Home   Whats On   Article

FOLK FOR ALL: From the Bury Free Press of Friday, March 11

Some advice this week on making instruments more affordable.

Build/Convert Your Own: Make instruments you can’t afford, someone somewhere will be dumping broken guitars etc. in the skip. Salvage them Skippy, we waste good stuff despite the poverty/austerity. Give unloved instruments a new lease of life.

Motto: Mending is better than ending.

Conversion to slide: Some cheaply bought stringed instruments never stay in tune when fretted, so they get dumped. With guitars you can always raise the action – the distance between fretboard and string and use them for slide where the frets merely act as markers.

There’s something iconoclastically satisfying about taking a hacksaw to a guitar, I mean, it’s off the dump anyway so have some fun.

Customise your own – I have a McVities-tin resonator.

Remove the back and reline the entire inside with tinfoil. Fit a metallic kitchen collender inside with a twangy bean-can suspended on tension springs for that tinny effect and extra volume, then go street preaching. For slide, you’ll want to retune your contraption – open D or G, tuning DGDGBD or DGGGBD for that thumping Seasick Steve effect.

Try using thinner/thicker strings everywhere, experiment, this is no church of political correctness.

To convert into a flat steel guitar, enlarge the sound chamber by boxing in the whole area from the head to the body – it looks more like an Appallacian dulcimer. Electrify and play grass-skirt Hawaiian steel style using a heavy bar. Tuning is CEGACE, C sixth – a combination of C major and A minor – use minimal delay and/or echo, good also for country if you use the A string sparingly. Paint with acrylics then varnish with Tru-oil.


FRIDAY, MARCH 11 Hadleigh Folk and Music Night: Ansell Centre, 8pm.,£5 on door. £2 under 16s and floor singers. Pete Cooper and Richard Bolton. Supported by Robert Castellani. Bring own drink.

SATURDAY, MARCH 12 Slack Folk Piatto Cafe: Colchester, 2-4.15pm, free. Bernard Hoskin, Ken Butcher, Leon Helmsby, Dave Rado. slackfolk@gmail.com

SUNDAY, MARCH 13 Erskine Centre, Chedburgh: Spring Concert. £5 on door, accompanied under 16s free. Chedburgh Community Choir. Shanties, Russian folk,gospel. Contact Teresa 01284 850073

Black Fen Folk Club: The Boathouse, Cambridge. 7.30pm. Open/guest night. Contact JulieWatson – jwlz101@yahoo.co.uk.

MONDAY, MARCH 14 Ccolchester Folk Club: Arts Centre £10, £9 cons. Winter Wilson. Supported by Sinead and Friends.


Circle Dancing: Friends Meeting House, Bury. 7.30–9pm. £6 per session. Contact jenlarner@gmail.com


Hunter Club, Bury: 8pm. Free. Open night. Everyone welcome.

Wildwood Restaurant, Newmarket: 8pm. Free. Wordz & Muzic. Speak sing, play. Contact Yvonne 07880 695839

Ely Folk Club: 8pm–11pm Jim Moray Contact Andy Wall andywall@ntlworld.com


Wolf Folk Club: Wolfeton Village Hall. 8pm. Free. Singaround. Contact youngroger235@gmail.com.

Drinkstone Village Hall: 10am-11.30am. £5 on door. Circle Dancing. jenlarner@gmail.com

Burwell Folk Club: Ex Service & Social Club 8.30-11pm. Contact Michael Freaney michael.freaney@ntlworld.com

Horningsea Folk Club: The Plough and Fleece. 8pm-11pm.

The Ole Swan, Brightlingsea: Acoustic Night. 8pm-11pm. Free.


Iliffe Media does not moderate comments. Please click here for our house rules.

People who post abusive comments about other users or those featured in articles will be banned.

Thank you. Your comment has been received and will appear on the site shortly.


Terms of Comments

We do not actively moderate, monitor or edit contributions to the reader comments but we may intervene and take such action as we think necessary, please click here for our house rules.

If you have any concerns over the contents on our site, please either register those concerns using the report abuse button, contact us here.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More