From: Folk in the Barn [debs_at_folkinthebarn_dot_co_dot_uk]
Sent: 06 May 2010 17:18
Subject: May - you never - miss out on great music

Did you like the title? It's got the month, a song title and friendly wish all in one. Took me seconds to think of that, was it worth it I hear you ask!
Have your legs stopped aching yet? Those that weren't dancing their socks off at Show of Hands on Friday, were probably dancing their socks off at Bellowhead in Rochester on Saturday. Well done if you managed both - what stamina!!
A fantastic turn out for Show of Hands, and a brilliant atmosphere. I really enjoyed it, hope you did too. The best turn out of the tour I was told - so huge thanks to those that came along. Although we were 70 short of full capacity, I for one thought it was 'ambient' enough. I was hoping that Phil or Miranda would mention the fact that it was Steve's birthday - give us all an excuse to sing to him for a change!
I was also hoping somebody would leave some comments on the Show of Hands guestbook. There have been lots of great reviews and comments from all the other gigs, but no-one so far has mentioned Folkestone....? boo hoo... I'm worried they'll think we didn't enjoy it. If you feel like it, I know the guys appreciate getting feedback. Also currently on the SoH guestbook is this message from Vaughan, Show of Hand's trusty manager ..... I thought I'd pass it on....
"Hi Folks,
The EFDSS have launched a campaign called Folk on the Airwaves asking people to petition the BBC: "The BBC is currently undertaking a Strategy Review Consultation, looking at its broadcasting output. Having received the Director General's recommendations, that include the well publicised closure of BBC 6 Music and BBC Asian Network, the BBC Trust wish to hear the views of the public. This is an ideal opportunity to make our voice heard.
Folk music is immensely under-represented in the BBC schedules, but the advent of digital radio is a great opportunity for them to fulfil their public service remit by providing niche market programming. Folk programming on the BBC is also an invaluable platform for folk artists at all stages of their career, but is especially useful for young artists or those just starting out.
Folk music should be an essential part of the BBC's programming, and you can help us with our campaign to make that a reality - just add your name to our online petition at before 20 May, and circulate the link to your friends and family."
Full article and links here: Add your vote and make a difference. " Vaughan Pearce, SOH HQ

It was great to get an email the other day telling me that as a result of the last mailout - Steve's recent Radio prog had been listened to online in Australia! Crikey

Right then! big decision day today - who will you choose? - what a difficult dilemma! Will it be Steve Knightley at St Gregory's, Canterbury or Phil Beer at Faversham folk club. Yes - they're both here on the 30th June - I know! - we all try so hard to avoid those situations happening, this one slipped through the net. Oh sorry - did you think I was talking about the election! Nah! Now if there was a common sense party, they might get my vote.
That's definitley enough Show of Hands news and malarky. The real reason for this email is to remind you that the next opportunity to get a fix of great music is coming up very soon. Friday 14th May - we have for your listening and viewing pleasure - the unbelievably fantastic GIGSPANNER. This band got a well deserved and sustained standing ovation last year - they were absolutely incredible. The most stunning musicianship and connection between the three superb performers. Peter Knight - Steeleye Span's virtuoso fiddle player - has to be seen to be believed. Head and shoulders above any other fiddle player I've ever seen, the sounds he gets out of his violin are astonishing and so beautiful. Combine that with a fantastic percussion/rhythm section and inter-weaving guitar and the noise they make together is sublime. You really shouldn't miss this one. Still some tickets left at £12 each. It's at our wonderful Kingston Barn. At the risk of making this another long email I'm going to copy Simon Rowan's review of last years concert - so you know what you're likely to miss if you don't come...
"DURRGH. It just dawned on me what a gigspanner is. Not only a busmanís holiday from Steeleye Span, but also an essential piece of equipment every self-respecting journeyman musician should not travel without, a bottle opener.
A perfectly lazy warm June evening in a rural Kentish setting in the village of Kingston and a trio of the most affable, laid back and immensely talented musicians one could wish to be entertained by. It just doesnít get any better.
Actually it does. I knew a little about violinist, Peter Knightís diversification from Steeleye Span, and it is an extraordinary journey from there. It was not a road seeking fame and fortune, rather adventure and exploration, which was to lead to the discovery of new frontiers and an exciting new musical landscape. Peter was involved with a 12 piece jazz orchestra, which I saw some years back led by a long-time friend, saxophonist Trevor Watts.
There are many more musical projects bringing African or Arabian flavours into the mix in what seems to be a culmination of Peterís lifeís work in his new venture, Gigspanner, and long may it continue. Roger Flack, on acoustic guitar and percussionist Vincent Salzfaas are superb accompanists, and a whole lot more. An essential blend of rhythm and underlying melody, shadowing and cajoling Peterís soaring violin gliding around the warm summer thermals in the Barn through to improvised musical conversations and a delightfully witty, whimsical ramble composed on the hoof.
I hadnít appreciated what blooming hard work it is being a virtuoso violinist, especially on a hot night, but there were some emotive stories between tunes for Peter to refresh and reflect, of life, friends and a four-year career change, fishing. Not an excuse for a long holiday, but serious trawling. I donít know if this was out of necessity or Peter just fancied trying his hand at something else. He did mention something about not being qualified to sing a sea shanty until properly marinated, but four years is beyond the call, and we simply canít have a musician of this calibre roaming the oceans for codís sake.
Peter is definitely fore-mostly a very gifted experienced musician, and like most great musicians, unassuming of his talent, but modestly aware of the pleasure shared. As with his accomplices an absolute treasure to behold. A packed barn could have listened all night, intimate and beautiful. Simply great innovative music encompassing a variety of influences and sources drawn from an invaluable career, donít let it be history tells you how good. Be there, Gigspanner at a venue near you." Simon Rowan

Gigspanner - 14th May - Kingston Barn - just £12 - ring or email me to reserve - you might have to leave a message as I'm at Cromer - Folk on the Pier this weekend with CQ and don't have a BlueBerry. Mind you I'm not sure Cromer has internet yet? ;o)

Lets hope for a warm and sunny weekend.


Debs Earl

ps Only 18 tickets left for Fairport Acoustic on May 27th.

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