Great new gigs on the way! Sat 27 July to Sat 24 Aug- tickets, details, videos…
Hi folks- there are some fantastic events on the way between now and the end of August (all in air-conditioned venues you’ll be pleased to know!!). This Saturday fRoots Album of the Year Editor’s Choice winners Alden Patterson & Dashwood come to the Harrison for two sets of English & American inspired roots music, and we return to The Harrison on Fri 2 Aug for Our Man In the Field with his full band- he’s a brilliant new discovery for New Roots, don’t miss him. On the 3rd and 10th Aug we have two notable free gigs at The Hays Galleria by the river in London Bridge with Whiskey Moonface and Counter’s Creek (we’re there every Saturday at 3.00 pm for a free one hour concert as part of Front Room Songs “Summer By The River’, come down and say hello!). On Thurs 15th Joisienne Clarke plays the Green Note, with support from Benedict Benjamin– there are just two tickets left for that one, you’ll need to move quickly! Friday 23rd we’re back at The Harrison for a ridiculously good triple-bill with Samantha Whates, Adam Beattie and Fiona Bevan (this is well on the way to selling out also, don’t hang about..), and we stay in the lovely Harrison basement for RW Hedges‘ (‘a genius songwriter’ Louder Than War) album launch on Saturday 24th. All details, videos and ticket links below, with lots more for Sept and Oct up now on the website, dive in!
Sat 27 July Alden, Patterson & Dashwood
New Roots presents fRoots Album Of The Year Editors Choice winners and Folk By The Oak stars Alden Patterson & Dashwood.
Doors open 7.30 pm, music from 8.15 pm. Alden Patterson & Dashwood will play two sets with a 30 minute interval.
Taking inspiration from the twin pillars of American bluegrass and English folk, Alden Patterson & Dashwood weave rich harmonies with fiddle, dobro and mandolin around a combination of finely crafted original compositions and traditional songs, all the while maintaining a thoroughly contemporary cutting edge. Their debut album, Call Me Home, was fRoots 2016 Album of the Year Editor’s Choice. In 2018 they made their debut performance at the prestigiousFolk by the Oak Festival, followed by a nationwide UK tour with folk legends Show of Hands. No museum pieces, A P & D feel equally at home alongside the likes of First Aid Kit and Old Crow Medicine Show as they do the stalwarts of US & UK trad folk.
“It’s lovely stuff” – Mark Radcliffe, BBC Radio 2 Folk Show
★★★★★ Album Of The Year Editors Choice – fROOTS Magazine
“When we saw this Folk / Americana trio live we were completely captivated, and knew we had to bring them to Folk by the Oak and share them with our audience” Adam Slough – Folk By The Oak Festival Director
Fri 2 Aug Our Man In The Field with support from Fairhazel
One of New Roots’ most exciting discoveries of 2019 comes to The Harrison in full band guise (drums, bass, guitar, cello and pedal steel). You could be forgiven for thinking you’ve heard Our Man The Field somewhere before. He records live with his band just like the best of his influences; Neil Young, Van Morrison, Credence Clearwater Revival, Ryan Adams and Wilco. His own sound is undefinable but familiar and has been compared to modern day artists such as Ray LaMontagne, Damien Rice, Foy Vance and Joe Purdy.
Think of Our Man In The Field – AKA Alexander Ellis – as an independent correspondent and his songs as dispatches from his travels. He has assembled a band of the finest players and together they give a deeply personal yet wholly cathartic performance, like an off the record admission from you to yourself.
Fairhazel is the moniker for the artist Hugh Macdonald who has been releasing music for several years under his own name, performing at TEDx, Ronnie Scott’s and Sofar as well as countless gigs across the US and the UK. A citizen of the world, he grew up in Paris and Cape Town, going on to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston. There he experienced a whole new culture and with it experiences that would inspire a new sound- folk music drawing lyrical and melodic influence from jazz and psychedelic music , rooted in a raw acoustic aesthetic.
Sat 03 Aug : Summer By The River -The New Roots Stage at Hay’s Galleria London Bridge – Whiskey Moonface
Sat 103 August, 3.00 pm : FREE CONCERT
To describe Whiskey Moonface as an alternative folk group doesn’t even begin to do justice to the breadth of inspiration and style in their music. Based around double bass, accordion and clarinet, they’re led by the superb vocals and hallucinatory lyrics of singer Louisa Jones.
Capable of being both ear-to-ear-grinningly entertaining and profoundly moving, they combine elements of Eastern European traditional and klezmer music, old-time New Orleans jazz and the baroque/ chamber folk styles of Sufjan Stevens and Beirut with their own unique take on contemporary folk music to make for a superbly realised, truly beautiful, and utterly original sound. There is simply no-one in the UK making music like Whiskey Moonface.
Sat 10 Aug : Summer By The River – Counter’s Creek
Sat 10 August, 3.00 pm : FREE CONCERT
Folk trio Counter’s Creek are inspired by the music of Britain and Ireland, jigs and reels from Eastern Europe, and rhythms from West Africa, all rooted in a strong melodic and harmonic sensibility allied to a real sense of swing and dance energy.
Fiddle, banjo and mandolin player Tom Newell is known for his work with Effra, The Ceilidh Liberation Front, and pop acts including Muse and Lana Del Rey. Guitarist Moss Freed plays with jazz/folk group Flekd, and has recently recorded for John Zorn’s Tzadik label. Whistle player Jonathan Taylor is co-founder of Tango Siempre, and has worked as an arranger for Robert Wyatt. Counter’s Creek are three much respected musicians from very different backgrounds, united by a love of the finest in roots music, firing tunes and earthy dance grooves.
Thurs 15 Aug: Josienne Clarke with support from Benedict Benjamin
Please note, the venue consists of both seated and standing areas- to ensure a seat please arrive early.
When Josienne Clarke signed to the illustrious independent music champions Rough Trade Records, its founder Geoff Travis told The Guardian that she writes, ‘songs that rearrange your internal emotional landscape… reinventing the popular song structure’.
With a rare gift for poetic melancholy, Josienne’s songs have also been described as ‘extraordinary’ (Mojo), ‘gently exquisite’ (The Observer) and ‘full of depth’ (The Telegraph). While the world music bible Songlines said, ’Clarke’s dark, complex imagery in the lyrics pushes the songs into rich metaphorical territory, one of the heart and of self-enquiry’. American Songwriter magazine named Josienne one of the best songwriters of 2016.
Having been awed by a live performance at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, 6 Music DJ Cerys Matthews arranged for Josienne to act and sing in The National Theatre’s revival of Timberlake Wertenbaker’s Our Country’s Good. In addition to performing on the Olivier stage each night – in a role specially created for her – Josienne contributed two of her own songs to the play. In their review of the acclaimed production, The Financial Times said, ‘Josienne Clarke sings like a haunted angel’. It marked the start of a continued relationship with the National Theatre which has included composing songs for a new adaptation of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Snow Queen, with acclaimed young playwright Zoe Cooper.
With an elegant, nuanced and emotionally affecting singing style (Cerys Matthews described her as having a voice that can ‘trickle back over centuries’) Josienne has frequently been compared to the great Sandy Denny, but present too are elements of Nina Simone and Gillian Welch; all three are important influences on her work.
Expanding beyond the folk music for which she was first known, Josienne has partnered with rising star jazz pianist Kit Downes to release the Such A SkyEP. And her friendship with London-based Scottish singer songwriter Samantha Whates has bloomed into new group PicaPica, whose debut album will be released by Rough Trade. fRoots magazine has already described the band’s sound as ‘originally exciting’.
In the last two years, Josienne has supported the great Richard Thompson on a dream-come-true tour of the UK and opened for the legendary Robert Plantin Europe. The summer of 2018 saw her perform with guitarist Ben Walker at some of the UK’s best-loved festivals, including Latitude, Larmer Tree and End Of The Road. She even found herself in demand as a writer and broadcaster, contributing to Standard Issue magazine and appearing on BBC Radio 3’s The Verb to discuss her pet subject melancholy, alongside poet Simon Armitage.
With several new records and theatrical productions to look forward to in 2019, Josienne Clarke remains one of the most impressive, accomplished and downright heart-breaking singers, lyricists and composers we’ve got.
Fri 23 Aug: The New Roots Sessions – Samantha Whates / Adam Beattie / Fiona Bevan
New Roots presents The New Roots Sessions- three headline solo artists on one superb triple-bill.
Scottish singer-songwriter and Rough Trade Records recording artist Samantha Whates is a hugely respected figure on the London roots scene. Her beautifully crafted, poetic songs retain a strong affinity with her Scottish roots, cultivating a sound that is thoroughly contemporary, rooted in tradition, yet uniquely her own. She recently formed new Rough Trade Records signingsPicapica with her long time friend and collaborator Josienne Clarke. Her debut album Dark Nights Make For Brighter Days has been enjoyed both critical acclaim and extensive radio play (BBC 6 Music, KCRW, Resonance FM).
Scottish singer-songwriter Adam Beattie has released four albums of his own songs. Having roots in Scottish folk music, as well as a lifelong interest in old time jazz, blues and other folk styles, his genre-spanning music is tied together by his warmly soulful, distinctive voice and poetically narrative lyrics. A consumate performer, Beattie’s shows are as captivating with solo voice and guitar as they are in full band incarnation. He has performed to audiences across the UK and Europe alongside musicians such as the legendary Bert Jansch, Jolie Holland and Sean Hayes as well as collaborating on guitar and bass with Brooke Sharkey, Scott Hirsch and Michael Chapman. In addition, Beattie is part of 12-piece folk supergroup Band of Burns, contributing interpretations of Robert Burns songs as well as original compositions, and Rough Trade signings PicaPica, alongside Samantha Whates, Josienne Clarke and Sonny Johns.
‘Incredibly Beautiful’ – Mary Anne Hobbs, BBC Radio 6 Music
‘A great ear for melody and a natural talent for lyric writing’ – Bruce MacGregor, BBC Radio Scotland
‘Carefully crafted, gently affecting song writing with a dark twist’ – Roddy Hart, BBC Radio Scotland
Expertly combining folk, soul and and pop, singer-songwriter Fiona Bevan is noted for co-writing ‘Little Things’ with Ed Sheeran, reaching no 1 in 13 countries, for which she received a BMI Award. Her debut solo studio albumTalk to Strangers (April 2014) was released on Navigator Records, and she has toured as support to Nick Mulvey, Ryan Keen, Ed Sheeran, Hawksley Workman, Ingrid Michaelson, Gwyneth Herbert, Luke Friend and Bill Bailey. She also runs a residency night at Servant Jazz Quarters, Dalston, called “Fiona Bevan Presents” which has featured acts including Mercury Prize-nominated Sam Lee and Ed Harcourt.
‘Startling odysseys that suggest Erykah Badu, Joanna Newsom and Kate Bush spine-tinglingly joined’ The Guardian
Sat 24 Aug: R.W. Hedges Album Launch
New Roots presents RW Hedges ‘The Hills Are Old Songs’ album launch, with support from spoken word artist Roy.
RW Hedges and Luca Nieri return with the launch of ‘The Hills Are Old Songs’, the follow up to 2018’s ‘The Hunters in the Snow’ collection. The album has a strong unifying theme, set in the American West of 1877, the year the phonograph was invented. Recorded chronologically, momentum built as the album came together. Hedges and Nieri deliberately stripped the songs of any extraneous insrumentation and emotional baggage- Luca Nieri produced the album, with the only addition to the pair’s acoustic guitar playing coming from an occasional delicate flavouring of pedal steel from Matt Allwright.
2018’s ‘The Hunters in the Snow’ received musc press acclaim, with psych bible Shindig Magazine calling it ‘magical’ and awarding it a maximum five stars, and much respected indie blog Louder Than War proclaiming Hedges to be a ‘genius songwriter’. As with the current album, it was guided by Luca Neiri’s minimalist vision, with the pair’s love for the easy listening era of the 1950s and 60s filtered through a keen ear for doo-wop and rhythm-and-blues and a natural awareness of sophisticated folk.
That’s all from New Roots for now– if there’s anything more you’d like to know please drop me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Cheers! Rory.