voice and guitar – plus a bit of banjo and harmonica – with only engineer Roy Dodds in the studio for company. And for all its soft reflectiveness it hits as hard as anything you’ll hear this year.

The opening title track attacks government cruelty through the stories of its victims, driven to despair and suicide and ‘Angel In A Blue Dress’ takes a specific case of a nurse in the resource-starved NHS. ‘The Lonesome Death Of Michael Brown’ contains several nods to Bob Dylan in both its title and lyrics and ‘Cicero’ is oddly reminiscent of ‘A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall’. The former tells the story of the Afro-American boy shot by a white policeman in Ferguson, Missouri which gave rise to a wave of protests but I’m uncertain about the link to the Roman senator in the latter, unless it is his life-long struggle against corruption. The song has a modern setting with some righteous finger-pointing at the rich, and particularly bankers and lawyers, but more empathy for the ordinary people.

There is tenderness here, too. ‘New Brighton Girl’ and ‘In Your Arms’ are both love songs and ‘Refugee’ sees the western world through the story of one such, trying to settle into a new life. Its anger is buried in regret and a sense of helplessness but it’s there. Reg is not without humour, either. ‘Leavin’ Alabama’ tells of an imagined meeting between Hank Williams and Dylan Thomas – in a bar, of course – and ‘Phil Ochs & Elvis Eating Lunch In Morrison’s Café’ is pure Michael Marra. Note the apostrophe, this café is in the south-eastern USA although Reg also places it, somewhat confusingly, just off the M18 and it imagines two of his heroes together with him trying to eavesdrop.

Faraway People is destined to be one of the albums of the year. It will be released on July 28th but you really should be queuing up already.

Dai Jeffries

If you would like to order a copy of the album (in CD or Vinyl), download it or just listen to snippets of selected tracks (track previews are usually on the download page) then click below to be taken to our associated partner Amazon’s website.

Buying through Amazon on folking.com helps us to recover a small part of our running costs, so please order anything you need as every little purchase helps us.

Artist’s website: http://www.regmeuross.com/

‘Faraway People’ – in the studio: