Featuring Martin Simpson, Nancy Kerr, Bella Hardy, Jim Moray, John Smith, Hannah James, Rachel Newton & Emily Askew
This 14 track CD showcases the multi-artist commission from Folk by the Oak and the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) inspired by the music, the people, the myths and the stories of the Elizabethan age.
From John Smith’s darkly brooding track ‘London’ reflecting on life as a peasant in Elizabethan England to Nancy Kerr’s deeply moving ‘Shores of Hispaniola’ examining the era’s slave trade; The Elizabethan Session is a ground breaking album of exceptional new music that beautifully conjures up the spirit of the age. It reflects the collective talent of some of the cream of the contemporary folk world, who lived and worked together for five days in March 2014, absorbing the spirit of the era and translating it into outstanding new music.
The work was premiered at Hatfield Old Palace where Elizabeth I held her first Council of State, and Cecil Sharp House, home of EFDSS and the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library. It was also performed at the festival Folk by the Oak, held in the field with the oak tree where legend claims the young Princess Elizabeth learnt of her ascent to the throne.
Produced by Andy Bell (The Full English) and recorded at Hatfield’s Old Palace and Cecil Sharp House, The Elizabethan Session is set to create its own place in musical history when it is released on September 8.
Featured on BBC Radio 3 In Tune and the BBC Radio 2 Folk Show, and reviewed in The Guardian, Times, R2, fRoots, Living Tradition and Songlines, The Elizabethan Session was supported with funding from Arts Council England and the PRS Music Foundation.
Sunday Times essential new release
‘A fine artefact of an inspired project’ – Fatea
Named as one of the best folk albums of 2014 by the Daily Telegraph – ‘A bold triumph of imagination and musicianship from eight of the UK’s top folk musicians’
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