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Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012

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GUEST,olgaj 04 Feb 12 - 11:35 AM
Vic Smith 04 Feb 12 - 12:08 PM
Dave Hanson 04 Feb 12 - 12:29 PM
Les in Chorlton 04 Feb 12 - 12:39 PM
Bainbo 04 Feb 12 - 12:46 PM
GUEST,999 04 Feb 12 - 01:34 PM
Les in Chorlton 04 Feb 12 - 03:29 PM
GUEST,selby 04 Feb 12 - 04:22 PM
GUEST,John from Kemsing 05 Feb 12 - 05:51 AM
doc.tom 05 Feb 12 - 06:01 AM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 05 Feb 12 - 07:15 AM
Les in Chorlton 05 Feb 12 - 07:55 AM
Vic Smith 05 Feb 12 - 08:26 AM
GUEST,GUEST, chillybean 05 Feb 12 - 08:27 AM
theleveller 05 Feb 12 - 08:30 AM
Vic Smith 05 Feb 12 - 08:34 AM
Vic Smith 05 Feb 12 - 08:55 AM
SteveMansfield 05 Feb 12 - 09:04 AM
GUEST,Folknacious 05 Feb 12 - 09:44 AM
Phil Edwards 05 Feb 12 - 10:04 AM
theleveller 05 Feb 12 - 10:26 AM
GUEST,CS 05 Feb 12 - 10:31 AM
GUEST,999 05 Feb 12 - 10:32 AM
GUEST,carso 05 Feb 12 - 03:17 PM
The Sandman 05 Feb 12 - 03:40 PM
GUEST,CS 05 Feb 12 - 03:41 PM
GUEST,CS 05 Feb 12 - 05:03 PM
GUEST,Gail 05 Feb 12 - 05:14 PM
Spleen Cringe 05 Feb 12 - 05:20 PM
GUEST,CS 05 Feb 12 - 05:30 PM
Big Al Whittle 05 Feb 12 - 06:45 PM
The Sandman 05 Feb 12 - 06:52 PM
Big Al Whittle 05 Feb 12 - 08:59 PM
Bonzo3legs 06 Feb 12 - 01:44 AM
theleveller 06 Feb 12 - 03:30 AM
GUEST 06 Feb 12 - 04:55 AM
matt milton 06 Feb 12 - 05:27 AM
SunrayFC 06 Feb 12 - 05:37 AM
GUEST,Panellist 06 Feb 12 - 05:41 AM
matt milton 06 Feb 12 - 06:09 AM
Big Al Whittle 06 Feb 12 - 06:12 AM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 06 Feb 12 - 06:16 AM
GUEST,Derek Schofield 06 Feb 12 - 06:20 AM
Silas 06 Feb 12 - 06:25 AM
GUEST,Banjiman 06 Feb 12 - 06:29 AM
GUEST,CS 06 Feb 12 - 06:45 AM
johncharles 06 Feb 12 - 07:52 AM
Vic Smith 06 Feb 12 - 08:09 AM
Silas 06 Feb 12 - 08:31 AM
treewind 06 Feb 12 - 08:36 AM
Will Fly 06 Feb 12 - 08:38 AM
matt milton 06 Feb 12 - 08:43 AM
Big Al Whittle 06 Feb 12 - 08:51 AM
GUEST 06 Feb 12 - 09:00 AM
GUEST,Banjiman 06 Feb 12 - 09:00 AM
Vic Smith 06 Feb 12 - 09:06 AM
matt milton 06 Feb 12 - 09:59 AM
GUEST 06 Feb 12 - 10:06 AM
GUEST,FloraG 06 Feb 12 - 10:25 AM
GUEST,Azoic 06 Feb 12 - 10:32 AM
Phil Edwards 06 Feb 12 - 06:55 PM
Continuity Jones 07 Feb 12 - 08:24 AM
Spleen Cringe 07 Feb 12 - 10:24 AM
theleveller 07 Feb 12 - 11:10 AM
Phil Edwards 08 Feb 12 - 05:25 PM
Les in Chorlton 09 Feb 12 - 06:31 AM
Big Al Whittle 09 Feb 12 - 10:06 AM
GUEST,Howard Jones 09 Feb 12 - 11:17 AM
GUEST,SteveG 09 Feb 12 - 11:26 AM
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theleveller 09 Feb 12 - 12:05 PM
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Subject: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,olgaj
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 11:35 AM

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/news/could-it-all-be-a-fiddle-folk-stars-tell-the-bbc-to-reveal-who-judges-awards-6358939.html

Anyone read this and what do you think?

Personally I think there is a Folk Maffia or we wouldn't keep seeing the same names coming up on Festival Line Ups and award nominations year after year. I've known lots of good singer/songwriters, musicians and bands over the years who don't stand a chance in hell of getting heard widely because they are not connected to already recognised 'names'. Local folk clubs and small festivals that pay very little seem to be the only way to get into the scene and even then it is unlikely that demos actually get listened to unless they are recommended by 'someone in the know'. As a band we consider ourselves very lucky to have been booked for small festivals such as Moira Furnace,Spratton,Doncaster, Dulverton and this year Folk Station on the Isle of Wight. The only opportunity for having music aired on the radio appears to be on community radio which by its very nature is local and only has a small catchment.

OK over to you.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 12:08 PM

Firstly, though no supporter of the Folk Awards as my record on Mudcat shows, I still do not approve of the way Emma Hartley goes about her campaign of casting doubts on the honesty of the Folk Awards. She has one narrow line of argument and she repeats it ad infinitum. She is quoted in this article and the whole thing reads as though Emma has had a strong influence on its construction.

The word "Mafia" is correctly spelled in the original article.

Secondly, let's look in a realistic manner at the current situation for young musicians. I do feel sorry for the young performers who are trying to make their mark, but they really need to look at the overall situation and see why thy are not getting a mass of work.
* The number of gigs available to folk performers has diminished greatly with the years. Not only are there many fewer clubs, but those that there are are booking fewer guests - fortnightly, monthly or whatever.
* The folk scene differs from the pop & rock scene in that the loyalty of the fans to someone they appreciate continues often for decades - so Carthy, Kirkpatrick, Gaughan and all those of their generation are still doing many gigs and will continue to get booked for as long as they want to. This is not an ephemeral scene.
* The best of the young performers do get accepted into the folk scene - and once they have made their mark, they too will continue to work. Nobody gets rich and retires early from performing folk music.
* So why do club organisers like myself book an act each week that will fill their rooms? Because, even though the better performers charge more, there is a much higher chance of covering your costs. Why do we not often take chances on the unknown beginners how ever promising they may be? Because years of experience tells us that us that we are likely to lose money.

No conspiracy to keep anyone out, just the simple facts of life. I listen to and watch many demos, Youtubes, Myspace etc. and it's amazing how many I find unsatistactory, derivative and plain dull. I still feel very sorry for the youngsters struggling to make a mark, but I'm afraid that nobody owes them a living,


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 12:29 PM

Vic, nevertheless there is still no transparency, names are kept secret so what do you expect, I was a trade Union official for a large part of my working life, accept nothing, question everything until all is clear and open.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 12:39 PM

Same old same old same old.

Why am I bothering? I trust Mike Harding I have no reason to think he would do anything dishonest

L in C#


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Bainbo
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 12:46 PM

I saw one of the finalists in the best original song category at a local club last week. During the gig, the organiser announced from the stage: "Well, we voted for you. We're among the judges, and nobody's told us to keep it secret."

Of all the things to have conspiracy theories about ... folk music awards?


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,999
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 01:34 PM

Someone could make hundreds of pounds off of folk music. It's the thin edge of the wedge. Next someone will want gifts in beer or Morris outfits.

That's it. Look for people wearing Morris outfits. There's yer trouble.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 03:29 PM

But it's not just bungs of the financial kind we should be concerned about should we?

Next it will be free camping passes for festivals, reduced rates on buses from one festival to another. Some judges have already made it clear that crates of Coop own brand low alcohol bitter can pave the way to stardom -ish.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,selby
Date: 04 Feb 12 - 04:22 PM

As a old / ex folk club organiser I agree with Vic the bottom line on booking acts for us was if we could not cover the cost of the artist from door takings it came from our own pockets.
People would only turn up for who they knew, not the new best thing since sliced bread who was taking the whole world by storm. Unfortunately sad but true and I suspect much the same now.
Keith


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,John from Kemsing
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 05:51 AM

I have no gripe with the BBC, or any other media organisation for that matter, giving awards to anybody they consider deserves it. My objection is that some of the content then BBC peddle is classified under "folk music". To me some of it has as much to do with "folk music" as admirable Morris sides have to do with ballet.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: doc.tom
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 06:01 AM

Vic has it absolutely right - and BB & I work on both sides of the scene. And so has GUEST,John from Kemsing.

For the great wide world out there, it's rather a parallel to the trend whereby, if you read the headlines, only stuff funded by the Arts Council was ART. We're now getting to where the stuff that is media promoted as folk becomes the only folk there is. That's life.

If some of that stuff IS folk, then I need a new word for the stuff I love - and 'traditional music' is too narrow. It's the way of the world er.... folks!


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 07:15 AM

A few observations.

As others have said, Vic is right about the financial liability of folk club organisers and quality of guests.

I am amazed at one part of the folk scene's determination to wreck the biggest annual showcase for folk music in the media. The time will come when the BBC gets fed up of this bitching and says, "sod it, if you don't want the awards, we won't run them".

It may be a great showcase, but it is just one aspect of the diversity of the folk scene, which ranges from the small, local singaround and music session, morris side dancing outside the pub, local folk clubs, ceilidhs, local festivals, concerts at the well-known concert halls up and down the country, and the biggest folk festivals - cambridge, Shrewsbury, Sidmouth and Towersey. It's everything from singer-songwriters to unaccompanied ballads. Rejoice in that diversity and strive to make all of it better. There must be a cascade effect down from the folk awards media coverage to all these events.

The Folk Awards are not the Brits, which covers pop music and which by its nature therefore will be dependent on fashion. Folk music is about tradition - it is inevitable that some names will crop up every few years or even every year (though I bet an analysis of all the nominations over 13 years would show a turnover).

And yes, I am sure there are very good singers and songwriters in local clubs and festivals that some people rate more highly than the people nominated. There is no fixed marking scheme. But just look at the song nominated this year about the Morecambe cockle-pickers. Christy Moore heard it on a Cd put out by the Bothy Folk Club in Southport - the song is written by one of their residents. A great song, given prominence by a great singer.

I find that the nominations do not completely reflect what Mike plays on his programme. Yes, most of the songs / music have been played on his programme but he also plays a lot of other stuff that doesn't feature. Perhaps these are the songs that John from Kemsing has in mind - and the point is that when it comes to nominations, they don't feature in the final lists.

I have faith in the process. Suggestions that the results are rigged are absurd. I am on the panel of judges and I see all the documents sent out to ensure fairness. Requests to publish the list of judges would, if followed, just shift the argument from the music to the credentials of the judges. What might be an idea - as suggested elsewhere - is to publish the list of all the nominations, and I think that would show that a wide variety of artists and music are nominated - it's just that some of them don't get enough nominations as the ones that get chosen.

Derek Schofield


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 07:55 AM

Thanks Derek, much wisdom

L in C#


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:26 AM

I wrote:-
"The number of gigs available to folk performers has diminished greatly with the years. "


Why is this? Well there are a variety of reasons.

* The generation of organisers who started running clubs in the 1960s and 1970s were really plentiful. Folk clubs in every town in the UK. Some lost money, others lost interest, some found it too much work and lessened their commitment (monthly rather than weekly etc.) Most of these organisers were performers, some were pro- musicians, some semi- pro, some enthusiastic amateurs.

* Every university and college in the country had a thriving folk club that booked many guest performers. Some had sizeable grants (mine did) from the Students' Union to help them with this. How many universities have folk clubs in 2012.

* As recently as 2007, I was organising tours of Arts Centres, either for an African musician friend of mine or for Shirley Collins and her presentations. Though often staffed by enthusiastic amateurs, theese establishments had hefty ACE grants. Their programmes were full of the established and the rising stars of the folk scene. I still get circulars from many of these establishments. It is obvious that cuts in grants are making these places much more circumspect in their programming; those that remain open, that is. Five years since I organised such tours - I wouldn't like to be doing so in 2012.

*******
I

Back in the 1970s Tina and I were getting quite a lot of work in folk clubs, festivals and playing in our dance band - yet we never seriously considered trying to make a living from our music. Even in those much more encouraging times, it seemed far to precarious. We wanted a family, the security of owning our own home etc. so we stuck to our day jobs - and both did very well in them. We have continued to enjoy a good semi-pro connection with folk music and this has extended since our retirement - but we never actually hassle for gigs, we just take the ones that we are offered that we fancy, which is not all of them. I feel that we made the right choice.

One guilty feeling that I have occurs when I have had conversations with folk music professionals who have been having a hard time and they blurt out hoe little thay have been earning.... and I gulp as I realise that we are earning more from music ourselves.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,GUEST, chillybean
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:27 AM

I've read this site loads, but have never posted on here before. I feel the need to now...

Closed-door policies define the folk scene from the ground up.

The live folk club circuit consists of audiences aged 50+, who just want to hear the same boring, cliche-ridden, derivative take on "folk music" that they have been going to clubs and listening to for years. They do not go to a folk club to be challenged or to have their minds opened; they go because it is what they have done their whole lives, and they don't wish to change. Heaven forbid some young upstart should come along and sing anything vaguely pop or jazz or world music -tinged, despite the fact that it is near impossible in this day and age to make music that is not a blend of many varied musical influences, unless you somehow actually live inside a folk club. The only young performers who ARE welcomed must not be showy, must not offend by being "stars" or appearing to get above their station. Any hint of the suggestion that they made an effort by getting dressed up for the occasion screams of X Factor style vanity. They must preferably sing in a thin, airy voice with no evidence of vocal training (women) or a baritone warble in the manner of a Sussex farmer crossed with Jon Boden (men). These young performers must not expect the folk club to be in any way enthusiastic or reverent until they have proven their worth, and therefore will be met by a silent room full of stern people (mostly men) with their arms folded and an expression that clearly says "go on then. impress us. we've seen it all before." The young performer must preferably not perform his or her own original material, but if she/he does deviate from traditional repertory, it must resemble a ballad about cow farming, ploughing, sailing, or other such traditional subject matter about which the performer will invariably know nothing about, what with them being a 22-year-old from Norwich. If the performer DOES sing a traditional chorus song, they must expect the audience to join in on every chorus but at a completely different speed (usually about half as slow) so that any sense of pace or energy they tried to put into the song is eclipsed by a dirge much more preferable to the geriatrics in the audience. The performer must be prepared for audience members to sing throughout the verses, too, although they will not know the words, will not sing in tune, and will not sing quietly. One idiot near the front of the stage will probably turn towards the window, close his eyes, and periodically whistle throughout the entire set.

Folk club promoters/bookers are well aware that this is their audience. And instead of booking young, original, energetic performers who might encourage some new audience members, they are too concerned in making sure that their veterans are kept happy. This means giving them the same old same old, week in, week out. They never make any more money, and they never increase their audience. They never spend any money on actually PROMOTING the gigs, with classy posters or adverts in magazines - they just advertise to their existing audience. In my experience, the vast majority don't seem to research new music or new acts, either. And it's scary how many folk clubs still don't have a proper website or even email. But this is representative of their generation, sadly.

This is how folk music is going to kill itself. Labels and agents see the opportunity to make money from young, bland acts who have pandered to the folk club circuit's narrow interpretation of "folk", by selling the music back to the same elderly audiences who championed their dated, affected, derivative sound in the first place. The agents make sure the acts are booked at the folk festivals that they also run - Sidmouth, Beverley, etc. The labels then make sure that their acts get played on Mike Harding and are nominated for the R2FAs. Suddenly, the awards are completely representative of an older generation's choices - a combination of long-standing favourite veterans of the scene, and the personality-free, inoffensive youngsters like Lucy Ward.

I got into folk music as a teenager after Kate Rusby and Eliza Carthy were nominated for the Mercury Music Prize. They were skilled, dynamic, professional, original and impressive enough to stand alongside the best artists from across all other genres of British music. This is why even people who don't know folk know these artists' names. From then on until I began seeking out like-minded folkies and performing myself, my initiation to the scene came from watching the BBC4 coverage of the R2FAs, Celtic Connections, and Cambridge.

I hardly think that any youngster watching over the past three or four years will have been as excited by what they've seen as I was about The Waifs, Seth Lakeman and Cara Dillon. Last year, the best and most convincing performers by a mile were Chris Wood and Barbara Dickson - doesn't exactly give the impression that folk is a thriving young genre, does it? Yet at the same time, young audiences have been captivated by Laura Marling, Mumford & Sons, and suchlike... and instead of embracing this, the folk club-goers turn their noses up and say "well they aren't folk as WE know it! And they never played the folk clubs did they...?" LIKE YOU WOULD HAVE BOOKED THEM?!

YOUNG performers trying to do something NEW with folk should be playing to an audience of YOUNG people who are receptive to it. Not tailoring their set to suit a bunch of old gits. It's not a good situation when the performer is the youngest person in the folk club by about 25 years... but it happens all the time.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: theleveller
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:30 AM

Wow, this thread has managed to combine those two old chestnuts, the Great Folk Conspiracy Theory, usually peddled by people who want to be pros but can't make it, and The What is Folk? argument, usually peddled by those who think that they have the monopoly on the folk genre.

Should be interesting (not).


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:34 AM

It would be difficult to quantify, but it seems to me that the proportion of 1960s/1970s young folk performers who took an extra interest in organising and facilitating folk clubs, dances and festivals as part of their interest is a higher proportion than of the young performers today.

Am I right in making this assumption/observation?

And if I am, why is this?

In other words, where are the young organisers to go with the explosion of young performers?


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:55 AM

The live folk club circuit consists of audiences aged 50+, who just want to hear the same boring, cliche-ridden, derivative take on "folk music" that they have been going to clubs and listening to for years.

Don't moan about this on Mudcat - get out there and do it the way you want it to be. I've been organising a weekly club that books old, young and middle-aged performers for 45 years now. Within the last year we have been able to welcome school-aged floor singers & musicians and they have delighted our mixed aged audience. I put hours each week into websites, producing and distributing posters, posting our forthcoming gigs on all the folkie forums and on MySpace and Facebook. As a result our establishment has a healthy four-figure bank balance so that sometimes we can afford to take a chance on talented young performers even although we reckon that we will probably lose money on them.

Chillybean, there is an element of truth in your complaints and I sometimes go to other folk clubs and think, 'What the hell am I doing here?' - but I must say that your post shows a negativity of thinking that cannot possibly do you any good. As I said in my first post in this thread, "I'm afraid that nobody owes you a living."


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: SteveMansfield
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 09:04 AM

If (and it's a big if) I were one of the judges on something like the Folk Awards, I think the very first thing I would insist on would be anonymity.

Given the prevalence of The Great Folk Conspiracy Theory you don't stand a cat in hell's chance of satisfying everyone with your nominations; your email and phone and Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn (and maybe even letter box) will be deluged by the marketing departments of all the major labels flogging their latest bloke-with-guitar product, combined with all the relentless self-publicists who would do well to put as much effort and time into the actual music as they do into their barrage of promotion; and at the end of the day you'll just end up being accused of being a corporate shill anyway.

Derek's right - I wouldn't be at all surprised if the BBC didn't give up in this face of this wholly manufactured storm in a teacup, and kick the Folk Awards into touch. And then within 6 months the very same people getting on their high horses about The Great Folk Conspiracy will be whining that the BBC's 'unfair to folk music' by not broadcasting more ...


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Folknacious
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 09:44 AM

Chillybean makes good points. Not comfortable reading, but the truth sometimes hurts

Steve Mansfield is absolutely correct about the need for anonymity (if desired) in the current world. Which doesn't stop people breaking cover if they so desire.

Why do I have this strong impression from self-publicist Emma Hartley's latest article that the people doing the moaning are those who don't stand a snowball's of ever getting a nomination regardless how the rules are re-jigged. I mean, have you Googled some of them? There, I said it.

Conspiracy? What conspiracy?


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 10:04 AM

The young performer must preferably not perform his or her own original material, but if she/he does deviate from traditional repertory, it must resemble a ballad about cow farming, ploughing, sailing, or other such traditional subject matter about which the performer will invariably know nothing about

No idea where you're getting all this from. There's a club I know where the same faces line the walls week in, week out, and some nights I lower the average age by going in (and I'm 51); but you'll never hear a traditional song there, and it's a job to get anyone to join in on a chorus. There's another where the same regular audiences face the same regular performers, give or take a few, week after week after week; but given that half the regular performers are twenty-something singer-songwriters, that's probably not the kind of place you're complaining about. Then there's a singaround, where traditional songs reign and the choruses can get a bit slow; that's obviously not the kind of place you're thinking of either, as anyone under 30, new or both is welcomed with open arms and much applause.

In short, I think 'folk club' covers a huge range of different types of club, and you're combining all the worst aspects of lots of different clubs without including any of the good aspects. Your folk club sounds horrible, but I suspect you've only been there in your imagination.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: theleveller
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 10:26 AM

"the people doing the moaning are those who don't stand a snowball's of ever getting a nomination regardless how the rules are re-jigged. I mean, have you Googled some of them? There, I said it."

Well, I wasn't going to say that myself but........


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 10:31 AM

Really rocking the changes there with such a nice and pleasant selection of artists: Mumford and Sons, Laura Marling, Cara Dillon... Sounds like elevator hell music to me! I'll take my folk straight up with the the old wrinklies thankyou - roaring choruses and all - while waiting for the Fuck Buttons 2009 album Tarot Sport
I posted this on another thread actually, but here it is again because IMO it's a properly enjoyable piece of music made by young people unlike so much folk music made by young people. Basically young people should stay well away from making folk music and go and do something less boring instead ;-)
Flight of the Feathered Serpent

CS 39


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,999
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 10:32 AM

"his or her own original material"


I don't get it.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,carso
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 03:17 PM

"my initiation to the scene came from watching the BBC4 coverage of the R2FAs, Celtic Connections, and Cambridge"

all of which were filmed and put out by Smooth Ops. If this continues to rage, perhaps they'll disappear off to Count Arthur Strong and let us "folkies" fight it out to our own demise.

Terribly sad, terribly unfair. Leave them alone, or do it yourself. Smooth Ops do a fantastic job.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: The Sandman
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 03:40 PM

The time will come when the BBC gets fed up of this bitching and says, "sod it, if you don't want the awards, we won't run them"
Roll on that day, the best thing the BBC did for folk music was "hold down a chord" television series.
The BBC would be well advised to stop these awards as soon as possible, and start a series of lessons , teaching the ukelele, might be a good starting point, this inexpensive instrument, is rapidly gaining popularity in schools.
The BBC folk awards[imo] are nonsensical claptrap, personally I dont care a fiddlers fart if they are corrupt, or not corrupt, they are an irrelevant competition for pop/folk performers hell bent on commercial success, they are not encouraging the majority of people to be imaginative, they are not encouraging ordinary people to get interested in roots music, or to be artistically creative, they encourage the following attitude...the winner will achieve success in the folk world ... that is not the case, so they encourage performers to have false hopes.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 03:41 PM

" If this continues to rage, perhaps they'll disappear off to Count Arthur Strong and let us "folkies" fight it out to our own demise."

Well if it's Mumfords and Marling taking up the banner as the "new blood", one can only hope that the 'folk revival' will do the decent thing and give up it's last gasp along with the baby boomers who breathed it's first (a group for whom I might add, I have nothing but the greatest affection and respect even whilst they're getting the words wrong and singing too slowly). As I said above< I'd exhort 'young people' to make their own music, leave the folk scene alone, especially if your going to try to "improve" it with such scarily Stepford Wives fare as endorsed above!

More Fuck Buttons (don't know how I missed this little gem before now) http://grooveshark.com/#!/s/Surf+Solar/2IhCj9?src=5


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 05:03 PM

" I suspect you've only been there in your imagination."

Hehe, sounds like it's some wind-up troll with an agenda to create an argument. Or it's a Newcastle student with a 3rd. Your guess is as good as mine..


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Gail
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 05:14 PM

Such venomous generalisation from one generation towards another is the most depressing part of Chillybean's post. He/she blames age for the unlikeable behaviour/attitudes found in some people on the folk scene when, I'd say, it's due to some people naturally being tossers, regardless of their age. Chillybean, I guarantee that many of your own age group will turn out to fit that description too.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 05:20 PM

Ha! Back to the thread with this!


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 05:30 PM

This is my favourite bit:

"what with them being a 22-year-old from Norwich."

No farms or tractors to see in Norfolk, oh no... Oooar.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 06:45 PM

Almost interesting.....

lets just accept there is a divergence of opinion on this subject. Abusing each other achieves nothing really, does it?

Lets just try and be more understanding of, and responsive to each others needs and ambitions for OUR folk revival.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: The Sandman
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 06:52 PM

Al , its not your folk revival, you are a singer songwriter, you are not allowed.
"Basically young people should stay well away from making folk music and go and do something less boring instead"
get drunk, get shagged, get stoned , all the things that government minister from Epsom said northerners were doing.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 05 Feb 12 - 08:59 PM

you are a good man GSS.

One day we will have a drink together and reflect on the foolish nature of humanity - and the folk mafia in particular. I feel genuinely sorry for you. You re a really skillful musician and you need that little lion stamp on your egg more than half these daft gits like Donovan. Love him and him songs though I do. Like Jeff Goldblum said in Jurassic Park - the dinosaurs were selected for destruction. You can't piss about with evolution.

One day the folk songs of this era will arise. And I hope your stuff is amongst it. I couldn't give a bollocks about my creative effort. I'd swap my place in history for another hit record.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 01:44 AM

No snow here in Malaga - just beautiful sunshine and a cold wind. Ah folk awards............have you people nothing else to worry about?????


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: theleveller
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 03:30 AM

Ah, Bozo, the snow's absolutely beautiful here, especially in the woods and hedgerows - just like Narnia. We even had people out on horse-drawn sledges yesterday - and I've got roaring log fires to come home to. As for folk awards - I think people take them far too seriously.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 04:55 AM

I'm sure it is, and we,ll be back at Gatwick later this afternoon so looking forward to some snow shots as we come in to land!

I keep my fingers crossed for Blair Dunlop, but also wish the others luck in the "Young" award.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: matt milton
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 05:27 AM

"What might be an idea - as suggested elsewhere - is to publish the list of all the nominations, and I think that would show that a wide variety of artists and music are nominated - it's just that some of them don't get enough nominations as the ones that get chosen."

I'm confused - I thought that the list of nominees WAS published?! There's a list of four or five names for each category...

...are you saying that initially this list is longer?


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: SunrayFC
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 05:37 AM

Well I for one, in the guise of the Sunray Folk Club include as many "lesser knowns" as I can. I won't just put the big names on- others need the exposure otherwise it all grinds to a slow halt.

And yes, it is a risk. So far I have not lost money except on one big name!

I love folk music.

I remain suspicious about the awards, but it's only a suspicion. I came 4th in a song-writing competition a year or two ago. The winner was the best man at the wedding of one of the judges. Pure coincidence no doubt.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Panellist
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 05:41 AM

The first round is an open round. The 150 judges nominate whomever they like. The short list of "nominees" is comprised of the artists who receive the most nominations in that open round.

What DS is suggesting is that the nominations in the first round, which will represent a much wider breadth than the eventual short list - should be published in order to counter the regular allegation that only a few "usual suspects" are ever nominated by the voting panel. The Froots awards publish all nominations as well as the winners, which means that the full scope of the judges' choices is available to anyone who is interested.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: matt milton
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:09 AM

I see. Yes, that'd be a great idea. Do the 150 judges get one nomination each (for each category)?


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:12 AM

Well we all appreciate your efforts Bob with the Sunray FC. Its a great contribution to local life.

Competitions are extremely sus.

I once was lured into the depths of rural Ireland to compete in the finals of a songwriting comp. To be honest I wasn't the only one suckered in. Sat next to me was Crystal Gale's lead guitarist - and he was going onto me about how the basic Lowden guitar was just too basic - so he'd had a few ornamentations added - in fact he'd spent more on his guitar than my house and car cost! This guy had jetted in from LA.

I sat there clutching my yamaha sushi board model.

Anyway the local Father Ted was one of the judges - apparently the village had been betting on it for weeks. The heavy money was on this bloke who was very Eurovision - and he arrived with glamorous backing singers, and he did in fact clinch it. father Ted didn't give any of the foreigners any marks.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:16 AM

Thank you Panellist. Exactly.
When people get hot under the collar about certain people not getting a look in, I suspect that they are being nominated ... but as I say, not enough people are nominating them to get in the final 4.

Sunray FC - yes. When I was running a club, back in the 70s and 80s, we had guests 3 weeks out of 4, with a full mixture from the "guaranteed to fill the club" guests such as Martin carthy, Roaring Jelly, Vin garbutt, through to the people we knew wouldn't fill the club, including newcomers etc. The main criterion was that they had to be good! And to do that, we relied on people we'd seen elsewhere, including festivals, personal recommendation etc. Lots of clubs had the same sort of guest structure I am sure.
There are now fewer clubs doing this sort of thing, some people have unrealistic expectations regarding fees (so I am told), and with some of the newer, and younger, performers wanting to tour with bands, the economics of clubs affording some of these guests is impossible....
Derek


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Derek Schofield
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:20 AM

Matt ... each panellist gets 3 votes in each category in round 1, and then in round 2 they are presented with 4 options in each category, and they choose one.
Derek


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Silas
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:25 AM

If I may respond to the comments by chillibean.

I am not saying that he does not have a valid point, but I think he is blaming the wrong people. Those of us old gits that have been into folk music for decades do indeed often have very fixed ideas about what and what is not folk music. It is not an age thing, nor is it a content thing. It is simply this;

Some of us go to the trouble of setting up a 'folk club' or 'session club' in order to promote and listen to the sort of music 'we' like. That is it in a nutshell. 'The sort of music we like'. Now, I would be happy for anyone, age, sex or whatever to come along and sing or play folk music or music in the traditional style. What we are not happy about is people coming along and playing 'pop music or jazz or rock. Not that there is anything wrong with these genres, it is just a question of performing appropriate material for a folk club. There are loads and loads of young talented folk performers about, loads of them and most of them are bloody good and would be welcomed at most folk clubs, I really don't know why you think they wouldn't. Lots of these young people write their own material and much of it is very good and in the folk style.

However, if some 'upstart' comes along and tries to sing 'Pop' or 'Jazz' or 'World Music (whatever that is)' then yes, they are unlikely to get a good reception, in the same way as a bloke going into a local Jazz club and singing a 12 verse unaccompanied folk ballad ? he is unlikely to be Mr Popular for the night.

It's really just a case of choosing your material to suit the venue. Simples


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Banjiman
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:29 AM

I think publishing the "long list" of nominations would go a long way to mitigating some of the concerns around nepotism.

I think being clear about the profile of the judges would also help (I'm not saying name them all!). I think it has been stated that none of the panelists are artists themselves....... this is clearly not true, so it shouldn't be stated!

Does anyone (on the inside) get to see who has nominated who? Just to check that nepotism is being avoided? I'm not saying the public should see this, just asking if it is checked.

And for those who say that the awards are taken too seriously...... careers are built on this stuff. It is important. And with a bit more transparency, undoubtedly a good thing.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:45 AM

"It's really just a case of choosing your material to suit the venue. Simples"

Quite so. Leave the old gits alone I say and let 'em enjoy the music that they like in peace.
It's like if I turned up to perform somewhere like Glade
and then bitched about all the mean and nasty 'youngsters' * who failed to appreciate me singing my top fifteen favourite unaccompanied murder ballads...





* has never heard anyone under 70 use this quaint turn of phrase.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: johncharles
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 07:52 AM

A quick review of tour dates for the nominees for these awards suggests that larger venues and festivals are the audiences to which they aspire. The folk awards are a reflection of these aspirations and not a reflection of the scene found in small local folk clubs.
My preference is small scale participative music making not the concert performance embodied in these awards.
Many of these performers are trying to make a living,good luck to them and anything which may help them.
john


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:09 AM

To me, both Chillibean and Silas have both got hold of the wrong end of the stick - different ends of the stick but still wrong.

Folk music - traditional song - should be a timeless, ageless thing. It is never going to be the most popular form of musical entertainment, but at the same time, rumours of its demise are unfounded. I can see that there are enough young people devoted to the music to keep it going after I am gone, which is great.

So, if my assessment of the nature of the music is true then enthusiasts of whatever age should be working together to enjoy and further their commitment to the music.

When I started running folk clubs in the 1960s, I was soon booking the likes of Belle & Alex Stewart, Packie Byrne, Willie Scott - people old enough to be my grandparents amongst a lot of younger and middle-aged performers.

This year, I have booked the likes of The Askew Sisters, Jim Causley, Lady Maisery - people young enough to be my grandchildren along with middle-aged people and older people. (We had Noel Dumbrell - 83 this year - recently and he gave a brilliant, energetic performance).

In the 1960's we used to get three generations of the Blanchard family coming regularly to the club. Last Thursday we had a young married couple sitting holding hands all evening next to a smiling bearded octogenarian. Let the young people bring their energy and excitement at finding this wonderful tradition. Let the old people share their knowledge and enthusiasm built up over decades of close involvement.

That is the way I have always wanted it to be. That is the way that it should be.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Silas
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:31 AM

Sorry Vic - I can't see just where you and I differ (from your last post)


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: treewind
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:36 AM

'The live folk club circuit consists of audiences aged 50+, who just want to hear the same boring, cliche-ridden, derivative take on "folk music" that they have been going to clubs and listening to for years.'

That view is in itself becoming a boring cliché and it simply isn't true any more. My experience of folk club audiences in the last ten years is that the average age is starting to come down again. Last Thursday we had about a dozen people under the age of 30 at Islington Folk Club which is a big change from two years before, and the organisers tell me their annual Trad2Mad competition (look it up on YouTube) is bringing in surprising numbers of youngsters*. I've seen similar changes at other clubs. That's to say nothing of young dance teams (Morris, rapper, etc), old dance teams with younger members and a trio of Suffolk step dancers aged "nearly 10" to 14 who've been doing it for four years now.

Anahata

* Hey CS! I'm not even 60 yet !


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Will Fly
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:38 AM

Tell me, Chillybean - what music will you perform/and or be listening to when you get old?

And when will you get old? What will be the defining age when, as Roger Daltry said, you hope you die before you get to it?

The important thing is not to rage against spurious folk awards or age or folk clubs, but to get out, make your own music, start your own club, have fun, do your own thing. And if you get irritated by clubs or festivals or attitudes, then find a decent open session, singaround or open mic - like the two or three I attend each month - which have a completely wide mixture of ages and musical styles from teens to old-timers and from trad tunes to jazz and blues.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: matt milton
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:43 AM

"I think publishing the "long list" of nominations would go a long way to mitigating some of the concerns around nepotism.

I think being clear about the profile of the judges would also help (I'm not saying name them all!). I think it has been stated that none of the panelists are artists themselves....... this is clearly not true, so it shouldn't be stated!"

Yep. And, quite apart from anything else, publishing all that would win the organisers of the Folk Awards even more free publicity for their event.

I can't be the only person who's noticed an irony here: that all this hoo-hah about the awards has done a much, much better job of garnering publicity for the awards than whoever it is that is paid to do their Marketing & Publicity.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 08:51 AM

really is the wrong sort of publicity. The BBC wont like having their probity questioned. I don't think anybody does.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 09:00 AM

That's fine Matt. The more publicity the better..... I think the awards are a good thing (as I stated), surely we're allowed to ask for improvements though?

A little more transparency would go along way to shutting up the naysayers.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Banjiman
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 09:00 AM

Post above was me.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Vic Smith
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 09:06 AM

Silas - re-reading your post, I can see that I have misinterpreted it, so I apologise for that. You were not being as exclusive as my first reading of your post made you seem to be.

I would, however, state that if you are not welcoming to what you call 'World Music (whatever that is)' then you are missing out in a big way.

Folk song, traditional song, does not end at the Straits of Dover. Again, quoting the example of the club that I run, in the last few years we have had guest performers on tour in this country from Zimbabwe, Hungary, The Gambia, Roumania, Sierra Leone, Breton-speaking groups and French- and Spanish-speaking groups from the North American minority language areas of Louisiana, Quebec and New Mexico. These nights when our locals have tried to present the best of our culture against the musical riches that our foreign guests have brought with them have been amongst the most rewarding of all our presentations.
***************
Last Thursday we had an American with an Appalchian background as guest. I don't know how old Kate Lissauer is, but young enough to be my daughter if not my granddaughter. I started off the evening with Jeannie Robertson's version of The Gypsy Laddies which I have always thought of from the gypsies' point of view because of my long enthusiasm for Scots Travellers and their culture. I see it as a song that just gives one example of the cruel treatment of this outcast minority. Then Kate got up and said, "I'm going to sing a different version of the song that Vic sung earlier; this is from my area and is called Black Jack Davy, For me, this song is about a woman having a mid-life crisis. We've all met people who seem to have a settled, happy life, then they go off the rails with an impossible relationship that cannot work, haven't we?"
Brilliant! Fascinating! For me this was a new insight into a song that I have sung for decades; just what I want to get from a folk club evening.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: matt milton
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 09:59 AM

"The BBC wont like having their probity questioned. I don't think anybody does."

oo-er!

Normally I'd agree, but in the case of this particular awards ceremony, one which gives Don McLean a lifetime acheivement award and which gets Barbera Dickson to present it, I really do think that even bad publicity is good publicity.

It is such a tea-with-the-vicar type institution that hints of corruption actually liven it up a bit. I've barely been aware of its existence, and was never remotely interested in it, until this whole "transparency" business came up.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 10:06 AM

"'World Music (whatever that is)' "

Mainly it's music from folk traditions, from anywhere in the world. Unlike what many singer/songwriters etc from here and the USA play in folk clubs without the regulars complaining "it's not folk". Yes it bl**dy is!


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,FloraG
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 10:25 AM

I have been pleasantly surprised at how much folk has been on the media recently. Sky arts? Warhorse tunes and I even heard CBS last weekend and the results to a sports match played by women!

I think someone somewhere is listening ( or reading ) comments.
FloraG.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Azoic
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 10:32 AM

Yes FloraG, plus folk stars and Mercury nominees King Creosote and John Hopkins have had their music played on Top Gear - surely a step in the right direction.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 06 Feb 12 - 06:55 PM

Dearly as I love King Creosote, I think that's just a step in the direction of a slightly different style of background music. James Yorkston got me into Anne Briggs, Lal Waterson and Nic Jones - as well as introducing me to some great traditional songs - but he seems to be the only person from that whole scene with any interest in the old stuff.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Continuity Jones
Date: 07 Feb 12 - 08:24 AM

Slightly off topic, I've met King Creosote / Kenny Anderson a few times now. He's in his 40's and for years made a living running a ceiledh band. His father is a well known accordionist and band leader. The music he does is certainly folk afflicted, poor chap. His presence on an ambient pop record on a programme about cars isn't really an event for the folk world to celebrate though.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Spleen Cringe
Date: 07 Feb 12 - 10:24 AM

I'm not sure I'd describe that album as ambient pop. Or folk for that matter. Bloody lovely album, though. For what it's worth, Kenny Anderson knows his folk, even if he does other stuff. I still think this song is his finest moment: Not One Bit Ashamed


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: theleveller
Date: 07 Feb 12 - 11:10 AM

I've just been watching some bits of film about the Watersons on YouTube with clips from the great Sunday evenings upstairs at the Old Blue Bell in Hull which I used to go to when I was 16 or 17. It just strikes me how wonderfully simple, exciting, friendly and uncommercial it all seemed back then when it was just a matter of getting up and singing what you liked and no-one (well, no-one I knew) discussed what was folk and what wasn't and there were no awards and it was bloody amazing if you got to make a record. As Mike Waterson said: 'We're just playing at it' but they certainly enjoyed the game - as did I.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Phil Edwards
Date: 08 Feb 12 - 05:25 PM

The opening instrumental and the first half of John Taylor's Month Away had me quite excited, but after that it went off a bit. These days I find that I can't be bothered with songs about the minutiae of people's relationships; give me a big old song about heartbreak and death any day. Lovely sounds, though (and KC's got a lovely voice) - shame about the songs.

As for KC's finest moment, it was unquestionably "678" (I saw him do this live once backed by the Earlies - it was sublime), or else "My favourite girl", which is a rare example of a song that's completely transformed by knowing the back story. I thought it was just a pretty little song until I read in an interview that it's about talking on the phone to his ex-wife, who has custody of their daughter...
Promise you'll tell her
She's my favourite girl
In all the world


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 06:31 AM

A letter in yesterdays Manchester Evening News:

Mike Hardingis quite right (M.E.N.)February 3). Folk music is unfairly mocked and negelcted in Britain, but there are still some pub venues in Manchester, if not clubs, where it's played. And often without addmission charges. The Beech in Chorlton is one that is worth a visit.

That said, the pub scene, whether with or with out music, is very different to what it was like when Mike and others such as Christy Moore and Bernard Wrigley played in the Crumpsall boozers, which I recall from almost 50 years ago. And I don't remember having to pay then either. Geoff Chandler, Chorlton.

L in C#
Big Green Ceilidh Saturday - Songs next Wednesday


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 10:06 AM

You can't help thinking that Don MacCleans out of tune guitar will become a Youtube favourite. Lucky there were no musicians in the audience to notice it! Incredible!


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 11:17 AM

There was an ironic clap from someone in the public gallery when he finally got around to re-tuning


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: GUEST,SteveG
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 11:26 AM

leveller,
Whilst I agree with what you're saying, I think that was actually filmed at the Haworth Arms. I was standing at the back and did some singing while the cameras were off. They'd have had a job setting up lighting and cameras in the old Bluebell room.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: tonyteach1
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 11:44 AM

Well lets see   

1 I have been a TV actor and extra - getting work was hard - waiting for money was harder
80 plus percent of actors are unemployed at any one time Breaking in to the business is just as hard for any newcomer as any where else

I am in touch with gigging singer guitarists The guy who does covers is getting paid work. The clever singer guitarist who is doing his own material is getting gigs but not paid

There is not a conspiracy to stop new young artists developing - its just that the punters prefer established names Sir Bruce is still doing TV at 803 plus. Why because the punters ie the BBC book him


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 12:01 PM

Vic Smith: It would be difficult to quantify, but it seems to me that the proportion of 1960s/1970s young folk performers who took an extra interest in organising and facilitating folk clubs, dances and festivals as part of their interest is a higher proportion than of the young performers today.

Am I right in making this assumption/observation?

And if I am, why is this?

In other words, where are the young organisers to go with the explosion of young performers?


They're organising at venues that aren't recognised as "Folk Clubs" or "Folk Sessions/ Singarounds" but which nevertheless put on a lot of acoustic/ "folky style" music...almost invariably from youngsters.

There are 3 local venues that I go to where I can see lots of young people playing acoustic music. Most of them play their own songs but many of them are au-fait with both British and American folk...eg a trio I saw the other week did 2 of their own songs and then launched into some Woody Guthrie. I'm usually the oldest person in the audience at these venues, except perhaps for some of the performers' parents. I've tried to get some of them to go along to some of the more "traddy" venues in the area but they're generally not interested as they'r ehaving a lot of fun in a more "mixed" environment than they'd get in a traddy venue.

At the folk clubs, singarounds and "more traddy" sessions I go to, with the exception of one notable one where youngsters often turn up, I'm generally one of the youngest there, at 56. Equally, I can't get most of the older ones interested in attending "younger" venues.

The two scenes rarely mix. I managed to mix one event last year when I put on Katriona Gilmore and Jamie Roberts at a local venue, and engaged as their support act a band from the local "younger scene". Although Katriona and Jamie are young, the audience that came to see them was largely older people who'd seen them supporting Fairport or who responded to my leafletting (400 leaflets, into the hands of a member of every party attending the gig) of a Show Of Hands gig. The younger audience members were almost all from the "following" of the local band from the younger local scene. I managed to fill a hall with 104 people and a great mix of ages, and the odd thing is that everyone I spoke to really enjoyed *both* acts, so the "crossover potential" is there.

But it's really hard work to get it going.


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Subject: RE: Independent Article on Folk Awards 2012
From: theleveller
Date: 09 Feb 12 - 12:05 PM

"leveller,
Whilst I agree with what you're saying, I think that was actually filmed at the Haworth Arms."

Ah, the sands of time (and the beer) dim the memory! Still had some great times at the Blue Bell and at other clubs where I bumped into them Mike always used to call me The Banjo Player - 'cos I did at the time.


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Mudcat time: 19 February 12:39 PM EST

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