Big Bill Broonzy
Big Bill Broonzy was an American blues singer and guitarist. His career began in the 1920s, when he played country blues to African-American audiences. Through the 1930s and 1940s he navigated a transition in style to a more urban blues sound popular with working-class African-American audiences. In the 1950s a return to his traditional folk-blues roots made him one of the leading figures of the emerging American folk music revival and an international star, his long and varied career marks him as one of the key figures in the development of blues music in the 20th century. Broonzy copyrighted more than 300 songs during his lifetime, including both adaptations of traditional folk songs and original blues songs; as a blues composer, he was unique in writing songs. Born Lee Conley Bradley, he was one of the seventeen children of Mittie Belcher; the date and place of his birth are disputed. Broonzy claimed to have been born in Scott, but a body of emerging research compiled by the blues historian Robert Reisman suggests that he was born in Jefferson County, Arkansas.
Broonzy claimed he was born in 1893, many sources report that year, but family records discovered after his death suggested that the year was 1903. Soon after his birth the family moved to an area near Pine Bluff, where Bill spent his youth, he began playing music at an early age. At the age of 10 he made himself a fiddle from a cigar box and learned how to play spirituals and folk songs from his uncle, Jerry Belcher, he and a friend, Louis Carter, who played a homemade guitar, began performing at social and church functions. These early performances included playing at "two-stages": picnics where whites and blacks danced at the same event, but with different stages for blacks and whites. On the understanding that he was born in 1898 rather than earlier or sources suggest that in 1915, 17-year-old Broonzy was married and working as a sharecropper, he had become a preacher. There is a story that he was offered $50 and a new violin if he would play for four days at a local venue. Before he could respond to the offer, his wife took the money and spent it, so he had to play.
In 1916 his crop and stock were wiped out by drought. Broonzy went to work locally until he was drafted into the Army in 1917, he served for two years in Europe during the First World War. After his discharge from the Army in 1919, he returned to the Pine Bluff area, where he is reported to have been called a racial epithet and told by a white man he knew before the war that he needed to "hurry up and get his soldier uniform off and put on some overalls." He left Pine Bluff and moved to the Little Rock area. A year in 1920, he moved north to Chicago in search of opportunity. After arriving in Chicago, Broonzy switched from fiddle to guitar, he learned to play the guitar from the veteran minstrel and medicine show performer Papa Charlie Jackson, who began recording for Paramount Records in 1924. Through the 1920s Broonzy worked at a string of odd jobs, including Pullman porter, foundry worker and custodian, to supplement his income, but his main interest was music, he played at rent parties and social gatherings improving his guitar playing.
During this time he wrote one of his signature tunes, a solo guitar piece called "Saturday Night Rub". Thanks to his association with Jackson, Broonzy was able to get an audition with Paramount executive J. Mayo Williams, his initial test recordings, made with his friend John Thomas on vocals, were rejected, but Broonzy persisted, his second try, a few months was more successful. His first record, "Big Bill's Blues", backed with "House Rent Stomp", credited to Big Bill and Thomps, was released in 1927. Although the recording was not well received, Paramount retained its new talent and in the next few years released more records by Big Bill and Thomps; the records sold poorly. Reviewers considered derivative. In 1930, Paramount for the first time used Broonzy's full name on a recording, "Station Blues" – albeit misspelled as "Big Bill Broomsley". Record sales continued to be poor, Broonzy was working at a grocery store, he was picked up by Lester Melrose, who produced musical acts for various labels, including Champion Records and Gennett Records.
Harum Scarums, a trio comprising Broonzy, Georgia Tom and Mozelle Alderson, recorded the two-part "Alabama Scratch" in Grafton, for Paramount Records in January 1931, it was reported that it sounded "as if it was a real party." Broonzy recorded several sides released in the spring of 1931 under the name Big Bill Johnson. In March 1932 he traveled to New York City and began recording for the American Record Corporation on their line of less expensive labels; these recordings sold better, Broonzy was becoming better known. Back in Chicago he was working in South Side clubs, he toured with Memphis Minnie. In 1934 Broonzy moved to RCA Victor's subsidiary Bluebird Records and began recording with the pianist Bob "Black Bob" Call, his fortunes soon improved. With Call his music was evolving to a stronger R&B sound, his singing sounded more assured and personal. In 1937, he began playing with the pianist Joshua Altheimer and performing with a small instrumental group, including "traps", double bass and one or more melody instruments.
In March 1938 he began recording for Vocalion Records. Broonzy's reputation grew. In 1938 he was asked to fill in for the deceased Robert Johnson at the "From Spirituals to Sw
Folk rock is a hybrid music genre combining elements of folk music and rock music, which arose in the United States and the United Kingdom in the mid-1960s. In the U. S. folk rock emerged from the folk music revival and the influence that the Beatles and other British Invasion bands had on members of that movement. Performers such as Bob Dylan and the Byrds—several of whose members had earlier played in folk ensembles—attempted to blend the sounds of rock with their preexisting folk repertoire, adopting the use of electric instrumentation and drums in a way discouraged in the U. S. folk community. The term "folk rock" was used in the U. S. music press in June 1965 to describe the Byrds' music. The commercial success of the Byrds' cover version of Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man" and their debut album of the same name, along with Dylan's own recordings with rock instrumentation—on the albums Bringing It All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited, Blonde on Blonde —encouraged other folk acts, such as Simon & Garfunkel, to use electric backing on their records and new groups, such as Buffalo Springfield, to form.
Dylan's controversial appearance at the Newport Folk Festival on 25 July 1965, where he was backed by an electric band, was a pivotal moment in the development of the genre. During the late 1960s in Britain and Europe, a distinct, eclectic British folk rock style was created by Pentangle, Fairport Convention and Alan Stivell. Inspired by British psychedelic folk and the North American style of folk rock, British folk rock bands began to incorporate elements of traditional British folk music into their repertoire, leading to other variants, including the overtly English folk rock of the Albion Band and Celtic rock. In its earliest and narrowest sense, the term "folk rock" refers to the blending of elements of folk music and rock music, which arose in the U. S. and UK in the mid-1960s. The genre was pioneered by the Byrds, who began playing traditional folk music and songs by Bob Dylan with rock instrumentation, in a style influenced by the Beatles and other British Invasion bands; the term "folk rock" was coined by the U.
S. music press to describe the Byrds' music in June 1965, the month in which the band's debut album was issued. Dylan contributed to the creation of the genre, with his recordings utilizing rock instrumentation on the albums Bringing It All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited, Blonde on Blonde. In a broader sense, folk rock encompasses inspired musical genres and movements in different regions of the world. Folk rock may lean more towards either folk or rock in instrumentation and vocal style, choice of material. While the original genre draws on music of Europe and North America, there is no clear delineation of which other culture's music might be included as influences; the term is not associated with blues-based rock music, African American music, Cajun-based rock music, nor music with non-European folk roots. There are some exceptions; the American folk-music revival began during the 1940s. In 1948, Seeger formed the Weavers, whose mainstream popularity set the stage for the folk revival of the 1950s and early 1960s and served to bridge the gap between folk, popular music, topical song.
The Weavers' sound and repertoire of traditional folk material and topical songs directly inspired the Kingston Trio, a three-piece folk group who came to prominence in 1958 with their hit recording of "Tom Dooley". The Kingston Trio provided the template for a flood of "collegiate folk" groups between 1958 and 1962. At the same time as these "collegiate folk" vocal groups came to national prominence, a second group of urban folk revivalists, influenced by the music and guitar picking styles of folk and blues artist such as Woody Guthrie, Lead Belly, Brownie McGhee, Josh White came to the fore. Many of these urban revivalists were influenced by recordings of traditional American music from the 1920s and 1930s, reissued by Folkways Records. While this urban folk revival flourished in many cities, New York City, with its burgeoning Greenwich Village coffeehouse scene and population of topical folk singers, was regarded as the centre of the movement. Out of this fertile environment came such folk-protest luminaries as Bob Dylan, Tom Paxton, Phil Ochs, Peter and Mary, many of whom would transition into folk rock performers as the 1960s progressed.
The vast majority of the urban folk revivalists shared a disdain for the values of mainstream American mass culture and led many folk singers to begin composing their own "protest" material. The influence of this folk-protest movement would manifest itself in the sociopolitical lyrics and mildly anti-establishment sentiments of many folk rock songs, including hit singles such as "Eve of Destruction", "Like a Rolling Stone", "For What It's Worth", "Let's Live for Today". During the 1950s and early 1960s in the UK, a parallel folk revival referred to as the second British folk revival, was led by folk singers Ewan MacColl and Bert Lloyd. Both viewed British folk music as a vehicle for leftist political concepts and an antidote to the American-dominated popular music of the time. However, it wasn't until 1956 and the advent of the skiffle craze that the British folk revival crossed over into the mainstream and connected with British youth culture. Skiffle renewed popularity of folk music forms in Britain and led directly to the progressive folk movement and the attendant B
David Michael Gordon "Davey" Graham was a British guitarist and one of the most influential figures in the 1960s British folk revival. He inspired many famous practitioners of the fingerstyle acoustic guitar such as Bert Jansch, Wizz Jones, John Renbourn, Martin Carthy, John Martyn, Paul Simon and Jimmy Page, who based his solo "White Summer" on Graham's "She Moved Through the Fair". Graham is best known for his acoustic instrumental, "Anji" and for popularizing DADGAD tuning widely adopted by acoustic guitarists. Graham was born in Market Bosworth, England, to a Guyanese mother and a Scottish father. Although he never had any music theory lessons, he learnt to play the piano and harmonica as a child and took up the classical guitar at the age of 12; as a teenager he was influenced by the folk guitar player Steve Benbow, who had travelled with the army and played a guitar style influenced by Moroccan music. At the age of 19, Graham wrote what is his most famous composition, the acoustic guitar solo "Angi".
Colin Harper credits Graham with single-handedly inventing the concept of the folk guitar instrumental. "Angi", named after his girlfriend, appeared on his debut EP 3/4 AD in April 1962. The tune spread through a generation of aspiring guitarists. Before the record was released, Bert Jansch had learnt it from a 1961 tape borrowed from Len Partridge. Jansch included it on his 1965 debut album as "Angie"; the spelling Anji became the more used after it appeared in this way on Simon & Garfunkel's 1966 album Sounds of Silence and it was as "Anji" that Chicken Shack recorded it for their 1969 100 Ton Chicken album. Anji soon became a rite of passage for many acoustic finger-style guitarists. Arlen Roth has recorded "Anji" on two separate albums of his; some other musicians of note who have covered Anji include: John Renbourn, Gordon Giltrap, Clive Carroll and the anarchist group Chumbawamba, who used the guitar piece as a basis for their anti-war song "Jacob's Ladder". Angi is the second track on the first CD of the Topic Records 70 year anniversary boxed set Three Score and Ten.
Davy Graham came to the attention of guitarists through his appearance in a 1959 broadcast of the BBC TV arts series Monitor, produced by Ken Russell and titled Hound Dogs and Bach Addicts: The Guitar Craze, in which he played an acoustic instrumental version of "Cry Me a River". During the 1960s, Graham released a string of albums of music from all around the world in all kinds of genres. 1964's Folk and Beyond and the following year's collaboration with the folk singer Shirley Collins, Folk Roots, New Routes, are cited among his most influential album releases. Large as Life and Twice as Natural includes his cover of Joni Mitchell's "Both Sides, Now" alongside unprecedented explorations of Eastern Modes and scales played in Faustian takes on a Gibson J45 steel string guitar, his continuous touring of the world as a beat mystic traveller, picking up and recording different styles of music for the guitar, has resulted in many musicians crediting him with founding world music. However, though Graham recorded in a variety of genres and loved to play the oud, he was no purist, absorbing all his influences into his own ever-expanding conception of the possibilities of guitar music.
Quizzed, for instance, on his introduction of a chord progression into an Arabic maqam, his amiable retort was to the effect that, if he felt like it and it sounded alright, why shouldn't he? Davy appears playing guitar in a pub in Joseph Losey's 1963 film "the Servant". Graham married the American singer Holly Gwinn in the late 1960s and recorded the albums The Holly Kaleidosope and Godington Boundary with her in 1970, shortly before Gwinn had to return to the USA and he was unable to follow her, because of his visa problem due to a marijuana conviction, he described himself as having been "a casualty of too much self-indulgence", becoming a heroin addict in imitation of his jazz heroes. During this period, he taught acoustic guitar and undertook charity work for various mental health charities. For several years he was on the executive council of Mind and he was involved for some time with the mystic Osho. In 1976 he recorded All That Moody a private pressing that remains his most collectible vinyl record owing to its "moody" nature and rarity.
He recorded two further groundbreaking albums for Kicking Mule, 1978's The Complete Guitarist and 1980's Dance For Two People. He dedicated the main thrust of his life to studying languages, he would regale his neighbours. After some time he became disinhibited, his penultimate album Playing in Traffic was so titled as he was frustrated by trying to learn Bach in the noise of 11 Lyme St, Camden where a boatyard used to operate on the canal just outside his bedroom. He was the subject of a 2005 BBC Radio documentary, Whatever Happened to Davy Graham? and in 2006 featured in the BBC Four documentary Folk Britannia. Many people sought out Graham over the years and tried to encourage him to return to the stage to play live; these concerts were eclectic, with Graham playing a mix of acoustic blues, Romanian dance tunes, Irish pipe tunes, songs from South Africa and pieces by Bach. His final album, Broken Biscuits, consisted of originals and new arra
Carnegie Hall is a concert venue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City, United States, located at 881 Seventh Avenue, occupying the east side of Seventh Avenue between West 56th Street and West 57th Street, two blocks south of Central Park. Designed by architect William Burnet Tuthill and built by philanthropist Andrew Carnegie in 1891, it is one of the most prestigious venues in the world for both classical music and popular music. Carnegie Hall has its own artistic programming and marketing departments, presents about 250 performances each season, it is rented out to performing groups. The hall has not had a resident company since 1962, when the New York Philharmonic moved to Lincoln Center's Philharmonic Hall. Carnegie Hall has 3,671 seats, divided among its three auditoriums. Carnegie Hall contains three separate performance spaces; the Isaac Stern Auditorium seats 2,804 on five levels and was named after violinist Isaac Stern in 1997 to recognize his efforts to save the hall from demolition in the 1960s.
The hall is enormously high, visitors to the top balcony must climb 137 steps. All but the top level can be reached by elevator; the main hall was home to the performances of the New York Philharmonic from 1892 until 1962. Known as the most prestigious concert stage in the U. S. all of the leading classical music and, more popular music performers since 1891 have performed there. After years of heavy wear and tear, the hall was extensively renovated in 1986; the Ronald O. Perelman Stage is 42 feet deep; the five levels of seating in the Stern Auditorium begin with the Parquet level, which has twenty-five full rows of thirty-eight seats and four partial rows at stage level, for a total of 1,021 seats. The First Tier and Second Tier consist of sixty-five boxes. Second from the top is the Dress Circle, seating 444 in six rows. At the top, the balcony seats 837. Although seats with obstructed views exist throughout the auditorium, only the Dress Circle level has structural columns. Zankel Hall, which seats 599, is named after Arthur Zankel.
Called Recital Hall, this was the first auditorium to open to the public in April 1891. Following renovations made in 1896, it was renamed Carnegie Lyceum, it was leased to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in 1898, converted into a cinema, which opened as the Carnegie Hall Cinema in May 1961 with the film White Nights by Luchino Visconti and was reclaimed for use as an auditorium in 1997. The reconstructed Zankel Hall is flexible in design and can be reconfigured in several different arrangements to suit the needs of the performers, it opened in September 2003. The 599 seats in Zankel Hall are arranged in two levels; the Parterre level seats a total of 463 and the Mezzanine level seats 136. Each level has a number of seats which are situated along the side walls, perpendicular to the stage; these seats are designated as boxes. The boxes on the Parterre level are raised above the level of the stage. Zankel Hall is accessible and its stage is 44 feet wide and 25 feet deep—the stage occupies one fifth of the performance space.
The Joan and Sanford I. Weill Recital Hall seats 268 and is named after Sanford I. Weill, a former chairman of the board, his wife Joan; this auditorium, in use since the hall opened in 1891, was called Chamber Music Hall. The Weill Recital Hall is the smallest of the three performance spaces, with a total of 268 seats; the Orchestra level contains fourteen rows of fourteen seats, a total of 196, the Balcony level contains 72 seats in five rows. The building contains the Carnegie Hall Archives, established in 1986, the Rose Museum, which opened in 1991; until 2009 studios above the Hall contained working spaces for artists in the performing and graphic arts including music, dance, as well as architects, literary agents and painters. The spaces were unusual in being purpose-designed for artistic work, with high ceilings and large windows for natural light. In 2007 the Carnegie Hall Corporation announced plans to evict the 33 remaining studio residents, some of whom had been in the building since the 1950s, including celebrity portrait photographer Editta Sherman and fashion photographer Bill Cunningham.
The organization's research showed that Andrew Carnegie had always considered the spaces as a source of income to support the hall and its activities. The space has been re-purposed for corporate offices. Carnegie Hall is one of the last large buildings in New York built of masonry, without a steel frame; the exterior is rendered in narrow Roman bricks of a mellow ochre hue, with details in terracotta and brownstone. The foyer avoids typical 19th century Baroque theatrical style with the Florentine Renaissance manner of Filippo Brunelleschi's Pazzi Chapel: white plaster and gray stone form a harmonious system of round-headed arched openings and Corinthian pilasters that support an unbroken cornice, with round-headed lunettes above it, under a vaulted ceiling; the famous white and gold auditorium interio
Huddie William Ledbetter was an American folk and blues singer and songwriter notable for his strong vocals, virtuosity on the twelve-string guitar, the folk standards he introduced. He is best known as Lead Belly. Though many releases credit him as "Leadbelly", he himself wrote it as "Lead Belly", the spelling on his tombstone and the spelling used by the Lead Belly Foundation. Lead Belly played a twelve-string guitar, but he played the piano, harmonica, "windjammer". In some of his recordings, he sang while stomping his foot. Lead Belly's songs covered a wide range of topics including gospel music, he wrote songs about people in the news, such as Franklin D. Roosevelt, Adolf Hitler, Jean Harlow, Jack Johnson, the Scottsboro Boys and Howard Hughes. Lead Belly was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988 and the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2008. Lead Belly was born Huddie William Ledbetter to Sally and Wesley Ledbetter on a plantation near Mooringsport, Louisiana, on January 20, 1888.
The 1900 United States Census lists "Hudy Ledbetter" as 12 years old, born January 1888, the 1910 and 1930 censuses give his age as corresponding to a birth in 1888. The 1940 census lists his age with information supplied by wife Martha. However, in April 1942, when Ledbetter filled out his World War II draft registration, he gave his birth date as January 23, 1889, his birthplace as Freeport, Louisiana, his grave marker bears the date given on his draft registration. Ledbetter was the younger of two children born to Sallie Brown; the pronunciation of his name is purported to be "HYEW-dee" or "HUGH-dee". Leadbelly, can be heard pronouncing his name as "HUH-dee" on the track "Boll Weevil," from the Smithsonian Folkways album Lead Belly Sings for Children, his parents had cohabited for several years, but they married on February 26, 1888. When Huddie was five years old, the family settled in Texas; the 1910 census of Harrison County, shows "Hudy" Ledbetter living next door to his parents with his first wife, Aletha "Lethe" Henderson.
Aletha is married one year. Others say she was 15 when they married in 1908, it was in Texas that Ledbetter received an accordion, from his uncle Terrell. By his early twenties, having fathered at least two children, Ledbetter left home to make his living as a guitarist and occasional laborer; when Lead Belly was released from his last prison sentence, the United States was deep in the Great Depression, jobs were scarce. In September 1934, in need of regular work in order to avoid cancellation of his release from prison, Lead Belly asked John Lomax to take him on as a driver. For three months, he assisted the 67-year-old in his folk song collecting around the South. By 1903, Huddie was a "musicianer", a singer and guitarist of some note, he performed for nearby Shreveport audiences in St. Paul's Bottoms, a notorious red-light district there, he began to develop his own style of music after exposure to various musical influences on Shreveport's Fannin Street, a row of saloons and dance halls in the Bottoms, now referred to as Ledbetter Heights.
While in prison, Lead Belly may have first heard the traditional prison song "Midnight Special". He was "discovered" there three years during a visit by folklorists John Lomax and his son Alan Lomax. Impressed by Ledbetter's vibrant tenor and extensive repertoire, the Lomaxes recorded him in 1933 on portable aluminum disc recording equipment for the Library of Congress, they returned with better equipment in July 1934, recording hundreds of his songs. On August 1, Ledbetter was released after having again served nearly all of his minimum sentence, following a petition the Lomaxes had taken to Louisiana Governor Oscar K. Allen at his urgent request, it was on the other side of a recording of his signature song, "Goodnight Irene." A prison official wrote to John Lomax denying that Ledbetter's singing had anything to do with his release from Angola. However, both Ledbetter and the Lomaxes believed that the record they had taken to the governor had hastened his release from prison. In December 1934, Lead Belly participated in a "smoker" at a Modern Language Association meeting at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, where the senior Lomax had a prior lecturing engagement.
He was written up in the press as a convict. On New Year's Day, 1935, the pair arrived in New York City, where Lomax was scheduled to meet with his publisher, about a new collection of folk songs; the newspapers were eager to write about the "singing convict," and Time magazine made one of its first March of Time newsreels about him. Lead Belly attained fame; the following week, he began recording for the American Record Corporation, but these recordings achieved little commercial success. He recorded over 40 sides for ARC, but only five sides were issued. Part of the reason for the poor sales may have been that ARC released only his blues songs rather than the folk songs for which he would become better known. Lead Belly continued to struggle financially. Like many performers, what income he mad
Steve Tilston is an English folk singer-songwriter and guitarist. Steve Tilston was reared in Leicestershire. A graphic designer before taking up music in 1971, Tilston lived in Bristol where he recorded his first album, An Acoustic Confusion. In the early 1980s, he ran a folk club with Bert Jansch in London. Tilston recorded a rock album in 1982 called In For A Penny – In For A Pound, but soon reverted to quieter music. In 1985, Tilston played guitar and mandolin with the on-stage band for "Sergeant Early's Dream" while on tour with Ballet Rambert, again when the ballet toured England in 2000-2001. Tilston formed his own record label, Run River, in 1987, in 1988 he was a member of John Renbourn's group Ship of Fools, which released one eponymous album on Tilston's label. In 1990, he was a session musician on Peter Bellamy's album Soldiers Three. By the 1990s, Tilston was performing with Maggie Boyle, his on- and off-stage partner. Tilston garnered positive reviews in the United States for his 1992 album, Of Moor and Mesa, which contained two of his compositions, "The Slip Jigs and Reels" and "Naked Highwayman," that were recorded by Fairport Convention.
Tilston formed Hubris Records in 1995. By 1999, Tilston and Maggie Boyle had separated, he joined WAZ! with Pete Zorn and Maartin Allcock. In 2003, there was a slight change of direction as he moved towards melodic jazz with Such And Such, an album with saxophonist Andy Sheppard. Live Hemistry was not a misspelling for "Chemistry" but a live album with many of his best songs, so named because the live recordings are taken from the UK and Australia, thus from two hemispheres; the Thomas Paine Society selected. His song "Night Owl" was the title of her 1998 album, his songs have been recorded by Fairport Convention, Dolores Keane, The House Band, Peter Bellamy, North Cregg, Bob Fox, John Wright and others. His instrumental style crosses classical music with English folk, he plays an early 19th-century instrument called an arpeggione. He has been a tutor at summer camps. In 2007, Reaching Back was released; this was a boxed set of five CDs of his songs, with rarities and contributions from Wizz Jones, Ralph McTell and Coope and Simpson.
2008 saw the release of Ziggurat. He performed a 40th anniversary concert in Bristol on 23 September 2010 with guests Wizz Jones, Keith Warmington, Brooks Williams, Chris Parkinson, Maggie Boyle, Hugh Bradley, his children Martha and Molly. In 2010, Tilston began working with Yorkshire-based band The Durbervilles, with a selection of low key live dates followed by work in the studio; the first fruits of the collaboration was a track on a Bob Dylan 70th birthday tribute album put out by UK label, Fat Cat Records. Steve Tilston & The Durbervilles worked as a touring unit appearing at various venues in the UK including Cropredy Festival 2011. In March 2012, Steve Tilston & the Durbervilles released The Oxenhope EP. In 2011, Tilston released The Reckoning, on his own Hubris label. In October 2011, he performed "Water" from the album on Later... with Jools Holland. He was subsequently interviewed by Jools Holland "at the piano" and the pair paid homage to the late Bert Jansch who died earlier in the month.
In February 2012 the title track from The Reckoning was awarded Best Original Song at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. The award was shared with Bella Hardy, who polled the same number of votes, his daughter Martha maintains a folk music career as a solo artist while his son Joe Tilston is in the ska-punk band, Random Hand. In August 2010, it was reported that John Lennon had penned a letter of support to Tilston in 1971, though it was never delivered. Lennon had been inspired to write to the 21-year-old folk singer after having read an interview in ZigZag magazine in which Tilston admitted he feared wealth and fame might negatively affect his songwriting. Tilston did not become aware of the letter’s existence until a collector contacted him in 2005 to verify its authenticity. “Being rich doesn't change your experience in the way you think,” Lennon wrote. It was signed "Love John and Yoko." This letter was the inspiration behind the 2015 film Danny Collins. An Acoustic Confusion Collection Songs From the Dress Rehearsal In for a Penny, In for a Pound Life by Misadventure Music of O'Carolan Swans at Coole And So It Goes The Greening Wind 1972 - 1992 Solorubato Live Hemistry Such and Such Of Many Hands Reaching Back: The Life And Music Of Steve Tilston Ziggurat The Reckoning Truth To Tell John Renbourn's Ship of Fools Silently the Snow Falls Of Moor and Mesa All Under the Sun Fully Chromatic The Oxenhope EP Happenstance The Janus Game Sound Techniques - Guitar Maestros #5 The Steve Tilston Music Book - A collection of songs and tunes in notation and tablature.
All For Poor Jack - Steve's first novel. Official Web Site Biography
Pentangle are a British folk-jazz band with an eclectic mix of folk, jazz and folk rock influences. The original band was active in the late 1960s and early 1970s, a version has been active since the early 1980s; the original line-up, unchanged throughout the band's first incarnation, was: Jacqui McShee. The name Pentangle was chosen to represent the five members of the band, is the device on Sir Gawain's shield in the Middle English poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight which held a fascination for Renbourn. In 2007, the original members of the band were reunited to receive a Lifetime Achievement award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and to record a short concert, broadcast on BBC radio; the following June, all five original members embarked on a twelve-date UK tour. The original group formed in 1967. Renbourn and Jansch were popular musicians on the British folk scene, with several solo albums each and a duet LP, Bert and John, their use of complex inter-dependent guitar parts, referred to as "folk baroque", had become a distinctive characteristic of their music.
They shared a house in St John's Wood, London. Jacqui McShee had begun as an "floor singer" in several of the London folk clubs, by 1965, ran a folk club at the Red Lion in Sutton, establishing a friendship with Jansch and Renbourn when they played there, she sang on Renbourn's Another Monday album and performed with him as a duo, debuting at Les Cousins club in August 1966. Thompson and Cox had played together in Alexis Korner's band. By 1966, they were both part of Duffy Power's Nucleus. Thompson was well-known to Renbourn through appearances at Les Cousins and working with him on a project for television. In 1967, the Scottish entrepreneur Bruce Dunnet, who had organised a tour for Jansch, set up a Sunday night club for him and Renbourn at the Horseshoe Hotel in Tottenham Court Road. McShee began to join them as a vocalist and, by March of that year and Cox were being billed as part of the band. Renbourn claims to be the "catalyst" that brought the band together but credits Jansch with the idea "to get the band to play in a regular place, to knock it into shape".
Although nominally a ` folk' group, the members influences. McShee had a grounding in traditional music and Thompson a love of jazz, Renbourn a growing interest in early music, Jansch a taste for blues and contemporaries such as Bob Dylan; the first public concert by Pentangle was a sell-out performance at the Royal Festival Hall, on 27 May 1967. That year, they undertook a short tour of Denmark — in which they were disastrously billed as a rock'n'roll band — and a short UK tour, organised by Nathan Joseph of Transatlantic Records. By this stage, their association with Bruce Dunnett had ended and, early in 1968, they acquired Jo Lustig as a manager. With his influence, they graduated from clubs to concert halls and from on, as Colin Harper puts it, "the ramshackle, happy-go-lucky progress of the Pentangle was going to be a streamlined machine of purpose and efficiency". Pentangle signed up with Transatlantic Records and their eponymous debut LP was released in May 1968; this all-acoustic album was produced by Shel Talmy, who has claimed to have employed an innovative approach to recording acoustic guitars to deliver a bright "bell-like" sound.
On 29 June of that year they performed at London's Royal Festival Hall. Recordings from that concert formed part of their second album, Sweet Child, a double LP comprising live and studio recordings. Basket of Light, which followed in mid-1969, was their greatest commercial success, thanks to a surprise hit single, "Light Flight" which became popular through its use as theme music for the television series Take Three Girls for which the band provided incidental music; the album went all the way to number five in the charts. By 1970, they were at the peak of their popularity, recording a soundtrack for the film Tam Lin, making at least 12 television appearances, undertaking tours of the UK and America. However, their fourth album, Cruel Sister, released in October 1970, was a commercial disaster; this was an album of traditional songs that included a 20-minute-long version of "Jack Orion", a song that Jansch and Renbourn had recorded as a duo. It failed to go higher than number 51 in the charts.
The band returned to a mix of traditional and original material on Reflection, recorded in March 1971. This was received without enthusiasm by the music press. By this time, the strains of touring and of working together as a band were apparent. Bill Leader, who produced the album, said "It seems to me, in retrospect, that each day a different member of the group had decided that this was it:'Sod this for a game of soldiers, I'm leaving the group!'" Pentangle withdrew in a bitter dispute with Joseph regarding royalties. Transatlantic had concluded that they were within their contractual rights to withhold royalty payments from the Pentangle albums. Joseph pointed out that his company had covered all the costs, such as recording costs, entailed in making the albums. Jo Lustig, their manager, who had agreed to the Transatlantic contract, made it clear that their contract with him included a clause that they could not sue him "for anything under any circumstances." In order to make some money out of