Scottish-American singer-songwriter and folk musician, David Ferrard, releases Journeyman, an album of finely-crafted original songs marked by a strong social conscience. Ferrard takes the listener on a musical journey in his most autobiographical album to date, from the elliptical opening song of reconciliation and hope (Bridges) to the haunting closing number (The War Carries On – Turn, Turn Turn), in which he interweaves folk legend Pete Seeger’s 1960s peace anthem with his own contemporary lyric. Throughout Journeyman Ferrard explores personal issues of identity, childhood, relationship and family break-ups, as well as those affecting humanity in other areas of the world: genocide in Bosnia (Wildflowers), AIDS-ravaged Africa (The Father Says), and the legacy of war both at home and abroad (The War Carries On – Turn, Turn, Turn).
Ferrard said: “Since my last album of traditional material I have been digging deep as a writer, using my own life and the world around me as source material. These songs, about childhood, family, relationships, and the impact of war on my and others’ lives, explore my hopes and fears. It’s a more personal expression than my first album of original songs, Broken Sky (2008), even though I’m often writing from the perspective of different characters. My favourite songwriter, Robert Burns, did that. For example he wrote as an elderly woman in John Anderson, My Jo. I have tried that in Till Death Do Us Part. You have to find the write character to tell the story. It doesn’t make the song any less personal. I hope that Journeyman takes the listener on an emotional journey through my words and music.”
Most autobiographical is I Am An Immigrant (I’m From Here), which explores multiculturalBritain through Ferrard’s own family story. He says: ‘I’ve spent my whole life explaining to people that despite my accent and my last name I am in fact Scottish. This song deals with three stories: my Italian grandfather who was interned in Scotland during World War Two and afterwards changed his name from Ferrari to Ferrard to be more accepted; my American mother who first came to Scotland to study, and then to marry my father; and me – a Scot of mixed origins who embraces open borders and who feels at home in a diverse Britain.’
Ferrard recorded Journeyman in a small studio in the Scottish Borders with producer Mattie Foulds (LAU, Karine Polwart, Kris Drever). A handful ofScotland’s finest folk musicians (Kevin McGuire, Steven Polwart, Kim Edgar, Adam Sutherland, and Su-a Lee from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra) have contributed to the album’s warm, acoustic sound.
‘Moving, powerful, compelling.’ – TONY BENN
‘…a one-man transatlantic session.’ – THE SUNDAY HERALD
‘…reminds me of the intense and poetic singer-songwriters of the late 1960s, but with contemporary sophistication’ – SING OUT! (USA)
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