John Tams rejoins Home Service

Home Service

If you thought Home Service had gone a bit quiet of late here’s some good news – the band is back with some great gigs in the diary and the major news is that John Tams has re-enlisted alongside John Kirkpatrick as joint front man and lead vocalist. This is very exciting for us all and furthermore there are rumours of new material, which could mean we might see the boys back in the studio before long. A series of EPs is a possibility this time.

Main thing is, just don’t miss this rare opportunity to be blown away by the sheer might, grace and grandeur of the one and only Home Service when they come your way.

We have very sad news regarding dear and wonderful bass player, Rory McFarlane. Rory has had to stand down from the position of bassist owing to a currently incurable neurological illness, which renders it impossible for him to play. This is such a blow after most of a lifetime as a musician and our deepest sympathies are with Rory. We shall miss him terrnbly. Because of the terrible news that Rory can no longer play bass for us, we are enlisting the talents of another old friend, Rob Levy to supply the low notes. Welcome to the fold Rob!

The new line-up of Home Service played their first gig in Nettlebed on September 31st.

Artists’ website:

A reminder of what was and what is to come. ‘Scarecrow/Ampleforth’ live:

Upcoming gigs

Friday 18th October 2019 – LICHFIELD GARRICK THEATRE

Friday ‪7th February 2020 – LOWDHAM VILLAGE HALL

Friday 3rd July 2020 – NEW FOREST FOLK FESTIVAL 2020

Friday 17th July 2020 – ‪St EDITH’S FOLK CLUB, Nr. SEVENOAKS

The Roundhouse announces its 2020 In The Round season


Celebrating its fifth year, the Roundhouse presents In The Round, a series of shows devoted to intimate performances set in the venue’s iconic main space, staged in a rarely seen, fully-seated concert set up around an almost circular stage.  Since its inception in 2016, In the Round has become known for its bold and adventurous programming.  An eclectic mix of genre-spanning artists present a series of special shows that include unique one-offs, exclusive premieres, solo sets and storytelling, making it a key fixture of the musical calendar and an exciting start to the year.

Today, the Roundhouse announces its first wave of acts for In The Round 2020 and amongst an array of eclectic performers is Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell

In 2010, Mitchell released the album Hadestown, a folk opera based on the Greek myth of Orpheus. The response was extraordinary.  Five star reviews across the board marked it an unmitigated triumph heralding the arrival of a vital new voice and a formidable songwriting talent. Originally conceived as a community theatre project in rural Vermont, Mitchell continued developing it as a musical. Today, Hadestown is a Broadway hit and winner of eight Tony Awards including Best Musical.  Yet Hadestown is just one release from Mitchell’s six-album catalogue. Each, including the highly acclaimed Young Man in America, and Child Ballads for which she won a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award, draws from the tradition of folk, yet with thoroughly modern execution.  Mitchell comes from the world of narrative folksong, poetry and balladry; her distinctive, fragile voice is beguiling, her melodies seductive and songcraft immaculate, tackling universal themes with emotional intimacy.

Anaïs Mitchell is a compelling live performer most usually seen in the UK, solo or duo.  Her In The Round appearance offers UK audiences a rare chance to see her music that spans the breadth of her catalogue, including some new material, together with a band.

Mitchell also appears in her latest project, Bonny Light Horseman, who will open the show. Dubbed a ‘folk supergroup’ by Rolling Stone Magazine, she appears with multi-instrumentalist Josh Kaufman (The National, Hiss Golden Messenger) and Eric D. Johnson (Fruit Bats).

Doors 7pm / Ticket Prices from £22.50

Full In The Round Listing:

Friday 24 January                              Jorge Drexler
Saturday 25 January                          Badly Drawn Boy
Tuesday 28 January                           KOKOROKO
Thursday 30 January                         Fatoumata Diawara
Friday 31 January                              Anaïs Mitchell
Friday 01 February                            Beverley Knight

More acts to be announced soon

As part of the Roundhouse’s commitment to developing emerging talent, young artists who use the Paul Hamlyn Roundhouse Studios will perform as support acts for each headline artist.

Tickets on sale Friday 27 September:

Anaïs Mitchell – ‘All I’ve Ever Known’ – live:

Bob Fox – autumn gigs

Bob Fox
Photograph by Rob Bridge

Here are Bob Fox’s solo gigs throughout September and October. Don’t forget that the Pitmen Poets UK Farewell Tour starts 16th October. Details at


Sat 7th SEDGEFIELD Folk Festival,County Durham.
tickets/info: website

Wed 11th CRAMLINGTON Folk Club,The Benedictine Social Centre, Glenluce Drive, CRAMLINGTON Northumberland NE23 6YA
tickets/info: website

Thurs 12th DONCASTER – Cast, Waterdale, Doncaster, S.Yorks DN1 3BU
tickets/info: 01302 303959

Fri 13th STOKE-ON-TRENT – Potteries Folk Club,Foxfield Railway Station, Caverswall Road, Blythe Bridge, STOKE-ON-TRENT, North Staffs ST11 9BG
tickets/info: 01782 616015

Tues 17th DARTFORD Folk Club,Dartford Working Men’s Club, 40 Essex Road, DARTFORD, Kent DA1 2AU
tickets/info: 01322 277218

Thurs 19th MARGATE House Concert
Rosslyn Court,62 Sweyn Road, Cliftonville, MARGATE, Kent CT9 2DD
tickets/info: 07902 140248

Fri 20th THAMES DITTON – The Ram Club,Old Cranleighan Club, Portsmouth Road, THAMES DITTON, Surrey. KT7 0HB
tickets/info: 0208 686 9421

Sat 21st MORETON – Millennium Community Centre,
Church Lane,Moreton nr Newport,Staffs.TF10 9DS
tickets/info: tel: 01952 691222

Sun 22nd GAINSBOROUGH – Springthorpe Village Hall,
School Lane, Springthorpe, nr GAINSBOROUGH, Lincs DN21 5QD
tickets/info: 01427 838726

Wed 25th EDINBURGH Folk Club,Ukrainian Community Centre, 14 Royal Terrace, Edinburgh EH7 5AB website
Please note new venue

Thurs 26th FALKIRK Folk Club,The Tolbooth Tavern,
Tolbooth Street, FALKIRK. FK1 1NL website

Fri 27th HEXHAM – The Vault, Hallgate Gallery,
Hallgate, HEXHAM, Northumberland.NE46 1XD
tickets/info: 01434 603884


Tues 1st GLASGOW – Star Folk Club,The Admiral Bar,
72a Waterloo Street,GLASGOW,G2 7DA
tickets/info: website

Fri 4th RHYL Folk Club,Tynewydd Community Centre,
Coast Road, RHYL, North Wales LL18 3RD
tickets/info: website

Artist’s website:

‘The Galway Shawl’ – live:

Special guest artists announced for Richard Thompson’s birthday bash

Richard Thompson
Photograph courtesy of Mojo magazine

An incredible array of special guest performers has been announced for Richard Thompson’s 70th birthday celebration show at London’s Royal Albert Hall on September 30th 2019. This once in a lifetime concert will see eminent fellow musicians, friends and family grace the stage to mark the milestone birthday of this iconic and much respected artist.

Joining Richard Thompson on an exceptional night will be: Alistair Anderson, Ashley Hutchings, Bob Mould, Christine Collister, Danny Thompson, Dave Mattacks, Dave Pegg, David Gilmour, Derek Smalls (formerly of the band formally known as Spinal Tap), Eliza Carthy, Hugh Cornwell, Jack Thompson, James Walbourne, Judith Owen, Kami Thompson, Kate Rusby, Linda Thompson, Loudon Wainwright III, Maddy Prior, Marc Ellington, Martin Carthy, Olivia Chaney, Simon Nicol, Teddy Thompson and Zara Phillips.

The show sold out swiftly when it was announced in April. Look out for the release of last minute tickets:

Richard Thompson’s enduring musical influence and accomplishments are unparalleled.  Having co-founded the ground-breaking group Fairport Convention as a teenager in the 1960s, he and his bandmates invented a distinctive strain of British folk rock.  He left the group by the age of 21, followed by a decade long musical partnership with his then-wife Linda, to over 30 years as a highly successful solo artist.  Thompson’s genre defying mastery of both acoustic and electric guitar along with engaging energy and onstage wit continue to earn him new fans and a place as one of the most distinctive virtuosos and writers in folk rock history.  Powered by evocative songcraft, jaw-dropping guitar playing, and indefinable spirit, this venerable icon holds a coveted spot on Rolling Stone’s “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time” and counts Lifetime Achievement Awards from the Americana Music Association in Nashville and the UK Americana Music Association, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the BBC Folk Awards, a prestigious Ivor Novello Award and, of course, an OBE, among his many accolades.

A wide range of musicians have recorded Thompson’s songs including David Gilmour, Robert Plant, Elvis Costello, R.E.M., Sleater-Kinney, Del McCoury, Bonnie Raitt, Tom Jones, David Byrne, Don Henley, Los Lobos, and many more.  His massive body of work includes many Grammy nominated albums as well as numerous soundtracks, including Werner Herzog’s Grizzly Man.  Thompson’s latest album 13 Rivers (Proper Records) was released to widespread acclaim last September and appeared on many 2018 ‘best of the year’ lists. His accompanying tour was met with glowing reviews, including The Observer, in its Artist of the Week spread, who concluded, “Half a century after his first gig with Fairport Convention, folk-rocker Richard Thompson – trademark Stratocaster and beret intact – is as cool, energetic and contemporary as ever.”

Artist’s website:

‘Who Knows Where The Time Goes’ – live and acoustic:

Belinda Kempster and Fran Foote – album and live dates

Belinda Kempster and Fan Foote

From Here Records release On Clay Hill, Stick In The Wheel harmony singer Fran Foote’s debut album with her mother, Belinda Kempster.

Belinda began singing traditional songs in the 1960s:

“Our family has a history of farming and working on the land; these songs come from that way of life – at work and at play”.

She met her husband in a folk club, and Fran grew up immersed in the local folk scene, learning songs from her parents from a very young age. As mother and daughter, Fran and Belinda have sung together privately for years, but it’s only now we all have a chance to hear Ian Carter’s recordings of their unique interpretations of mostly Essex-collected traditional songs. Encouraged by band and label founders Nicola and Ian, they bring timeless renditions without frills or fuss to a repertoire that is rich and varied.

Many of their songs were learned from Fran’s great uncle and farm labourer Ernie Austin, who was recorded for Topic’s Voice Of The People release Flash Company in 1974. Austin lived and worked in the small village of Bentley, just outside Colchester, and sang songs related to his work and recreation. Stuff you’d sing down the pub.

‘Ernest Austin is now 83 years of age and he lives in a small village to the east of Colchester in Essex. He left school at 12 to work as a kitchen boy in a farmhouse, earning 3/6d in return for a 60-hour week. For most of his early life he worked on the land as a farm labourer until, with experience, he became an agricultural engineer, retiring at the age of 70.’ Flash Company, Topic Records sleevenotes

This collection of songs are made up of those taught to Belinda by Ernie and from private family recordings. Also included are personal favourites from Belinda’s repertoire: “we want our family’s music to be documented – this is the tradition of our family and singing these songs together feels like coming home”. Clay Hill Road is an area of Basildon that Belinda and Fran have always lived near.

Nicola Kearey and Ian Carter set up From Here Records to release their own Stick In The Wheel material. This has expanded into a label concerned with the transmission of English folk music and culture into the wider world, including the critically acclaimed and ongoing project English Folk Field Recordings, and now their harmony singer Fran Foote.

Please support us and order via our UK or US Storefront 

Click banner above to order featured CD/ Vinyl/ Download/ Book/ DVD

Physical link for the UK Store is:

Click banner above to order featured CD/ Vinyl/ Download/ Book/ DVD

Physical link to the US Store

Label website for pre-orders:

‘Dark Eyed Sailor’ – official video:

Live Dates:

Sunday 15 September Cressing Folk Festival

Saturday 28 September Cellar Upstairs, London

Flook release limited edition vinyl Ancora

Photograph by Naoki Fujioka

Ancora is released today in a Limited Edition of 500 Orange Vinyl. To celebrate its release, Flook are playing two special shows, Stapleford Granary near Cambridge, and the Roman Theatre of Verulamium in St Albans, Hertfordshire, as part of St Albans Folk Festival and the Roman Theatre Festival on Saturday 29th June 2019.

Please support us and order via our UK or US Storefront 

Click banner above to order featured CD/ Vinyl/ Download/ Book/ DVD

Physical link for the UK Store is:

Click banner above to order featured CD/ Vinyl/ Download/ Book/ DVD

Physical link to the US Store

Flook say that “We had a tough time choosing the winner of our Seahorse Competition, not least of all because the entries came flooding in by so many methods – Email, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and it was hard to keep track. But we managed, and we had great fun reading them all. After much deliberation, we would like to congratulate Andy Mitchell for his winning entry, which contained some interesting facts and a nice link back to us”. Andy says “I hope you enjoy these few facts and I don’t really mind if I don’t win. Just thanks a million for the music I’ve been listening to since that first night in the Stromness Hotel, Orkney in 1999.” Well, he did win, and a signed copy of Ancora on vinyl will be winging its way to him after the weekend. Well done, Andy! Here’s his winning entry:

“Seahorses belong to a genus of fish called Hippocampus. The best known and best studied fossils are from the Marecchia River formation, Italy, dating back about 3 million years ago. The Marecchia River enters the Adriatic at Rimini which is just 41km from Pesaro, where your artist, Germano Ovani was born. Also, the hippocampus is a part of the brain, so named because of its shape. It forms an important part of the limbic system, the region that regulates emotions and is associated mainly with memory, in particular long-term memory. You couldn’t possibly do what you do without a highly developed hippocampus to feel the emotion of music and then remember all those notes!”

Over the summer you can hear Flook at festivals in Galicia and Germany, and at Sidmouth, Glasgow’s Piping Live, Purbeck and Bromyard in UK. Then they have a series of five Scottish dates in September, anchored around Ceol Cholasa on Colonsay, and a tour in Germany. Please come and say hi along the way!

Artists’ website:

Read Tony Birch’s review of Ancona here.

‘Rubik’ live: