A Review of the Various Artists CD
"Acoustic Folk, Rock & Blues"

"Acoustic Folk, Rock & Blues"
by Various Artists

(Dick-Head Productions: DHM011)

This review is written by Dai Woosnam, daigress@hotmail.com, 7/04

This is an album showcasing the talents of some of the stalwart talents of the North East Lincolnshire (England) folk scene. That it has been produced in aid of a worthy local charity will not affect the way I approach it as a critic. My foremost consideration will be whether or not the prospective buyer of this album will be making a shrewd purchase.

This was a live recording made one night last winter in aid of “The Heneage Live At Home Scheme” (part of a nationwide initiative run by the Methodist Church for the most senior of Senior Citizens). And as you would expect with live recordings, what it lacks in finesse it more than makes up in spontaneity.

We start of with the authoritative guitar and vocal delivery of Roger Beard. The two numbers he presents are sure-footedness personified. And how nice to hear someone sing Dylan with no hint of an American accent.

Then comes veteran Bob Heaton. Now this guy is respected throughout the County as one of the finest “a cappella” singers around. He is not always the best judge of what suits him, but the two he selects here are well-chosen. Indeed “The Spaniard Who Blighted My Life” (with audience participation singing the “He Shall Die!” response) is a candidate for the best track on the album.

Then comes Eddie Weeks with his couple. How nice to hear that Paul Metsers song again. About 18 years ago, New Zealander Metsers' songs were ever so popular on the UK Folk Circuit: nowadays you seldom hear them.

Broadsword are a duo new to me. Accomplished musicianship, and good vocals….if albeit the latter are a bit derivative! Their “Hotel California” sounded more “Eagles” than the real thing.

Then Dick Appleton who incidentally recorded and produced this album. He has a big reputation in the County as a blues guitarist and vocalist. And you can hear why. He does nothing fancy with the lyric: just puts it across in the traditional way.

And then Parcel of Rogues, a trio fronted by Martin Carthy soundalike, Martin Campbell. Was particularly taken with “Gabriel's Message” with its words by the Reverend Sabine Baring-Gould. (Now, that is the Folk name to trump all other names in a name-dropping review, eh?!)

Get this very decent album at the very modest price of £8 (excluding postage), and remember your money goes to a fine cause. And for you North Americans reading this: obtain this CD and it will give you an insight into the Folk Scene in a coastal part of the East of England, some 200 miles north of London.

Buy it from Martin Campbell atmartincampbell9@ntlworld.com

Dai Woosnam
Grimsby, England

Track List:

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