2010!!! Good grief.. where did last year go?
Well I’ll tell you. 3 very special things happened.
The first was that my beautiful grand-daughter Freya was born in May..
The second thing was that I performed with Fairport at the Barbican in July. A sell-out concert based around the first five Fairport albums and part of the Witchseason Weekend Concerts. I had the wonderful task of introducing the first lineup with whom I sang and played autoharp on several songs, then bowed out gracefully as the lineups changed and sang from the other albums, culminating in a magnificent Meet On The Ledge..
The recorder that I played at the Barbican was signed by all the surviving members of the first lineup and it was then auctioned on Ebay and raised £210 which was then donated to Greyhound Lifeline, from whom I adopted my latest ancient greyhounds Whizzy and Flower (RIP)
And the third thing was the release of Talking With Strangers in August. We held a launch gig at the legendary 100 Club in London t play most of the album live.. Many thanks to Alistair, Tim, Simon, Mark, ,Laurie and Rachel who played for me so beautifully and made it a joy instead of the terror it might have been.
Thanks also to Sand Snowman, David Hughes and Tim Bowness and friends who also played their very different musics.
There were many wonderful reviews of the album from the BBC Music website, Mail on Sunday, Record Collector, Classic Rock Presents Prog, Oxford Times Limited Edition Spiral Earth, Netrhythms, Progfiles and many more. I gave interviews to many of the local BBC radio stations, including Radio’s Oxford, Manchester, Kent and Bristol as well as the US internet radio Prog’opolis who created a three hour programme around my life and music. My head is now very large.
The vinyl version of TWS has been released by Tonefloat. It is a limited edition of 500 and each one has a signed numbered postcard inside with the words of the original Harpsong and a picture of me and my harp.
The album has been selling very well and has now been repressed –sorry re-pressed with the new artwork by the wonderful Jackie Morris . There’s a bit of her work from the inlay at the top of the page. Isn’t it lovely? Her website iswww.jackiemorris.co.uk – go and have a look..
HMV gave me my own rack pack in nearly all their stores and had TWS in their Best of 2009 specialist Music stand
TWS will be released in Scandinavia by the Norwegian record company, Termo Records, on the 1st March 2010.
It will have a bonus track on it –‘Fragile’ and I will be going over there to promote it with Tim and Alistair, by appearing on two of Norway’s top TV and one of it’s top radio programmes plus a lot of nattering with magazines and journalists and all that lovely malarkey.
And TWS will be released in the US, France and Japan very shortly. Yippee!
What else? Ah yes Trader Horne. We will be releasing the Morning Way vinyl album this year. It will be a faithful reproduction of the original and will have vinyl 7” copies of the two Trader Horne singles included, again they will be faithful reproductions of the originals
And I have promised that I will do a one-off reunion Trader Horne gig with Jack McAuley this year. I must be bonkers..as well as one or two live JD performances this year. More news later when they are confirmed.
I am currently working on new material with Alistair and Tim, and on a wonderful project with Markus Reuter and Lee Fletcher. And I have contributed to recordings with Kings Cross, Sand Snowman and I will be writing and singing some music for a small project with some of Jackie Morris’s work.
All in all, apart from things like getting snowed in and on and losing another of my lovely greyhounds to old age..oh and picking up my bus pass (eek!) it’s been an extraordinary year and 2010 looks as if it’s about to go the same way.
Right then. Toodle pip for now xxx