The first session of a new folk night was held at The Gardeners pub, in Tostock, on Monday, March 30.
Around 15 people turned out on what was a wet and windy night to meet in the pub’s back bar, an atmospheric setting with oak beams and tiled floor. It’s ideal for a folk night, in that it is separate from the main bar where other customers can carry on a lively conversation without drowning out the music.
There were plenty of musicians, with guitarists playing a range from elegiac folk ballads to blues and Pink Floyd, melodeons, an accordion, a flying-fingered fiddler and a banjolele player.
Tunes from his recent funeral were played in tribute to the late Des Herring, morris man and hobby horse to East Suffolk Morris Men for many years. Most of the songs were pretty gloomy, with death at sea, the electric chair and even the ‘pub with no beer’ all featuring, but despite this funereal tone a cheery time was had by all.
Next session at the Gardeners will be on April 27 at 8.30pm.
Back in Bury St Edmunds, a ‘community choir’ is being assembled as part of this year’s Bury Festival. It will include adults, many of whom have sung in previous years, and school pupils of various ages, from primary to upper school.
A series of singing workshops to prepare for the concert will be led by musical director Paul Bartholomew, who has worked with Bury Festival community choir many times since 2006. He and the band Mbawula have run successful song projects all over the country.
Paul will take the choir on a musical journey from New Orleans to Trinidad via Ireland and the UK, with stopovers in various different centuries and continents. The itinerary includes Calypso, Mardi Gras groove, a sea shanty, a tune from the Irish rebellion and much more.
This Global Folk performance will take place on Saturday, May 16, at The Apex. Rehearsals start on April 13.
-- Gayle Wade
We lost a giant from the folk world last week. RIP John Renbourn.
SUNDAY, APRIL 5 – Bury Folk Collective: Oakes Barn, St Andrew’s Street North, Bury St Edmunds. 7pm, £3 on door. Wired night, professional sound engineer, lights. Real ale, friendly,
atmospheric. Bex and Freda, On the Edge, Thorpe and Bailey, This Country Needs More Country, Pheonix Folk.
TUESDAY, APRIL 7 – Sing/play around: Crown & Castle, Risby. Snacks at half time. Dave Cooper. Contact Crown & Castle.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 8 – Singaround: The Bull pub, Woolpit. In back room. Free. 8pm. First timers welcome, as are oldtimers.
Ask for John or Peter.
THURSDAY, APRIL 9 – Horningsea Folk Club: Plough and Fleece. 8-11pm. Contact Phil 01638 741743.
FRIDAY, APRIL 10 – Melford folk: Cock and Bell, Long Melford. 8.30pm. Free. Everyone welcome. ‘anything goes’. Stage format.
FRIDAY, APRIL 10 – Milkmaid Folk Club: Constitutional Club, Guildhall Street, Bury St Edmunds. 8pm. Traditional. American. The Jigantics. Support tba.
Listings compiled by Brian Kew