Davey Graham EP

To celebrate the 6th annual Record Store Day on Saturday 20th April Topic Records have released a 50th anniversary limited edition 7″ vinyl single of DAVY GRAHAM‘s historic and extraordinarily influential 3/4 AD. This astonishing recording includes the original recording of Graham’s signature tune – ‘Angi’, alongside ‘Davy’s Train Blues’ and a wonderful duet with ALEXIS KORNER on the title track.

‘Angi’ was composed by the 19 year-old Graham whilst holidaying in the South of France and missing his girlfriend. The tune quickly became the ‘test piece’ for all aspiring finger-style guitarists on the British folkscene.

This modest little EP recorded in the Camden Town kitchen of Bill Leader’s Mum in 1962 captured Davy Graham at the exact moment of his unique guitar invention. Three instrumental pieces that helped to define modern British folk-blues and would influence a generation of guitarists, from Bert Jansch, Martin Carthy and Paul Simon to Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend and Johhny Marr.

Beer

This is not strictly on topic for this website, but it is a subject close to many folkies’ hearts; apparently someone is writing an app for your smartphone to recommend beers that you might like. Beer Mapper is a project by engineering student Kevin Jamieson. The app, when it becomes available, will work a lot like a Hot or Not for beer: It shows you two options and you pick the one you prefer. After you’ve gone through and picked beers for a while, you’ll be able to view a heat map that’s supposedly representative of the beers you might like the most.

How does it work? First, Jamieson created a database of beverages for the project by pulling reviews from the 50 most commonly discussed brews on Ratebeer.com. After crunching the reviews, he was able to create a “map” of beers, which is a solid representation of the similarities and differences between beers. From there, all the app needs is for you to input on various kinds so that it can extrapolate your taste.

My advice, skip the app, and get yourself to some beer festivals. The people that brew craft ales, stouts, bitters, lagers and ciders tend not to be too fussy about apps and they’d be more help, and you’d have more fun too.

The Full English

The Full English is an English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) project, supported by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, the National Folk Music Fund and The Folklore Society. It will bring together 11 major collections for the first time in the most comprehensive free searchable digital archive in the world.The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has awarded the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) a grant of £585,400 to archive, conserve and digitise materials from six archives containing some of the country’s most important folk music collections and allow free public access to 58,400 digitised collection items through a new web portal. The project will bring together the collections of Harry Albino, Lucy Broadwood, Clive Carey, Percy Grainger, Maud Karpeles, Frank Kidson, Thomas Fairman Ordish, Cecil Sharp, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Alfred Williams and Mary Leather for the first time, to create the most comprehensive searchable database of English folk songs, tunes, dances and customs in the world. The Full English is also EFDSS’s biggest learning and participation programme to date. The Full English project is also supported by the National Folk Music Fund and The Folklore Society.This archive is due to launch in June.

Fay Hield has been commissioned by EFDSS, with support from the Arts Council’s Grants for the Arts and PRS for Music Foundation, to create new work, arrangements and a full concert performance piece to commemorate The Full English. The results of Fay’s journey through the digital archive will premiere on 20 June at Cecil Sharp House in London, the home of EFDSS.

Fay, Seth Lakeman, Martin Simpson, Nancy Kerr, Sam Sweeney, Rob Harbron and Ben Nicholls will perform new music and arrangements inspired by material Fay has found within The Full English archive.

The Full English Tour will run from 19 October until 2 November taking in Bury, Gateshead, Southport, Derby, Bristol, Colchester, Sheffield, Milton Keynes, London, Birmingham and Lincoln.

Fay Hield said: “Exploring the archives so far has led to some amazing discoveries and there is a wealth of material that, from 20 June, will be available to anyone who is interested. I am delighted that so many talented and experienced musicians will be part of The Full English Tour, enabling us to share our discoveries.”

Seth Lakeman said: “I have always been interested in folk stories, songs and tunes so the plan by EFDSS to make a lot of their archives available via the internet is something I want to support. So I’m excited that I’ve been asked to be part of this special project celebrating this work and I’m looking forward to working with this great bunch of musicians.”

Martin Simpson added: “I’m delighted to be involved in The Full English Tour – it gives me the chance to work with some of our finest young musicians and singers, and to learn new pieces from the big folk song collections.”