Big Ears, ladies and gentlemen, is 21. That makes it/him/her an adult in old money. Big congrats to Big Ears.
But Big Ears isn’t interested in old money. Big Ears only concerns it/him/herself with the very new, even if the very new is a reissue of an album originally released in 1958 featuring ladies and gentles already in their 80s singing in a pub long since shut down. In short, Big Ears is now a confused young adult. Please treat it/him/herself very kindly.
Here’s what Big Ears has overheard (and when we say overheard, we mean seen on the internet) this week. Pay close attention. Somebody has to.
If you’re not on Instagram these days, well… where the hell are you? We mentioned the joyous #tradfolk hashtag a few weeks ago, which gives you a chance to dive into all kinds of weird and wonderful folkie business, but we also recommend spending a good few hours following all your favourite artists and going behind the scenes.
Or, in the case of Nancy Kerr, behind the car…
…or, in the case of Ye Vagabonds, inside the car…
…or, in the case of Georgia Lewis, behind the shed.
You’ll also find Edgelarks rehearsing up a storm in what looks like a fancy barn…
…and Mikey Kenney playing Ethereal Otherworldly Folk (yes, that’s a genre now – moaning about it won’t help you) in what appears to be a 1960s Greenwich Village cupboard.
You’ll also find some legendary folk stalwarts giving you a taste of what has gone before. Try Topic Records…
Follow us over on Instagram for iconic, historical photos of Topic Records artists and all the news on our 80th anniversary new releases, gigs, events, etc : https://t.co/vbJujyvGA3 pic.twitter.com/lYHcjdzDhh
— Topic Records (@TopicRecords) February 22, 2019
…or us, of course.
In short, Instagram seems to be the folkie place to be these days. Get yourself involved!
In non-Instagram news, we feel somewhat finger-off-the-pulse and saddened to have read the news concerning Mawkin‘s latest tour. Not because they’re touring again, of course – nothing could give us more joy – but because they’ve labelled it a farewell tour and announced that they’ll be calling it quits. You can read their farewell note here, at the same time as booking tickets for this final jaunt.
Bye, Mawkin. Thanks for 16 boisterous years.
Just 22 days until we hit the road for the very last time guys! Get your tickets for this one off special at Walthamstow Folk Club in the lovely Ye Olde Rose & Crown Theatre Pub on the 13th of March now!https://t.co/VBDK7DPdFf https://t.co/QQP4iqUUJc
— Mawkin (@TheRealMawkin) February 19, 2019
Meanwhile, there’s live news from Wizz Jones and Ralph McTell, which is just… joy!
The man Simpson seems to be bringing some mighty sessioning to an end. How nice that he’s “delirious”! We hope he’ll be as delirious with the front cover he adorns in the next edition of fRoots. Have you subscribed yet?
I just finished my 8th day in the studio with @magicandy81 . Yesterday I had @thejohnsmith and @bennicholls10 with me. Twenty tracks are laid down including those with @lizhankscello @andycuttingbox and @NancyKerrMusic . I’m delirious. X
— Martin Simpson (@msimpsonian) February 22, 2019
Jim Moray has been cooking something up for a while. We’re so intrigued! (Note: Instagram again… it’s where it’s at!)
There’s a brand new release from the ever-busy Karine Polwart. You’ll be wanting to order this one posthaste!
7 days on the road
Out on the road this week, you’ll spot Mr Seth Lakeman kicking off a tour in Exeter (Thursday), before hitting Bridgwater (Saturday) and Salisbury (Sunday). Tickets are selling fast, so be quick.
— Seth Lakeman (@SethLakemanNews) February 21, 2019
You’ll catch Luke Daniels performing with the aforementioned Nancy Kerr (presumably not in the boot of a car) tonight in Walthamstow, in Shrewsbury (Monday), Coventry (Tuesday) and Grantham (Wednesday). Luke then continues a solo tour in Banbury (Thursday) and Morpeth (Friday).
Chris Wood gets back in the saddle this Saturday at Cecil Sharp House. Then he takes a wee break before riding forth once more, and with increased regularity, the following week.
If it’s an evening with Jim Causley you’re after, get your skates on and get over to Horsham this evening. Then take a little breather before catching him in Kingsbridge (Thursday), Exeter (Friday) and Newton St Cyres (Saturday).
Knight & Spiers continue their spring tour in Hitchin (tonight; Sunday), Bretforton (Tuesday), Bath (Wednesday), Wiveliscombe (Thursday), Devoran (Friday) and Brixham (Saturday).
Leveret kick off their latest wanderings in London (Friday) and Stamford (Saturday). They’ll head up to Scotland on Sunday before wending their way back to Bath over the coming weeks. We’ll be following them right here with our Big Ears.
You’ll catch Kitty Macfarlane venturing back out into the wilds this week. She’s at Gateshead Quays on Friday. There are more gigs lined up throughout March.
Fare thee well
This week, we’ve bid a fond farewell to U Tin, the Burmese master of the slide guitar. He reached the ripe old age of 87.
Remember, if you like what we’re doing and you want to support our ongoing dedication to all of this fine music, please consider taking out an fRoots subscription, or perhaps even making a donation. You can also click whenever it says “pre-order here” and we’ll get a little kickback from Amazon. It really does make a difference. We thank you.