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2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened

breezy 10 Dec 08 - 04:35 PM
Ruth Archer 10 Dec 08 - 04:51 PM
Ruth Archer 10 Dec 08 - 04:55 PM
breezy 10 Dec 08 - 05:01 PM
GUEST,John from Kemsing 10 Dec 08 - 05:11 PM
Spleen Cringe 10 Dec 08 - 05:29 PM
GUEST,GUEST, MadUncleDave. 10 Dec 08 - 06:49 PM
Ruth Archer 10 Dec 08 - 06:51 PM
Folkiedave 10 Dec 08 - 07:14 PM
Phil Edwards 10 Dec 08 - 07:15 PM
GUEST,Mr Oldbugger 10 Dec 08 - 07:21 PM
Phil Edwards 10 Dec 08 - 07:31 PM
The Borchester Echo 10 Dec 08 - 07:39 PM
GUEST,Mr Oldbugger 10 Dec 08 - 07:49 PM
terrier 10 Dec 08 - 08:12 PM
melodeonboy 10 Dec 08 - 08:45 PM
tijuanatime 11 Dec 08 - 02:28 AM
Colin Randall 11 Dec 08 - 03:46 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 04:07 AM
breezy 11 Dec 08 - 04:11 AM
evansakes 11 Dec 08 - 04:37 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 11 Dec 08 - 04:37 AM
Folkiedave 11 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 05:09 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 05:09 AM
The Borchester Echo 11 Dec 08 - 05:19 AM
matt milton 11 Dec 08 - 05:33 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 11 Dec 08 - 05:34 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 05:43 AM
The Borchester Echo 11 Dec 08 - 05:45 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 05:46 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 05:56 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 05:57 AM
matt milton 11 Dec 08 - 06:23 AM
Big Al Whittle 11 Dec 08 - 06:42 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 06:52 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 06:56 AM
Jim Moray 11 Dec 08 - 07:24 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 11 Dec 08 - 07:31 AM
Will Fly 11 Dec 08 - 07:37 AM
The Borchester Echo 11 Dec 08 - 07:38 AM
matt milton 11 Dec 08 - 07:53 AM
matt milton 11 Dec 08 - 07:55 AM
matt milton 11 Dec 08 - 08:13 AM
Ruth Archer 11 Dec 08 - 08:17 AM
Will Fly 11 Dec 08 - 08:22 AM
Judy Dyble 11 Dec 08 - 08:31 AM
Joe G 11 Dec 08 - 08:41 AM
GUEST,Working Radish 11 Dec 08 - 08:57 AM
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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: breezy
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 04:35 PM

I listened to the prog tonight ,whilst watching me boys train at rugby.

then I saw this thread.

I heard the winning act as driving me boys home, they are 15-16 year olds, and they had to listen

they wondered what I saw and see in the prog at the best of times

I think Jim Moray is a fantastic fellow for coming on the mudcat.

I liked The Jackie O when she played at the St Albans roots comp some time back , especially as she sang enchantedly

I prefer 'songs' with substance and thats what I'm searching for as a singer.

Trouble now is everyone thinks they can write.

I am confused by John Kelly's version of 'Spencer the Rover', is it his/yours John if you are reading this - own adaptation ? Very original but we have all sung it from time to time.

Cant stand young precocious talent.

Mind you we wont complain about 16 year olds, even 14 year olds competing for their country in sport, but you have to be 16 to do lots of other things

Good luck to Joe and Megan, the world is your oyster, go for it.

And to all the rest of us, tough luck.

Hey Diane, always nice to hear from you.

Paul, did you play the CDs?


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 04:51 PM

"The fact that I would like to see the award won by a motley bunch of deranged teenage fuckwits wreaking havoc with hurdy gurdies, bagpipes, jazzastic drumming and a shitload of reverb, feedback, fuzz, sustain and general mayhem is probably neither here or there, as no such beast deigned to enter, more's the pity. If you are out there, however, PM me. I will put your album out."

And I'll book them.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 04:55 PM

Hey Spleen Cringe: I know it's not exactly what you ordered, but how's this working for you?

Toothless Mary


:D


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: breezy
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 05:01 PM

Please refrain from profanities, its not essential.

and under 16s may be reading this

let us retain some decorum

hemel


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,John from Kemsing
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 05:11 PM

I listened to the programme this evening and I`m sure Jim Moray said words to the effect that he was enthusiastic about the way "folk music" was developing. If what I heard from Megan and her fellah had the remotest connection with that genre then J.Moray`s backside is a banjo!


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 05:29 PM

Sorry Breezy. Really. I just get carried away...

(but not as much as my local under 16s).

Ruth, I would describe Toothless Mary as "Theme from Shaft Ceilidh" ... a good thing, in my book, natch. With a touch of Anglo Acid Jazz...

Meanwhile, check this out: Grinders Misfortune Society. If you don't love it I'll not only eat my hat, but those of every Mudcatter...


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,GUEST, MadUncleDave.
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 06:49 PM

i personally don't know what classes as folk and what doesn't these days but i personally also feel that Megan and Jo ARE.

oooh bold statement.

i was lucky enough to be at both the semis and the finals and saw them first hand both times and thought they were nothing but exceptional. beautiful voice and gorgeous sax lines are a winning combination whatever genre. Megans stage craft is faultless as for jo, anyone who can play an instrument that competantly at such a young age is worthy of regonition.

as for the matter of "are they? aren't they?" i personally think they most deffinately are.

heres why.

firstly yes they have stripped down there larger band but the combination works. sax has been used in folk music for quite some time now. Bellowhead, Eliza, Folkestra, the green machine, Mike McGoldrick, Sharron Shannon (top pedigree i think) and guess what they all use sax?! so the use of sax in my mind can't be questioned. not conventional but not out of place. and i challenge anyone to defy the use of acoustic guitar as a folk instrument. if they do then they are quite clearly living with their head in some very deep sand.

secondly, for me folk music is music that tells a story that the general audience can relate to. something that creates a community feeling with a room and music that brings people together. i belive megans songs have al those qualities. her lyrics are beautiful poetic and most of all relavent! now for me beautiful lyrics that also comment on a social situation are the building blocks of any great folk song!

so i think their music if folk.

and as people have said before. regardless of whether its folk or not the festival goers will determine there popularity and i think they'll do well.
im definately going to be there.

as for the other acts i thought they were all amazing. Maz was stunning and Jaywalkers were also phenominal. Jays vocals do sound american but its rather difficult to play american music and not have a bluesy twang. you can't picture the royal family belting out bluegrass standards full voice can you? i thought she was exceptional and they were deffinately in the running for me. Tyde too, Lau take note!

rant over. feel free to comment what you will but that is my standpoint.

finally. big up Jim Moray for fighting the corner of up and coming acts and saying what he thinks. its refreshing when people can.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 06:51 PM

"Theme from Shaft Ceilidh" ... exactly how I'd describe them myself: chicka-pow pow!

Ah yes - young Tom bunged me the Grinder's Misfortune demo a few months back. Loving their work.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Folkiedave
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:14 PM

sax has been used in folk music for quite some time now

Moving Hearts 1981.

Any decrease on 1981?


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:15 PM

So maybe the answer to the conundrum "Is it folk?" is irrelevant.

Ohhh... folk or acoustic. That's all right then.

([rant on] [Spleen look away now] But this is just what keeps happening, isn't it? 'Folk' meaning 'traditional or in a traditional style' gets labelled as terminally unhip, so we end up with 57 varieties of traditional-but-different or like-folk-only-not-traditional. Then that entire area of folk-with-modifications gets labelled as 'folk' - which in turn is seen as terminally unhip, so a new generation comes along to make yet more modifications and subtractions and dilutions. So you end up with the bizarre situation where 'folk' is effectively defined as 'folk music and other music that isn't folk' - and playing only traditional music is just as eccentric among folkies as being a folkie is in society at large. It's daft and unsustainable. The traditional repertoire is the only thing that's unique to folk; if folkies don't perform traditional material, folk will end up as a label for one kind of pop music (you know, Katie Melua, James Morrison, that kind of area). [/rant off]

I'm not against people writing & performing their own material - I do it myself. I'm just against them calling it folk, or using folk as an umbrella term for anything where the instruments aren't amplified. Apart from anything else, you can do great things with amplification. Toothless Mary are OK, but the Grinders' are fantastic - the missing link between Hamish Moore and Loop Guru.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Mr Oldbugger
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:21 PM

back in the 70's
we used to lable
all that misc. commercial bland middle-of-the-road
non-descript chart friendly girly stuff


"Soft Rock"


its still as good a categorization as anything


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:31 PM

In reply to MadUncleDave, I don't give a monkey's about instrumentation. Your 'secondly's don't strike me as adequate, though - surely many good pop songs would tick all those boxes, without becoming folk songs.

I think the trouble with defining folk is that we routinely mix up three different criteria: where the material's from, what its style is and who's performing it. Actually, only one of these is really problematic. The first two would give you a workable definition: [1]'traditional songs collected in the wild' plus [2]'new and recent songs in the style of traditional material'. The problems start when you add on [3]'new songs sung by folkies'; since folkies are a wide-ranging lot, this means that the style and sound of 'folk' gets defined by material that's not folk[1] or [2].


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:39 PM

Any decrease on 1981?

Gerry Rafferty's Baker Street had a sax solo in 1978
David Bowie played sax for Steeleye Span on Now We Are Six earlier, 1974?
And when did Jo Freya start playing? Maybe even earlier?


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Mr Oldbugger
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 07:49 PM

but surely, its not so much a big 'radical' deal

if

its a Sax

as much as what is being played on that Sax !!??


heaven forbid if theres ever a new trend
in smothering any form of folk music
in gratuitous self indulgent meandering 'sophisticated' jazz style
chocolate Ad / porno-soundtrack note noodling...


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: terrier
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 08:12 PM

Personally, if I was that sax player I heard tonight on the 'folk' awards prog, I would have waited until I could afford a sax that played in tune!( purely for effect, you understand ). What I heard was NOT good music, folk or otherwise. OK, maybe I'm to critical, the judges said they were the best on the night so I should have been there to listen!


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: melodeonboy
Date: 10 Dec 08 - 08:45 PM

As Greg Stephens said: "A hippopotamus is not a butterfly".

I wouldn't classify Muddy Waters' music as bluegrass, Martin Carthy's as thrash metal, Des O'Connor's as zydeco or Hank Williams' as rap. By the same token, I wouldn't classify what I heard yesterday on Mike Harding's programme, i.e. the song played by the winners of the award, as folk.

Had I not been told it was folk, it wouldn't have occured to me that it was. Had I heard it in another context, I would have assumed it was something from the world of jazz or easy listening.

When people who have been involved with folk music for years cannot recognise something as folk music (or even having its roots in folk music) but are expected to accept that it is, because the powers that be have decreed it so, it brings to mind both the constantly rewritten history described in Orwell's 1984 and the logic of the characters in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Is Mike Harding the White Rabbit in disguise? I think we should be told!

(Cue: the usual ascerbic responses!)


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: tijuanatime
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 02:28 AM

It didn't sound a million miles away from what, for example, Chris While and Julie Matthews do, or John Tams and Barry Coope. The sky hasn't fallen, nobody died.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Colin Randall
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 03:46 AM

In common with most people at the time this thread started, and perhaps still in common with many, I have not heard Megan and Joe. I greatly look forward to doing so; the definition of folk is in such disarray that it won't greatly matter how I then categorise them. Even without having heard them, I can say that their achievement in the Folk Awards alone means I would happily feature them at my website - and that describes itself as covering folk, folk-rock and roots.

But what has actually changed? I remember Therapy - Dave, Sam and Fiona - playing for the first time at a club, the Spinning Wheel, which I then ran in Darlington, Co Durham. They were at least two-thirds of the way into their first set before they recahed Blackwater Side "for anyone who strayed in here hoping to hear a folk song". Prior to that, they had concentrated mainly on pop (including Cat Stephens and their own material if my memory is correct). And that was close on 40 years ago.

Folk clubs, or at least the ones that have tended to appeal most to me, have always offered platforms for interesting music that would struggle to be called folk on practically any definition. In the absence of a definition on which we seem able to agree, the BBC awards should perhaps be no different.

I can see no problem with robust opinions being expressed on Mudcat. I have dealt out some, and also been on the receiving end. Occasionally, as happened at moments in the Unthanks debate, it descends into something a little nastier. But that is a price I am willing to accept for freedom of expression for anything short of malicious untruths, mindless abuse and incitement to racial hatred or violence.

Mudcat is, overwhelmingly, a force for good. And I am delighted that people such as Jim Moray and Eliza Carthy, and Folkiedave for that matter, are willing to step forward and contribute to the discussions.

Colin Randall
Salut! Live


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 04:07 AM

"Toothless Mary are OK, but the Grinders' are fantastic"

I know we're off topic slightly, but watch as I deftly bring it back...

Do keep in mind, Pip, that the average age of Toothless Mary is about 18 (maybe even younger),whereas Grinder's Misfortune includes a number of experienced folk musicians such as Gavin Davinport, Helena Reynolds and Jon Brenner. While virtual babes by folk standards, I'd hazard a guess that the average age in the band might be 10 - 15 years older than Toothless Mary. I realise there are other issues such as choice of instrumentation, but I love what both are doing, and both bring something exciting and fun to folk music.

Which rather brings me back on topic: you don't necessarily expect the same things - in skill, in aesthetics, in polish - from an 18 year old that you would from a 28 year old, or a 48 year old or a 68 year old. What the YFA is (or ought to be) about, IMHO,is spotting the potential within the contestants to BECOME something rather wonderful - you're not necessarily looking for a finished product.

It is rather unseemly for a bunch of middle-aged people to be bitching about a couple of fresh-faced, enthusiastic and talented kids. Particularly when the bitching starts to encompass "the BBC gives airtime to this rubbish, but won't play me/my favourite band who has/have been around for ages and am/is MUCH better." I can't say categorically that it is a bunch of very sour grapes being trampled here, but that's sure what it looks like.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: breezy
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 04:11 AM

Thanks for the link Colin


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: evansakes
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 04:37 AM

The list of previous winners makes interesting reading....was there this much fuss about the 'folk' credentials of the winner in previous years?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio2/events/youngfolkawards2007/previouswinners.shtml

Maybe it's about time that something a little different gets a moment in the sun?

ps Ruth, if Toothless Mary are young enough why not suggest to them that they enter the award next year?


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 04:37 AM

I note that some of the 'all music's folk music' types above have attemted to subvert the argument by 'seizing the moral high ground'. Those amongst us that think that a Young Folk Award competition, on national radio, should feature Folk Music are now, apparently, guilty of discouraging young and talented people. That, of course, is dishonest rubbish! I further note that this contemptible tactic is all too prevalent these days among people who are too lazy to construct a proper argument.

Read Pip Radish's excellent and exhaustive summary of the debate, posted on 10th Dec., and point out the moral failings in that!


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Folkiedave
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM

heaven forbid if theres ever a new trend in smothering any form of folk music in gratuitous self indulgent meandering 'sophisticated' jazz style

A 19th century folk musician commented ironically:

"heaven forbid if there's ever a new trend in smothering any form of folk music in gratuitous self indulgent meandering styles with that there imported guitar".

"heaven forbid if there's ever a new trend in smothering any form of folk music with gratuitous self indulgent singer-song writers".

"heaven forbid if there's ever a new trend in smothering any form of folk music in gratuitous self indulgent meandering melodeons".

"heaven forbid if there's ever a new trend in smothering any form of folk music in gratuitous self indulgent meandering 11 piece bands. It'll never attract people. Who on earth would want to see and hear that?".


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:04 AM

"I note that some of the 'all music's folk music' types above have attemted to subvert the argument by 'seizing the moral high ground'. Those amongst us that think that a Young Folk Award competition, on national radio, should feature Folk Music are now, apparently, guilty of discouraging young and talented people. That, of course, is dishonest rubbish! I further note that this contemptible tactic is all too prevalent these days among people who are too lazy to construct a proper argument."

I seriously hope you're not including my post in that assessment. There are two discrete issues in this thread: 1) the "what is folk" chestnut; 2) rhe fact that some posters have used this thread as an opportunity to have a rather gratuitous swipe at a couple of talented young kids, and to wheeze on about their own/their favourite band's lack of exposure. My issue is with number 2, though several members seem to have used number 1 as an excuse to indulge in number 2.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:09 AM

"ps Ruth, if Toothless Mary are young enough why not suggest to them that they enter the award next year?"

I will - after I've booked them. :)


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:09 AM

Shimrod, that argument only holds good if you believe that the word folk is defined the way you personally choose to define it. The trouble is, none of us owns that word (or any word, for that matter - we merely borrow them). Language doesn't stay still - it never has and never will. By various means the meaning of words shifts all the time - some by more than others, but nothing is carved in stone. So the definition of a word is only and always developed through common usage (influenced by the media, but journalists have as much right to develop language as Joe Public does), so that in the end the only safe bet is to define your audience and accept the majority view within that group and choose your words accordingly. As it happens, my PERSONAL take on the word folk, at this point in my life, happens to coincide with yours and Pip's - as it probably does within the world of folk clubs and festivals that's so well-represented here. But it's NOT our word. It belongs to anyone who chooses to speak English. And there is absolutely no doubt that across the wider English-speaking world (or, in this case, the BBC audience) it means something more, something bigger and more amorphous than we might personally be happy with.

In fact the word folk is now so ill-defined, with so many different PERSONAL meanings, that it's general meaning has become as broad as the word Art. You can still use the word yourself howsoever you choose, of course, but if you want reliably to be understood (and this goes for any form of human communication) - to tell people what you are putting in your particular tin - you have to use THEIR language.

In the case of the word folk, it has now become necessary to add a secondary definition, or choose a different word which WILL be reliably understood by the greater population. And the BBC have chosen not to - therefore their use of the word to describe a wide genre of music, as generally accepted by the majority of their audience, is entirely correct. And therefore all the acts in this particular competition are completely acceptable on the roster - because they DO, ALL fit that definition.

I'd go so far as to say that; just as to call a work 'art' you merely have to convince an Art Gallery owner that it is so, by the same token, to call music folk you merely have to convince a Folk Promoter that it is so.

If the promoter chooses to narrow the definition to, say, traditional folk, or contemporary folk, then you have a different set of criteria and your argument would hold more water, but the BBC didn't. Therefore we are wrong to complain about any of these acts being included.

In case you didn't see my post on this topic elsewhere, let me paste again the Grammy nominations for this year. THIS is the way the word folk (and Trad - God help us - it seems!) is understood in the wider world - and until we accept this, and work within it without argument, we will continue to make folk music seem a nasty unfriendly place. Which is a crying shame, considering how friendly we all actually are, and how badly we're in need of some new mates.

Best Traditional Folk Album
Kathy Mattea - Coal [Captain Potato Records]
Tom Paxton -Comedians & Angels [Appleseed Recordings]
Peggy Seeger- Bring Me Home [Appleseed Recordings]
Pete Seeger - At 89 [Appleseed Recordings]
Rosalie Sorrels - Strangers In Another Country [Red House Records]

Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album
Joan Baez - Day After Tomorrow [Bobolink/Razor & Tie]
Ry Cooder - I, Flathead [Nonesuch Records]
Rodney Crowell - Sex & Gasoline [Work Song/Yep Roc Records]
Emmylou Harris - All I Intended To Be [Nonesuch Records]
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss - Raising Sand [Rounder Records]

Lets all try to play nice, eh?

Tom


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:19 AM

Well, hurrah for Tom Bliss. He's a lot more patient than I am in explaining the bleedin' obvious. Except that I would (as any fule kno) dump the discredited and terminally-damaged term "f*lk". Because, as the Grammy nominations show, it means absolutely sod all.

And meanwhile, IAFWAFIAWM(or W)WQ. I have.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: matt milton
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:33 AM

I really don't think it's "gratuitous" to express disappointment at the very middle-of-the-road music made by almost all the acts presented at an awards show of a music that I love. If nobody points out that their music is (whisper it) boring, then they will continue to make boring music. Anyway, kids are more thick-skinned than they're given credit for and I don't think they should be patronized.

It would't be considered gratuitous to say such things about X Factor. The only difference is that folk music is supposed to be all nicey nicey and, in the UK, is a parochial scene in which you may well end up bumping into somebody you've dissed.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:34 AM

That's one huge, tangled knot you've tied yourself there, Tom. As Greg Stephens has told us many, many times before if you label a hippopotamus as a 'butterfly' it doesn't become one.

If I pay good money to go to a folk concert(or one of your gigs)then I expect to hear something resembling the music I've been listening to for the past 40 years; not free form jazz or soft rock or Beethoven's 5th. If I don't get what I paid for I will feel cheated. It's as simple as that and no amount of semantic knot tying will persuade me otherwise.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:43 AM

But Matt - you're missing the point. The BBC IS middle of the road. That's whole its purpose and remit. It needs to be as inclusive as it can possibly be, because of who is paying the bill. (Ok there is room for minorities and we need to lobby hard for good representation thereof, but we're not going to get it with comments like the ones above - the BBC read this too, you know).

All they've done is find some fantastic young artists from different sub-genres across a genre of music they choose (correctly) to call folk, and run a great show with full credit to all concerned.

Now, you have every right to say YOU FEEL it's boring. But it's just rude to say it IS boring. Can you see the difference? Stating opinions without tact or manners is never helpful, and usually just gets people's backs up - to the detriment of you argument.

How would you feel if a young relative of yours was referred to in the terms used above, when all they'd done was be absolutely brilliant? Do you see what I mean?

Tom


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:45 AM

See what I mean?

IAFWAFIAWMWQ.

And I'm sure Tom Bliss is sufficiently thick-skinned too not to mind if boring old farts don't turn up at his gigs.
Like (and go and see) whatever you want, however narrow. Your loss.
That's still no reason to kick young artists trying out something different. If it doesn't work, they'll go on to something else and if they have any sense, will pay no attention whatsoever to ridiculous whingeing on scribbling boards they wouldn't dream of reading in the first place.
Equally, they won't be giving a toss whether I encourage them or not. Good for them.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:46 AM

The hippopotamus was labelled as butterfly in the 1960s, Shimrod - just some people didn't notice. (The insect was, incidentally, called a 'flutterby' originally). QED.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:56 AM

Well, I thought that Megan and Joe's performance was lovely. As someone else has said, you can't really discount their work as being outside the folk genre without also discounting the work of people like John Tams or Lal Waterson. It's clearly not traditional music, but that's another issue.

By the way, who's going to tell Jo Freya that apparently she's not a folk musician because she plays the sax?


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 05:57 AM

Shimrod, if you go to a gig or buy a CD just because it has the word 'folk' attached to it, without finding out any more about the music you may hear, you can expect to 'like it or lump it.' I repeat; 90% of the population are perfectly happy with the attachment of the word folk to all those acts, and until we 'folkies' accept that, and find a different solution to this admittedly large and annoying label problem, we'll get nowhere. My argument is not semantic, it's just the plain unfortunate truth. We have to let go of the lifebelt and swim. Tom


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: matt milton
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:23 AM

="Equally, they won't be giving a toss whether I encourage them or not. Good for them"

That neatly sums up why I don't really feel like I need any of those cushiony disclaimers ("in my opinion" etc.). Because if any of those young musicians were to read this, I really don't think they are going to start crying. They are going to say "Well what do they know? I've been on a national awards show and I'm playing at all these festivals". And they will carry on doing what they're doing and if they continue to receive BBC Radio 2's endorsement, it will bring them financial success.

Yes, you can be philosophical about it, take a step back and point out that it's Radio 2, not Resonance FM, it's a station not exactly known for challenging music. But that's pretty damning of these musicians in itself then isn't it? You might as well say that it doesn't even really merit mentioning in the first place.

I dunno how I'd feel if a young relative of mine was being discussed in this way. I have a niece and a nephew (both age two). I'd like to think that I could sneak sufficient free jazz, Grime, punk and, yes, folk music into their listening habits that such a situation would never arise. It'll be a struggle though to bypass the malign influences of their mother's rather Radio 2-friendly taste in music (Dido, Jamie Cullum et al).


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:42 AM

Yeh nice to hear Matt!

so much of the slop goes unchallenged


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:52 AM

Well, one man's slop is anoyther man's treasure, WLD. And vice versa. Most of us are hopefully wise enough to understand that really liking something doesn't make it intrinsically better than what other people equally think is very good.


And some of us are not.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 06:56 AM

Al, why did you feel the need to use the word 'slop' to describe, by implication at least, the music of these two children? You see to me, coming from you - an established denizen of the folk world, with hit records to his name, that's just bullying. Would you say that to their faces? I think not. So why do you write it here when you know they may be reading it?

I'm genuinely puzzled, because I know you're a nice chap.


Tom


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Jim Moray
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:24 AM

"That neatly sums up why I don't really feel like I need any of those cushiony disclaimers ("in my opinion" etc.). Because if any of those young musicians were to read this, I really don't think they are going to start crying. They are going to say "Well what do they know? I've been on a national awards show and I'm playing at all these festivals"."

Matt, the reason I'm so worked up about this is that when I was only slightly older than Megan is now I got ripped apart on Mudcat and elsewhere and it had really detrimental effect on my confidence and (ultimately) mental health. While this isn't the place to go into it, I'm not exaggerating to say that the experience affected me very deeply and it took me years to recover. For all the familiar comments of "if you can't handle it, don't be in the public eye", this is not what people like me sign up for - I don't think anyone enters the YFA to become a celebrity, only to play music. If you are Coldplay or James Blunt (or even someone like Seth Lakeman or Fairport) then the financial rewards and adulation of your sizeable audience might make up for being rubbished on the internet. If you are a 20 year old playing folk clubs for no money to 50 people then it can really tear you down. Perhaps I'm just atypically sensitive.

"And they will carry on doing what they're doing and if they continue to receive BBC Radio 2's endorsement, it will bring them financial success. "

Hahahaha. No.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:31 AM

Thanks for that Jim.

It's staggeringly easy for very otherwise very kind people to forget the impact their words can have.

I know exactly what you're talking about and salute your courage here.

Tom


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Will Fly
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:37 AM

I don't think anyone enters the YFA to become a celebrity, only to play music.

Jim, could I say, with respect, that I think that's slightly ingenuous? People enter a competition for an award to - win an award, presumably - not only to play music. You can play music anywhere. There is, I suppose, another motive for aiming for an award, which could be, for example, to test your excellence against others, be judged, etc.

I've been listening to the Mike Harding YFA programme on the iPlayer, and noted your wry comment on coming away with a YFA T-shirt in 2001... :D

I have to say that, IMHO all the contestants seemed of a high standard. The couple who won didn't particularly tick my box, but that's of no consequence here.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:38 AM

Very brave, Jim. Thanks for telling them what they've forgotten or may not even have known
I hope you now feel it was worthwhile to keep on keeping on. I do.
Low Culture . . . Hurrah!


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: matt milton
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:53 AM

"They feel privileged and honoured to of won this award and look forward to playing the festivals next year"


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: matt milton
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 07:55 AM

KT Tunstall, which is what Megan and Joe's music most reminded me of – seems to be doing alright for herself.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: matt milton
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:13 AM

I used the words adjectives "boring", "awful" and "Michael Parkinson". Not sure whether the latter is a noun or an adjective. I don't know if that constitutes a ripping-apart. It's just one man's opinion (I really can't be arsed to type those "in my opinions" all the time: who else's opinion could it possibly be?).

Yes, I am now feeling a wee bit silly for having launched into this spiel on a thread that concerns the music of some under-18s rather than on a thread about, say, Seth Lakeman.

But children say far worse things to each other on a daily basis in school playgrounds. Why, my girlfriend actually had her nose broken by an older girl whose boyfriend had taken a fancy to her. Life's hard. But that's no excuse for easy listening.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:17 AM

"They feel privileged and honoured to of won this award and look forward to playing the festivals next year"

And? There are 3 festival slots which come as part of the prize: Towesey, Cropredy and Cambridge. They're not necessarily even being paid for them.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Will Fly
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:22 AM

Last comment from me: Looking back through this thread and a couple of other threads from '03/'04 (concerning Jim Moray), to win an award of any kind these days really seems to be a double-edged sword. To be blown up by publicity and the media, bombarded with cries of "brilliant!" from one camp and cries of "shite!" from another camp, seems to be a high price to pay if you win.

Seems almost a relief that my sights have been set incredibly low - and my achievements have consequently, therefore, been incredibly high... :-)


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Judy Dyble
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:31 AM

I read this sort of thread with such sadness.

Jim is absolutely right in that vitriolic criticism can deeply wound, whether to someone who is just starting out or one who has been singing for years, but has just decided to step aside and try something new.
I never thought all those years ago when I first started singing in folk clubs that 40 years later people would have such closed ears.
Fairport wouldn't have made the music that they have without beginning their musical lives with influences from everywhere. And none of us would have gone on to do what we have done without experimenting with new instruments, new sounds, new writings and new influences.
Without these things no musician can grow and no music should be so stifled by being leashed so tightly.

Yes I know, I never was 'folk', but I was influenced deeply by it and all other music that was soaked up as I heard it.


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: Joe G
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:41 AM

I'm a little surprised at some of the negative comments here. As a reviewer for a local folk magazine I am not afraid to dole out criticism when I feel that recordings or live acts are not up to the mark musically or have particularly inane lyrics. Indeed I have been taken to task about my comments on one occasion. However everything I heard on Wednesday night was of a superb standard (even if not all of it was to my taste) and we should be delighted that young people are beginning to see being labelled as folk musicians is not an insult. The music we all love has spent long enough in the shadows without some of us trying to give the impression it is a closed members club where entry is only permitted by being able to sing tedious songs in reverent voices.

For God's sake let us celebrate the enthusiasm of these young people and welcome them with open arms - we need them to carry the music forward when we are gone. I for one would rather see any of them, or their pedecessors such as Jim, than some of the dated and moribund acts we have to avoid or unwittingly suffer on some evenings at a folk club.

(Though of course tonight's guest at the Topic in Bradford certainly does not fall into the latter catgory!)


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Subject: RE: 2008 R2 Young Folk Award - What Happened
From: GUEST,Working Radish
Date: 11 Dec 08 - 08:57 AM

Tom: you're right that we don't own the word 'folk', but I think it's important that people who would like a narrower definition keep saying so; there's enough pressure in the other direction, after all. I thought of the 'art' analogy myself; we seem to be getting into a position where it's actually impossible to say that an entry to a folk award or an act on a festival stage isn't folk - because it's acceptance by a folk promoter that defines something as folk. Hence my original comment after listening to that fateful dreaded MySpace page - "if it's possible to say "this isn't folk", then this isn't folk".

Ruth: you don't necessarily expect the same things - in skill, in aesthetics, in polish - from an 18 year old that you would from a 28 year old, or a 48 year old or a 68 year old.

This is true, of course, but I don't think anyone's called M & J a pair of rough-edged incompetent amateurs. Yes, some people obviously think their music isn't very good, but the criticism's not been that intense. I think far more of the heat in this thread has come from people leaping to M & J's defence than from their critics, and an awful lot of the heat has been generated by the assertion that their music isn't folk - which isn't even a criticism (of them; it is a criticism of the YFA). I'm really puzzled about why this should be, and I wonder if some of us are refighting old battles. Possibly including myself.


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