Tuesday, June 30, 2009

SFF Tune workshops 2009

This year Izzy has organised two tune workshops, one aimed at beginners and and one at improvers.

From the Tune Workshops page of the main SFF website link you will find downloadable tunebooks and supporting materials.

The Improvers Session follows the same format as previous years where we will play any set of tunes requested from this year's book.

The all-new Beginners Session has nine well known tunes and accompanying audio files so you can play along and practice the tunes before the workshop.

As always, our aim is not to teach you the tunes on the day but to give you common ground with which to enjoy each session. Enjoy!

Those who've attended these sessions over the last couple of years, will remember how friendly and accessible they are, and how those who've never had the confidence to sit in on a session in the past have sat in, played and loved every minute of the experience.

Have a look at the tunebook, listen to the MP3 samples, practice a little, and then join us over the weekend!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Breabach - School's Project Year 2

We’ve just completed year two of our three year Heritage Lottery funded school project where we take musicians into school for a full week to explore the folk traditions of Great Britain.

Year one saw The Demon Barber Roadshow, and this year we looked at Scottish traditions, and had fantastic band Breabach in Radbrook Primary School for a week, with a final concert in the Theatre Severn on Friday 19th June with 30 children from the school.

The band performed a concert exploring the dance, music and song of the Scottish tradition, and throughout the concert they were joined on stage by the 30 children who had been working with the band all week – the children demonstrated Scottish set and step dances, traditional song, and 10 children played traditional tunes on whistles.

It was a fantastic week for the band and the school, but especially so for the 30 children who worked with the band over the week.

There will be a full report and pictures of the full week our website in the coming month.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Richard Shindell - The Hive

The hundred people who packed into our first small show at The Hive in Shrewsbury, were treated to a world-class performance from Richard Shindell.

In the late afternoon he held a songwriting workshop that saw him explain how some of his songs had come about, from how tricky last verses had just fallen into his lap through good fortune; to how his newest song, 'Abi's Gone to the Country', had been written in a couple of hours in Florence only days ago.

The sound for the evening was a perfect as could be imagined and Richard held the audience for 2hr 5mins with a superbly varied and engaging set.

Those fortunate enough to be in the audience will never forget the atmosphere of the room - it genuinely was an evening of real magic.

We're already looking into other shows in the same venue...we'll keep you posted.
Photo courtesy of Alan Surtees

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Darwin Artist Video Interviews

Folk magazine website Spiral Earth have just listed video interviews with each of the Darwin artists (Chris Wood, Karine Polwart, Jez Lowe, Mark Erelli, Emily Smith, Rachael McShane, Krista Detor - not sure where Stu Hanna's video went!)


These videos were recorded on the Monday of the songhouse week, and are excellent interviews that show the thoughts of the artists in the middle of the songwriting process.

Radio Devon are broadcasting a Darwin programme this evening (Thursday 11 June, 7pm - 10pm) where you have the chance to hear some of the songs from the Darwin Song Project.

It's likely there will be between 8 and 10 songs broadcast through the 3 hour programme, with most being played after 9pm.

It will be available to listen live from 7pm here