Black Swan Folk Club

E-Newsletter 148

1st July 2012

This is a mini newsletter, mainly to remind you about this week’s events.  All being well, there will be a full length edition in another week or two.


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Make sail for the National Centre for Early Music this Wednesday, 4th July, for a special evening with local heroes Blackbeard’s Tea Party.


“Though we're now renowned for our full-throttle, loud and electric approach to the folk canon”, says the band, “on Wednesday we will be stripping things down for a rare all-acoustic concert.  The front line of Laura’s fiddle and Stuart’s melodeon and vocals remains unchanged, but in addition Laura's cello will be making an appearance, Martin will be swapping his shiny blue Les Paul for an acoustic guitar, and Tim will play upright double bass.  Meanwhile Dave and Yom have gathered a plethora of weird and wonderful drums and percussion on which to maintain the usual groove.  We hope this acoustic show offers a brief respite for you and us, giving our ears a rest before we storm a string of upcoming festivals with our usual high-decibel sound.”


The intimate atmosphere of a converted medieval church is the perfect setting for this special gig, a reprise of last year’s successful sit-down acoustic concert with the north’s number one folk-rock band.  They gave us a storming performance at Folk Weekend last month (and were rewarded with a rare glimpse of sunshine) and they certainly have a busy summer lined up, with bookings at top festivals such as Cambridge, Sidmouth and Shrewsbury.


Opening the show on Wednesday with a 45 minute set will be two other very special musicians, Katriona Gilmore & Jamie Roberts, who combine astounding lap-tapping guitar, fiery fiddle and trademark harmonies with considerable songwriting talent to make a truly distinctive sound.  We think these BBC Horizon Award nominees are great and have presented them several times at the Black Swan and as NCEM support acts in recent years.  Kat is also a member of the new look Albion Band, along with Tim Yates of Blackbeard’s.


Tickets are modest £10 (or £8 concessions), which is great value for two such excellent acts.  You can buy beforehand on or in office hours on 01904 658338 or just come along on Wednesday evening and purchase at the door.  The Box Office will be open from 7.00pm and the concert begins at 7.30pm prompt, probably going on until 10.15pm or even a bit later.




With a concert on Wednesday, we have opted for another Singers & Musicians Night at the Black Swan Inn this Thursday, 5th July.  I know I always say it, but these monthly “open house” nights really are great fun and often very well supported.  Last month, for example, we expected a quiet session on a very wet Thursday immediately before the start of Folk Weekend but in fact we had a really buzzing and enjoyable night, with 17 varied and talented acts and over 20 non-performing listeners besides.  Let’s aim for something just as good this week.




Just in case I don’t get another full Newsletter written in time, here’s a quick reminder that next week, 12th July, we welcome that great American musician, Debby McClatchy, returning to York after a gap of six years to delight us with her banjo playing and her repertoire of old-time songs and tunes.


The week after that, 19th July, we have another Singers & Musicians Night, but with a twist, this one being devoted to younger performers (defined fairly loosely as under 30, which I guess equates to half the average age of our club “residents” and “organisers”!).  Pip Jopling & Stuart Giddens will be hosting this one.  Stuart is of course the lead singer with the above-mentioned Blackbeard’s Tea Party and by all accounts he and Pip did a great “standing room only” spot in the club room on the Sunday of Folk Weekend.  Needless to say, listeners of any age will be most welcome.




There is just time for one non-club notice.  As I mentioned in the last E-News, The Unthanks are appearing in a very special concert at York Minster on Friday 17th August, alongside the Brighouse & Rastrick Brass Band.  Tickets cost £21 for the rear nave, but if you book before 8th July and quote the promotional code BOFB2012 at checkout you’ll save 15%.  Don’t delay, book today!