JIM CAUSLEY – Dumnonia (Wild Goose Records WGS 377 CD)

At least young Causley is thinking outside the box, even if it is by reflecting in song his local county of which he is justifiably proud. Come to think of it let’s have a show of hands for those of you who agree. As he states in his sleeve-notes he’s steered clear of the more established Devon songs and in doing so brings a wealth of lesser-known material to his audience. I’m pleased to say that he’s not averse to giving credit where credit’s due and opens with “When I Was Young” passed on through the aural tradition by Paul Wilson. As he rightly states, this pleasant ballad should take its place among the more popular of the ‘established’ songs and, who knows, if enough tradition bearers latch onto it, it will. Surrounding himself with an august bunch of musicians including Nick Wyke & Becki Driscoll, Tom & Barbara Brown and The Dartmoor Pixie Band his vocals are mostly unmannered unlike a plethora of recent artists whose names immediately spring to mind. There is much to admire in his diligent research and much to thank for his inquisitive nature in putting together a selection of songs that through the passage of time may well become as popular as the standards he has tried to avoid.

PETE FYFE

Artist website: http://www.jimcausley.co.uk/


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