New film: Live @ Cecil Sharp House, London.

Cecil Sharp House, North London.

Cecil Sharp House, North London.

In September 2010 myself and my best friend Gareth Davies took a trip to London to play at the ‘Ghosts From The Basement’ all-day event organised by Weekend Beatnik, Rif Mountain & The English Folk Dance and Song Society. This was a celebration of cult folk record label The Village Thing which was founded in 1970, 40 years previously. Artists I am a big fan of were playing, for example Wizz Jones, Dave Evans and Mark Fry, so I was delighted to be able to do this.

Apparently these films have been online for about a year, but I have only just found out about them thanks to Steven Collins of The Owl Service.

So, here’s me with Gareth and Steven playing Lillian, I Love You:

And I sing on the second song here (Willy O’Winsbury), with my buddies The Owl Service. I appear like the shopkeeper in Mr Benn at 5:17.

There must be more film out there (all the songs I did were filmed) but this is all I can see so far.


Echoes From The Mountain

* Echoes From the Mountain sees the Rif Mountain collective paying homage to legendary folk label Village Thing.

* Village Thing was self-dubbed ‘the alternative folk label’ way back when it began in 1970, and although it lasted only 4 years (and 20-odd releases) the music they released continues to be revered today with key albums being reissued by the likes of Light in the Attic and Sunbeam.

* The Rif Mountain artists all cite various VT albums as having a major influence on their music, particularly the work of Dave Evans, Wizz Jones and Sun Also Rises, all of whom are re-interpreted on this collection. This 15 track album features Rif Mountain mainstays The Owl Service, Jason Steel and the Straw Bear Band, plus special guests Jane Weaver, Starless & Bible Black, Stephen Cracknell (The Memory Band/Gorodisch), The A Lords & Mark Fry, Lemez Duo feat. Ben Mandelson, Pamela Wyn Shannon, Adam Leonard, Katie Rose and Corncrow. It also includes new recordings from original Village Thing artists Wizz Jones and Steve Tilston. All tracks are exclusive to this release.


Ghosts From The Basement event

I’m playing at this in the afternoon, hopefully helped out by Gareth Davies (elec. guitar) and Steven Collins (bass).

Saturday 25th September, at Cecil Sharp House, London.

Weekend Beatnik, Rif Mountain & the EFDSS present:

Ghosts from the Basement

A 40th anniversary celebration of Village Thing and the lost songs, dreams and folkadelia of the early 1970s

Concerts • Sessions • Author Slam!

Among the artists who will be appearing: From Village Thing’s basement: Wizz Jones (and Pete Berryman), Steve Tilston, Tucker Zimmerman, Ian A. Anderson, Dave Evans, Ian Hunt, Maggie Holland, Keith Christmas and Keith Warmington.

From up yonder Rif Mountain and beyond: Nancy Wallace, Jason Steel, The Owl Service, The Straw Bear Band, Pamela Wyn Shannon, Adam Leonard, Ellen Mary McGee, The A. Lords with Mark Fry and more special guests t.b.c.

In the literature lounge: Rob Young (Electric Eden), Jeanette Leech (Seasons They Change), Mark Jones (Bristol Folk), Will Hodgkinson (The Ballad Of Britain), Richard Morton Jack (Galactic Ramble) and Colin Irwin (In Search Of Albion) will perhaps illuminate the answer to that troubling philosophical question “what the f*** is psych folk anyway?”

All day ticket £20 (£25 on door)

Evening only ticket £15 (£20 on door)

Doors: 2.00pm, Ends: 11.00pm