RICHARD DIGANCE – Letter From Afghanistan (Own Label)

Along with John Foreman and Dave Sealey, Richard Digance is one of the folk music scenes few masters in the art of the Music Hall tradition. His interpretations of this style of music have kept me buoyed over many hours slaving over a hot computer and personally I can’t get enough of it. Of course, Richard isn’t a true Music Hall artist in the strictest sense but his songs and poems have that familiar style of celebrating ‘everyman’ as he speaks his mind from the heart. This couldn’t be more apparent than on the title track where he takes the role of a soldier writing home to his loved ones about the England football losers and the irony of “…Cheering For England” and perhaps the football ‘legends’ (?) might like a spell in the soldier’s place instead.Clearly a clever man with his lyrics Digance’s amusing slant on the recent state of politics with “We Built The Animal” will bring a wry grin to everyone who still feels bitter towards a certain ‘party’ and gain a lot of pleasure in joining in the chorus. Now, the nice thing about his songs is that they are all so totally accessible without the ‘arty’ approach that is assumed by other, shall we say, higher ranking singer-songwriters feel their audiences want. Hopefully I don’t sound too churlish but I personally like a good, honest song without the frills and fuss although lending support with a splash of colour we do have the instrumental and vocal talents of Arnie Cottrell on national guitar and Vikki Hobbs on vocals along with Digance’s not inconsiderable musicianship as a rag-time guitarist. I’ve played every track of this album several times and gain something from it every time which in my estimation is reason enough to purchase a copy.


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