Appearing next at the Willows

Wed May 31st - 8.30pm -      Chris Sherburn & Denny Bartley with Emily Sanders

Chris and Denny have been bringing their unique sound to audiences across Europe and the USA since the early 1990s, when a chance meeting at a music session created one of folk music’s most enduring partnerships.  They are joined by Emily Sanders, formerly of Isambarde.  Emily’s fiddle playing and singing brings a new depth that compliments Chris on accordion and Denny’s guitar and stirring voice.   The fast flowing “craic” means that no two concerts are ever the same!!  Enjoy



Wed June 14th - 8.30pm -  Jenn Butterworth & Laura-Beth Salter

Jenn and Laura-Beth have each been a presence on the UK folk scene for a number of years. They were brought together by the close-knit and progressive Glasgow folk music community, spending lots of their time jamming an eclectic mix of folk music from across the globe, particularly the UK, Scandinavia and America. The years of playing together brought a deep affinity between the two artists; their rhythms lock tightly, their voices blend so closely that it’s often hard to tell them apart. They have developed a natural telepathy: two musicians bound together. 

Jenn Butterworth is one of Scotland’s foremost female guitarists, and has toured extensively with the award winning Anna Massie Band. As an accompanist she is in high demand, her most recent collaborations have involved Songs of Separation, Phil Cunningham and Fiddler’s Bid.

Laura-Beth Salter takes influence from the Oldtime and Bluegrass music that her parents played whilst she was growing up in Lincolnshire. After spending time studying a Traditional Music Degree in Newcastle she became heavily involved in the folk scene. She is a founding member of The Shee and her most recent collaborations involve Shooglenifty and The MacLean Project led by the world renowned Perthshire singer Dougie MacLean.


 

Wed June 28th - 8.30pm -  Phil Cockerham Trio

Philip Cockerham is a British singer, performer and songwriter. He is based in West Yorkshire, England, but plays nationally on the folk and acoustic music scene.      www.philipcockerham.com

His songs contain a range of sometimes humorous, but always thought-provoking themes, with memorable hooks and irresistible choruses! There are also some familiar traditional songs, but delivered in a refreshingly different way. It's not surprising then, that Phil Cockerham is fast gaining a deserved reputation with his original material and his entertaining performances.                       Supported with his collection of acoustic instruments, Phil Cockerham captivates audiences with his music in a range of styles. His relaxed and confident personality instantly engages and puts people at their ease. Whether he is performing solo, or as most often is the case when he is accompanied by ace double bass player, Dave Bowie  and percussionist/harmonist Dickie Dixon, an enjoyable night is promised.

His influence has often inspired others to pick up their own music and speak for themselves. Since his emergence in recent years, many people have discovered Phil Cockerham and his songs, and other musicians are now covering songs he has written and recorded.

Wed Sept 13th - 8.30pm -  Dave Gibb

HAILING from the village of Wanlockhead in Dumfries and Galloway Dave describes himself as a left-handed, balding, middle-aged songwriting folky from Scotland’s highest village.

A superb guitarist with a style that is as distinctive as it is effective, a voice that can carry traditional and contemporary songs and a songwriting ability that produces songs ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous, he is an established performer throughout the acoustic/folk club, festival and concert scene.

Lyrically Dave is a storyteller and is determined to maintain the art of storytelling through song. Musically he draws on both traditional and contemporary sources, especially the finger picking styles of the heroes.

Wed Sept 27th - 8.30pm -  Maria Dunn & Shannon Johnson

Award nominated Canadian Songwriter Maria Dunn ( vocal, guitar, accordian) in duo with Shannon Johnson (violin) draws deeply on the folk tradition of storytelling through song. a true preserver of the spirit of folk music, she is often compared to Woody Guthrie for her keen social awareness and her unvarnished songs about the lives of working men and women.

Melding North American roots music with her Scottish-Irish heritage, Maria celebrates the resilience and grace of "ordinary" people, past and present.

A true preserver of the spirit of folk music, past Juno and CFMA-nominee Maria Dunn is often compared to Woody Guthrie for her keen social awareness and unvarnished songs about ordinary people. In 2016, she released her sixth independent album Gathering, songs of courage and struggle, local and global (produced by Shannon Johnson of Juno-winning band The McDades).

Edmonton-based, Maria tours internationally. Accolades for her songwriting include publication in Sing Out! and Penguin Eggs magazines and the Rise Again songbook (2015). Other artists have recorded (Niamh Parsons, Bob Bossin) or performed (Archie Fisher, Andy Irvine, Nathan Rogers) her songs.

Wed Nov 8th - 8.30pm -  Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman

Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman have long established themselves as one of the UK folk scene’s most rewardingly enduring partnerships.

Twice recent winners of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Best Duo – 2016 & 2013 – the couple’s intimacy and strength of passion on stage have won them many fans and an enviable reputation as ‘Songwriters par excellence’- (fRoots),  whose greatly varied original songs cover such subjects as wicked mermaids, Norwegian legends, and a lonely whale.

Building upward from their last two highly praised albums ‘‘Tomorrow Will Follow Today’ & Hidden People’’ fans of folk and acoustic music can only wonder where this leading couple will choose to turn next.

With a story that includes over 20 years of music making with the likes of Seth Lakeman, Cara Dillon, Levellers, Kate Rusby and Show of Hands, Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman have consolidated themselves as pillars of modern British folk.

Wed Nov 22nd - 8.30pm -  Ninebarrow

NINEBARROW are a multi-award-winning folk duo, who are impressing audiences across the country with their innovative and captivating take on the folk tradition. Described by Mike Harding as sounding ‘damn fine’ and by Kate Rusby as ‘absolutely amazing’, Jon Whitley and Jay LaBouchardiere combine breath taking vocal harmonies and melodies, delivering original songs that are inspired and rooted in the landscape and history of the British Isles. As well as crafting unique and engaging original material, Ninebarrow also take a wide-range of traditional folk songs and rework them in their own, distinctive way. Not only exceptional singers and musicians, Ninebarrow are also equally passionate about the stories behind their songs  - combining their music with history, folklore and storytelling. 

Wed Dec 6th - 8.30pm -  Blast from the Past

Founded in 2011 by Chris Green and Sophie Matthews, Blast from the Past have swiftly earned themselves an enviable reputation for presenting the sights and sounds of the past in a way that is witty, engaging and accessible. Although they are first and foremost musicians, they are equally at home performing as actors, storytellers and street entertainers.

Their music ranges from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century, taking in everything between. As main suppliers to English Heritage they are used to playing for a variety of audiences – from an intimate village hall to a large auditorium.

Wed Dec 20th - 8.30pm -  Bernard Wrigley

Bernard Wrigley (born 1948 in Bolton, Lancashire) is a singer, actor and comedian. He is sometimes known by the nickname "The Bolton Bullfrog".

Wrigley's career as a singer and storyteller began in the late 1960s, when a love of folk music led him to perform in folk clubs. Since then he has released over sixteen albums of traditional and original songs, stories and monologues. His main instruments are the guitar and concertina. He began acting around the same time and has made many appearances on stage, most famously in Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot alongside Mike Harding at Bolton's Octagon Theatre, and Jim Cartwright's Road at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester.

Wrigley has made many appearances in British TV programmes, including Phoenix Nights (where he was Dodgy Eric, who sold club owner Brian Potter a Das Boot fruit machine, a bucking bronco and an obscene bouncy castle), Emmerdale (as eccentric rocket inventor Barry Clegg) and Coronation Street (most recently as the Rev. Marvin Winstanley, the shady 'internet priest' whom Roy and Hayley approached to arrange their wedding - Wrigley's sixth character in the soap). His other credits include Last of the Summer Wine, Cold Feet, Coogan's Run, Dinnerladies, Victoria Wood With All The Trimmings and In with the Flynns. He also appeared as a union official in Brassed Off and as a school teacher in Rita, Sue and Bob Too. In 1978 he was a night school teacher in Alan Bennett's play Me—I'm Afraid of Virginia Woolf.

On BBC Radio 4 he has acted in plays lasting from 15 to 90 minutes. BBC Radio Lancashire has broadcast many of his pre-recorded series, such as Wrigley's Ramblings and Home Brewed, and his readings of many stories written by Tommy Thompson.

As a writer he has released various combinations of his songs and monologues. In 2006 he produced a book of silly one-verse poems Shorts For All Occasions, which was followed in 2008 by The Longs & The Shorts Of It. - Don’t miss this opportunity to see him.