The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #116775   Message #2510529
Posted By: GUEST,Graham Bradshaw
09-Dec-08 - 05:34 AM
Thread Name: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
Well, there are two questions here as I see it.

Should an act which is patently obviously NOT FOLK, be in, let alone winning the Folk Awards? No. In the same way as you wouldn't get a rap artist in the Country Music Awards, or Fred Jordan in X Factor.

Should artists who are outside the genre be trying to make a career in the Folk world? Don't see why not. It was always so. Barbara Dickson, Jasper Carrott, Mike Harding and countless others, started off in the folk clubs, and went on to greater things elsewhere.

I can remember back in the 60s when the folk scene was much more eclectic than it is now. My own club - Surbiton - was considered to be fairly 'traditional', but would feature bluegrass, country, jazz, blues as well as what we now refer to as trad and revivalist folk.

How about this for a sample guest list....
Stephane Grapelli with Diz Disley
Ken Colyer Jazzband
Bill Clifton
Julie Felix
Malcolm Price
Jesse Fuller
Jo-Ann Kelly
Sandy Denny
Dave & Toni Arthur
Isabel Sutherland
Stewarts of Blair

The flagship programme on the radio at the time was Country Meets Folk, hosted by Wally Whyton (a skiffler and pal of Pussy Cat Willum).

So, nothing much has changed in that department!! Not Mike's fault - he is working to a brief laid down by SmoothOps and ultimately the Beeb.

In the case of the winners of YFA, they will probably get booked at just about every folk festival next Summer and, if the audiences don't take to them, they will disappear without trace the following year, and go back to wherever it is that they DO belong.

In this case, the market WILL decide.

As an afterthought, I just showed a friend of mine who plays in a very good pop covers band the footage on the Shrewsbury Folk Festival website. Oysterband, Doonans, The Duhks, Demon Barbers, Bellowhead - he thought it was a Country Music festival and didn't think any of them were anything to do with folk!!

AS always, it is in the eye of the perceiver.