On Friday 6th September Finn Collinson and band are launching his debut album Call To Mind at Aces & Eights, Tufnell Park.
Call To Mind is the debut album by recorder player and multi-instrumentalist Finn Collinson. Over the last few years, Finn has been gaining a reputation as one of the foremost exponents of the recorder on the English folk scene, performing all over the country at folk clubs, venues and major festivals including The Sidmouth Folk Festival, Broadstairs Folk Week and FolkEast.
Released in September 2019, the album is a diverse and creative exploration of the contemporary folk genre, with exciting and sensitive arrangements of traditional and contemporary tunes and songs. Captivating the listener from the first breath, the album showcases the recorder in new and exciting instrumental contexts, with beautifully reflective airs and vibrant tunes. Add to this the expressive tone of Finn’s vocals, his dynamic guitar style and the energy of a full band, the album takes you on an unexpected journey of musical storytelling.
Finn will be joined on-stage by his full band, featuring the powerful rhythm section of Jonno Gaze (drums, percussion) and Tom Leader (guitar, double bass) alongside strikingly distinctive oboe and vocals from Emma Beach.
With music that will make you both pause for reflection and dance in the aisles, an evening with Finn Collinson is sure to enthral audiences with its energy and diversity.
We’ve all played a recorder sometime in the dim and distant past, whether we wanted to or not, but we never played like Finn Collinson. These days we usually hear recorders played in baroque ensembles or slightly fey folk groups but they don’t play like Finn Collinson either. Finn is a multi-instrumentalist but he makes various recorders the lead instruments on his debut album, Call To Mind, its title a play on the Latin recordari. He is supported by Emma Beech on oboe and cor anglais, Archie Churchill-Moss on button accordion, Rowan Collinson and Katriona Gilmore on fiddle with bass by Tom Leader and Josh Clark and percussion by Clark and Jonno Gaze.
The opening set, ‘The January Walk’, has all the hallmarks of the Celtic tradition but comprises three modern tunes while the second pairs the old-time ‘Elk River Blues’ with the old English ‘Chain Cotillion’ for a lovely slow set. Unexpectedly, Finn switches to song with a jaunty take on ‘Hanging Johnny’ which, as he points out, has nothing to do with execution. He also features banjo and mandolin on this one. ‘Evie’s & Emma’s’ are two of Finn’s own tunes which he plays on F whistle but he reverts to recorder for ‘Ordinary Streets’ which he pairs with the Morris tune, ‘Orange In Bloom’.
The second song is ‘Banks Of The Nile’, given a driving beat with the lead vocals shared with Emma. That is followed by three original tunes, ‘FolkEast Waltz’ (did I forget to mention that Finn is from East Anglia?), ‘Aardvark’ and ‘Black Mountains’. The third and final song is, appropriately, Jimmy Rankin’s ‘Orangedale Whistle’ before the record closes with the 18th century ‘Tune For The Bullfinch’ from a volume of tunes supposedly used to teach birds to sing. Did it actually work?
Simply by changing the emphasis of lead instrument, Finn has produced a lovely album which wouldn’t work anywhere near as well with all strings. Call To Mind is not revolutionary and it won’t scare the traditionalists’ horses but its delightful style should bring his name to a wider audience.