Mid August 2005
Yes, it is just three weeks since the last newsletter but once again there seem to be lots of good things to tell you about.
- DON WALLS IN PERSON. Following on from E-News 35, when we reported on the publication of Don's book of poems, In The Shed , we are happy to record that early sales have been very good indeed. An official "launch" event has been fixed for Wednesday 5th October at the Victoria Vaults on Nunnery Lane in York. We hope to have more news for you next month, but put it in your diaries now!
- WELL DONE JOHN CHERRY. Congratulations go to another much-loved Black Swan Folk Club resident, John Cherry, who won the Fred Jordan Memorial Trophy for unaccompanied singing at the recent Saltburn Folk Festival. As he would be the first to admit, John is not the most technically proficient of singers, and he can easily forget his words, but he carried off old standards like The Village Pump and D-Day Dodgers with such character and good humour that the judges were won over. Like the late Fred Jordan himself, John sings with a twinkle in the eye. His floor spots at the Black Swan invariably lighten the mood, bringing smiles to faces, and it is good to see that talent recognised. Well done, John!
- CLARE GOES TREKKING. Many of you will know Clare Rabone , a member of acapella singing group Ripple (formerly Voice Of The Water), and a frequent performer around York's informal folk & acoustic scene. She has signed up to trek the arduous 90km Inca Trail in Peru in June next year, in aid of Mind, the mental health charity. Clare has to raise a minimum of £2,600 through a combination of sponsorship and fundraising events. The latter will include "Come and sing Fauré's Requiem in a day" on 18th February 2006, and an acoustic evening at City Screen Basement Bar. We'll have more details of these and other events in due course; meanwhile you can sponsor her easily online at www.justgiving.com/clareinperu , or contact her direct to a make donation: email@example.com , 07786 223207.
- MORRIS DANCERS WANTED … MUSICIANS TOO. Local mixed Morris team The Minster Strays are recruiting once again, keen to find new dancers and also any willing musicians. The team meets for practise on Monday evenings at a venue on the outskirts of York, and the first three sessions in September (5th, 12th, 19th) will be aimed specially at beginners. There are no age limits − present members' ages range from 16 to 61 − and no previous experience is required. Ring Wendy (York 414157) or Gez (York 415443) to find out more.
- LISTEN AGAIN TO THOSE OLD LPS AND TAPES. Word reaches us of a new local business specialising in record transfer and audio restoration. Soundabout offers to bring back to life old or damaged recordings and transfer them to modern CD format, complete with packaging. Audio engineer David Grant takes old vinyl discs, even 78's, or cassette tapes, transfers the sound to computer with high quality hardware, then uses full professional software to get rid of most of those horrible pops and crackles from the records, or tape hiss from the cassettes. The end result is put onto CD, with printed track listings and inserts. For full details, visit the brand new web site at www.soundabout.net . Prices are around £10 for one side of an LP record or £12 for one side of a C60 cassette, with a limited special offer discount of 20% available to early customers.
David is also an electronic engineer with a repair service for hi fi systems, PA kit, PCs and such − see www.davidgrant.co.uk . He's no stranger to folk, being partner to NCEM publicist Melanie Paris and an attendee at some of our concerts there.
- TALKING OF THE NATIONAL CENTRE FOR EARLY MUSIC. The NCEM's Autumn brochure is almost ready to go to press, and we are delighted to say that Emily Smith (19th November) has been chosen for the front cover picture.
We have now arranged support artists for our next two concerts at the NCEM. Opening for Niamh Parsons (23rd September) will be the expatriate New Zealand singer Rachel Dawick , who did an excellent Marquee set at the Folk Day in May, and before that gave us some impressive floor spots while she was briefly living in York in the summer of 2004. And warming up the Tanglefoot audience (1st November) will be The Jill Fielding Band , a trio from Lancashire.
Word also reaches us of a short-notice extra gig at the NCEM on Wednesday 7th September (barely two weeks away), when John McCusker & Friends are in concert. This one is being organised by the Sheffield-based firm Jewels Promotions, with all tickets at £12, booking is via the NCEM Box Office on 01904 658338 − as indeed it is for our own concerts. Jewels Promotions are also responsible for the up-coming Kate Rusby Band concert at the Grand Opra House on 16th October, for which the box office number is 0870 606 3595.
- 7. AND TALKING OF CDS (1). Wild Cat Records at 76 Micklegate in York are still keen to buy old and unwanted folk CDs. "Respectable prices paid for the right items" they say, "big collections particularly welcomed". Since the closure of Cassadys Records, York's remaining second-hand record stores for folk are Wild Cat and Ark Records (Gillygate), both of which are worth the occasional browse if you are a keen CD collector, with Wild Cat probably having the better folk stock.
- 8. AND TALKING OF CDS (2). Mo Burrows asks us to let you know that her World Music group HangOn have a CD out. Crooked Grooves is available from Mo on 01759 380431, firstname.lastname@example.org , priced just £5.
- 9. AND TALKING OF CDS (3). Old Songs By Young Men is the rather smart title of an EP just released by local youngsters, Andy & Ben . It's self-penned, original material in the modern acoustic vein, but with a certain folk music sensibility. Ben is the son of club stalwarts Chris & Jude Sutton and was brought up on annual trips to Cropredy Festival and such like! The CD is launched at City Screen Basement Bar in York on Bank Holiday Sunday, 28th August. It's a FREE show, under the brave billing Folk For Beginners , with several other young acoustic acts in support.
- 10. NOT FORGETTING THE BLACK SWAN. Just space to remind you that is the much talked about young duo Rosie Doonan & Ben Murray this Thursday (25th) at the Folk Club (Come Early − it could well be busy), followed by a Singers Night (1st Sep.), Kevin Loughran (8th Sep.) and American Mike Agranoff (15th Sep.).