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Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again

Spleen Cringe 24 May 09 - 08:31 PM
Bryn Pinzgauer 25 May 09 - 05:57 AM
Hamish 25 May 09 - 06:55 AM
GUEST 25 May 09 - 07:34 AM
richd 25 May 09 - 10:27 AM
matt milton 25 May 09 - 11:29 AM
Spleen Cringe 25 May 09 - 12:25 PM
GUEST,Guest show Bob 25 May 09 - 02:39 PM
Jack Campin 25 May 09 - 07:32 PM
GUEST,A 25 May 09 - 09:15 PM
Seamus Kennedy 25 May 09 - 09:28 PM
GUEST 26 May 09 - 03:36 AM
Smedley 26 May 09 - 04:04 AM
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Subject: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 24 May 09 - 08:31 PM

Saw Alasdair Roberts play a tiny venue tonight, essentially entertaining the thirty-odd people at the front of the room who actually gave a flying fuck about what he was doing. Apart from the obvious injustice that such a talented and soulful musician is playing to such a small crowd, I am constantly amazed that he isn't snapped up by festival organisers and on the radar of folk club committees. Maybe its because he largely exists outside of the established folk world and as such, doesn't warrant a second thought (even if people have heard of him).

His own compositions are stunning and original and yet clearly deeply rooted in the folk tradition, at least as much so, if not more than the song writing of, say, Chris Wood. His interpretations of traditional material is beautiful - tonight he did a heartbreaking unaccompanied "Banks of Red Roses", and visceral versions of "Long Lankin" and "The Cruel Mother". His arrangements and guitar playing are second to none. And yet his albums are released by an American indie label and available as imports in his home country and he is virtually unknown on the folk scene.

This has got to change. Festival organisers, club organisers: check this out. AND BOOK HIM!

Willie Leonard

Lyke Wake Dirge

Myspace

Website

Come on! What are you waiting for!


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Bryn Pinzgauer
Date: 25 May 09 - 05:57 AM

He is excellent and he is playing the Big Session Festival next month.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Hamish
Date: 25 May 09 - 06:55 AM

Nope. Sorry. Doesn't work for me.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: GUEST
Date: 25 May 09 - 07:34 AM

Those clips are old and not him at his best, Hamish.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: richd
Date: 25 May 09 - 10:27 AM

I've seen him three times, once at a small venue in Cardiff and twice at the Greenman. On all occasions he was outstanding, especially solo at the Greenman. He's not at the Greenman this year, mores the pity, but Roky Erikson (ex 13th Floor Elavators) is, and that nearly makes up for it.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: matt milton
Date: 25 May 09 - 11:29 AM

well the Goose Is Out promoters have put him on. To be honest, I'm not sure he "needs" the UK folk scene. I mean, he's not selling records on a Seth Lakeman level, obviously. But I think he's still a lot better off from a mainstream profile/cash money point of view playing to the Bonnie Prince Billy/Bon Iver crowd than to the trad folk circuit. You may have seen him playing to 30 people in a pub but he always seems to play to pretty packed venues in London.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 25 May 09 - 12:25 PM

Fair point, Matt. And to be honest there were more than thirty there, but it was only about thirty who seemed to be taking any notice. I don't think he needs the UK trad folk scene, but I think the scene would benefit immensely from having him and a few others like him gatecrash the party, to act as a reminder that this music can be visceral and thrilling, as opposed to the polite soft-focussed approach that seems to be developing in the wake of the new wave of stadium folk...


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: GUEST,Guest show Bob
Date: 25 May 09 - 02:39 PM

Reading some of the threads on this board, I wonder what on earth Alasdair and his ilk would gain from being more associated with the UK folk scene. From what one reads here, it seems to be a mostly negative place with the odd voices of reason usually agreed with and then ignored almost immediately so the squabbling can resume. My bouzouki is indeed bigger than yours. And older. And more authentic.

Yours,

AC.Ward


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Jack Campin
Date: 25 May 09 - 07:32 PM

Why is "Guest show Bob" so determined to start a fight? Roberts sounds like a pretty good traditional singer to me. I don't know where "Willie Leonard" comes from, but if he made it up he's got the ballad idiom spot-on. And the guitar playing is lovely. (The Lyke-Wake Dirge is much less successful).

Roberts doesn't need Bob any more than Phil Beer needs Lizzie Cornish.

The biography on Roberts's website suggests he isn't all that interested in doing folk clubs - he shouldn't have had any problem getting gigs in Scotland if he'd wanted them. He's worked with enough weel-kent figures who could have recommended him to the dubious.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: GUEST,A
Date: 25 May 09 - 09:15 PM

Willie Leonard is from the singing of Sheila Stewart.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 25 May 09 - 09:28 PM

Willie Leonard also seems to be a variant of The Lakes Of Coolfin.
Or perhaps the Lakes is a variant of Willie Leonard.

Very good performance either way.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: GUEST
Date: 26 May 09 - 03:36 AM

Yep - the Stewarts picked it up on their travels in Ireland I believe.


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Subject: RE: Review: Alasdair Roberts!!! Yet Again
From: Smedley
Date: 26 May 09 - 04:04 AM

He is a great talent. Alongside his own albums & performances, those interested inb him should seek out his contribution on a tribute album to Lal Waterson called 'Migrating Bird'.


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