Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


young folk tradition undermining folk

McMullen 22 Jun 07 - 01:09 PM
John MacKenzie 22 Jun 07 - 01:20 PM
GUEST,wordy 22 Jun 07 - 02:07 PM
The Sandman 22 Jun 07 - 02:26 PM
Les in Chorlton 22 Jun 07 - 02:30 PM
BB 22 Jun 07 - 02:43 PM
Scooby Doo 22 Jun 07 - 02:52 PM
Leadfingers 22 Jun 07 - 03:07 PM
GUEST,wordy 22 Jun 07 - 03:13 PM
stallion 22 Jun 07 - 03:19 PM
GUEST,mg 22 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM
Ythanside 22 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM
The Borchester Echo 22 Jun 07 - 03:37 PM
Sugwash 22 Jun 07 - 04:04 PM
GUEST 22 Jun 07 - 04:07 PM
The Sandman 22 Jun 07 - 04:52 PM
concertina ceol 22 Jun 07 - 05:29 PM
RTim 22 Jun 07 - 05:36 PM
oggie 22 Jun 07 - 05:49 PM
GUEST,Geordie-Peorgie 22 Jun 07 - 06:12 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 22 Jun 07 - 06:56 PM
GUEST,wordy 22 Jun 07 - 07:01 PM
Darowyn 22 Jun 07 - 07:03 PM
The Vulgar Boatman 22 Jun 07 - 07:08 PM
GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz 22 Jun 07 - 07:21 PM
GUEST,Brian Peters 22 Jun 07 - 07:37 PM
GUEST,Brian Peters 22 Jun 07 - 07:38 PM
Big Al Whittle 22 Jun 07 - 07:41 PM
GUEST,Art Thieme 22 Jun 07 - 10:08 PM
Big Al Whittle 23 Jun 07 - 03:14 AM
The Borchester Echo 23 Jun 07 - 03:15 AM
Dave Earl 23 Jun 07 - 03:42 AM
The Borchester Echo 23 Jun 07 - 03:47 AM
Dave Earl 23 Jun 07 - 03:56 AM
Folkiedave 23 Jun 07 - 04:11 AM
mandotim 23 Jun 07 - 04:12 AM
GUEST,Brian Peters 23 Jun 07 - 04:26 AM
concertina ceol 23 Jun 07 - 04:58 AM
Ruth Archer 23 Jun 07 - 04:59 AM
Dave Earl 23 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 23 Jun 07 - 05:16 AM
GUEST,Uncle Boko 23 Jun 07 - 05:27 AM
The Sandman 23 Jun 07 - 05:37 AM
Malcolm Douglas 23 Jun 07 - 05:51 AM
Songthrush 23 Jun 07 - 06:37 AM
MikeofNorthumbria 23 Jun 07 - 06:43 AM
The Borchester Echo 23 Jun 07 - 06:47 AM
The Borchester Echo 23 Jun 07 - 06:53 AM
George Papavgeris 23 Jun 07 - 06:58 AM
George Papavgeris 23 Jun 07 - 07:01 AM
George Papavgeris 23 Jun 07 - 07:07 AM
Dave Earl 23 Jun 07 - 07:17 AM
stallion 23 Jun 07 - 07:26 AM
Ruth Archer 23 Jun 07 - 07:32 AM
stallion 23 Jun 07 - 07:37 AM
oggie 23 Jun 07 - 07:51 AM
Leadfingers 23 Jun 07 - 07:52 AM
Linda Kelly 23 Jun 07 - 08:03 AM
Ruth Archer 23 Jun 07 - 08:05 AM
John MacKenzie 23 Jun 07 - 08:14 AM
The Borchester Echo 23 Jun 07 - 08:18 AM
Dave Hanson 23 Jun 07 - 08:26 AM
George Papavgeris 23 Jun 07 - 08:27 AM
stallion 23 Jun 07 - 09:35 AM
mandotim 23 Jun 07 - 09:47 AM
Linda Kelly 23 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM
George Papavgeris 23 Jun 07 - 03:53 PM
shepherdlass 23 Jun 07 - 04:32 PM
Big Al Whittle 23 Jun 07 - 04:46 PM
GUEST,FP 23 Jun 07 - 05:04 PM
Linda Kelly 23 Jun 07 - 05:38 PM
oggie 23 Jun 07 - 05:56 PM
Big Al Whittle 23 Jun 07 - 06:18 PM
shepherdlass 23 Jun 07 - 07:02 PM
Ruth Archer 23 Jun 07 - 08:54 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 07 - 01:52 AM
oggie 24 Jun 07 - 02:19 AM
Dave Earl 24 Jun 07 - 02:55 AM
Folkiedave 24 Jun 07 - 04:15 AM
Jim Lad 24 Jun 07 - 04:32 AM
Dave Earl 24 Jun 07 - 04:38 AM
Marje 24 Jun 07 - 05:00 AM
mandotim 24 Jun 07 - 05:04 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 24 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM
George Papavgeris 24 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM
stallion 24 Jun 07 - 05:14 AM
George Papavgeris 24 Jun 07 - 05:16 AM
Big Al Whittle 24 Jun 07 - 05:24 AM
George Papavgeris 24 Jun 07 - 05:35 AM
GUEST,shepherdlass elsewhere 24 Jun 07 - 05:53 AM
Ruth Archer 24 Jun 07 - 05:59 AM
GUEST,Warwick Slade 24 Jun 07 - 06:18 AM
Marje 24 Jun 07 - 06:19 AM
stallion 24 Jun 07 - 06:42 AM
Linda Kelly 24 Jun 07 - 06:45 AM
GUEST,Warwick Slade 24 Jun 07 - 07:12 AM
Patrick_Costello 24 Jun 07 - 08:11 AM
Folkiedave 24 Jun 07 - 11:36 AM
Jim Lad 24 Jun 07 - 11:45 AM
Dave Earl 24 Jun 07 - 11:52 AM
Jim Lad 24 Jun 07 - 12:04 PM
Uncle Boko 24 Jun 07 - 12:31 PM
George Papavgeris 24 Jun 07 - 01:17 PM
breezy 24 Jun 07 - 02:58 PM
GUEST,meself 24 Jun 07 - 03:01 PM
Big Al Whittle 24 Jun 07 - 04:33 PM
GUEST,Santa 24 Jun 07 - 05:11 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 07 - 05:25 PM
George Papavgeris 24 Jun 07 - 06:58 PM
GUEST 25 Jun 07 - 05:58 AM
Ruth Archer 25 Jun 07 - 06:06 AM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 06:55 AM
GUEST 25 Jun 07 - 07:07 AM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 07:14 AM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 07:32 AM
GUEST,sparticus 25 Jun 07 - 08:12 AM
Doktor Doktor 25 Jun 07 - 08:44 AM
Ruth Archer 25 Jun 07 - 09:00 AM
Grab 25 Jun 07 - 09:14 AM
EuGene 25 Jun 07 - 09:19 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin. 25 Jun 07 - 09:41 AM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 09:49 AM
Grimmy 25 Jun 07 - 10:04 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin. 25 Jun 07 - 10:05 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin 25 Jun 07 - 10:14 AM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 10:18 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin. 25 Jun 07 - 10:29 AM
Dave Earl 25 Jun 07 - 10:31 AM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 10:33 AM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 10:46 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin. 25 Jun 07 - 10:54 AM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 11:01 AM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 11:10 AM
GUEST,Brian Peters 25 Jun 07 - 11:13 AM
Dave Earl 25 Jun 07 - 11:24 AM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 11:34 AM
GUEST,Captain Colin 25 Jun 07 - 11:37 AM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 11:46 AM
GUEST,Russ 25 Jun 07 - 11:49 AM
GUEST,melodeon 25 Jun 07 - 11:53 AM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 11:56 AM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 12:00 PM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 12:00 PM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 12:01 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 12:07 PM
oggie 25 Jun 07 - 12:10 PM
GUEST,Dan 25 Jun 07 - 12:17 PM
Dave Earl 25 Jun 07 - 12:21 PM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 12:23 PM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 12:31 PM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 12:41 PM
stallion 25 Jun 07 - 12:41 PM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 12:46 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 12:53 PM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 01:04 PM
GUEST,James H 25 Jun 07 - 01:06 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 01:19 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 01:24 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 01:30 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 01:33 PM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 01:41 PM
Grab 25 Jun 07 - 01:45 PM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 01:46 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 01:46 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 01:48 PM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 02:00 PM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 02:01 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 02:03 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 02:10 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 02:26 PM
Scoville 25 Jun 07 - 03:09 PM
The Borchester Echo 25 Jun 07 - 03:11 PM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 03:15 PM
Marje 25 Jun 07 - 03:18 PM
The Sandman 25 Jun 07 - 04:07 PM
The Sandman 25 Jun 07 - 04:59 PM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 05:09 PM
Mr Red 25 Jun 07 - 05:21 PM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 07 - 05:37 PM
Richard Bridge 25 Jun 07 - 05:52 PM
McMullen 25 Jun 07 - 05:57 PM
TheSnail 25 Jun 07 - 05:58 PM
Folkiedave 25 Jun 07 - 06:49 PM
George Papavgeris 25 Jun 07 - 07:01 PM
Tootler 25 Jun 07 - 07:20 PM
Tootler 25 Jun 07 - 07:21 PM
George Papavgeris 26 Jun 07 - 01:43 AM
GUEST,Young Buchan 26 Jun 07 - 02:11 AM
Ruth Archer 26 Jun 07 - 03:05 AM
GUEST 26 Jun 07 - 03:09 AM
GUEST,Merry Bee 26 Jun 07 - 03:55 AM
The Borchester Echo 26 Jun 07 - 04:05 AM
treewind 26 Jun 07 - 04:31 AM
Folkiedave 26 Jun 07 - 05:05 AM
The Sandman 26 Jun 07 - 06:11 AM
GUEST,James H 26 Jun 07 - 06:19 AM
Folkiedave 26 Jun 07 - 07:30 AM
treewind 26 Jun 07 - 08:19 AM
The Sandman 26 Jun 07 - 08:28 AM
shepherdlass 26 Jun 07 - 10:59 AM
GUEST,Jim Moray 26 Jun 07 - 01:34 PM
Folkiedave 26 Jun 07 - 01:56 PM
GUEST,Jim Moray 26 Jun 07 - 02:30 PM
GUEST,wordy 26 Jun 07 - 02:33 PM
Folkiedave 26 Jun 07 - 02:52 PM
countrylife 26 Jun 07 - 03:11 PM
countrylife 26 Jun 07 - 03:12 PM
Folkiedave 26 Jun 07 - 03:20 PM
Bert 26 Jun 07 - 03:23 PM
Herga Kitty 26 Jun 07 - 06:06 PM
Big Al Whittle 26 Jun 07 - 06:31 PM
George Papavgeris 26 Jun 07 - 06:41 PM
Big Al Whittle 26 Jun 07 - 06:55 PM
Declan 26 Jun 07 - 07:56 PM
GUEST,ex post-grad 26 Jun 07 - 08:03 PM
Dave Earl 27 Jun 07 - 01:43 AM
Richard Bridge 27 Jun 07 - 03:03 AM
Folkiedave 27 Jun 07 - 04:26 AM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 04:49 AM
stallion 27 Jun 07 - 04:57 AM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 05:24 AM
Folkiedave 27 Jun 07 - 05:59 AM
treewind 27 Jun 07 - 06:59 AM
Big Al Whittle 27 Jun 07 - 07:26 AM
Ruth Archer 27 Jun 07 - 08:04 AM
The Sandman 27 Jun 07 - 08:14 AM
GUEST,Dan 27 Jun 07 - 08:29 AM
treewind 27 Jun 07 - 08:48 AM
Dave Earl 27 Jun 07 - 08:58 AM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 09:08 AM
Folkiedave 27 Jun 07 - 09:18 AM
Ruth Archer 27 Jun 07 - 10:36 AM
Richard Bridge 27 Jun 07 - 12:44 PM
stallion 27 Jun 07 - 01:36 PM
Declan 27 Jun 07 - 01:53 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 27 Jun 07 - 02:53 PM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 03:06 PM
McMullen 27 Jun 07 - 03:26 PM
Dave Earl 27 Jun 07 - 03:34 PM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 03:53 PM
GUEST,countrylife 27 Jun 07 - 04:14 PM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 04:22 PM
McMullen 27 Jun 07 - 04:23 PM
Declan 27 Jun 07 - 04:26 PM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 04:28 PM
GUEST,countrylife 27 Jun 07 - 04:45 PM
GUEST,Warwick Slade 27 Jun 07 - 04:56 PM
The Borchester Echo 27 Jun 07 - 05:11 PM
The Sandman 27 Jun 07 - 05:23 PM
countrylife 27 Jun 07 - 05:47 PM
oggie 27 Jun 07 - 06:03 PM
EuGene 27 Jun 07 - 07:18 PM
MikeofNorthumbria 28 Jun 07 - 07:29 AM
Dave Earl 28 Jun 07 - 07:46 AM
Dave Sutherland 28 Jun 07 - 09:44 AM
BB 28 Jun 07 - 02:27 PM
GUEST,Neovo 04 Jul 07 - 08:05 AM
Folkiedave 04 Jul 07 - 08:16 AM
treewind 04 Jul 07 - 09:00 AM
Tootler 04 Jul 07 - 01:49 PM
The Sandman 04 Jul 07 - 06:24 PM
George Papavgeris 04 Jul 07 - 06:47 PM
concertina ceol 05 Jul 07 - 01:40 PM
GUEST,Carol B 06 Jul 07 - 09:08 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 07 Jul 07 - 06:52 AM
The Sandman 07 Jul 07 - 07:19 AM
GUEST,bobcat 08 Jul 07 - 06:08 AM
GUEST,bobcat 08 Jul 07 - 06:20 AM
Cath 08 Jul 07 - 07:52 AM
GUEST,Jim Causley 18 Jul 07 - 04:19 PM
treewind 18 Jul 07 - 04:31 PM
Folkiedave 18 Jul 07 - 06:12 PM
BB 27 Jul 07 - 05:03 PM
Giant Folk Eyeball (inactive) 28 Jul 07 - 03:06 AM
treewind 28 Jul 07 - 03:22 AM
The Borchester Echo 28 Jul 07 - 03:26 AM
Giant Folk Eyeball (inactive) 28 Jul 07 - 04:09 AM
TheSnail 28 Jul 07 - 06:13 AM
Big Al Whittle 28 Jul 07 - 06:30 AM
treewind 28 Jul 07 - 09:01 AM
BB 29 Jul 07 - 03:14 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:













Subject: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 01:09 PM

As a young folk musician of only 18, i will admit that i have ambitions, and i hope to make some sort career in folk music. However i would be fully content playing in small clubs for small fees and touring the pubs for the rest of my life as long as im having fun and meeting new interesting peole, i couldnt give a badgers back for money.

However i believe all this rubbish about folk degrees just makes folk music mundane. Its a fast track to stardom in which some people(not all) probbally never understand the enjoyable social aspect of meeting wide generations of people to devlop socially.

My point is emphasied in a post i found on a wesbite i discovered recenlty i am sure some of you have seen it.

Could young tradition contribute to the demise of folk clubs?

Here's the text of a press release that recently came my way...

Stratford sees an explosion of Young Talent
BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award 2007

On Saturday 14 October 2006 the Civic Hall in Stratford-upon-Avon will be filled with the sounds of some the best up and coming young talent performing folk, roots and acoustic music as part of the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award 2007. BBC Radio 2's Mike Harding Show has invited 12 of the many soloists, groups and duos that entered this prestigious competition to attend a Semi-final Weekend in Stratford- upon-Avon.

On Saturday evening at 7.30pm the Semi-finalists will take to the stage in a public Audition Concert where the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award judges will choose acts to go through to the Final to be held in London on 1 December 2006.

Tickets for the Audition Concert are free and open to everyone but booking early is advised as numbers are limited. To reserve a ticket please contact the Civic Hall on 01789 207100.

These young performers are all aged between 15-20. They will spend the weekend learning new skills from high profile musicians Robert Harbron and Eliza Carthy and be taught the tricks of the music trade, immersing themselves in making music and song.

The finalists will be announced on Mike Harding's show on Wednesday 18 October, 8-9pm on BBC Radio 2 and the Final can be heard on BBC Radio 2 on Wednesday 6 December, 8-9pm.

The winning act from the Final will record a session to be broadcast on BBC Radio 2's Mike Harding Show, appear at three top UK festivals - BBC Radio 2 Cambridge Folk Festival, Towersey Village Festival and Fairport's Cropredy Convention and receive a year's free membership to the Musicians' Union.

Previous winners include Tim van Eyken who now has a successful solo career having been a regular member of Waterson:Carthy, exciting Celtic group Uiscedwr who have performed at many of the UK's festivals and Scottish fiddle player Lauren MacColl, who has recently been seen performing with BBC Radio 2 Horizon Folk Award 2006 winner, Julie Fowlis.

What's significant about this is the drive by the BBC to promote young folk talent and there's no doubt that a generation of impressive young singers and musicians are keeping traditional music alive and accessible to younger audiences. Not just the BBC, but many organisations are working hard to keep the average age of active folk performers lower than 65!

One regular source of newblood performers is the University of Newcastle's folk and traditional music degree whose teaching staff includes Kathryn Tickell, Catriona MacDonald and Alistair Anderson. I often find myself referring to this course when writing up background details of guest artists for the Warwick Folk Festival programme.

Many of these talented youngsters are nurtured almost from birth, sometimes by parents who are themselves professional folk artists. It does raise a nagging doubt in my mind - are these youngsters being fast-tracked into folk stardom?

Many older generation folk (and non-folk) performers will extol the virtues of working the clubs and developing a professional status through experience and the University of Hard Knocks. My impression (but I have no solid evidence for this) is that many of the 'bright young things' do not have a lot of experience of travelling the country and playing the folk clubs - at least the smaller ones - but often step straight into the circuit of larger and concert-style folk venues.

Yes there are many exceptions and yes most young folksingers have some experience of folk clubs and folk sessions. Spiers and Boden come to mind as two young musicians who have hosted excellent sessions and haven't fallen into the trap of presenting themselves as instant superstars. But there is a concern in my own mind that many young performers see their musical careers as pop stars playing the larger festivals and arts centres while traditional folk clubs miss out. They can't afford to book them or have to charge pretty high admission - concert-style prices.

I took part in a Singers Night at a folk club in Coventry recently. The organiser was convinced that the club would be closed by Christmas because of falling audience support and higher fees charged by guests. Most of the people there (and there weren't many of us) were over 40 and the one young singer who turned up sang from a repertoire of old Beatles and Searchers songs (which was good to hear but not what they teach at the Univertsity of Newcastle I suspect!).

It seems to me that while the new industry of young folk talent is keeping folk music alive - i.e. making sure that the old songs and tunes are still being played and heard - it is also a possible factor in the demise of the informal, low-budget, backroom-of-the-pub folk clubs





stacey

theres no doubt the degrees and awards keep folk music alvie, and i will be the biggest hypocrit entering this years award, but a degree? i find that a little extreme and ridiculous and unfair and and and and to many ands lol


what ya think.

stacey mcmullen


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 01:20 PM

Well Stacey I agree, the younger generation seem too long on technical brilliance, and too short on the charisma front, but I am technically what is known as 'An old fart' so I may be jaundiced in my viewpoint.
I just don't see so many 'entertainers' these days, where are the Derek Brimstones, the Johnny Silvos, and all the others who served their apprenticeship on the folk circuit at about 30/- a night, (£1.50 for the youngsters)
There seems to be an upsurge of big 'clever' groups the like of Bellowhead whom no folk club could ever afford to book. There are too many festivals now, all booking from the same small group of 'Folk Superstars' who never play clubs any more in most cases, as they get a good enough living doing the festivals.
I think what I'm saying is there's not enough 'hungry' performers out there, but oddly there's not enough venues for them to get work in either.
Giok


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,wordy
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 02:07 PM

In my copy of the MU mag today a big article on "new" folk says the Waterson/Carthy/Van Eyken axis employ a PR agency!!
What that costs a year I can't imagine but now we know why they are the only ones we ever see in magazines, documentaries etc. PR agencies are employed to keep you in the public eye. Not too many of the good pros who work the clubs can afford that, or would want it.
There are too many festivals booking the same acts, because those acts have this sort of back up. The young ones coming on the scene undoubtedly aspire to having a PR agency, an Agent, a good Accountant, a record label, a press cutting agency, and a chauffer, but they can't all get it.
Those that do will have personality and talent and be different in a way that appeals to people. The younger ones would do well to study the approach to an audience of some of the old pros, but I don't think that's part of the university courses that churn out fine players, good business people, but uncharismatic and formulaic performers of a catalogue, that by its very nature,resists change.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 02:26 PM

Music has to come from the soul, technique can be taught,but technique without soul is not music.
Last night I heard Kate rusby on the wireless,She sang in tune ,the instrumentation was very interesting,but she did not sound interested in the song she was singing,she might as well have been singing about her shopping,the rendition was completely soulless.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 02:30 PM

One of the things I got from my post about the collapse of clubs was the very wide spectrum of folk events that are available and the massive amounts of talent that moves about.

Although we may have to travel, it is possible to experience evrything from small singers sessions with small gems to the biggest festivals with anybody you can name.

Find your spot Stacey and give it all you can

Cheers

Les


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: BB
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 02:43 PM

Giok says that 'there's not enough venues for them to get work in either'. That may be so - certainly there are less and less clubs booking guests - but many of the young pros. are pricing themselves out of the market that *is* there.

When we started booking guests for our first series of guest nights, I approached several 'young' acts so that we could ring the changes not only in styles of music, but in the age of the performers, thus hoping to attract some younger people into the audience as well as having the chance to celebrate the brilliance of some of their music. Some were too expensive for us even to contemplate, although we are paying reasonable fees - well, reasonable enough for the likes of John K. or Pete C. anyway. Others, interestingly, didn't even respond to my e-mails - perhaps they just don't want to work in clubs, as has been indicated above.

Certainly, I don't think there is a better place to learn how to interact with an audience - but perhaps that scares some of them. Perhaps they find it easier to face the 'faceless' large audience than the immediacy of one which is just feet away and therefore 'in your face', to use a popular modern expression.

In a TV programme the other night, Lenny Henry was talking about 'doing his apprenticeship in the clubs', and bemoaning the fact that younger comedians seem not to do so. I have to say, that produced a smile of recognition on our faces, as it is what so many have been saying about this generation of folk musicians.

Stacey, I'm really glad that you recognise the fact that folk music is first and foremost a 'social' music in which the generation gap doesn't, or didn't used to, exist. It was the music which was important, and the older people who were around when I was first involved in it were those who had the knowledge and experience, so were, to an extent, revered and their friendship was valued. I regret the fact that there is a much more narrow age range in the clubs than there used to be, certainly in many of the clubs that I attended.

I hope we all get a chance to meet you, Stacey, in the clubs, and festival sessions and singarounds, and that you manage to make a living with the music that you, and the rest of us, love. Spread the word amongst your peers that this is what it's all about so that there are more like you.

Barbara


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Scooby Doo
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 02:52 PM

Llantrisant Folk Club has special nights for the up and coming young talent of today.It goes down well too.



Scooby


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Leadfingers
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:07 PM

BB has it right - It seems to me that a lot of these VERY talented youngsters get to the 'Specialist' Folk Universities and hone their technique to perfection , then when they finish they dont want to work small venues , but only Art Centres and Festivals , who can afford to pay 'Silly' Money ! The result is that the youngsters DONT see young acts booked into their local club , so dont go ! This HAS to be a major reason for the Ageing of the Folk Audience .


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,wordy
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:13 PM

would it be fair to say that many of these young hoping-to-be pros actually are concert performers? Whereas the clubs encourage communication between performer and audience, humour and chorus singing and general good timiness?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:19 PM

Ok you guys, my experience of one of these fast tracked young "stars" was his reply to an honest comment, I suggested that he was not enjoying his first set, this was answered by a tirade of abuse and shouting and being called a nobody, " I have a degree in folk music, who do you think you are talking too!, you're a nobody, you know nothing". Well he may have an opinion, but I had paid to get in and I was being short changed, indeed I nearly left at the interval. What forty years going around the clubs has given me are a lot of friends and an appreciation of everyone's endeavour. I think Newcastle should teach it's students a little humility. I overheard Alan Ayckbourn once say that he would rather employ someone who had done a season in Pitlochry than someone straight out of RADA, I feel that doing the "porridge" is necessary if only to make the graduates less unpleasant.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM

It sounds like you will do well. I would recommend that you have a backup trade or profession..teaching if you enjoy it..summers off...or carpentry, dental hygiene, whatever...mg


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ythanside
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM

Stacey, folk audiences are a pretty savvy bunch; they can differentiate between PR 'puff' and the genuine article. They are also traditionally appreciative and supportive of youngsters and newcomers using them as sounding boards, for without this flow of new blood the entire live folk scene would grind to a halt.
Fast-tracking and college degrees, regardless of their validity, are no substitute for serving your time in front of the only people who matter, the audience. Today's headliners didn't just drop out of the sky, and the polished performances they deliver were developed and honed by their discovery of what worked for particular audiences and what didn't.
Go to it, Stacey, and when I see you strutting your stuff at some club or festival I'll say hello.
Best of luck, lady,

Ythanside


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 03:37 PM

McMullen/Stacey or whatever you are called

Since you are 18 you are doubtless looking at higher education opportunities. After all, these days you have to get a degree in something in order to become anything at all, so why not one on trad music (if you are good enough). The Newcastle course has a very high entrance standard and is performance-based. What it is emphatically not is a 'fast track to stardom'. Your inverted snobbery against it is rather hard to comprehend. Such a qualification would get you, at the very least, a job at the lowest rung of some musbiz company in order to get by while touting for gigs.

As for the YFA, any fule kno that Smoothops/MH are a load of wankers. But the 'contestants' take the opportunity to spend a weekend playing and inter-reacting together. And they'll use any resulting publicity to promote their own careers. I know many fine and successful musicians who have come through this mill. And they (mostly) weren't 'winners'.

And as for the 'f*lk clubs' as a viable place to work, just what century and upon which planet are you existing? They're well-finished, past their sell-by. The vast majority offer you unrealistically and insultingly low fees that probably don't even cover your fuel, nowhere to change and tune and no accommodation. You're faced with a drive home of several hours and thus an inability to work the next day.

Think again. There are other venues, better for the music and for you.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Sugwash
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 04:04 PM

One of the best acts I've seen in years is Jim Causley. He's personable, has a quite wonderful voice, knows and cares about the material he performs and is wonderfully entertaining to boot. Jim's studied traditional music at university; if he is an example of what the universities are producing, then I'm all in favour. Conversely I've come across other graduate folk artists who have left me cold.

That said, I've seen acts who have not had the 'advantage' of a degree course who have delighted me with their love and knowledge of the tradition. I've also seen similarly untutoured acts who have left me wondering how they make a living from 'folk' music.

Where the reality of folk degrees lies I'm not sure. Will they damage the tradition, I strongly doubt it. I can only hope that there are more Jim Causleys about to graduate and enrich us with their performances.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 04:07 PM

Stacey, Bonnie Lass!

Listen te Giok & BB etc.

De ye want te be an entertainer or de ye want te be a 'star' of festival, Art Centre and Lavvie Door?

Aye, gettin' yasel' a profession is a good idea - Not te faall back on but te keep ye busy while ye're settin' up the round of clubs and pubs that'll book ye every 18 months to two years.

Then during that time get aroond and hone yer act. Not just the music and songs but the 'entertainment' factor.

Ye divvent hev te be a comic but ye divvent want te bore yer audience te death either

There's neebody can tell ye how te dee it - ye just hev te watch the others and not only see what works but see what dizzen't work (for them) and see if ye can use it aall te your advantage.

Aah think if ye ask anybody who 'works the pub & club circuit' the'll tell ye that they started by 'borrowin'' other peoples intros, patter etc and eventually developin' their own stuff.

Aah'm sure if ye ask 1000 folk performers about turning pro 999'll say "Get a job" - The other one'll ask ye to ensure that if you use any of their songs to be sure to register with PRS & MCPS.

Best of luck, Petal! I reckon ye've probably got what it teks to mek it on the folk circuit.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 04:52 PM

I mentioned Kate Rusby earlier,the song was I courted A Sailor.Kate Rusby HAS Potential,unfortunately all the while she is being overhyped,she runs the danger of believing her publicity.,she will not improve, until she exercises some musical self criticism.
A good starting point for her might be to listen to early Anne Briggs,MaddyPrior or better still Jeannie Robertson[now there was a really good interpreter of a story,someone that could always bring a song to life].


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: concertina ceol
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 05:29 PM

are you for real? inverted snobbery? havn't got the talent to get there yourself?

Jim Moray might fit into the box you are describing but to my knowledge he didn't go to Newcastle. Graduates of the course that I am familiar with do not fit with your description.

Still there is no excuse for anyone to talk to an audience member the way stallion was talked to, that is shocking.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: RTim
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 05:36 PM

I am reminded of when I worked in Computing. Whenever we got a new, wet behind the ears "Computer Graduate" - we would have to wean them into the REAL world of Computing and not let them continue with all their high flown theories taught by tutors who had never working in the real world!
I also remember seeing the Kings of Cauldicot (spelling?) in their early incarnation - at a Festival, not a club room - with a bar and drinkers, etc.. They were great musically - but their stage presense was non-existent. Very self orientented and full of private jokes that left the audience cold.

Tim Radford


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 05:49 PM

If you have to make your living from what you do, be it folk, comedy or craft (my own business), regretably it is a "business", you don't work you don't eat and your house is on the line. How you go about earning that living is "business". If you ignore the clubs, fine if you have enough work from other sources but will they (or the clubs) always be there? You need a portfolio of work and places to work. In my case I do markets, schools, enviroment centres, the odd festival. Not all traditional outlets for what I do but part of the "business". Waterson/Carthy employ PR? good luck to them, they have a living to earn and for them it works.

On Desert Island Discs Ernie Wise was confronted with the fact that to many people Eric was the "show" he was "business". His reply was interesting, "Yes, I don't have a problem with that, people forget that it is "show business". Without the business there is no show".

The same applies in the folk world, clubs have to make a profit, artists have to make a living, unsuccessful festivals cease to be.

We make not like the way of the world but we have to work within it or get a job and become a semi pro who makes money through their music. That is not to denigrate those who do that, some of the best and most professional performers I have seen had day jobs and in the current climate it may well be the way forward. In which case a Degree in Folk Studies et al may NOT be the best way forward.

All the best

Steve Ogden


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Geordie-Peorgie
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 06:12 PM

That wez me back there an' aall - Cookie probs again!

Anyroadupwards! Give me entertainment every time!

As a festival compere of some small experience (Fareham, Winchester, Guernsey, Solent & Broadstairs) aah hev watched bands on stage without a thought for the 'payin' public', sittin' there smilin at one another or just gazin' off into space until their bodhrn/mandola/guitar/whistle/pipe solo comes up and then their eyes close and the' gan for it - Then the' come oot of the solo and gan back inte space - nee time for the audience and nee in-between songs banter with the crowd

One massive exception is Last Night's Fun - But they aall did their groundwork in the clubs etc.

Does anybody remember Bill Jones? She wez ganna be massive until people caught her act at festivals and she didn't seem te be able te speak to anyone across the footlights - Where is she noo? What a waste!

Anyway, Stacey - If you're canny at what ye dee and CAN dee a bit of amusin'/informative/witty banter ye'll dee alreet! But keep practicin' how te say "De ye want fries wi' that" Just in case (Joke, Honest!)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 06:56 PM

Just of few thoughts from an ole' American living in Canada reading your posts...
I don't want to get in your way, and most of you seem to be from the U.K.,
But just to tell you all I think this is just great. It's like watching a storm brewing
overseas, like a new Tsunami of creativity being born.
On a quiet night, when you're alone, look in the mirror into your own eyes
and into your soul. Then ask yourself the question, " do I really want to do this?"
And when the answer comes, as it must from The Great Spirit that guides us all...
Do THAT. Don't worry about degrees, financial aid, or whatever...
If being a Folk Artist is your dream, pursue it. Or as someone so aptly put it, "what would you do with your life if you knew you could not fail?"
God Bless...
bob


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,wordy
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:01 PM

well Bob, over here in the UK the Great Spirit on the folk scene is usually whisky...single malt.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Darowyn
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:03 PM

I remember the last episode in the BBC Folk Britannia series, in which it suggested that the real next generation of folk music is already out there, well away from the Folk Clubs and Academic world.
I saw a young band last weekend, on the same bill as me, who call themselves a folk funk band. This was at a local festival.
I doubt there is anyone on here who would admit them to the Folk category. The line-up was, Drums, Bass guitar, Electric guitar and the singer played Electro Acoustic. The Bass player played real Bootsy Collins style funk.
I spoke to them the following Monday, and it seems that the folk influence they are following is the attack and anarchic energy of the Pogues. That is the tradition from a 17 year old's standpoint.
Their repertoire included a superb version of Outkast's "Hey Ya".
Of course they would never consider playing a folk club, bu tthey go down a storm in any young rock venue. They are right in the mainstream- and they are not the only ones!
Dare I suggest that is where folk is supposed to be? The young generation are making the new folk in their own way, for their own audience.
Folk Britannia was right the real young tradition, as opposed to the academically hot-housed, is already out there.
Cheers
Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Vulgar Boatman
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:08 PM

And as for high standards of entrance - I encountered one of these and her pushy mother at a music shop on Durham market, and it was abundantly clear that they didn't know their arses from a hole in the ground as far as music or musicianship was concerned. They were much more exercised by trying to establish who I was and who I knew - some bloody hope!
Traditional music is older and far more durable than this consumer society nonsense. If universities want to offer courses in musicology, folklore, music history or whatever, fine. It won't make you a traditional musician any more than standing in a garage will turn you into a car.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Bob Ryszkiewicz
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:21 PM

wordy: Ha Ha. LOL. I guess we are all guided by SOMETHING. Life is long...
Make sure your choice of guide doesn't destroy your liver...
They say that which we focus on expands...
So maybe if your thoughts are LESS about single malt whiskey and MORE "single"
about MUSIC (let thine eye be single), you won't have to worry about "the young folk
tradition undermining folk." It will thrive..
All the best from over here to over there...
bob


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:37 PM

Diane Esaby said: "And as for the 'f*lk clubs' as a viable place to work, just what century and upon which planet are you existing? They're well-finished, past their sell-by. The vast majority offer you unrealistically and insultingly low fees that probably don't even cover your fuel, nowhere to change and tune and no accommodation."

Diane, I know we've had this argument on another thread, but for Stacey's benefit it is worth stating that most folk clubs *do* offer acceptable and often generous accommodation (usually in private homes), and if you accept a fee that doesn't make a decent profit, never mind cover the fuel expenses, that's you're own lookout. I'm not bothered about a changing room, myself.

There isn't a living to be made in folk clubs alone, but the number of younger performers that seem to do gigs in such places would suggest that they still form a valuable part of the mix. And as BB said above, they are a good place to learn about actually interacting with an audience, rather than playing at it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:38 PM

"Diane Esaby said"

Oops: 'Easby'


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 07:41 PM

keep up the undermining ....its the job of the young.

does anyone feel undermined?

You have to deal with the world you grow up in, its not ours - take care of business as best you can. I don't think there are blueprints for success (artistic or commercial) ...you just have to do what seems right. You may get it wrong, most of us do. But you learn a lot ....having a go.

Not as much as the folks who do nowt. They know everything and have nothing to learn. You will hear many of them, every day on mudcat, giving you the benefit of wisdom gained by years of doing nowt.

Best of luck Stacey.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 22 Jun 07 - 10:08 PM

As one who has been there and done all that, and am now finished with the music except for the listening, albeit in the USA, this is fascinating. I feel privileged to view you all from afar---almost like a deceased one who has been allowed to take my computer to some other dimension or afterlife hangout where I can go on line and hear you all as clear as a bell.   I know you are speaking English, but...

...why can I not understand you at all?

Art Thieme


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:14 AM

Its cos we never went to university and studied folk music, Art.

The dazzling panorama of a life, nay a career; upholding the great traditional values of getting a decent agent and accountant and the right package together for the era in which we live....it was simply never laid before us.

Its the way its done these days, and who's to say they're wrong. Its what lies at the root of why folk music is SO popular these days.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:15 AM

inverted snobbery? havn't got the talent to get there yourself?

Not sure whether (and if so why) this was aimed at me but my degree was in something quite different, long ago before the Newcastle course was available. Had it been, yes I likely would have taken it. My remark about inverted snobbery was for the OP but might just as well apply to the person delighting in the name of 'stallion' who adheres apparently to the Louis Armstrong school of definitions.

Jim Moray is not a graduate of Newcastle but of the Birmingham Conservatoire, where he produced Sweet England for his finals dissertation. Nowadays in Bristol it is he who is spearheading an 'alternative' music venue, far removed from the past-sell-by 'clubs. This year, Newcastle is only onto its third generation of graduates from a four-year course, and it just didn't exist for him at the time. Whoever remarked that Jim Causley (+ Emily Portman & Lauren McCormick), collectively DTI, are some of the Best Things to come out of it so far, was right. And not only them but Crosscurrent, half of the Witches, Ellie Skinner, Simon Stephenson, Julian Sutton, and a load of others who I'm not altogether sure if they are actually on the course or just hang out with the students.

Brian Peters: you know very well what type of club I'm talking about. There are a few good ones left, but as for the bulk, you've been there and so have I. You may be able to dispense with a changing room and you don't need somewhere quiet to tune, but what about the player of stringed things, or the 16-year-old young woman who's told to 'just do it behind the bar?' And no, you shouldn't accept a fee that doesn't cover costs. That's why an increasing number of acts simply cannot afford (even if they wanted to) to do clubs who are behaving as though it was still 1975. It is the organisers who are unprofessional, not the artists.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:42 AM

"Jim Causley (+ Emily Portman & Lauren McCormick), collectively DTI, are some of the Best Things to come out of it so far,"

Don't know if it's wot you were thinking of Diane but I said something very much like that in the other thread.

To restate my case.

I think that the younger generation who take the Tradition(s) forward (perhaps using modern instruments and styles)are to be commended for keeping it alive. I happen to like Spiers and Boden, Bellowhead, Devil's Interval and the Witches of E. They contribute things in a different way from my fellow club singers and I but I don't see that as a bad thing. Just not the way I do it.

Oh and the clubs in my area do book the likes of the above from time to time and so do the Art Centres and Concert Hall/Theatre type venues.

So I don't think it is a matter of "undermining" more a matter of building on it.

We older peeps won't be here for ever and we need the youngsters for the future.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:47 AM

Wot I was thinking (but not writing) was TDI (The Devil's Interval) not the Department of Trade & Industry (which might have a Morris team to match that of The Lord Chancellor's Department . . . maybe).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:56 AM

Yes Diane

I worked that one out (all by myself)

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:11 AM

I mentioned Kate Rusby earlier,the song was I courted A Sailor.Kate Rusby HAS Potential,unfortunately all the while she is being overhyped,she runs the danger of believing her publicity.,she will not improve, until she exercises some musical self criticism.
A good starting point for her might be to listen to early Anne Briggs,MaddyPrior or better still Jeannie Robertson[now there was a really good interpreter of a story,someone that could always bring a song to life].

You may not have noticed Cap'n but Kate Rusby is a BIG star.

Whether you like her or not is irrelevant and since her career has been extremely successful in terms of headlining big folk festivals she has been a great success. In money terms, record and video sales she is a massive success and I bet if she never worked again she would probably be able to have a very comfortable life.

That is her choice and nothing to do with you and I, you don't have to buy her records or go to festivals where she is appearing (unless you are booked yourself of course).

Now purely as a matter of interest - how do you know she didn't listen to those singers you mention? She comes from a folk family.

The folk music scene is far bigger than it ever was, and my belief if that if you are any good you will "make it".

Knocking the Folk Degree (hardly a route to stardom - one of my friends who did it is working in the kitchens at the Iona Community - (!)) does not respect those who did it, and are doing it. And any of them who think it is a road to stardom will I suspect become very disillusioned.

There have been - at a guess - 60/80 students who have graduated so far - can anyone name more than ten?

Can I suggest that Stacy reads Jacey Bedford's advice on how to get gigs on folkwise? And good luck Stacey - plough your own furrow and don't take any notice of old farts like me.

And now - off to Handley Village Festival to watch some young artists like the Askew Sisters and Kerfuffle - none of whom did the folk degree. Although Hannah James is just finishing her first year and Sam Sweeney- now he is old enough - starts in September.

But there again it is Mudcat - don't let the facts spoil a good story.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: mandotim
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:12 AM

Just for the record; I've heard Stacey in a folk club. Mansfield Folk Club, at the Brown Cow, I think? (Correct me if I'm wrong, Stacey.) He's a highly original, thoughtful performer with a balance of older songs and some very good ones of his own. For me, he is the very antithesis of the 'modern' young folk artiste. Quietly funny, able to engage an audience at several levels with either song or chat, and a damn fine musician to boot. Also very young and good looking. I hate the bastard.

My real point is; talent will find a way to express itself, and perhaps the best thing to do at the early stage is to try lots of different avenues for performance. Folk clubs are just one; others include sessions, festivals, 'open mike' events, house concerts, support slots for established artists and showcase events. Try them all, and don't worry about the odd 'bad fit' between what you do and the nature of the event. Even bad gigs help a performer to learn the business, and those artists who really sustain a career seem to have learned those lessons well; and are still learning.

Good debate Stacey, thanks for opening this up.
Tim (the old geezer with the wierd red mandolin!)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:26 AM

"Brian Peters: you know very well what type of club I'm talking about."

Yes, Diane, I do, although we might disagree about the proportion. I also realise that my own attitude to changing and tuning facilities is a product of low expectations and might not be shared by everyone. Nonetheless, on the accommodation issue, I repeat that this is almost always offered by folk clubs as part of the deal, and is usually more than acceptable. And that if club fees didn't cover fuel costs they wouldn't get even semi-pro guests to turn out.

But this is off topic. And of course I endorse your praise of TDI.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: concertina ceol
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:58 AM

inverted snobbery? havn't got the talent to get there yourself?

aimed at Stacey

why can't this forum software be updated to something useful!

Have seen and enjoyed TDI, Crosscurrent, Damon O'Kane and Shona Kipling, and the Witches none of whom fit the box that Stacey wanted to put them in.

I know one person on the course quite well, he plays in sessions, for morris, and folk clubs and also does not match the mini superstar ego described.

I still can not believe the first post. A great deal of people going on the Newcastle course go as mature students and they have years of experience and grounding in the folk tradition. Just because it is not the route you have chosen doesn't make it fake or less valid than the route you have chosen.

Good luck with your journey Stacey - but take the plank out of your own eye before telling others about splinters in theirs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:59 AM

Dave: is Sam doing the Newcastle degree then? Last time I talked to his dad I thought he'd decided against it. Something about a conversation with Chris Wood...

"It seems to me that a lot of these VERY talented youngsters get to the 'Specialist' Folk Universities and hone their technique to perfection , then when they finish they dont want to work small venues , but only Art Centres and Festivals , who can afford to pay 'Silly' Money !"

I like taking young bands for my venue. I recently took a 3-piece who had all done the Newcastle course, for the princely sum of £400. They got some more for doing a school workshop (something many of the Newcastle students are keen on and good at), and I sorted out some accomodation the night before because they had to be at the school at 11 am. They chose to drive back up to Newcastle after the gig.

If £400 for a 3 piece band that has travelled 4 or 5 hours each way to do your gig is "silly money", I guess I'm guilty as charged. But I'd have been frankly embarrassed to pay them any less.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM

"take the plank out of your own eye before telling others about splinters in theirs."

Biblical references yet!

Matthew 7:5 I believe - well thats the original which is almost the same .

Point is perhaps we should all think along those lines.

This is not the God Slot it's the philosophical point made in that phrase.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:16 AM

I heard a couple of the 'Newcastle Prodigies' the other night and, in spite of my rather low expectations, it was a good evening - excellent choice of songs, very professionally presented. There was even one of those 'spine-tingling moments' which are increasingly rare these days.

But (there had to be a 'but' - didn't there?), apart form the 's-t m' mentioned above, there was a certain bloodlessness about the evening - as though the performers were relying on their (undoubted) virtuosity. It was almost as if they were saying to the audience, "we're displaying our virtuosity - what more do you want?"

Well, actually I want passion and daring - a sort of 'tight-rope walking over Niagra Falls' scary quality; and if you can give me one 's-t m' I want more!

Interestingly, the 's-t m' came when one of the performers sang on her own (for most of the night they had performed as a duo). Please remember that the classic performances of British trad. song have usually involved a single, unaccompanied singer. Personally, I think that the 'band' phenomenon is partly responsible for the bloodlessness - everyone wants to be in a f..king band these days - but in a band it's easy to hide behind the other performers and never really give of yourself.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Uncle Boko
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:27 AM

"As for the YFA, any fule kno that Smoothops/MH are a load of wankers"

I love it!!

I'll report on the Blackmore's Night gig tomorrow, but I won't be allowed to tape it because it says so!!!!!!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:37 AM

foklie dave ,Kate Rusby is a big star,SO WHAT,That doesnt mean there isnt room for improvement in her singing.
She has been well promoted,She has acquired good technique[breath control,and good intonation],but as far as I am concerned she sings with complete lack of understanding of the storyline.
if she has listened to any of the singers I mentioned it doesnt show.
the point is good technique can be learned[on a degree course or from a teacher],but singing from the heart is something youve either got or havent,and learning stage craft,is best done by going out at folk clubs and festivals[observing people like HughieJones, Brimstone ,JohnForeman,RoyHarris]and then doing it,in other words,Practical experience.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:51 AM

'McMullen' makes some good points.

Performers need to pay their dues, and not expect to be treated as 'special' because they've done a course, however good it may have been. If it turns into a 'fast track' to Arts Council type fees, then it will certainly lead to resentment, and perhaps also an over-inflated sense of personal importance. I'm quite sure that the people who run the Newcastle course (all of whom, so far as I know, came up the hard way) would be very uncomfortable if their protegés were to behave in the arrogant fashion described by 'stallion'.

Who exactly was that person? I think we should be told (provided, of course, that the reference is accurate). I've noticed that people usually only start listing their degrees when they have been challenged on something and can't provide an adequate answer.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Songthrush
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:37 AM

I was appalled by the behaviour of a group of students from Newcastle during a folk club session at Sidmouth last year, this particular threesome were booked to do two spots during the evening, they arrived in the company of a very "big" name half way through the first half and made as they say an entrance. They listened to some of the floor singers (well they were in the same room so I assume they were listening ) and then they were called upon to do their spot, which although not entirely to my taste was adequate, they then committed a cardinal sin of singing a song that the last floor singer had sung. I must admit I left after the first half . If there is anyone here who teaches on the Newcastle course can I recommend that they teach good etiquette and respect for other performers because without that they may be brilliant but they will succeed in alienating much of their audience.

Viv, who is not a performer


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: MikeofNorthumbria
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:43 AM

Hi Stacey,

More alert posters have already said most of what I would have written in response to your initial observations. However, here are a few words of encouragement for you - and any others of your generation who are following this thread.

"The crime of being a young man, which the honourable gentleman has, with such spirit and decency, charged upon me, I shall neither attempt to palliate nor deny; but content myself with wishing that I may be one of those whose follies may cease with their youth, and not of that number who are ignorant in spite of experience." (William Pitt, 1741).

Anyone from my generation (the bus-pass generation, that is) who looks back honestly on the follies – musical or otherwise – or their own youth has probably got quite a lot to feel embarrassed about.   But making mistakes and being embarrassed by them is an essential part of the learning process. No pain, no gain.

Unfortunately, the fast-tracked young whiz-kids of the Folk Nouveau scene are doing their learning under a spotlight. Some of them may be irritatingly bratty at times – but weren't we somewhat similar when we were their age? Those of us who were able to make our juvenile mistakes in relative obscurity should show a little more patience and tolerance to today's young hopefuls.

Wassail!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:47 AM

It seems to me, on the contrary, extremely odd that a 'floor singer' taking part in a session to which a named act had been invited, chose to do a song that said act was known to have as part of their repertoire.

Normal polite behaviour would have been to have checked first if the act (whether from the Newcastle course or not, provenence is not important) intended to do that particular song and if so, to do something else.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:53 AM

The above was addressed at 'Songthrush' of whom the line:

if I had an arrow in my hand
And a bow bent on a string


springs to mind.

Such spiteful jealousy towards students going through great hardship to study what they love is entirely unwarranted.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:58 AM

I don't know, Diane, in principle I agree but all floor singers don't know the repertoire of all "named acts", especially one that is presumably a comparatively new trio. But to repeat a song just sung by anyone is definitely bad manners, even if it is your own.

At the same time, Songthrush, and though it's hard to judge as I wasn't there, I'd generally cut the youngsters some slack in terms of behaviour. They are young, and carry some of the baggage of youth (enthusiasm being some of it, high spirits too, often peppered with an as yet undeveloped ability to put oneself in other people's shoes); I made quite a few behavioural "faux pas" in my younger days (and not only then!), and learned on the way. Call it part of the learning process.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:01 AM

Mike of Northumbria, you put your finger on an important issue with your last paragraph. Excellent point, and one we'd all do well to remember.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:07 AM

Another point in defense of young folkies wanting to go straight to the top and play arts centres etc etc. I don't think this is at all to do with having gained a qualification - rather, it's a result of today's "get famous quick" and celebrity culture, exemplified by the multitude of so-called talent and "reality" (not) shows.

Will those who remember singing into a hairbrush in front of the mirror raise their hand, please...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:17 AM

Seems to me that the Sidmouth errors could have been on either side.

Was it one of the Folk scene standard songs Thousands or More, Wedding Song or any of thousands of other songs. If so the oncoming group should have swapped it for a reserve song or at least apologised somehow even saying something like "We hope you like our version of the song just sung by..... " would have been better.

However if the song was one the act have recorded or are known for then the floor singer should have known that the act were to follow and sung another song.

If we are to lay blame at either door we need the full facts but again I don't think this is the place to name names and one upsetting incident should not blind us to all the good stuff that is out there.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:26 AM

I have no problem with a centre of excellence as long as they don't fill the students heads with the idea that they are God's gift to folk music and there place is on a pedestal. In every occupation and calling respect and reputations are earned and a good reputation takes a lot of hard work a bad one a damn site less. Some of the graduates, not all, seem to be completely detached from their audience, so in the past the old salts earned their following so it amazes me that some of the grads. have such high profiles, is it PR or am I just out of kelter with everyone else in not being that impressed?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:32 AM

*raises hand*

"Performers need to pay their dues, and not expect to be treated as 'special' because they've done a course, however good it may have been."

I have to say, I haven't encountered that attitude amongst the Newcastle students. But I have noticed that a lot of the older generation of folkies are rather chippy about the whole concept of the degree. There seems to be an attitiude that the degree is "anti-folk" in some way, and a bit of the "Eeeeh, when I were a lad we didn't need no degrees. We played the circuit, took our knocks, learned the hard way..."

And if anything, I think some of the students from the degree course actually have a tougher time gaining acceptance, as a load of old folkies with their arms crossed, sucking their gums, stand in front of them thinking "Okay, let's see why you're so bloody great then. Let's see what you learned on this so-called folk degree..." The expectations of them are higher, and there are some people I've met who are actually quite smug if kids from the degree trip up, or have a bad night, or don't set the world on fire with their between-song patter.

I certainly think that the degree should be scrutinised - there's nothing wrong with healthy criticism, and if constructive it can only help the degree to get better all the time. But as far as "needing" a folk degree...well, lots of great young performers are getting on very well without it, others are benefitting hugely. Horses for courses.

Is the degree a Good Thing? Is it anti-folk? Well, lots of countries who take their folk music far more seriously than England does - the Scandinavian countries, for instance - have incorporated folk music into university study for years. It stands alongside classical music in terms of status. That can't be a bad thing.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:37 AM

George and Mike, I take the point but who is thrusting them into the limelight? Why don't they graduate and then build a reputation for themselves, when was the last time a "Starred First" was given the Chair of a faculty upon graduation? Perhaps they are being driven before they have been broken to the harness. perhaps they ought to be Mentored by an old hand, like training plough horses. OK, so I had a bad experience with an arrogant oik, I shall put that behind me and try to look through the mists of youth, after all, someone has to make allowances it may as well be me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:51 AM

Arrogance is not the sole preserve of the young neither is ability the sole preserve of their elders.

Why do performers need to pay their dues in the same way as people before them? Times move on, there aren't the Clubs there used to be which offered a (hard) living, if someone will book them for an Arts Centre good luck to both parties. Having a 40 year career as a professional folk musician may no longer be viable (if it ever was for all but a few), Kate Rusby may well be the career model for one type of new performer. Pete Coe, with his mix of work and interests may be another.

It will be interesting to see down the road the mix that Northumbria turns out. My own guess is that there will be a very few musicians who have a lengthy career, a few who do it for a few years and end up taking paid employment and some who do nothing, rather like music courses (of all genres) have been doing for years.

All the best

Steve


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Leadfingers
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:52 AM

Ruth - £400 for a trio is a fair fee , with the distance travelled taken into sonsideration , its a VERY fair fee to charge ! However £1200 for a group to travel fifty miles to a club (as WE were quoted a little while back) is a little greedy !


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:03 AM

Surely all students (in my experience) think that the older generation have neither seen the things they have seen-or done the things they are doing -I wouldn't single out Newcastle students partcularly. The ones I have encountered are bright young things, lively and talented. I have never however, singled them out as being more or less talented than others. Some young musicians do lack presence and personality, but you get that with experience and those words my mother said to me and I say to my granddaughters come to mind 'When your older.....'. It's a pity the future of folk music relies so much on academia though - kind of throws the face of the tradition. I think we have to accept that things move on -festivals are the thing and many do do their apprenticeship, just not in the folk clubs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:05 AM

"It's a pity the future of folk music relies so much on academia though - kind of throws the face of the tradition."

Why?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:14 AM

Diane, I love some of your posts, but sometimes wonder if your knickers are sandpaper lined. You do go in for the odd abrasive remark don't you?

Giok ¦¬]


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:18 AM

It's a pity the future of folk music relies so much on academia

Does it?
And if it does, why not?
As somebody said, the only harm you can do to a trad piece is not to re-arrange it.
And, I'd add, not be aware of its origins and of the provenance and cultural background of the song and tune carriers.
'Tradition' does not equate with ignorance and studied lack of awareness.
That's coming dangerously close to 'good enough for f*lk'.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:26 AM

In my humble opinion NO-ONE is undermining folk music, it's not possible, this is why it has endured for so long. [ and continues to do so ]


The mere fact that young people are actually studying folk music etc. can only be regarded as a good thing, when and if they start performing professionally, they will learn, and pay their dues.

Lets have more.

eric


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:27 AM

The future of folk music relies on many things. The dwindling folk club scene has its role, and so do the festivals. And the open mike cafes, and the centres of excellence, and the arts centres, and parents singing songs to their kids, and the existence of the EFDSS and the V.Williams library, and C# House. I feel no need to single out the "most important" factor in ensuring a future for folk music because a) I don't know it and b) I am pretty certain that no single factor can ever be sufficient. Folk music is/should be pervasive, turning up at all sort of moments in one's life and all sorts of place - hence, many avenues required for it to travel freely.

In a flowing river, the water molecules go this way and that, individually; some hit obstacles, some backtrack, some never make it to the sea. But the river moves forward. And so does folk music, I believe.

(PS: Ruth, regarding the raised hand: I knew it, I was behind the one-way mirror!)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 09:35 AM

Giok I don't think Dianne has abrasive in her underwear as you suggest the posts aren't always vitriolic, it's more an allergic reaction to some keywords.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: mandotim
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 09:47 AM

I can remember my first, stumbling attempts at trying to communicate with an audience via a folk song. (Shudders delicately). I can also remember a number of older, much more experienced performers who took the time to criticise (usually constructively), suggest things, praise where appropriate, teach me, recommend me to others and generally encourage. I'm still not the performer I'd like to be, but I'm better than I would have been without their guidance.

As a result, I see my role now as enjoying the music of newer generations, helping where I can and where that help is sought or welcomed. An example; a lot of young musicians don't have a clue about how to set up a PA to produce a good sound, especially with acoustic instruments. I do; and I have a really good PA setup that I don't use all the time. I work with a number of young soloists and bands, usually for free or expenses. It's not altruism, though. I see it as indirectly repaying the debt I owe to my own benefactors, who played their part in 'keeping the river moving forward' (thanks for the image, George!).

I'm an academic these days, so I can't really attack the role of academia in society generally; but I would argue for balance. Folk music is not a theoretical pursuit in my view, and whilst study can produce knowledge and background, there is also a need for talent honed by performance and feedback from audiences. It's a bit like the recent move to train nurses in universities, rather than on the wards; a knowledgeable nurse is not necessarily a good nurse. That comes from the interaction with patients in the 'live' situation, and drawing on the experience of other staff. The study of folk music has it's place though; greater understanding of the material and its history must surely lead to more informed performance, at least in the long run.

Sorry for the long post; I still haven't managed to say everything I wanted to.
Tim


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:31 PM

I think it is a pity because I would like to think that traditional music is not just a snapshot in time to be studied in books and libraries, but experienced and added to by each generation. I am all for young musicians knowing the provinence of traditional music. But I would also like to think that there are people out their talking to actual people, learning and discovering communities and traditions before they disappear. It may be in my interpretation of tradition (I think we've been down this road!) differs from everyone else, but in 200 years time I don't want there to be a gap in our traditional music history -I want that generation to be able to hear songs about the decline of the farming, or the fishing in this century. I get letters sent to me all the time telling me stories and incidents which are totally fascinating, and invited to talk to people, harbour masters, Humber pilots, little old ladies in residential care who have amazing memories that they are desperate to capture-small stories amazing stories -all to make you cry or laugh and desperate to be made into a permanent memory in verse or song. We need young musicians to capture the here and now of our lives, before they are lost to us and all the generations to come. If the university courses sned out students into the community with notepad and pen so they can lay down traditions for the future -then bring it on-but I fear that they do not.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 03:53 PM

I don't know whether they do or not, Linda (referring to your last sentence). But I know that some of the youngstersb are indeed digging metaphorically, to find old material. They are probably less interested right now in documenting the present or recent past - somehow I feel that this is more of an interest to your generation and also to mine. Not sure why - perhaps it requires a few years of living experience to want to look to your immediate roots, close up as it were; while the more distant past fascinates more readily and is less contentious or politically/emotionally loaded with links to one's own experience.

But the interest in the past, recent or distant, is being established in the minds of these youngsters, and that's what's important. The seeds might take a few years to germinate in some; in others (like Jim Causley) they take hold immediately - some of the wording in Jim's sleevenotes for "Fruit of the Earth" give this away, I think his immediate family probably had the biggest impact on him though.

I don't want to get back into a definitions discussion; but any good music/song/dance/art has to have relevance, in my book. Not necessarily relevance to today, but to something that touches us, moves us, makes us feel or think, instinctive or conscious. If it doesn't, it simply does not succeed. Every kind of music that is listened to, does so because of that relevance. It's just that hip-hop relates to different things than traditional folk, whose relevance in turn differs from that of Dylan's songs or those of Johnny Cash. The youngsters coming out of the Newcastle course are looking for relevance to themselves too, and this might differ to ours. So it may be that some parts of the folk music we love may not have relevance to them any more - other than academic - ad they may be overlooked. THIS is where academia helps to preserve such temporarily "uninteresting" areas, until their turn comes again perhaps, in the cyclical way that interests and fads sometimes move.

Jaysus on a bike, but I've rambled...sorry.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: shepherdlass
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:32 PM

Linda, I've seen some examples of both the students and tutors at the Newcastle degree course going out there with notebook and pen (well, more likely a minidisc recorder, but you get the drift) to interview and record the performances of traditional musicians. I don't know if all those on the course study context and community as thoroughly, but certainly those that I've met indicate that it's far more than a "technique factory". Hope this is reassuring. Incidentally, I'm not on the folk degree course, nor at Newcastle Uni, so have no axe to grind.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 04:46 PM

well if you ask me, they're all bastards.

they have totally improper technique, and consequently they all stick the wrong finger in their ears...sometimes in the wrong ear. Bloody disgraceful!

And whats more they sing fol de diddle di day, when Cecil Sharp and Hammond were quite clear that fol de diddle rye day is not just a random load of crap sung sung by pissed up peasants but refers to matters of great great cultural significance. I mean one's a flattened fifth, and one's a minor accidental. Need I say more...?

Quite frankly, one's heart bleeds to think of our wonderful tradition entrusted to these ruffians and deliquents.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,FP
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:04 PM

WE totally agree!

The folk police.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:38 PM

er shepherdlass I think that is my point - they should indeed be doing that but also I believe they should be going into communities and listening to real people finding out about their disappearing and changing lifestyles contributing to the tradition, discovering writing music about real issues, real life. I am not digging at anyone-I have friends on the course, and I am sure learning from other musicians is enlightening -but the traditional musicians of the future for me would be the likes of Dave Evardson, who take the real stories turn them into wonderful songs that are a social commentary on the way that the fishing industry in Grimsby has changed over the last 30 years or so -if the course produces a dozen Dave's then its a job well done.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 05:56 PM

Oral history is a different field from folk music. Writing songs based on oral history is not, in my opinion, adding to the tradition per se. Some songs may become (to the chagrin of their authors) "trad" (take a bow John Connolly), some may be good songs which are widely sung for a few years and then vanish (how much of Ewan MacColl's output is still widely sung?).

Remould Theatre did this type of work (The Northern Trawl et al) as across the country have done countless other Drama Groups. Writing songs or plays about history doesn't somehow validate the course or the people on it. I am not sure that the purpose of the course is to turn out people who can write songs about disappearing worlds, just as my degree (Economic History) didn't condemn me to a life of history.

Statistically very few students end up in jobs directly relevant to their degree although the skills they learn in doing their degree may well be important in their future career. For the students on the course (like most students) I suspect that the bottom line will be "do I get a job at the end of it?"

All the best

Steve


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 06:18 PM

how much of Ewan MacColl's output is still widely sung?


perhaps you should go to a folk club and submit a reseach paper on the subject.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: shepherdlass
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 07:02 PM

It's very laudable to take disappearing ways of life and turn them into songs (which the new radio ballads - featuring one Kate Rusby! - have also done) ... but is this tradition? I'd have thought learning the techniques and the repertoires of older musicans was more the way that younger performers become immersed in a tradition, something they then take forward by adapting it to their own tastes, times and audiences.

Documenting these traditions/patterns of living is something else, just as important and notable as performance, and obviously something that can inform and shape future performance - but is the documentary side of folk music absolutely fundamental to the tradition (maybe in border/war ballads or occupational songs? more debateable in supernatural tales?) or something that really came to the fore in the 1950s and 60s with MacColl et al?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 23 Jun 07 - 08:54 PM

has anyone making profound pronouncements on this thread actually taken the time to look at the curriculum of the Newcastle course? There's a loty of I really hope they're studying the tradition..."

Answer: they are. That's why there are tutors like Chris Coe on the course: to give them some grounding in the sources for the music.

Many of the gainsayers could do worse than reading the article about the degree in a recent issue of English Dance and Song magazine, or at least finding out a wee bit more about the course, before issuing their dire pronouncements on the graduates of the degree.


I stand by my earlier post. Yopu lot are beginning to sound like the Four Yorkshiremen in the Monty Python sketch...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 01:52 AM

Any undergraduate course, let alone what goes on at The Sage, is not 'job training'. Students go and study what, ideally, they have a passion to research and develop. And these are skills they will use in whatever path they follow, whether directly related or not.

The Newcastle degree is not '10 steps to become a folk musician' nor is it a crash course in oral tradition. These are people who would be playing and singing anyway, and learning from song and tune carriers. But it just so happens that they have been fortunate enough to get a place on an academic (but performance-based) course, the content of which includes these activities along with modules such as business skills.

Every time this subject comes up (and it has with unfailing regularity over the past five or so years), I have posted links to this very syllabus and entry requirements, but do any of these ill-informed knockers ever read it? It's a bit like when Thames Valley University's Hotel & Catering Department ran a course on Indian cuisine and out came the remarks about curry degrees.

There's really nothing like the serious study of English trad music (on the lines that has been the norm in Ireland, Scotland, Sweden and Finland for decades) to bring out the 'good enough for f*lk' brigade'. It is a symptom of how the English have been, for a couple of generations, conditioned into despising and ridiculing their own cultural heritage. Hurrah for the dedicated tutors (working musicians of long experience themselves) who are encouraging more and more graduates to get out into their communities and reverse this, and to persuade others as well as themselves to respect, perform and add to it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 02:19 AM

Well said Diane

Steve


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 02:55 AM

"That's why there are tutors like Chris Coe"

And I believe Sandra Kerr and Vic Gammon all working Folkies before becoming involved at the Uni under discussion here.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 04:15 AM

foklie dave ,Kate Rusby is a big star,SO WHAT,That doesnt mean there isnt room for improvement in her singing.

That's Right Cap'n. I am not the person to offer it and neither (IMHO) are you.

She has been well promoted,

You prefer she was badly promoted? You prefer she was not promoted at all? I think all singers would like to be well promoted.

She has acquired good technique[breath control,and good intonation],but as far as I am concerned she sings with complete lack of understanding of the storyline.
if she has listened to any of the singers I mentioned it doesn't show.


Well since I first wrote, it is my understanding from information received that she DID listen to traditional music as I would have expected - but surprisingly she listened to a wide range other stuff too. Why should it show? Wouldn't people then accuse her of being a ...whoever....imitator had it showed?

the point is good technique can be learned[on a degree course or from a teacher],

Well the person who teaches voice (to the student on the degree course I spent an hour talking to yesterday )is Chris Coe and the student in question thinks she is wonderful as a teacher. I reckon most people would agree with that.


Kate spent years honing her craft and no doubt others will do so as well. It ain't that important Dick - I would contend that Martin Carthy and indeed the Watersons have very little stage craft. Tow of the biggest influences on UK folk music.

And do keep up Dick, John Foreman, Roy Harris and Derek Brimstone are all retired.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Jim Lad
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 04:32 AM

I'm for holding the young ones back for as long as possible.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 04:38 AM

"I'm for holding the young ones back for as long as possible."

Oh! Why?

Do please tell us what it is you are worried about.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Marje
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:00 AM

This thread has raised some interesting points and arguments.

I don't see what the problem is with new young performers being ambitious and attempting to make a decent living out of folk music - many of the oldies would be quick to complain if the youngsters were undercutting the going rates and doing it on the cheap. If they ask "silly money", or if they are unpleasantly arrogant, they won't get the gigs - the market will soon sort it out. And for what it's worth I've seen some excellent, unpaid floor performances at our local club by young people, including at least one Newcastle graduate. Some are wise enough to realise that a free floor spot is good publicity for one's future paid gigs.

The Newcastle students don't just sign up for the course with no knowledge or experience of the folk world. The ones I know were already regulars at local clubs and had established themselves as competent musicians before applying. They're really excited at the chance to have tutors like Tim van Eycken, Chris Coe, Alistair Anderson and Sandra Kerr - and who wouldn't be? Is there maybe just a touch of envy in some of the criticism?

In other threads, there are often comments about the low or very mixed standard of floor performance in clubs by people who are, in most cases, old enough to know better. To be honest, some local clubs don't offer much in the way of example to new performers. Now at last we have a cohort of young people with fresh ideas and enthusiasm who are rasing the general standard and approaching the music from an informed and educated point of view. What's not to like about that?

A degree is never going to be a requirement for performers, and there will also be room at clubs, concerts and festivals for those who've learnt their craft by other means. Audiences don't ask to see a CV, they judge by the quality of the performance.

And as Mike has said, above - the new folk music graduates are still young, and can continue to grow and develop. Many of us would not care to be reminded how we sounded when in our twenties. I think there's every reason to hope that a fair proportion of the graduates will continue to contribute to the folk scene in a worthwhile way, either as professionals or as skilled part-timers/amateurs and enhance it for years to come.

Marje


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: mandotim
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:04 AM

Thanks Diane; I've read the syllabus, and I agree wholeheartedly. The course appears to be well balanced between the study of the history, forms and tradition of folk music on one hand, and the needs of the modern 'market' for this approach to music performance on the other. In other words, a good mix of theory and practice. I wish it had been around when I was choosing an undergraduate course!

I can't really see what's wrong with this programme in the eyes of some; it seems to be an extension of the mentoring process I described above, with some academic credit attached for use in a world where a degree opens doors that would otherwise be closed. This mentoring used to be carried out in families ('songs I learned at my grandmother's knee'), but with the apparent decline of the extended family network this is perhaps less common.

I think it's important to remember that this degree isn't the only route to a successful career in folk music, nor is there any guarantee (based on the limited evidence currently available) that this approach will lead to greater success than any other.

One more thought; the degree programme gives an opportunity for in-depth study of a wide and fascinating area of the musical spectrum. I would argue that the 'democratisation' of information via the wonders of the web means that anyone with sufficient time, interest and an internet connection can research and explore to their heart's content irrespective of whether their study is formally recognised. Not only that, but the new phenomenon of social networking sites (now referred to as 'web 2.0') allows sharing and marketing of ideas and music much more readily. The world appears to have shifted, and that shift affects the folk music world as well. The question that's bothering me at the moment is not 'what's happening now?' but 'What's next?'.
Tim


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM

"Is the degree a Good Thing? Is it anti-folk?"

Yes! and No!

How can you undermine anything by gaining knowledge of it? There will always be the odd idiot who thinks he is God's gift, but he'll soon have the rough edges knocked off him by REAL life.

It seems to me that offering a degree course is a very good way to perpetuate something which has been struggling to survive over the last twenty years.

At the very least we will know that there ARE youngsters out there who care.

Don T.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:09 AM

Methinks that Jim's tongue was in his cheek, Breton Cap...

I also think that if one of the Newcastle students printed this thread and stuck it on a noticeboard there would be much mirth in the corridors. Some of the pontificating here (and I am not exempt) does not bear second reading - not straightfaced. Ah, the wisdom of age; I've been waiting for it for some time now.

By the way, coming back from a gig in the erly hours of Saturday I heard on Radio 2 that Ellie Skinner, who featured at Herga some months back, got a 2.1 from Newcastle. Well done, that lass!

It's Sunday morning, smells of Sunday dinner already emanating from the kitchen, and I feel gratitude for many things. One of them is that there are young'uns interested in traditional music, and are studying it. Life is good.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:14 AM

Who is missing the point, it isn't the study of Folklore that is being knocked it is the attitude that seems to be imbued in some graduates that they are the crème de la crème and they can piss in the faces of the paying public by deigning to turn up and produce mediocrity when they should be capable of more. I take the point that that is what semi-mature people do although I think a lack of confidence in most prevents that surfacing. Anyway, as I have said before, I probably have had one bad experience and maybe my expectations were elevated by the hype. And, the vast majority of the "uneducated" youngsters around us are wonderful company and beaver away in the sessions without any expectations of anything but enjoying themselves, and they do. So this isn't a pop at Newcastle, unless, that is, someone is telling them that they are better than they are. I personally don't think the Young Folk Tradition is undermining folk music I think there are some corkers around and they will be around for years, although I am one of those people who is fairly tolerant as to what is folk music. Anyway, as one young graduate said, I am a nobody and I don't know anything.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:16 AM

Hi, Mandotim. I don't know what's next, but I sure am interested in finding out.

I just thought - if there was a 1-year HND course in Newcastle, I might just enrol myself. Or a 2-year part-time course perhaps. Not right away, but when I hang up my office keyboard. But no residential courses, thank you, I couldn't stand the pace of the student parties nowadays... I am serious. I think the vast majority of us posting here would benefit from such a course, and as a result so would the clubs we go to.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:24 AM

Disappearing ways of life...... like petrol pump attendants and bus conductors. You'd need your finger a long way up your ear for that.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:35 AM

Indeed Al. The joke about the lightbulb and the folkies sometimes seems too close to the truth for comfort.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,shepherdlass elsewhere
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:53 AM

Stallion - surely every degree course in the world - from folk music to accountancy - produces the occasional graduate who thinks that they are god's gift and have nothing else to learn. But in my experience they're the exception rather than the rule. Degree courses by their nature produce great graduates; intermediate graduates and some that aren't so good. Let's be glad that at last there's a part of this country where there are opportunities to learn about folk music and to take it seriously.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:59 AM

"If they ask "silly money", or if they are unpleasantly arrogant, they won't get the gigs - the market will soon sort it out."

Yup. I'm sure we can all think of examples of "the next big thing" who crashed and burned because they started to believe their own press and forgot how to be civil to people. Then again, sometimes people get a reputation they don't deserve through rumour-mongering and sad old gossips whose time is past, and whose only joy comes from bitching about other people because it make them feel "in the know". I remember being concerned about hving booked Seth Lakeman because of all the negative stories that surrounded the Equation. When he arrived, he and his band were unfailingly polite to every single member of staff in my venue.

You have to draw your own conclusions: one person may claim that a youngster was arrogant and abusive. Another interpretation of the incident might be that the complainant was bitter old folkie with a chip on his shoulder and an axe to grind, and goodness knows what they might have said to the young person in question to elicit such an extreme response. In any case, we should remember that every one of us is entitled to bad days.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Warwick Slade
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:18 AM

The young folk tradition is not the main reason that folk is in decline. Other threads have explored this.
One reason appears to be the cost of booking 'top flight guests' yet most clubs, singarounds or open mics sessions have at least one or two very good preformers. The problem is they play to the same folk every week so everyone gets bored. Listener and player alike.
Perhaps what is needed is a 'play away' scheme where residents of club A play away at club B whos residents are at club C. Some people would float to the top after exposure to a wider public. This might answer several threads such as 'how to get a gig' or the demise of the folk club
Who knows several clubs could get together and book a young tradition or old tradition for that matter.
I am sure some clubs do all this, comments please


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Marje
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:19 AM

I could have added - and will now - the thought that there are a small number of arrogant know-it-alls in the folk world, and they don't all have degrees. I think most of us can think of an example of the middle-aged smart-arse floor performer who's not half as good as he thinks he is. Universities don't create this sort of personality, it's just the way some people are.

In fact, a good university course will foster humility in its students. Education doesn't teach you all there is to know - it teaches you how much there is out there to learn and discover, and sets you on the road to exploring it.

Marje


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:42 AM

Ok, Yes, someone has said "I have thirty years experience" and been an arse, and, like me playing a guitar, doesn't seem to have got any better in thirty years. I have admitted to having one bad experience but it was the first and that did colour my view somewhat. Like my first three trips to Coniston it heaved down with rain so I said "it always rains in Coniston" not true but it was the sum of my experiences. Whether it is fair to tarnish all the young performers because of this is doubtful and I will not.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:45 AM

i think you will find that folk clubs do that already Warwick -swapping etc-where geographically practical. Some folks just happen to go to more than one folk club as well. We have posters in the Union Bar at the local uni and we are very lucky-and priveleged to have many visitors to our club where regulars will step aside to hear something different. I do not think there is an issue, but then I do not think clubs are in decline either. I have seen the curriculum for the degree at Newcastle -most excellent for the art of perpetuating the music but Marje raises the point

'but is the documentary side of folk music absolutely fundamental to the tradition (maybe in border/war ballads or occupational songs? more debateable in supernatural tales?) or something that really came to the fore in the 1950s and 60s with MacColl et al? '



I would have thought it fundemental to the process of an enduring tradition and I do not think it was something invented by Ewan MColl in the 60's!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Warwick Slade
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 07:12 AM

Very glad to hear you are swapping singers in Newcasle. Trouble is I could not get there and back in one evening from Dorset.

As for a university degree in subject of folk and the tradition, I would love to do it as (quote) 'a boring old fart' Why should the young ones get all the fun (and knowledge)
Ewan MacCall invented nothing. Just the right man in the right place at the right time. The real heros are people like the Copper family and Sam Larner et al


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Patrick_Costello
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 08:11 AM

If you want to make a living as a folk musician the last thing you want to do is be anywhere near the folk music community.

Ignore what everybody else is doing. Focus on developing your skill, understanding your craft and find a way to inject what you do into your community.

A folk musician is, like it or not, a musician of the people. Our "job" has nothing to do with being on stage or self-promotion. Folk music is personal. It's face to face. It's in living rooms and front porches. Our success is not measured in how many records we sell or any of the other nonsense non-musicians think of in terms of attributes of success. No, our success is measured in how we live and in the lives we touch.

In my case, I ended up making a pretty good living without performing. I gave away my music and, because of the roundabout way folk music works, everything I gave away ended up making me money.

-Patrick


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 11:36 AM

The young folk tradition is not the main reason that folk is in decline

and

It seems to me that offering a degree course is a very good way to perpetuate something which has been struggling to survive over the last twenty years.

Let me try and do this gently. There is no evidence that folk music (however widely or narrowly you care to define it) is in decline and if you feel it is (or has been) I would like to know on what you base your statement.

There is tons more live folk music now than there ever was. (I understand Shrewsbury will have a 2,500 seater marquee this year for the main stage and a 1,000 seater for the second stage). Some decline......

Most major towns and many smaller ones host sessions - something that was rare until the late sixties/early seventies with the exception of the Irish community. There were few festivals and they tended to be dance-orientated.

There are now dozens of festivals some with very big attendances. Even into the early seventies there were few instrumentalists. In the past few weeks I have been privileged to listen to a dozen astonishingly talented young fiddlers, flute players, accordion players, watch dancers, and listen to singers most of whom were around 20/25 years of age. And some are are graduates of the Newcastle course one is on the course one is going on the course and others haven't and wont.

Incidentally like most university courses there are a number of mature students on the course - it isn't all young people.

If you want to make a living as a folk musician the last thing you want to do is be anywhere near the folk music community.

There is no way to address this gently. Just about as useless a piece of advice as I have ever seen.

And if you want to hear how the folk scene is thriving in Scotland go and listen to all the wonderful music that Archie Fisher played on last week's Travelling Folk via the BBC's listen again. Everything the Mike Harding Show could be and isn't.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Jim Lad
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 11:45 AM

Go on then .... 99


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 11:52 AM

if you insist..100


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Jim Lad
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 12:04 PM

We seem to fear/envy the success of others in folk circles. We want folk music to be more popular and yet when some group manages to bring them to the forefront, we cringe at the very mention of their names.
Simple fact; No act, no matter how good or bad & no publicity, no matter how good or bad is going to do anything but help me find gigs.

How many times have we played to rows of envious Folkies at folk clubs knowing that many of them would like nothing more than to see you die on the spot so that they could take your place.

So, formal training for folk musicians? No. I don't think it's of any real value but what the heck. Somebody came up with it and I take that as a positive move on our behalf.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Uncle Boko
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 12:31 PM

The trouble is that in the UK, success is scorned by envious masses.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 01:17 PM

Oh, to be scorned and envied... I'd gladly give away 30 years of my age for such a thing. I don't quite agree, UB; I think there is a minority that is scornful and envious, but they are very vocal, that's all.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: breezy
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 02:58 PM

Did I miss the word 'entertainment' somewhere?

What the hell, it keeps em off the streets and there arnt enough jobs around so 'keep em in school for longer' has long been our govt's credo

It's contemporary creativity with appeal to intellect through music with originalty that I am looking for.

Has Jez Lowe rec'd his honorary degree yet? Bogle and a few others.

In the end if one cannot communicate with an audience then it would only be an academic exercise

And , Well Done Jim C Lad for tackling a George Papavgeris song, hope its working, great source singer, in many ways.

Has Vin G got one

Does Martyn W -R's summer school in France qualify for any credits, if not . why not?

Folk music and song should be a pleasurable social pastime

I say Di E, where can I read the syllabub seeing as i cant be bothered to trawl


next St Albans song gig worth bothering about will be on Sunday 15th Julay - its the way they talk- at the Rose and Crown , - though word is that Fleggy will be stepping -into the breach - on the 2nd sunday,


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,meself
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 03:01 PM

Cyrano: Give me enemies!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 04:33 PM

yes I admit it - I'm an envious mass and I SCORN all you successful buggers.

Consider yourself scorned....!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Santa
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:11 PM

Just one person's opinion, but in the teeth of the established opinion here our club is still thriving. I did see Kate Rusby there more than once (a few years ago admittedly) and she seemed to have a great love for the songs she was singing. Well, as much as you'd expect given that she spent her childhood building sandcastles on Fleetwood beach whilst her father ran the sound desk, and sang in the Young Performers there (as indeed did Tim Van Eyken - though not sandcastles, as far as I know). I don't know how many graduates of Newcastle we've had: a few I suspect including the Witches more than once. But half? Only one admitted to me doing the degree, and she came up through the Skipton club worshipping at the feet of Maggie Boyle (as should we all). We've just had Uiscedwr, with one graduate (and another attendee) of the Northern Music College. It didn't seem to have hurt their enthusiasm for the music. If some performers ask too much, we don't see them (no, I've no idea what the going rate is). Plenty more to fit in.

If this seems a bit wandering, it just seemed to me that opinions are being expressed as if they were proven facts rather than suppositions, and a bit of contrary evidence was needed. I don't understand how three years honing your craft, and learning a bit in the process (well, being taught a bit anyway) can do anything but good. If some can convert that into a negative, it seems to say more about their outlook on life in general than about the value of the course. So one of students is a prat, it is still better that he be a competent musician than an incompetent one.

I don't care that performer X is doing wonders whilst steering clear of traditional outlets: good luck to him. There was a chasm between the traditional folkies and the protest songwriters when I was but a lad. Then there was the folk "entertainers", who used the clubs as a route into professional comedy (or not). There have always been those who flirted with popular music as a means of refreshing the roots/waking up the fuddy-duddies/doing their own thing, man. Chose your own interpretation, but folk music has always been a broad church. There is much variety around now, but it doesn't mean The End Of The Known World.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 05:25 PM

Points of information:

(1) The B Mus course is four years.
(2) OK, one and a half Witches as one had to give up half way through.
(3) (For George): yes you get an HND if you get to intermediate then leave.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Jun 07 - 06:58 PM

Thanks Diane. It's worth considering...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:58 AM

I would have thought that if the students on the degree course had their fingers on the pulse of Folk and Traditional music (such as it is), some of them might have contributed to this thread by now.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 06:06 AM

You really think that a bunch of middle-aged (and I'm being generous here) folkies squabbling amongst themselves about things like the future of folk clubs is having "their finger on the pulse"?

The younger generation have better things to do than sit around navel-gazing: they're too busy dancing. Performing. Going to festivals. Playing in sessions. Having a life.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 06:55 AM

Ruth, you are not middle-aged. No matter how generous you are. While ever you can get a yearn for a cow-man - albeit unfulfilled you are fine.

I am middle-aged. I have never had a yearn for a cow-man.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:07 AM

What, you mean they don't have an opinion to share?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:14 AM

I often advise people - almost invariably to no avail - to read threads before diving in.

This one was started by an 18 year-old. So yes at least one of them has an opinion and good for them.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:32 AM

'The younger generation have better things to do than sit around navel-gazing: they're too busy dancing. Performing. Going to festivals. Playing in sessions. Having a life.'

And we are to entrust our wonderful tradition to this vacuous gang of hedonists......I think not! As Jean-Paul Sartre said, all art is born out of suffering.

Mind you, we warned him about listening to the Mike Harding Show.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,sparticus
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 08:12 AM

Life has taught me that in every group of people there is going to be at least one self-opinionated, "I'm god's gift" gobshite and the students at Newcastle are no exception. The majority, however, are just like students anywhere with the exception that they are all extremely gifted in their chosen field. If the course can harness that talent, encourage it and point it in the right direction then surely it has succeeded in helping to perpetuate the tradition and given these young people a fighting chance to survive the pitfalls of the world in which they have chosen to make their living. As for them "undermining the folk tradition," surely common sense would tell you that they're not going to set out to destroy the thing that they love. My experience of the "young folk tradition" has been very positive and it's obvious that they are beginning to ruffle a few feathers amongst those who perhaps perceive some sort of threat. Good luck to them all,I say, it's a hard road they've chosen and some encouragement wouldn't go amiss to help them on their way.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Doktor Doktor
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 08:44 AM

Great debate! I go with George & Mike from Northumberland - allow the kids their mistakes, be entertained, as Old Folks always have been, by their mistakes and their pretentiousness*. While you're doing that, just guide them along.
There's a lot of crusty old opinion in this thread - understandable from those of us who know The Proper Way to Folk Sing maybe - but you have to take notice of the way music and media are changing, really you do.
In nature, things either evolve and grow or we only know them from ancient fossils. If you want something of "your" music to live on, you have to accept that.

*"leave home now while you still know EVERYthing"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 09:00 AM

"What, you mean they don't have an opinion to share?"

I'm sure they would - if they were even aware of the discussion. For the bright young things of folk, Mudcat is hardly in the vanguard of progressive thought, so they largely ignore its existence.

Fair play to them.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Grab
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 09:14 AM

Re the money, it depends on what's a living wage for the people involved.

Sure, £1200 is a lot of money. But let's say for the sake of argument that the group had five people in it - now we're talking £240 per person. Being realistic, they're likely to be averaging 3 gigs a week at best. That equates to £37K a year, out of which they also have to find petrol money, hire someone to run sound and lighting, and provide and maintain their own instruments, PA and lighting rig (or hire them). If they're doing much better than £30K after all that, I'd be surprised. Now that's a decent wage, but it's not exactly exceptional as far as skilled, trained work goes - compare it to what someone with a degree in engineering could get, say, and it's not so hot. It'll pay your pension and let you get a mortgage on a cheapish house outside of the southeast (assuming your partner works too), but it'll damn sure not put you in a mansion with hot and cold running groupies. :-/

Now do the same sums for £400 for 3 people. £130 a gig per person, 3 gigs per week per year, equals £20K a year. Subtract petrol and other expenses, and they won't be on more than £15K. That's OK for young people living in a bedsit or a room in a shared house, but it wouldn't pay anyone's mortgage or leave anything for savings.

Graham.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: EuGene
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 09:19 AM

Say, Sparticus, isn't "ruffling a few feathers" a prime component of the folk music scene . . . note that I said scene, not tradition, as the only tradition that , historically, I have ever seen is the free form, lack of tradition, nature of folk music. That's what sets folk music off from most other musical styles -- folk is painted with the broadest brush of all genres. Eu


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin.
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 09:41 AM

Grab- sounds pretty good to me for part-time work!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 09:49 AM

part-time work

PART-TIME work?
John Kirkpatrick write a song about that after he kept being asked what he did in the daytime.

One of the top touring bands doing 3 to 4 gigs a week fairly constantly, involving up to 10 hours driving there and back told me that when fuel, food, accommodation, strings and stuff was accounted for, they were each on slightly above the national minimum wage.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Grimmy
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:04 AM

part-time work

Dick Gaughan used to say he was a long-distance driver who sang during his breaks.

He also once revealed how much he earned during a typical year - it was not a lot, believe me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin.
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:05 AM

Grab's calculations were based on 3 gigs a week. Travelling times will obviously vary and will average out at far less than 10 hours per gig. Many people expend long hours in travelling to work, but don't class it as hours worked. A musician doing 3 gigs as week to fairly small audiences is being equated to a trained engineer working full time (and probably under stress and carrying a lot of responsibilty too)- it's just not a balanced comparison, sorry!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:14 AM

ps- I'm not, and never have been, an engineer!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:18 AM

Meant to type "John Kirkpatrick WROTE . . . "

Indeed DG does not earn a massive amount and he's on the go constantly (a never-ending tour that really doesn't) and reckons to do at least 3 gigs a week. This, of course, involves taking the chance that gigs may well slip by the wayside because of non-return of contracts, venues suddently collapsing or disappearing, organisers absconding with the advance sales money . . . that sort of thing.

A recent European festival booking, accepted in an attempt to recoup on a financially disastrous 'tour' the previous year during which a selection of the above occurred, ended with yet another shortfall.

Yet the performer has to maintain a home which is rarely seen, vehicle, PA and instruments out of meagre fees which are, as likely as not, not even forthcoming.

What do you do in the daytime indeed. As likely as not, a McJob to meet the next bill.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin.
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:29 AM

Well, if there's time for a daytime McJob that bears out my point that 3 gigs a week is part-time employment! My tough old heart is somehow failing to bleed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:31 AM

"non-return of contracts,"

Perhaps not every club is up to par in administrative matters and if the artist(s) is out on tour he/she/they may not receive the contract in time anyway.

"venues suddenly collapsing or disappearing"

Yes that does happen from time to time

"organizers absconding with the advance sales money"

I hope that is a rare event - it has certainly never happened anywhere that I have had any dealings with.

But yes making a living out of our music is far from easy.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:33 AM

yeh mugs game...personally I'd knock off the degree course and get a karaoke machine, buy a Bernard Manning jokebook and go into showbusiness....if you're that way inclined.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:46 AM

Captain Colin's heart is failing to bleed because he clearly has no clue what it's like out there. The entire point is that there isn't time for a McJob because a musician needs to be devoting time offstage to rehearsal, research, learning and arranging. But it sometimes just has to be done in order to cover the nitty-gritty of survival.

In the example I gave above of accepting a festival booking (at almost two day's driving distance) to recoup losses on the previous year's tour, I omitted to mention that the minimum three extra gigs requested to make the tour viable just did not materialise. And yet one of the venues decided to publicise the artist's alleged 'unreliability' despite the fact that they hadn't bothered to return the contract. Not only is this lack of consideration financially disastrous, it also does sometimes irreparable damage to an artist's reputation.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin.
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 10:54 AM

Diane- get real!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:01 AM

I am relating examples of the all too real dilemmas facing many musicians every day, as told to me. They are very real.

Captain Colin appears to be taking the example of some mythical band that gets gigs three times a week just up the road and has, additionally, an umlimited pool of private income. This is not real. Not even the most unrealistic and over-optimistic music student wears such violently pink glasses.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:10 AM

A ceilidh band I know do not charge for playing music - they would probably be doing that anyway. They charge for getting there and back and setting up and taking down their gear. The music comes free.

I was at a festival this weekend and watched the musicians arrive - since my stall was at the "stage door".

I can tell you the campers with their posh mobile homes and those in tents with posh cars drove better vehicles than any of the musicians. I would guess the campers were engineers.

I will remind you of the joke where a number of people arrive at the gates of heaven - when the poorest arrives instead of the usual questions St. Peter asks the person - what instrument did you play?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:13 AM

"rehearsal, research, learning and arranging."

All of the above, indeed. Classical musicians like to practice for several hours per day, and even us traditional musicians would love to do that if we had time. Research can involve hours on the internet or in public libraries, or with our own collection of books and CDs. Learning and arranging (or writing) new material has to be allocated time additional to instrumental practice. Teaching and workshops are a significant proportion of earnings for many of us, and they take a lot of preparation too.

Travel time and expenses are of a different order of magnitude to most commuters that I know. And we have days of enforced idleness away from hearth and family because it's not worth travelling home in the middle of a tour, and it's rare to get every successive night booked.

Those of us who prefer to be our own agents (it makes loss-making tours less likely, for a start!) have plenty to do with stuffing envelopes, signing contracts, keeping the publicity blurb up to date. And that's not to mention actually getting the gigs....

Not giving away any secrets but I would be very happy to earn £37K a year. I'm certainly not grumbling about my career choice, but a part-time job it is not!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:24 AM

And there ladies and gents you have it straight from the horses mouth.

Thank you Brian

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:34 AM

Thing is surely, lovely as it would be for all the musicians who want to make their living out of their art and earn £30K per year, if the market ain't there then it ain't there. A fee of £1200 only makes financial sense to an organiser if having booked that artist, they're going to pull in enough audience to make that much money and then a bit more. And while some organisers are maybe complacent about their audiences & advertising etc, plenty aren't and yet would still struggle to sell say 150 tickets at £15 each to cover artists fee plus attendant costs (venue, publicity, accomodation etc) even for a very well known artist with a following, let alone for a young five piece that nobody has heard of yet.

I think it is arrogant in the extreme for anybody at any age to effectively be saying 'I've decided to dedicate myself to my art and so you have to pay for it whether you actually like it or not'. From what I can see most artists don't do that, they say ' I am choosing to dedicate myself to my art and if you like it enough to think its a saleable comodity then let's come to a financial arrangement so that I can do it some more'.

I've read various of Dick Gaughan's posts on uk.music.folk on the situation you're talking about Diane and he has my every sympathy as a true professional soldiering on in a tough world. But I've never seen anything that suggests he would say he's not choosing to make his living that way.

I know plenty of people who do play on main stages at a festival near you who do not rely on their music as their main source of income, so it definitely isn't impossible to do both. And if somebody wants to get a folk music degree as part of their education then so be it but I agree with most of the people who have already posted who say in the long run it probably won't make much difference to a particular performer's career - if they're good & lucky they'll make it, if not they won't, regardless of a piece of paper.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Captain Colin
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:37 AM

Fair enough. My heart is starting to bleed now. All these oppressed performers forced into slaving away all the hours God sends updating their blurb and putting things in envelopes. Even having to sign their name sometimes! When I come to power I'll put it all right. Love to all and ta ta, C.C.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:46 AM

I've never seen anything that suggests he would say he's not choosing to make his living that way

And nothing I've said suggest that either. And I hope he continues to do so for a very long time.

I'm just completely pissed off at an idiot (and not just one) who has not the first idea wha's involved in running a sole trader business (because that's what it is and there is indeed a module at Newcastle on how to do this), nor of the musical and administrative labour involved chooses to come and stick his nose in, pontificating on stuff he doesn't understand.

IAFWAFIAWM(orW)WQ


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:49 AM

Late to the party as usual.

Why would anyone in his right mind get into folk music to make money?

I would be suprised if there were a group of professional performers making less money.

Then, of course, if you want to be a folk musician with credentials you also have to pay for the degree.

A joke you'll sometimes hear from traditional fiddlers in the states:
"I used to be a professional musician, but I had to quit for health reasons....
I was starving to death."


Russ (Permanent and occasionally mystified GUEST)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,melodeon
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:53 AM

I think I was at the Sidmouth session described by Songthrush and I must say it was very much as described, however I felt more embarassed than appalled, I think a modicum of strong drink may have been taken, and in fairness, they were not that well known that anyone would be aware of their repetoire.Diane , were you there because I think the song in question may have been a version of young hunting.Apart from that the performance was fairly good I think these people have got potential and I hope they achieve all that they want from folk music.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 11:56 AM

Er...have we strayed from the topic, or what?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:00 PM

awww, I'm intrigued now and you're all being coy and not naming names. Only trio I can think of booked at Sidmouth last year and out of the Newcastle degree and liable to get a bit silly when drunk are the Devil's Interval... so was it them...??? Jim Causley checks in on the message boards sometimes so maybe he'll pop along and apologise in person sometime soon.... if it wasn't them then please accept my own apologies for getting it wrong...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:00 PM

no we never do that....


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:01 PM

never stray fom topic or never name names?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:07 PM

No I wasn't at Sidmouth and I've no idea who it was and it was agreed much higher up the thread that peeps shouldn't be named.

TDI don't even do a version of Young Hunting (afaik). Why should Jim Causley (if it were he) or anyone else have to apologise for doing something which is part of their act? In his sort of situation, the onus lies clearly with the floor singer not to overstep the bounds of politeness.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:10 PM

If a folkie can earn a regular £37k then they're in a very small minority. The reality, even if they grossed that, is totally different.

You may think that the only expenses you have as a musician is a change of strings, it ain't.

Out of that mythical £37k (and 150 gigs plus a year would be good going and hard work) comes (in no particular order) -Travel, accommodation (if you've 2 days between gigs you're not going to be in an organiser's spare bed), insurance, agent's fees, a new vehicle as and when (don't forget AA membership), internet hosting (webmaster maybe), publicity, phone bills, accountant, bank charges. And this is nowhere like exhaustive. Out of that £37K I reckon they'd make about £12K to £15K.

Yes they choose the life, and thank God people like Gaughan do, but an easy living it is not. A period of illness, a breakdown or a last minute cancelled gig can seriously screw up a very delicate balance.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention pension provision unless they can work into their seventies.

One of the good things about the Newcastle course is that it does address the issues, both theoretical and practical, of running what is a small business. Remember, no business no show.

All the best

Steve


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Dan
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:17 PM

I've just deduced the trio in question (and attendent "name" who turned up with them - that was the bit that gave it away...). The group in question is mostly instrumental, yes?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:21 PM

"I've just deduced the trio in question "

What good will it do to name the names?

It was an unfortunate occurrence and best (IMO) left alone and moved on from.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:23 PM

Well said Brian Peters.

I know plenty of people who do play on main stages at a festival near you who do not rely on their music as their main source of income,

If you mean by that festivals are a source of extra money then I think you are wrong and I know a lot of artists and can think maybe of two who fit into that category.

If you mean to supplement their income as an artist they have to have other jobs - then sure, I can hardly think of any artists who do not fall into that category.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:31 PM

regardless of who it is (and seems I was off with my guess so appologies to TDI) I think it is rude to do a song that somebody has just done without at least some acknowledgement that you have noticed. If it was a festival folk club session then surely any material is fair game for anybody - why should a floor singer know whats in the repertoire of a booked act? Unless it was written by them, which sounds like not.

If the booked act had noticed they then had the choice to as suggested above say that they're going to do another version or to swap something else instead.

If they hadn't noticed then they weren't paying attention, which *is* rude and *would* warrant an apology.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:41 PM

This whole conversation is a bit reminiscent of that scene in A Mighty Wind, you know the one at the end of the concert.

Strange how life imitates art......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:41 PM

shit happens, I know it is really bad form to repeat a song but it does happen and I do get embarrassed for the parties involved, even to the point of not being able to applaud the "repeat" which is probably not good either, however, some may know I sing with two other blokes and last Friday one of em started to sing a song I had sung a 1/2 hour earlier! He got told! Goodness this is way of thread! He had even joined in the chorus and it hadn't registered!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:46 PM

>> If you mean by that festivals are a source of extra money then I think you are wrong and I know a lot of artists and can think maybe of two who fit into that category.

If you mean to supplement their income as an artist they have to have other jobs - then sure, I can hardly think of any artists who do not fall into that category. <<

what I meant was I know plenty of people who have another means of making a perfectly good living and who are choosing to perform *as well*, because they want to, because they can, and because there is clearly a market for what they do.

Reason I mentioned it was because there seemed to be other posts implying that in order to perform professionally you couldn't possibly also have a career as something else (doctor, teacher, civil servant, computer programmer....) at the same time. Yes, one or other or both of those careers (musician and other) would have to be on a part time basis because there are only so many hours in the day.

You can look at it as doing other work to supplement their income as an artist. You can also look at it as busy people juggling two careers. Either is fine in my book.

What I don't think is fine is somebody demanding to be paid a comparable wage to... other people? ...the national average? (dunno where that £30k figure came from) or more to the point complaining that they're *not* being paid that wage, to do something if there is no market to support it. If I was an inventor I'd only expect to make money out of my invention at the point where lots of people suddenly decided they wanted it. Surely any kind of art is the same?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 12:53 PM

James H is bent on telling us just how much of a child of Thatcher he is.
Those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing might concur with his wholly materialistic view.
But I'm appalled.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:04 PM

Nooooooo!!!!!!!! I'm say exactly the opposite. I'm saying the people who want to charge £1,200 for a five piece nobody has heard of are the materialistic ones. I'm saying that performers mostly are performing because they love doing it and that's great, and if the most the market can bear is £400 for said gig not £1,200 then they're mostly prepared to do it, which is their choice. And if they're not prepared to do it for that then that's also their choice, but probably means not many will afford to book them.

And if that is the most the market can bear and said performer also has another career as well which allows them to have a mortgage and all those other things people like to have then what is wrong with that? Does that make that performer (or me for talking about it?) more materialistic for having more than one means of earning their living? Or for not necessarily treating music & performing as the thing they rely on to pay the bills?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:06 PM

'I'm saying' not 'I'm say' would make more sense wouldn't it? oops.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:19 PM

Can I just say that I am MALE so sorry to the cool Scottish person who calls me a bonnie lass, I admit sometimes I am a drama queen and I do like to dress up as a lady, something I probably shouldnt confess, but I just want to say last time I checked, I had male reproductive organs.




Ok as for the post , I didn't expect to receive such hostile posts by some, and quite honestly many of the opposing arguments have widened my viewpoint so thanks. I have re read my post and I suppose it does have an air of snobbery, but believe you and me, from where im sitting in this house where the main meal is fish and fingers id like to resent that remark lololol (it's a joke b.t.w I am an arsey git sometimes)

let me just clarify that I said "some" of the people on the course neglect the decency and etiquette advocated by folk music. The majority are normal kids like me who piss their youth away with beer and fun, nothing wrong with that.(that isn't sarcastic, ill confess quite ignorantly and with a pretentious tone, that I am an incurable drunk)

I know people on the course, and they are brilliant and funny, and extremely `friendly. I certainly don't promote that the course should be abandoned. But my problem seems to focus around that its all exclusive to Newcastle and Glasgow (the latter being where I am hoping to study a humanities and social science degree)

I will admit that its out of jealously for my main repudiation, it's the ascendancy of some over others and the unfair representation and judgemental atmosphere the course creates. I'm currently studying history, economics and politics; I choose not to take the music course. Here is my confession; there is some strong hateful passion inside of me which fears being judged by a cruel and uncompromising world. The folk degree to me, someone who has never really engaged with other young folkies because there are none here (there all doing the degree lol) sees it as something only available to those who have connections. I probably have to much anger, probably responsive to exterior forces and being a hormonal young man., I have never had no one to direct me in my experience of the music world, my fathers Irish and that's the reason why I got into folk from listening to his Dubliners/ pogues records but other than that influence, I started going to clubs on my own when I was 15. The first encounter I had with another folkie was over the Internet, and he told me there were these alien things called "folk clubs". I was not raised with the tradition and thus I feel that's why I am more appreciative towards the underdog society and social benefits I find in folk music, not, the commercial bolox and fashion accessories music in general often portrays.

I have witnessed some people on the degree who have been booked to do gigs at clubs and out of sheer ignorance and egotism chose to drink their beers and smoke their cigarettes outside the venue (in the street) while the floor singers did their bit. 99% of the time i relish in listening to anyone of any ability because I like to look deeper than the sound and look at the entire presentation, what mental images ramify into the singers head and whether the songs of love they sing are reminiscent of some foreign girl on a summers day, or whether the song they sing is a dream they hold dear to their heart. The music expresses both elation and an intense pain which I feel some my own generation want to and seem ignorant off.


Ill admit I have a narrow view I only have a Selection of evidence and knowledge.

I am an egotistical narcissist like the rest of them and I to want to make it on the folk circuit, but there's something inside of me that cares little for joining the inner circle of musicians. I heard some new band advertise that they were doing a gig with "folk royalty" Eliza carthy, now the band (which shall be nameless) is an amazing band but to describe folk singers as "royalty" to me seems like a paradox of folk music. I am not criticising the carthy's but it's the idolatry that has creeped its way into folk music which I reject.

I will explicitly express my main disillusionment, it is the prospect of having to brown nose someone else to make it anywhere, I just have some innocent youthfulness that refuses to be a demagogue in music. I want to entertain, to love, to listen to everyday and feel a mutual catharsis that is experienced by all and not the select few.

These thoughts are typical of some youthful brat like me, I probably appear to be some ignorant communist with delusions of grandeur, I most probably am, but I posses an immense amount of fear and hatred of some aspects of society( we all do), my initial post undermined itself with its limited discussion and I am sorry to those who may have not got the jist of what I was trying to say.


Its all futile anyway, I am a naïve revolutionary who will never be content with the dictates of society, this is probably all to philosophical for some stupid discussion over the folk degree but its just one aspect of folk music which is, well I cant quite find the words, but is, for want for a better word, wrong.

I have no objection the study of music in general, but the two words "folk" "degree", they sound to me like the two words, "banjos" and "fun", lol sorry for the pun I am a banjo player myself.

Stacey McMullen


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:24 PM

Where has this 'mythical 5-piece that nobody's heard of' come from?
A band should be paid the rate for the job and £1,200 isn't a lot.
It's not about 'what the market can bear'. That's sheer materialism. Who decides what that is anyway?
Whether or not performing at gigs is their sole means of remuneration or not shouldn't come into it and it's highly intrusive to suggest that it does.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:30 PM

The above was addressed to James H but McMullen intervened.

Stacey: I didn't say you were a snob but an inverted snob. Different. Very. And I knew you were a bloke.

And I can tell you without a trace of doubt that the Waterson:Carthy axis loath and despise the description of '1st Family Of . . .' or 'Royal Family Of . . . '


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:33 PM

ok im stupid, i genuinely need to know what an inverted snob is? that isnt a rhetorical question, what is meant by an inverted snob?

like i said i wasnt critisisng the carthys, the mentality of others :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:41 PM

Very refreshing viewpoint, Stacey. Certainly for those amongst us who came into folk via a single route (mostly clubs or concerts), and tend therefore to see folk under that prism exclusively; which in turn often brings into discussion words like 'entertainment', 'market', and so on.

I understand now why 'folk' and 'degree' in combination grate for you, but as that is a personal thing rather than based on logic, you won't mind if I disagree, I hope. No issue. Some want to study it, some don't, some want to preserve it while others want to let it mutate, some feel that study of a subject kills the fun, hey, it takes all sorts, and all are welcome.

Thanks for the honesty of the post. This has been a most interesting thread - bar the discussion about money which distracts, detracts, and has already been dealt with in other threads.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Grab
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:45 PM

Captain Colin, you may be aware that as per the old joke, the way to get to Carnegie Hall is "Practise, man, practise". That's why 3 gigs a week average - the gigs have to cover the practise time required to support the performance, not to mention time spent writing new stuff. Same as pro footballers - they don't just turn up at the stadium on Saturday without having trained the previous week.

£30K was just a rough guess I came up with based on Diane's numbers. I don't know how other people's pay goes, but I can give mine as an example. As a software engineer, it took me 4 years to get a degree, and about 7 years after that before my salary hit £30K. FWIW, including uni I've now got 15 years in the software industry, and I'm now on about £50K as a contractor (after expenses and allowing for gaps in employment). So compare and contrast to someone in folk music - let's take Artisan for an example of a top-notch folk group. They went pro in 1989 and disbanded in 2005, by which time they were famous throughout the UK folk scene, and they gigged all over the place, sold loads of CDs, and also did solo work outside the band. Hands up who thinks they were making better than £50K each after expenses? I severely doubt it.

Yes, as an artist you're only worth what people are prepared to pay. And no-one's prepared to pay much to see me, which is why I'm still a software engineer by day. ;-) If you're only getting £400 to split between three of you for a gig, you can live with that for a while. But eventually you want a house, a family, all that stuff, and you can't do that on £400 gigs. So either you need more recognition so you can charge more and fill larger halls, or you need to cut your losses and get out.

One factor that may be missing from people's memory of the folk boom of the 60s is how old the performers were then. They could afford to risk it, and the ones who weren't risking it were the ones who'd already reached the "fill-a-five-hundred-seat-theatre" stage.

Graham.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:46 PM

From Wikipedia:
"A snob, guilty of snobbery, is a person that adopts the world-view that other people are inherently inferior for any one of a variety of reasons including supposed intellect, wealth, education, ancestry, etc."

An inverted snob is therefore the opposite: One who adopts the world-view that other people are inherently superior etc etc.

I think Diane used the expression because you were self-effacing i your recent long post - no doubt she'll correct me if I am wrong.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:46 PM

Some want to study it, some don't, some want to preserve it while others want to let it mutate, some feel that study of a subject kills the fun, hey, it takes all sorts, and all are welcome.


i totally agree with you there, personal preference is fine, its just the way in which if you go with one path you have more chance of ending better off. I think it does kill the fun. But each to their own as long as it doesn't hinder the progress of those who choose not to go down that path. I'm not saying it necessarily does always hinder others, my idol is old luke kelly, he certainly never got a folk degree, but for me it feels like it does create an accendency, which is probally a natural progression anyway.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 01:48 PM

i fully understand it now, cheers, yeh i am an inverted snob i completely agree.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 02:00 PM

Stacey,

I think that any ascendancy created by the folk degree can only be teporary, just like with any degree. It gives a useful leg-up for a few years (3? 4? 5? no more), but thereafter it is what you have done in that time that counts, not your degree any more.

OK, there are some prfessions where a degree will be a sine-qua-non, like medicine. But I have known people enter teaching and even the clergy in later life, based on their own conduct and experience alone. And in my job, I have always placed experience and practical knowledge above degrees when recruiting (I work in IT).

So, it's a leg-up. No more. It can be used well or wasted. It's like winning a talent show - a year on, people will only remember you if you have done something worthwhile since your win.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 02:01 PM

Sorry - my keybrd stcks. To mny coffees splled, to mch tbacc in the cracks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 02:03 PM

OK, you're an inverted snob because you dismiss the motivation of those who are studying music academically because you say you can't see the point and you'll brave it out by asserting you're better off without it. In this respect you are being as narrow-minded as the 'good-enough-for-f*lk' brigade. Such an attitude doesn't actually bring you working-class cred (except possibly among Sun readers) and you recognise surely what little worth that is.

As for George's assertion that the discussion about money 'distracts and detracts', it doesn't. To counter it is to challenge the materialistic attitude of those who value art only for what it costs. Exponents of our traditional arts are precious beyond price and may well find some reward in what they do, especially (ha!) is their audiences value and appreciate what they do. But they also need paying. Starving in garrets isn't a premise of Brown's Britain. Is it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 02:10 PM

So, it's a leg-up. No more. It can be used well or wasted. It's like winning a talent show - a year on, people will only remember you if you have done something worthwhile since your win

George, are you talking about the YFA here?
That was, after all, the other strand of Stacey's initial post.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 02:26 PM

diane is there a reason your so hostile, for all your sophisticated vocab it is without hesitation that id like to say "chill out" yes thats hypocritical coming from someone who has just had the biggest rant on here,im not a working class prodigy , im going to uni and im from a fairly decent up bringing, not idealistc but none the less i was provided with everything i needed. i certainly didnt go down the pit everyday or some other w/c stereotype.


i am not making assumptions on your personal character so why do you feel the need to make assumptions on mine?, again that is hypocritical and i may be over reacting,

debate the question in hand, not my personality.I am certainly the inverted snob you so passionately describe and since u pass that judgement on me it is with little guilt that i call you the snob.

friendly discussion thats all i asked for. perhaps im all wrong about you but there is a tone of agression in your posts. perhaps its the invenitible incapicty of text on forums to express themselves coherenlty without being misunderstood. But i asked what an inversted snob is? not why am i an inverted snob, there is the difference, i certainly didnt want an attack.


*shakes hands in offer of a ceasfire* thats a little immature of me , but seriosuly i want to be friends.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Scoville
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 03:09 PM

I was avoiding this thread because these "future of folk" ones invariably turn into shouting matches, but, eh:

Who is missing the point, it isn't the study of Folklore that is being knocked it is the attitude that seems to be imbued in some graduates that they are the crème de la crème and they can piss in the faces of the paying public by deigning to turn up and produce mediocrity when they should be capable of more.

This is not a problem peculiar to folk music, though. It happens in all areas of study. My brother is in graduate school in conflict archaeology (he wants to study how war affects civilian populations) and he runs into this attitude all the time with anthropologists who are long on theory and short on shared experience with the people they studied.

Hell, I ran into the same thing in college when I took a Civil War & Reconstruction class (that's U.S. Civil War, 1861-1865) from a Yale/Princeton Yankee whose Ph.D. was on the colonial history of Georgia. However, the schmuck would never have deigned to actually live in the South, and consequently kept asking obnoxious questions of his handful of Southern students. Stuff he ought to have been explaining to us, had he ever been in a "cultural immersion" situation. Furthermore, he should have realized that the fact that we were even attending a very left-wing liberal arts college in the Midwest was an major indicator that we were not the best examples of Southern attitude toward the war. Duh.

I have not seen the curriculum (is there a website? Can somebody PM it to me?), but I don't see anything wrong with studying folk music any more than there's anything wrong with people studying other cultures, men doing Women's Studies, etc. I do think that there's only so much one can learn in the classroom before one has to jump in and live it, but any adequate, non ego-bloated professor should take that into account.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 03:11 PM

[comes back in from Tesco very cross and hot]

Stacey, I'm not hostile to you, I don't know you (except that you by insinuation have slagged off some people who are my friends), but to a certain mindset of cultural iconoclasm that I find distasteful in everyone (and there are lots around here) who display it.

Nor did I assume you to be 'working class' but rather that you pretended to have a viewpoint which you thought presented you as such.

Not everyone on the Newcastle course is a pampered, middle-class wastrel you know. I know one graduate who did three jobs in addition to all the coursework.

(Actually I'm just waiting for someone to accuse you of choosing Glasgow in order to avoid having to pay fees, hehe).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 03:15 PM

Met plenty of the students off the course.

Not an ego or a bloated ego amongst them.

Not saying it doesn't exist - just that I have not met it - but I doubt there will be many bloated egos around.

I can think of one artist who persistently over runs. Hard to stop once he gets going. That's what I call bloated ego.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Marje
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 03:18 PM

It seems pretty pointless for people to keep on remarking that Luke Kelly, Eric Bogle et al managed very well without folk degrees. Of course they did, because they had no choice! Things are different now, and all sorts of formal and informal study courses are now there for the taking; think about the courses offered by Folkworks or the Wren Trust, etc. Ireland and Scotland have been offering formal courses in traditional music for quite a bit longer than England, and no one criticised that. I'm sure many of the older performers would have been delighted to take advantage of such opportunities had they been offered a few decades ago.

Many of the old established folk performers don't use computers, but that doesn't mean they're not a useful and worthwhile tool for research, information and discussion relating to folk music. The same applies to study courses and formal tuition.

Marje


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 04:07 PM

Brian Peters,I do practice several hours a day,managed three and a half hours today.Dick Miles


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 04:59 PM

MCMULLEN.Please ignore all that is written on this thread,go out and enjoy playing music, keep watching ,keep listening,use every oppurtunity to learn from others,including anything on the computer[particuarly old performers on you tube like PETE SEEGER]


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:09 PM

I agree. Study can only help things. I hate everything 'in the tradition'. Perhaps education would have cured this mental block.

I don't think so. But I can see that 'the tradition' is the view of te generality, and if the folk scene was a democracy, I would have lost my deposit.

You stick with it, kid. They have things to teach you - so does the world, but if things continue as they are - you can forget the world.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Mr Red
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:21 PM

oooooer......

McMullen - you are the backbone of the folk genre. However I have to be somewhat dismissive as an oldie - how else can the young tradition mould a niche for themselves unless we disapprove and thereby confirm their personal creative endeavours? As if we tried this in our day. Ha!

What most of us love about folk is the tolerance and breadth it affords. University degrees are just a wider flank. The holders are the tall poppies, but remember what happens to poppies - they can all to easily have a brief summer.

And there is one thing you have we envy - you make us look old when inside we .........


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:37 PM

we feel old, we are old, we look old.....

Diane's absolutely right.

between us, we screwed up the biggest spontaneous movement to rise from the people of our islands until it is a laughable minority woffling endlessly on about a tradition that none of us inherited, singing songs in a style that might have happened two hundred years ago(but we're not quite sure) - dancing to music that makes a gulf a mile wide between us and the rest of society.

And some of us are having the temerity to tell the young that its US who make the ground rules.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:52 PM

Alternatively, WLD, some of us bothered to find out what we were actually doing while others went off on pop music.

I do however have a problem with the meretricious who assume that particular virtuosity (and in some cases gratuitous philological exhibitionism) supersedes meaning.

By all means innovate, and interpret afresh. But bear in mind that this should be an accretion to the tradition, not its supercession, otherwise there is no tradition and we all become rootless.

BTW Diane, how come I never come across those who come in from Tesco all hot, even if they are cross too?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:57 PM

im well happier now to see more light hearted posts, and it is by mere coincidence *shuffles eyes" that i am going to glasgow for cheaper fees mwhahahaha, no i love scotland. I am sorry if i offend those who have friends on the degree who are decent people and it is certainly not individuals i am attacking, im not attacking nething, i was a bit reckless in posting my initial post without more depth or explanation and i come across as a right self rightious prick,

i think what would change my mind is if i did meet people on the course who didnt come across as middle class know it alls, but thus far i havent talked to anyone who is on simialr veiwpoints in life to me. i think its fair to say my social being has determined my thought and its only natural for me to be a typical 18 year old who rejects those whose thoughts determine their social being.

it is the beaucracy of the degrees i dislike and the orginasation of them,(im not talking about the sylabus actaully the sylabus looks interesting) i dont dislike any of the people on the course, and although i wont say i love the people i know on the course they were generally decent people.


i think the conclusion for this post would be to say is the degrees are like marmite, you love it or hate it, but never the less they are not going away and will continue to provide for those who are supportive of it.

i will try to make my way on my own, but from now on because of the viewpoints in the post i will be content with those on the course instead of being obtuse in my attitude towards them.


is that a fair conclusion??


thanks all for your posts and i hope to meet you in the future, so you can all pay for my folk fees muwahahahahhaa


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: TheSnail
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 05:58 PM

gratuitous philological exhibitionism

Oooh! I love it when you talk dirty.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 06:49 PM

But bear in mind that this should be an accretion to the tradition, not its supercession

I love it when you talk dirty too Richard....


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:01 PM

Diane, I wasn't talking about the YFA - I had the X-factor in mind. Awards are a little different to "talent contests", as they often award years of past performance and graft, and that has a totally different value to winning some talent contest.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Tootler
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:20 PM


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Tootler
Date: 25 Jun 07 - 07:21 PM

Oh dear! Hit the wrong button :-(


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 01:43 AM

The second "award" in my last post should have been "reward", of course...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Young Buchan
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 02:11 AM

McMullen said: Many of these talented youngsters are nurtured almost from birth, sometimes by parents who are themselves professional folk artists. It does raise a nagging doubt in my mind - are these youngsters being fast-tracked into folk stardom?

It's a long step from Folk Singing, but I believe this to be historically accurate, rarely recognised, and dangerously relevant: In the early 1990s the Communist Party of Great Britain dissolved itself, having lost touch with anything resembling Marxism. A large section of the leadership responsible for this were the children of long-standing Party members. They were people who had they been born into any other family would never have touched the CPGB with a bargepole. but because their parents had them down for the YCL the day they were old enough to qualify, theyjoined. And because they had heard all the lingo from age two onwards, they sounded convincing and shot straight up the leadership board to the top.

I worry to what extent the same thing may become true in the case of those mentioned by McMullen.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:05 AM

Nonsense.

How many of the Newcastle degree intake have professional folk musicians as parents?

How many young folk "stars" have professional folk musicians for parents?

Let's have a think: Benji Kirkpatrick. Eliza Carthy of course. Are we counting Kate Rusby because her dad was a sound engineer, or the Lakemans, whose parents played? Even if we are, it's a pretty small proportion of the young professional folk scene.

What does nurtured from birth mean, exactly? If you work in folk (or other live music), whether as atechie, organiser, promoter or musician, there are unsocial hours. You either drag your family along to gigs and festivals, or pay a fortune in childcare, or never see them. The first option is clearly the favourite. You also probably practice and play at home. So kids grow up around the music. Some will take to it themselves, some won't.

Should professional musicians actively discourage their kids from becoming musicians themselves? A daft idea, I think you'll agree.

Yes, you're lucky if your parents introduce you to good music early on. Them's the breaks. It's not a passport to a career, nor does it prevent people who weren't folk brats from accessing the music on their own.

Does having a famous surname open doors? Maybe, at the beginning. Just like the folk degree might be helpful in that respect. But no one is going to sustain a musical career based on a surname or a piece of paper. If you can't cut it, poeple will stop booking you and buying your records. End of.

McMullen, get the chip off your shoulder and just be the best musician you can be. If you're good enough, you'll get gigs.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:09 AM

Welcome back mudcat (thread creep) a good discusion as thingd used to be.I know lots of people who are on or have finished the folk degree and they are all people with all that brings. I believe the problem lies with fawning accolites i.e. a recent quote on mudcat by a contributor "and the folk degree supplied lots of talented young people" a piece of blurb seen on a flyer "direct from the degree course at newcastle" There are lots of young people out thee learning thier trade the traditional way and who knows may be in the long run better for it. The great worry for me about the degree course is all the people on graduation do not return home and input into their area where they got their love of music from in the first place.
    Please note that anonymous posting is no longer allowed at Mudcat. Use a consistent name [in the 'from' box] when you post, or your messages risk being deleted.
    Thanks.
    -Joe Offer-


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Merry Bee
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:55 AM

who is Diane Easby and what does she do?
Merry


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 04:05 AM

I am not a young person studying (or undermining) music at Newcastle and am therefore off-topic.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 04:31 AM

Seconded, everything Ruth Archer posted.
Every (would-be) performer in the folk world finds it hard to get gigs. Older ones say it's because they're too old, younger ones think they're fighting against entrenched attitudes of middle aged folkies, songwriters think they're ostracised by the traddies and vice versa. It's a broad church with many opposites and when it gets hard it's easy to blame everybody who doesn't do things that way you do or isn't the same age. The reality is it's hard work for nearly everyone. There's a few lucky ones who get a lot of publicity, but there's thousands who don't.

I keep remembering Jacey Bedford's advice: overnight success takes far longer than you expect.

(By the way, Diane Easby is 100 years old. It official, on her myspace profile, so it must be true. She hides it well)

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 05:05 AM

My kids have been brought up around folk music all their lives and a famous instrumentalist played over the eldest's bump a month before she was born. Their mother, talented lady that she is sang to them from a very early age. She has perfect pitch and sings with major choirs. Not a musical note in the eldest's body.

The youngest had exactly the same treatment musically. She doesn't play or sing either - though she might be a singer if she wanted to be.

Both were brought up going to festivals and surrounded by musicians all their lives to the age of sixteen. Both had the usual lessons, piano and flute. Neither have shown an interest in folk music - so any attempt to influence succeeded in putting them off.

So where did we go wrong?

In fairness the youngest is a professional organiser with an Arts and Ents degree - but she doesn't do much folk!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:11 AM

Dave,it is quite common for children to rebel against their parents,my father was heavily into jazz,I prefer to play /sing traditional music,.
my brother was into folk music his children play jazz,all you can hope is that your children will play music of one sort or another.
perhaps your children are not musical.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,James H
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:19 AM

I am interested to know where people such as Ruth Archer & Anahata think that promotional hype fits in to the model of sustained careers in folk. Other posters above have mentioned use of PR companies etc.

I agree that on the whole, while various factors such as a famous folky parent or piece of paper or whatever may help at the start they won't sustain a career for long if the performer can't please an audience.

But presumably there are lots of people out there who can and do please audiences but who don't have any such head start. If some of these employed a PR company to generate lots of media exposure for a season or two, would that or should that make any difference? Would it make it easier to get gigs and sell cds?

(imho, it would make a difference and I'm not sure that it should, but I'm interested to hear what others think)

I am aware that while plenty of real hardcore folk enthusiasts will actively seek out new acts (and that probably covers most mudcatters) but what about the radio 2 / Cambridge festival style audiences who will buy a Kate Rusby cd because they have heard of her but wouldn't go to see a name they hadn't come across even if performing live in a venue just down the road? Presumably to make an impact on that kind of audience, the media hype is a necesary evil?

I'm rambling...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 07:30 AM

......perhaps your children are not musical.

Well despite every attempt to "make" them so,in the most liberal freedom loving middle-class parent sort of way, they aren't. Hey-ho, they both seem happy so who cares.

PR.
One young man got a fantastic amount of publicity - a year or two ago and I wonder if all the hype was justified. Certainly looking at the bookings he has on his website not many bookers do think he sells tickets and most of his bookings seem to part of or along with his sister's band.

Of course good PR can help. But if you hire a PR person on a full-time basis then I would have thought you have to hand yourself over to them. No point in hiring a dog and barking yourself. And yet how many PR people really know about folk. I doubt many folk performers would go along that road.

I don't know whether Waterson:Carthy employ a full-time PR person which someone suggested recently, but I doubt it very much. If they do it isn't working. What is working is their talent.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 08:19 AM

"I am interested to know where people such as Ruth Archer & Anahata think that promotional hype fits in to the model of sustained careers in folk."

"Sustained" is a very significant word there.
Undoubtedly spending that sort of money gets you some fame and recognition. It's likely to create controversy in the folk world too, in fact it has done when that approach was taken, and as Dave says, it doesn't ultimately last.

Unless you're very lucky, talented and organised business-wise, there's a good chance you can blow a load of money on promotion and not get back what you spent. Also you may be famous for five minutes, then somebody else will be the next Big Thing and you are nowhere, and worse still you are "so last year!".

You can get lucky. I was just reading the article about Chumbawumba in fRoots - on the strength of one song in the top 10, they toured the world and did lots of stuff they'd never be able to do otherwise. They also kept their heads on and knew it wasn't likely to happen again. Since then the money earned at that time has given them more freedom to do what they want musically. I'd love to do that - but we don't all get into the top ten!

"imho, [hiring a PR company] would make a difference and I'm not sure that it should"
It would make a difference, but it might not make enough difference to pay for the cost of doing it. In the folk world, for example read Jacey's Why you don't need an agent. And again the effect wouldn't last unless you had some real talent that people wanted to hear anyway.

One of the things that appeals to me about folk music is that there's something real and timeless about it. It's about playing the music I love, and hopefully infecting others with that enthusiasm, and introducing it (when I get the chance) to people who've never heard it before. Not about playing whatever will maximize profits - if I wanted to do that I'd play C&W in Norfolk pubs!

I'd much rather build a reputation slowly and feel I've earned it. It's more likely to stay that way.
But I can afford to: my life doesn't depend on it.

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 08:28 AM

ANAHATA ,I agree.I did my first gig in 1976 and have been gigging ever since ,I have never been fashionable,but am still here 31 years later,gigging away,singin the music I like,if I had afiver for every time I have been told what a good voice I have,I would be laughing all way to the bank,.
But music has provided me with something that makes me feel rich in spirit,.
playing wallpaper music is soul destroying.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: shepherdlass
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 10:59 AM

McMullen said: Many of these talented youngsters are nurtured almost from birth, sometimes by parents who are themselves professional folk artists. It does raise a nagging doubt in my mind - are these youngsters being fast-tracked into folk stardom?

----------------
Here's a question - was Tom Clough, the Northumbrian piper 'fast-tracked' to being called the prince of pipers because he came from a piping family? What about griot families? I'd have thought young people learning from their parents the skills, the tunes - and, yes, where to get gigs - was actually quite traditional.

Sorry, I'm drifting back to a few posts previously but have only had a chance to catch up with the latest contributions.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Jim Moray
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 01:34 PM

I've been reading this thread with interest, and perhaps its now time to comment -

"PR.
One young man got a fantastic amount of publicity - a year or two ago and I wonder if all the hype was justified. Certainly looking at the bookings he has on his website not many bookers do think he sells tickets and most of his bookings seem to part of or along with his sister's band."

Perhaps the young man in question (whoever that might be) has been taking some time out from touring this year to organise a folk club and festival, complete a commision for orchestra for the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, write and record a new album and take over his own booking and business affairs, as well as play guitar for his sister for a bit of a change. The point being that some people are still interested in having sustained careers and its a marathon, not a sprint... If theres one thing this thread shows it's that there's no need to be in the publics face all the time - they'll resent you for it.

I don't think degrees are a headstart in anything. I'd agree with the poster above who says that there are a minority of unpleasant people in every walk of life, but to suggest the folk degree fosters that attitude is silly.

From the other side, if you are 'hyped' or talked up there are always going to be people who dislike you on principle (strangely enough, often on internet forums...) for some perceived slight. I'm sure the graduates of the folk degree are sick of having to defend themselves to people who know nothing about them or the degree. All that can be done is play the best gigs you can do and rise above it. Trust me, nobody is going into traditional music for the money.

In the end, you are only as good as your last album or performance, which is why I'm quitting this thread again to go and mix my new record and do some practise!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 01:56 PM

I am delighted that

the young man in question (whoever that might be) has been taking some time out from touring this year to organise a folk club and festival, complete a commission for orchestra for the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, write and record a new album and take over his own booking and business affairs, as well as play guitar for his sister for a bit of a change

has been so busy.

But I was simply reflecting on the booking list available as a piece of public information for the young man in question (whoever that might be) on his website and that it did not reflect his perceived popularity (let's say) two years ago.

If that is a piece of conscious decision making in order to further his love of music and desire to succeed in a difficult business, and because he has simply been to busy to chase or accept gigs, then that is great and good luck to him and his sister with whom he will be playing this summer.

I take it since you have taken over your own business affairs that the publicity lady has gone? :-)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Jim Moray
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 02:30 PM

yes.

A further thought - aside from being a performer, I care deeply about traditional music as much as anyone else. I know that all of the students of the Newcastle course that I have met feel the same. I've always been told that the main defining feature of folk music is that you can do anything with it - it represents not just the past, but the present and (most importantly) the future too. Thats what the idea of an evolving tradition is. Belittling other people credentials as folk musicians is a little futile - you're either a good entertaining performer or you're not, and even then its a matter of opinion. I think anyone who accepts money in return for playing or singing owes it to their audience to be as knowledgeable about their material and subject matter as possible, but knowledge alone won't get you far.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,wordy
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 02:33 PM

Folkiedave, as my post says it was an article in The Musicians Union mag on the new folk revival that stated that the Waterson/Carthy etceteras employed a modern PR company.Does it do any good? Certainly seems to, judging by the amount of press space they get. And it isn't talent that gets column inches in non folk mags etc, it's a good PR company.
I know,....been there in my past.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 02:52 PM

Topic records employ a PR agency - could it possible be the same people?

One article in the Guardian on the Saturday of the RAH concert. That was about the whole of the Waterson family (Eliza's picture was not in it) Mike, Mike's wife, Ollie Knight and his little daughter were in it. Mike, Ann Waterson etc are not in Waterson:Carthy. (Ollie does the sound).

One piece on Woman's Hour with Norma and Eliza the week before the RAH concert.

If there has been a lot more than that on national radio, TV or national newspapers then I confess to having missed it.

I am sure the radio programme on Bob Dylan for example that used Martin was not PR hype. And I would doubt that the programme on "Bright Phoebus" was PR hype either.

If you are referring to articles in folk magazines I would have thought it was highly likely they would appear in there and that a PR company would not be needed.

So I do not see a lot of evidence for the work of a PR company.

Perhaps they should change it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: countrylife
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:11 PM

*I don't think degrees are a headstart in anything*
I agree with you, Jim, they don't...oh they impress some people, but on the whole they make great wallpapper and that's about it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: countrylife
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:12 PM

oops that should read PAPER...the computer has developed a stutter, either that or I have *LOL*


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:20 PM

Sorry to come back because I posted that before I meant to.

If young artists use a PR person who does not understand folk music (often supplied by a record company) then they will probably regret what was written about them in the space of a few years. If only because - rightly - their ideas were not fixed and they themselves change.

On the other hand I do not see too much wrong with promoting folk music well. I would rather it was promoted well than not at all.

But there is some PR crap out there....

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/tyne/4075998.stm

Now that is what I would call transparent PR bollocks and stinks of PR agency.

Now if a Waterson:Carthy piece appears and it is on about their music, their love of their music, how their music developed; how people react to their music I would think in general the PR agency is doing a good job. It'll mention their latest record/RAH concert then good luck, but the PR won't sell tickets or the record.

If it is about how they need a bodyguard because they have upset people then it is bollocks and deserves to be called bollocks.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Bert
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 03:23 PM

If they'd offered a degree in folk music when I was young I would have taken that instead of engineering.

Then it wouldn't have taken me so many years to have gone from being a shy and incompetent drip to being able to hold an audience. And I'd probably be able to play the guitar as well.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:06 PM

I've been keeping my head below the parapet, but isn't this all part of the art v folk, pro v amateur debate? On the one hand there are the professional performers, performing in concert venues, carrying on the tradition of troubadours and trying to make a living out of it (and usually needing other sources of income such as teaching), and on the other there are people like me for whom it's a vital relaxation from what I do for a living....

For me, the rapport between the artists and the audience, and the audience participation (rather than "we perform, you receive and applaud") has always made folk music special. "Professional folksinger" is arguably an oxymoron.

I'll get my coat.... Kitty


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:31 PM

Yeh we all know Waterson Carthy play well to their contituency, and we know how vocal and and zealous that costituency are.

The basic problem as I see it is this:-

I was in Weymouth the other week at the folk festival and I stood in the shopping mall watching the morris dancers. They were nice people. Encapsulating everything nice about middle class English people playing silly buggers. However the passing people were about as involved and as embarassed, as if the Hare Krishna lot were doing their bit.

Now are you going to kid these kids that theres a place for them in the highly subsidised world of Waterson/Carthy, or are you going to break the habits of a lifetime and get honest about the situation? A situation YOU have brought about, through decades of intellectual dishonesty. A folk culture which alienates 90% of the folk is a blatant absurdity.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:41 PM

Al, I believe that the alienation was well under way well before the revival, and has very little (if anything at all) to do with the Waterson/Carthys' behaviours, or even with those of Ewan, Peggy or even Cecil and Al. There are many other societal and even religious factors to consider.

At the very least, none of the above-named are at fault for the inexorable move of entertainment from participatory to passive.

Already at the time of the revival the folk scene was "alternative", non-main-stream, which is why it attracted so many youngsters.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 06:55 PM

well yes... I am a fan of Martin and was a fan of Ewan and Peggy. They are, and were nice people.

That isn't the point.

The way Martin sings sounds weird to most English people. Morris music seems to go at a rhythm, people in England haven't danced to for generations, if they ever actually did.

This is a tradition not handed down to us. This is a tradition - totally factitious in essence - thought up by intellectuals.

people aren't buying it.

Now are you going to start again, like we did in the 60's. Or are you going to keep ploughing your resources into a losing battle like some odious First World War General.

I can't see a happy outcome for the majority of folk graduates, just the happy few who get aboard the gravy train - and places are VERY limited - get born into the right family is my advice.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Declan
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 07:56 PM

Arrange to be democratically born the son of a folk singer or the daughter of a sound engineer...

I'm not suggesting there's some sorof a plot, everyone knows theres not.

Sounds like there's a song in there somewhere :-)

Surely it can't be a bad thing if there's an opportunity for people who's main interest in life is folk music, to take that as an opportunity for further study. I remember a friend of mine who was a student (in a non folk course) at the time, (and a well known guitarist in an Irish traditional band) asking the question - how come there are never any exams in anything we know anything about? A folk music course would have suited at the time.

In a perfectly fair world talent will determine who gets on in the folk world and who doesn't. In the real world in which we live it will come down to a mixture of talent, hard work and luck. In any career it is necessary to grasp whatever opportunities present themselves in trying to be successful. A place in a degree course might be such an opportunity, but isn't (and shouldn't on its own) be a guarantee of success.

This has been an interesting thread Stacey. Don't take personal offence at the opinions of the people who criticise you. Particularly people who tend to criticise everybody. Make your own decisions in life and be prepared to live with the consequences of them good or bad. Ignore the begrudgers. And above all don't become one of them!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,ex post-grad
Date: 26 Jun 07 - 08:03 PM

..and always remember;

many Higher Education Courses
only exist
because the Lecturers and Admin staff need the employment
they provide for themselves.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 01:43 AM

"many Higher Education Courses
only exist
because the Lecturers and Admin staff need the employment
they provide for themselves."

Getting cynical in our old age aren't we?

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 03:03 AM

Oh no - they exist because a senior academic is building an empire for himself (I lecture at two universities).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:26 AM

people aren't buying it.

Now are you going to start again, like we did in the 60's. Or are you going to keep ploughing your resources into a losing battle like some odious First World War General.


I cannot agree with these points.

Again I have to repeat (and am happy to do so) that folk music is on the increase and the evidence is all around - you just have to look for it. Plenty of young people involved too. Every time I go to a festival there is a Music Room or a Hobgoblin stall selling melodeons, guitars, fiddles and other "folk" instruments. Who is buying these at a folk festival if it is not people playing for their enjoyment with themselves and others? There certainly are not enough professionals to sustain nine branches of Hobgoblin and the numerous Music Room outlets on sales to professionals.

As for arrange to be democratically born the son of a folk singer or the daughter of a sound engineer... it is just so much round spherical objects.

It would have been better to be born the son or daughter of a traveller if you really wanted to become a traditional singer. Or does Lizzie Higgins not fit into your pre-conceived ideas? Of course people pass music down through the family. Are you saying Benji Kirkpatrick, or ELiza Carthy or Kathryn Tickell can't play? That sort of skill does not come naturally you know - it does take a bit of practice.

I was in one of Sheffield's student quarters the other week and stood watching a group of morris dancers. A lot of young people stayed and watched. I talked to some of them. They were really interested (one was a dancer and had brought a couple of mates) and appreciative of the efforts.

I have been to three new festivals in the past few months. Each one had a number of young people - not the majority I am happy to admit - but people from let's guess, 12 - 20. Again when I go to festivals many of the stewards are young people - going not to steward but to enjoy their music and this is one way they can afford it.

Rant over - I'll go and take my pills now.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:49 AM

arrange to be democratically born
(Leon Rosselson)

Sometimes it helps, initially, but sometimes the opposite makes the would-be musician more determined. Just as it does some of those who weren't born sons of company directors and judge's private daughters who have to go to a slum school dumped by some joker in a dark back alley.

For any category of 'disadvantaged' child in some cases

. . . buttons would be pressed, rules would be broken
Strings would be pulled and magic words spoken
Invisible fingers would mould . . . Folkworks, the Wren Trust, Shooting Roots.

Now these really are Palaces Of Gold where young people participate and learn what the mainstream education system has denied them. Therein lies the future.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:57 AM

Fun is contagious and if one puts the fun in to folk music and dancing then people want a piece of it and will join in. However if folk music is hung in gallery's for the enjoyment of connoisseurs and talked of in stuffy intellectual terms the great unwashed will switch off. I am not saying that there isn't room for it, but it isn't the be all and end all. Last night at the Vicky Vaults in York (not a usual venue) we had a group of thirty or so Icelanders in, after a while they got carried up with the enthusiasm of the night and sang a few songs in Icelandic, I think most were probably pop songs but they did sing "The Wild Rover" in their native tongue. Some how it didn't matter what they sang what mattered is that they were singing, clapping, stamping their feet and dancing and the locals who were at first a little bemused joined in and were even dancing towards the end of the night. Now, we had taken the music to them, it was the same in New York a couple of years ago, one bar tore up the bar tab after we had had a boozy afternoon session singing, a little perplexed at first the clientèle got into it and we ended doing requests all afternoon! So folk music isn't dying from the extremities it's imploding, it is and should be a broad church and people should be content with that, in so far as young musicians, graduates or not, they cannot shoulder the blame, if a finger has to be pointed anywhere perhaps it is the shackles of commercialism that tie the pony to the yolk that may be working it to death. I admire people who can make a living from the Genre cos there never has been a huge amount of loot in it, in the early seventies we just about covered travelling expenses and beer money for the night and that was top money! Trouble is everyone with talent now wants to make a living and there isn't enough room. When Sweden put England out of the World Cup the vast majority of their players were part-timers, excellent players, but part-timers because Swedish football couldn't sustain full time players. The Battlefield Band spend all their time touring abroad because that is where the money is, it isn't here. So folk music is what we collectively have made it and if it is dying then look in a mirror and ask yourself "am I to blame?" So lets all go and SHOW everyone how much fun it is and not just talk about it like Waldorf and Statler


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 05:24 AM

"The Wild Rover" in their native tongue

Good grief.
I hope you directed these Icelanders towards the Polaris in Roberttown, West Yorks, where
Bára Grímsdóttir, and Chris Foster are gigging tomorrow (28 June).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 05:59 AM

Will someone please provide evidence that the folk scene is dying/imploding? FFS it is expanding........more players, many more festivals, much larger festivals, different sorts of festival etc...

Sessions down? Music instrument sales down? Number of festivals down? Attendance at festivals down? Record sales down? No new artists coming on the scene? Point me towards where it is imploding for goodness sake?

English folk has always entertained foreigners in my wide experience - Sheffield City Morris have had sessions in and with just about every nation in Europe and a session with the National Dance Company of Ecuador led to an invitation there.

But of course unlike Scotland and Ireland our media rarely takes our music seriously. Thus the North of England is without a local folk show on radio.

Now how far have you complained about that?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 06:59 AM

Dave, you are right, except that folk clubs have been on a steady decline for years. But you've provided a very fine list to illustrate that folk clubs aren't all what it's about.

Anyone about to tell me that new folk clubs are forming faster than old ones are dying out? (it's possible, I don't know)

What I'm seeing is that folk music has skipped a generation and lots of young people are now taking an interest. It not mainstream, of course (it never was) but it's looking more and more like the 70's (when I first dived in) every year.

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 07:26 AM

don't the mainstream of humanity have some right to a voice in our artform? shouldn't their experiences be the very stuff from which folksongs are wrought.

If you're planning a bonsai forest, it doesn't really require an army of trained pygmies for foresters.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 08:04 AM

I don't agree with your thesis, WLD, that folk is alienating. I've watched morris at Oxford Folk Festival and Chippenham this year, both out in the town, and there were large crowds stopping to stand and watch and chat to each other about what they were seeing. The responses generally seemed very enthusiastic. The same thing happened ouside my village pub last week. Loads of people came out to watch. They weren't embarrassed or dismissive - I would say the best description of their response was intrigued ands supportive.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 08:14 AM

My experience of playing at Maritime festivals,has been,that this is an excellent way to introduce folk music to a non folk audience,their initial interest may have been our maritime heritage,but they would not have gone to a folk festival or club,but realise that they[the non folk public] actually like maritime music.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Dan
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 08:29 AM

This may be hard to take but I wish to point out that if Folk has a bad rep and is subject to negative streotypes it is YOUR fault. Don't blame the young, blame the generation of the 70s and 80s who alienated the audiences after the 'boom years' in the first place.

In the last few years a generation of artists, journalists, workshop leaders and dancers under 35 have managed to almost turn around the perception of folk music in this country to the wider world. All you lot can do is moan about it.

There is another folk revival happening and you are not invited. You had your chance and you wasted it. Sorry.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 08:48 AM

WLD, your gritty sons-of-toil socialism is all very well, but what has alienated "90% of the population" (your figure) to our folk culture is not the folk culture itself, but the global capitalism-driven brainwashing though the media, to spend our money on the crap (which includes "music" manufactured by The Music Industry) advertised on TV and to deride or licence to death anything not manufactured profitably by the Big Capitalist Money Machine.

Which side are you on?

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 08:58 AM

Dan

There may be something in what you say but...

Why are we not invited? We want the music and song to continue and I for one don't object to the way the current generation have found to present it.

I may be knocking on in years but I still think I am fairly young at heart.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 09:08 AM

János Kádár, the Hungarian socialist politician, once remarked how glad he was that he had been born in the working class because this enabled him to recognise what self-seeking philistines many of them can be.

This emphasises that it is not just a recent global capitalistic development but that these noble 'sons of toil' can be and are seduced readily by 'bread and circuses', and away from their indigenous culture.

Anahata's right. It's not that they don't like it but that it is not in the interests of the economy for them to do so and they are, quite easily unfortunately, persuaded otherwise. It is our role to reverse this.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 09:18 AM

generation of artists, journalists, workshop leaders

Name them......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 10:36 AM

"In the last few years a generation of artists, journalists, workshop leaders and dancers under 35..."

What - and they've done this in a vacuum? They haven't been taught, guided, and mentored by members of the older generation who are perceptive enough to welcome youth, development and even (*gasp*) change?

I'm only a few years older than the generation you're talking about. Some people may have missed the party because of their narrow-minded intransigence, but I can think of a fair few in their 50s and 60s who are right in the middle of it, handing out the cake.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 12:44 PM

Nice to see some positive stuff here, but baby, bathwater, etc.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: stallion
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 01:36 PM

No FD I don't think it is dying it is changing as it ever did but if there is any pressure on it it is from within and the resistance to change or "go with the flow"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Declan
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 01:53 PM

The lines from Palaces of Gold came into my head when reading WLDs post below it. I was not actually endorsing the sentiments. Thats why there was a smilie in there. At least Diane got the reference.

Nor did I mean to slag off any particular daughter of a sound engineer - she gets far too much unwarranted bad press around here already in my opinion.

It is to be expected that music will pass down through families and that some of those who are exposed to the music from their early youth are likely to embrace the tradition and become very good at it. I know many fine traditional musicians in this country who have been handed their music down from a previous generation, and many who didn't. As I said luck is a factor and accidents of birth count as luck in my opinion.

Dan, if you have read the thread here you might notice that it was started by an 18 year old - who chose the title. I think if there is any degree of uniformity to the responses it is generally dismissive of the thread title, which I think Stacey chose to encourage debate - which certainly succeeded.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 02:53 PM

Folk music has struggled, and in some areas is still struggling, to survive against the tide of commercial pap produced by the "Music Industry", and the constant erosion of suitable venues (Thank you so much Tony B Liar).

I do, however think it is in the process of an overall improvement as regards festivals and concert venues.

What does make my blood boil, after 47 years of performing at, and running folk clubs, and endeavouring to be as inclusive in my approach as humanly possible, is to be told that any problems are my fault because I am 66 years old and out of touch.

I've put most of my life into this, and passed on all that I could to any youngsters who showed an interest, and if not for people like me there would be bugger all for them to show an interest in.

I bitterly resent being disrespected by people who, in the main, have sat on their fat arses while somebody like Herga Kitty, Vic & Tina, John Breeze, Richard Bridge (with the very talented and able Jacqui Walker), has done all the bloody work.

If, (and I do mean IF) the folk club scene is suffering a decline, perhaps it might have been averted if more of our Oh so clever companions had offered all the bright ideas they now boast of, at the time when new ideas were really needed.

Now I'm out of here cos I'm sick of being told how we got it all wrong.

Don T.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 03:06 PM

Erm, 'scuse me.
I thought it was the 'young folk tradition' (whatever that is) that's under fire here.
Who mentioned 66-year-olds with boiling blood?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 03:26 PM

lol people people, i think we all have stated our views and opinions nice and structured, it has certainly widened my viewpoint and i hope it has widened the view of many both for and against. It is inevitable there are downsides and upsides, but in my dogmatic view i suppose i have only seen the bad :)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 03:34 PM

Diane,
Did you not see Guest Dan's post.

I think that's what got up Don's nose. And were I he I'd be miffed too.

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 03:53 PM

Yes, course I did.
Dan said: There is another folk revival happening and you are not invited
He's quite right .
But he was as much off-topic (for the purpose of this thread) as Don T's very strange and intemperate ramblings.
Makes you wonder why peeps find it so hard to read the title in the box before placing fingers on keyboard.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,countrylife
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:14 PM

"There is another folk revival happening and you are not invited. You had your chance and you wasted it. Sorry."

I see, Dan, and you got the job of handing out the invites did you?
It's the old let's blame the previous generation for the current mess...not very original Danny Boy...you self righteous little tick.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:22 PM

No, not original but right in many respects.
But this has NO BEARING on the current debate.
Nor has the blustering from the old git who assumes he's being got at.
There IS another revival happening.THEMSELVES from it.
Who is undermining who?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: McMullen
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:23 PM

stop quarelling its petty now


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Declan
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:26 PM

I suppose some might consider it childish to point out that - YOU STARTED IT!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:28 PM

It IS petty when some people can't keep to topic.
And confusing when a line has been eaten from my post.
What I typed was that there are those who exclude themselves from new progressions . . .
. . . or something.
I'm bored.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,countrylife
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:45 PM

I shouldn't allow folk like that to push buttons....I do apologise.
and um.....old git eh? *LOL* I would state the obvious about age, Diane, but aren't you the same age as Ashley Hutchings? I seem to remember reading that, somewhere among the threads....and this IS waaayyyyyy off topic...*LOL*

Anyway, nothing wrong with progression as long as it's not progression for progression's sake...and I do miss that smokey old room in the back of the pub.....and I'm also reminded of Swarb's quote in Patrick Humphries, Meet on the Ledge: A History of the Fairport Convention...you may know the quote..


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Warwick Slade
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 04:56 PM

This is getting heavy, lighten up and try the thread 'Old Folkers never die' and have a laugh. That means you Don (Wyziwyg)T


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 05:11 PM

Old git?
Just quoting someone who admited to being 66 and out of touch.

Yes, I'm the same age as Mr Tyger. So he says.
I never listen to a word Swarb says, though singing is a different matter.
Nor do I read anything Patrick Humphries writes.
Just been out and got some Polish beer so I'm feeling less bored.
And I think I know who you are, countrylife.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 05:23 PM

young folk tradition undermining folk.
Well one person who writes to this forum[no names no packdrill],would say that they are not part of the folk tradition ,that they are part of the folk revival,and that the folk revival has nothing to do with traditional singing.,or the folk tradition.
so if you extended this argument logically,the young tradition are not undermining folk,but are deviating from authenticity,and are an irrelevancy.[this is not necessarily my opinion]Dick Miles [Philistine]


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: countrylife
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 05:47 PM

"but are deviating from authenticity,and are an irrelevancy"
funnily enough I remember someone say something like that about
Liege & Lief when it was issued all those years ago.....nothing much changes does it? (It All Comes Round Again)
Me I'm a politically incorrect old git of 58....*LOL*


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: oggie
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 06:03 PM

No-one "blew" anything. Even it's supposed heyday folk was always a minority interest, be it dance, music or song. Today the Seth Lakemans and Kate Rusbys of this world are still a minority interest. So is jazz, classical music, heavy metal, goth metal et al. At the Hawkwind Festival there were punters aged 1 to 80, at any Folk Festival the range is about the same. There are young talented musicians out there, not all playing in clubs but making music, probably more than there have been for many years. Very few will make a living from it, but how many from the "good old days" did either?

Good music or spectacle (morris dancers rule OK) will find an audience, it may not be the way things were (craftworkers don't do general markets or busk, I make my living doing both) but that's the way things change. Coffee bars don't have folksingers now, pubs do, life moves on and so does the music.

Adding to the tradition, writing songs that reflect lost ways of life are fine, don't make it folk and don't make it a living and you'll only know if you added to the tradition long after you're gone.

In the long run making a living depends on ability, guts, perseverance, business sense and a lot of good luck. You can survive for a while with one of these missing but in the long road you need them all. Maybe birth or a degree helps for a while but it's a long time to your pension.

There is also a BIG difference between a hobby and a living, folk music is my hobby, it don't matter if I can't go to a session because of flooding, my craft is my living, it matters that I can't work because my workshop is flooded.

My last comment for Stacey is a piece of advice given to Slade by Staus Quo (but not original) "Be nice to people on the way up because you'll meet them again on the way down"

All the best

Steve Ogden


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: EuGene
Date: 27 Jun 07 - 07:18 PM

Golly, I gotta find my old poem about our little coffee house "The Real Dirt" in NW DC that closed down about 1965. One of the guys who had been singing and playing some sort of balalaika looking thing with a neck about a yard long borrowed the paper that I wrote the poem on and started playing and singing the poem, composing on the fly . . . it was beautiful.

We all came back the next day and helped load up the tables, chairs, cups, dishes, coffee pots, etc. all the while singing "The Death of the Real Dirt". It was a sad day. Eu


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: MikeofNorthumbria
Date: 28 Jun 07 - 07:29 AM

Some people choose to blame everything that gets up their noses on one specific sub-group of society. Then they make that group a target for all their pent-up rage and frustration. This is a very ancient human failing, but unfortunately still with us.

Capitalists and Socialists, Christians and Jews, Blacks and Whites, Hindus and Moslems … they've all been targeted. And one of the most frequent temptations is to blame all society's ills on the old - or on the young.

Of course who counts as old or young depends on your personal circumstances. Many years ago, a lot of my fellow teenagers used to rage at the insensitivity and incompetence of almost everybody over the age of twenty.   More recently, I've heard people in their mid-eighties complaining bitterly about all those "young fellows" (meaning mere striplings in their sixties) who show no respect or consideration for the elderly (meaning themselves).

Those who make a hobby out of scapegoating others are boring. Those who make a career out of it are dangerous. All of us are members of the same (human) race, and all of us - old or young – are on this wonderful planet for a tragically short span. Why waste time and energy slagging each other off when there are so many useful and enjoyable things we could be doing? (Like playing music, for instance.)

Wassail!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Earl
Date: 28 Jun 07 - 07:46 AM

"Why waste time and energy slagging each other off when there are so many useful and enjoyable things we could be doing? "

E Bogle wrote :-
"..... And I ask myself the same question"

Seems to me that "They" do it "Their" way but "We" do it "Our" way is always going to be a cause for argument.

Such a waste of effort. Why is their not space for both?

Dave


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Dave Sutherland
Date: 28 Jun 07 - 09:44 AM

Stacey and I sat at the same table at Traditions at the Tiger a few weeks ago and we seemed to communicate all right regardless of the forty one year age gap!The same way as I would expect to interact with any of the youngsters who come to our club to sing, play or listen. When I was Stacey's age I was bloody grateful for the advice that I received from the likes of John Revie, Pete Elliott or Johnny Handle and throughout the ensuing years I have always considered that you are never too old, or young, to learn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: BB
Date: 28 Jun 07 - 02:27 PM

Hear, hear, DaveS. Much what I said some 250 posts ago! (But much less succinctly!)

Barbara


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Neovo
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 08:05 AM

The young people coming out of the folk music degree courses are excellent musicians and singers - no doubt about it. But in my recent experience when they get together in an informal session - such as at a Morris weekend - they have a tendency to take over to such an extent that you can't get a song in edgeways. The exhuberance of youth?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 08:16 AM

Probably.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 09:00 AM

It's not as if any other age group wouldn't do the same. I've seen all sorts of people or groups dominate sessions, especially likely when there's a core group that know each other well. It can be unintentional - just so easy to jump in with a tune when you know for a fact that at least three other people in the room know it and will join in.

I've also been to a session full of youngsters that seemed to be very happy to let everyone involved "do their own thing" with no particular clique trying to take over.

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Tootler
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 01:49 PM

they have a tendency to take over to such an extent that you can't get a song in edgeways

I saw the same thing happen last Saturday only the person who "took over" was well into his 60's.

As someone said above, it is not only the young who do that.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 06:24 PM

people are people whatever their ages,you get young egotists, middle aged egotists, and old egotists.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 04 Jul 07 - 06:47 PM

Ain't it the truth... "I sing, you show off, he/she is a primadonna". There an exhibitionist in many of us who vie for the next floorspot or the extra 2 minutes to our slot. But we only see the flaw in others.

I wonder if such attitudes were as prevalent (if they existed at all) back when people sang in their homes for pleasure.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: concertina ceol
Date: 05 Jul 07 - 01:40 PM

There should be a reward for reading all that! Oh yes time for tea!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Carol B
Date: 06 Jul 07 - 09:08 AM

How can they undermine folk? it depends by what youmean by folk and music in general. all music evolves. alot of these young bands are very grounded in the folk tradition and you can tell from their music. its like art. you get a good grounding in the masters and then you take it to a new level.its all about evolution. and not sitting around playing the same tunes in the same way over and over for time immemorial. the tunes are not being lost. we got the comhaltas for irish music and tht is very strong. and the children who go thru this are very grounded in trad.

also, this is whether you like ti or not a globalizing world and folk-fusion is becoming the new folk. but still, of course there is room for the old folk.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 07 Jul 07 - 06:52 AM

"...all music evolves..."

It does, does it? I suspect that this is an example of the 'progress myth' (things have a tendency to get better). Unfortunately, 'it ain't necessarily so'(to coin a phrase).

As far as I can see, what happens in music is that, at certain times, certain forms tend to dominate. Think of the dominance of the Western Classical form over all other forms of music on world concert stages. And think of how the the Rock form has come to dominate popular music. I suppose that some will argue that this is evolution at work - but there is no law which says that a particular individual has to like it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Sandman
Date: 07 Jul 07 - 07:19 AM

Idont like Daniel o Donnell.Kate Rusby, Seth Lakeman,MikeSilver,AlanTaylor.
Iwouldnt say their undermining folk,just doing there own thing, which isnt to my taste.
but then they probably dont like me either.Dick Miles


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,bobcat
Date: 08 Jul 07 - 06:08 AM

Some entries back....no local folk radio prog in the north...Have a look at the Durbervilles website. They do Radio Folk on a Sunday on local Radio Aire
Discussion seems to have drifted in last few days......


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,bobcat
Date: 08 Jul 07 - 06:20 AM

The Grove Folk Club in Leeds (going some 40 years )is flourishing. On the third Friday there is third Friday sing which is a singers' night for one and all but featuring local singers who can get a prebooked mini spot. There can be 60 plus there some weeks and young enthusiasts are in the majority. Certainly in this neck of the woods there are a lot of younger folk enthusiasts who just want to sing and play. First Friday sing is equally busy....a good place for young hopefuls to sing their stuff, both self-penned and traditional.And we oldies like the mix!!
Interestingly numbers are not so great on guest nights...when it costs £6 to get in(as opposed to free-buy a raffle ticket on singers nights). In the north it would seem people like to sing/take part.
Not just Leeds City but taking part sessions are big and spreading...try The Abbey at Newlay Leeds, The Owl at Rodley, The Chemic, Leeds and others....even more in the Yorkshire Dales...


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Cath
Date: 08 Jul 07 - 07:52 AM

And a thriving Open Mic session in Holmfirth every other week with ages ranging from below 16 to over 60.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: GUEST,Jim Causley
Date: 18 Jul 07 - 04:19 PM

One of the reasons folk degree students might not be interested in this thread is because they're tired of this argument that has been ranting on with countless threads exactly like this one since before the Newcastle degree began!

The first point i always put forward is; Are you saying that our traditional music isn't worthy of being studied at degree level alongside jazz, popular and classical musics?

The other thing is that there are so many different kinds of people who choose to study on the course. An encouraging amount of mature students, and a lot of people who will never get mentioned on these message boards because they simply couln't be less interested in being a professional performer, very wise if you ask me!

And the course is not a folk fame factory! just like any degree, people go in with their own personal agendas, yes some will want to be folk stars but they really are in the minority. Some will want to play stupdly fast tunes and not give a damn about playing with feeling or relating to an audience but again, you're going to get people like that wether they've been on a folk degree or not. Personally i learnt all i know about performing from playing in rock bands on the exeter pub circuit when i was at college and playing folk clubs when i was supposed to be studying in newcastle! The best thing for me when i was at newcastle was having the time and resources to really research and soak up all the music that i love and am passionate about and i don't think i would have discovered half of the great songs or the old singers if it wasn't for having Sandra Kerr and Chris Coe around to inspire and encourage me.

When i started the degree i had no idea who anyone was or had ever heard of FolkWorks or even Mike Harding(!) I had just gotten really interested in folksong from going to local clubs and reading books in the library. i was very innocent of the wider folk scene before i became a 'product' of the folk degree. God i hate it when people say that! like i was completely void of skill before i went up there and then magically Sandra Kerr taught me to sing like a mouse!

what i do for a career and whatever sucess i have had has very little to do with the folk degree. the folk degree didn't mold me and get me bookings at folk clubs and it certainly didn't teach me any stage craft, i did all that myself because i chose to and i've worked bloody hard too so that's why it gets me hot under the coller when people who don't actually know anything about the degree go making sweeping statements and generalisations and announcing that all you have to do to get sucessful is enroll at newcastle and bob's your uncle you've got a folk award, what nonsense!

And finally about young folkies undermining the tradition; yeah some of them probably will. singing songs and playing tunes with no feeling, being dull on stage and rude to organisers and claiming to represent traditional music and we'll all get really annoyed and embarrassed but hey you can't stop the little f**kers, some folks even enjoy and encourage 'em! But for all the crap there are loads of really switched-on and intelligent young folkies out there doing really great stuff so we need to concentrate on encouraging them. there always has been and always will be awful performers who will look like they're gonna ruin everything but as many wise people have observed; traditional music is tough stuff and you simply can't kill it! if somebody sings your favourite song really badly we say they've murdered it but in truth we know thats rubbish, the song still exists in its purest form completely unharmed waiting for someone to come along and sing it well.

folk music will be just fine, it's not going anywhere so stop worrying and just enjoy playing /singing it and listening to the people who do it justice in your eyes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 18 Jul 07 - 04:31 PM

Well, that's settled the matter then.

Hi Jim, nice to see you here!
Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Folkiedave
Date: 18 Jul 07 - 06:12 PM

Excellent post Jim, who I recently saw perform and who was then off on a train journey home - four changes of train.

Easy life being a folk singer.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: BB
Date: 27 Jul 07 - 05:03 PM

We have met several of the 'youngsters' when we've been doing the 'Face the Music' conversations at Broadstairs Folk Week, and most of them have been skilled, knowledgeable and above all passionate about the music, as have several who we've met in other circumstances. I suppose there are always going to be those who are only interested in the glory and fame of the big stage, and there are always going to be those with whom we disagree about how songs should be sung or arranged. I still feel that the social setting of the music is important, though, and thus the more intimate situation of a folk club or similar is, in my opinion, more appropriate than the big stage.

Jim, having met a number of people who have taken the Newcastle course, I think on balance that it has been beneficial. I'm certainly aware of how Chris Coe is able to instill her enthusiasm for the songs and their sources into other people! I was particularly delighted that, in talking to one musician from Northern Ireland, I found that he has discovered through the course that England had traditional music of its own. I think the course has opened many eyes, and if the benificiaries of it are able to pass some of that knowledge and enthusiasm onto other young people (something that few of our generation have been able to do!), that can only be to the good.

Barbara


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Giant Folk Eyeball (inactive)
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 03:06 AM

I love the idea of this course. The main problem - as far as I can see - is that it's the only one of its type in the country, indicating how marginalised and undervalued traditional music is in the UK... Any course is going to turn out a variety of people - from the soundest and loveliest to vile tossers. I think it's unfair to judge on the basis of one or two bad examples. Personally, I think if the course produces people like Jim it's doing something right. I just hope some of them are able to take the music to a none folk audience in the way people like Alistair Roberts are doing. It's vitally important to move beyond the cosy and self-referential folk scene. Seeing James Raynard on the bill at last year's Green Man Festival, for example, was reassuring and hopefully the shape of things to come- playing to a crowd who'd rather chew off their own limbs than go to a folk club. In fact I'd rather they played weddings, parties and school fetes than got trapped in the folk scene...hee hee.

Meanwhile I'm just waiting for a few of the new young traditionalists to take it upon themselves to plug in, crank it up to eleven and become the 21st century equivalent of Steeleye Span, Mr Fox, Albion Country Band etc... Bring it on!

Cheers

Nigel


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 03:22 AM

"Meanwhile I'm just waiting for a few of the new young traditionalists to take it upon themselves to plug in, crank it up to eleven and become the 21st century equivalent of Steeleye Span, Mr Fox, Albion Country Band etc... Bring it on!"

Bellowhead? Mawkin? Many e-ceilidh bands populated with rockers of various ages... Jim Moray? You don't have to look far.

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 03:26 AM

How striking the contrast between the last two posts above (not counting Anahata who has just negated my last paragraph!)

It is extraordinarily patronising to describe any young person as a 'youngster' and concede one or two a few grudging words of stinted approval, still less when they are undergraduates on a demanding and tough course. Besides, they're not that 'young', if age be considered a criteria as many graduates and still on the course are so-called 'mature' students.

ANY MUSICIAN, not just Sage alumni, who is getting on with playing to those who'd rather chew their own limbs off than go to a 'f*lk club' is getting it right.
It's the large proportion of begrudging and blinkered denizens of the outdated 'clubs' who need to get out more and discover what is actually occurring musically.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Giant Folk Eyeball (inactive)
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 04:09 AM

It's odd... I always thought of Bellowhead, Mawkin etc as doing 'loud folk' rather than 'folk rock', but I suspect that's a distinction that only exists in my own head. You're absolutely right of course.

Cheer

Nigel


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: TheSnail
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 06:13 AM

ANY MUSICIAN, not just Sage alumni, who is getting on with playing to those who'd rather chew their own limbs off than go to a 'f*lk club' is getting it right.

Actually, we've had quite a few Newcastle graduates (and tutors) at our club. Both they and the audience seemed to enjoy the experience.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 06:30 AM

I think we'd all be better just getting on with what we do.

Does any of this actually matter...?

one day we'll all be dead and we've spent the time being grumpy with each other.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: treewind
Date: 28 Jul 07 - 09:01 AM

'loud folk' You're right about Bellowhead not being folk rock. They aren't really categorisable!

Actually I reckon that Dr Faustus were a 60's style folk rock band without any electric instruments or drums, based on hearing them at a concert before they disbanded.

But the point is not necessarily about rock music - it's about using trad material in a style that is modern and recognisable to people who listen to pop music, what ever that is. Jim Moray does that. It's not folk rock, you might call it folk-pop or folk-electronica or something.

Anyway no need to split hairs - they're certainly all playing a lot of trad music to people who wouldn't be seen dead in a folk club.

Anahata


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: young folk tradition undermining folk
From: BB
Date: 29 Jul 07 - 03:14 PM

I'm sorry, Diane, that you see the use of the word 'youngsters' as being 'extraordinarily patronising'! To me at nearly 60, they are 'youngsters', whether they're in their teens, twenties or even thirties: they are of a generation at least one later than me. I do not believe stating that to be patronising. And, yes, I do recognise that there are mature students on the course, although I haven't yet met any of them. Nor did I 'concede one or two a few grudging words of stinted approval' - or at least that was not my intention. Why do you always seem to read the worst into what people say rather than the best? I find that sad.

Barbara


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 17 January 11:20 AM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.