The album was inspired by the ballad ‘BORROWDALE JWOHNNY’ composed by Robert Anderson, the bard of Cumberland, in the 19th C. It tells the tale of Johnny, who leaves Borrowdale amidst gossip, to seek his fortune in ‘The Big City’, an eternal and familiar theme in any century.
The songs take the listener on a journey that skips up and down the centuries, through the work of 18th& 19th C. Cumbrian writers such as Suzanna Blamire and Robert Anderson, to modern ballads written by Mike Willoughby and John Hall. These songs explore the traditional themes of ambition and self-determination, with an enduring sense of place and history.
The Tunes have been sourced from manuscripts left by fiddle players residing in Westmorland, Cumberland or North Lancashire during the 18th and 19th centuries. These include William Irwin of Keswick and Elterwater, The Winder family of Wyresdale, The Browne family of Troutbeck and John Barnes of Abbeytown, nr. Wigton
Striding Edge are:
Ben McCabe Drums, percussion, French horn, vocals.
Carolyn Francis Fiddle, border Bagpipes, Trombone, vocals.
Mike Willoughby Vocals, dance-calling, melodeon, bouzouki, guitar, harmonica.
Rick Middleton Double-bass, vocals, dance-calling.
1. Borrowdale Johnny 06:05
2. Kings Polka, The Buff & The Blue and Ford Park Polka 03:18
3. Raffles Merrie Nite 03:20
4. Moving Away 05:08
5. Wrapped Between Borders 03:25
6. Keswick Bonnie Lasses and The Green Ship 03:15
7. Miss Gilpin’s Song 04:59
8. Beggar Boy Of The North 08:05
9. High Water and We’ll All Lye Together 04:12
10. Poor Man’s Mountains 04:39
11. Greensleeves and The Moon & Seven Stars 02:05
12. Trumpet Minuet, Get Old With Me and Charming Phyllis 04:08
13. Exit Strategy, Yordas and Tizzer 06:30
All tracks arranged by Striding Edge