Here are the artists, in alphabetical order, whose tracks feature on the albums. Click on the volume number to go to that particular album to see the track listings and to order your copy.
VYAJOR GANS GERYOW (Voyager with Words).
Bert is a Cornish songwriter, poet, politician and writer. He has performed in various guises, from touring rock bands to village WI poetry readings, and is one half of the popular poetry partnership, Dew Vardh, with his long-standing colleague, Cornish linguist, teacher and poet, Pol Hodge. Both are always available for booking, either individually or together. ‘The Story of Cornwall’ was written specially for this CD. email@example.com
Boilerhouse is a six piece a cappella group specialising in songs faithful to, but not usually heard in, the Cornish repertoire. Although deeply rooted in generations of local singing traditions, Boilerhouse casts its net wider to include folk songs, American Sacred Harp & gospel & some home-spun arrangements of Cornish poems. 1st tenors – Grevis Williams & Mike Conboye. 2nd tenor – Rick Williams. Baritone – David May. Basses – Stephen Hall & Luke Murray.
John Brolly is a storyteller, actor, director and founder member of Umbrella Arts Theatre Company now based in Cornwall. It began in London in the late eighties as a Theatre in Education Company touring shows across the South East of England.
Since then John has been working in community and youth theatre, storytelling and performing at corporate entertainment events across the world. He has racked up a range of film and television credits, including taking a leading role in BBC 2’s Bafta winning Doubletake. firstname.lastname@example.org
Stephen Lawry (Bass), David Williams (Baritone), Charles Parke (1st Tenor), Graham Warren (2nd Tenor).
Buccas Four, formed in August 2001, when all four were members of Newlyn Male Voice Choir. Their name “Buccas” is a word which many Cornish folk use to describe Newlyn men! They have two albums, Cornish Boys (2007), and Made in Cornwall (2016). They have toured in Southern Ireland, Wales, Brittany, and many places in England. They have performed at The Minack Theatre and The Eden Project. buccasfour.co.uk
Camborne Youth Band
The Camborne Youth Band has established itself as one of the best youth brass bands in the UK, performing concerts and competing in contests across Cornwall and beyond. Musical Director, Alan Pope, has led the band to an incredible seven wins at the National Youth Brass Band Championships of Great Britain. They have also been crowned champions of Cornwall, the South West, Greater Gwent, and the West of England Bandsmen’s Festival at Bugle. camborneyouthband.com
This track ‘While Shepherds Watch (Boscastle)’ performed by The Newquay Choral Society of Cornwall. Terry Bale first heard it sung by Charlie Jose for the Camelford Singers of North Cornwall and “Charlie, of the Boscastle area, had a great repertoire of Cornish Folklore music which was never written down.” Rod Lyon, Former Grand Bard. The arrangement has been credited to Jack Davey.
In the 18th century, “While Shepherds Watched their Flocks by Night” was the only hymn authorised by the Church of England, a testament to its central status in the English choral tradition. Many villages decided to make their own arrangements as a form of musical revolt. According to Carol Historians ‘While Shepherds Watch’ has over 30 different arrangements in Cornwall. This track came from a collection of ‘North Cornwall Carols’ collected by Terry Bale, Musical Director and Bard, of Bude.
Cape Cornwall Singers
Here they sing the St. Just version of ‘While Shepherds Watch’.
Cape Cornwall Singers were formed early in 1997 in an attempt to resurrect the singing traditions of the area in the local pubs around St Just and West Cornwall, and to raise funds for local charities. Our distinctive sound was formerly familiar in impromptu sessions throughout the town, especially during the St Just Feast celebrations, but had declined in recent years due mainly to the demise of the local tin mines. Cape Cornwall Singers are ordinary people, with ordinary lives, who sing with passion of the enduring traditions and extraordinary beauty of our homeland. capecornwallsingers.co.uk
MORVARTH (Sea Bard).
“Born and brought up in Launceston, Cornwall, Charles lived there for most of his life. Causley’s mastery of traditional forms imparts a timeless quality to his poetry, the voice of which is more often communal than personal.” The Poetry Archive.
The track, Cornwall, was originally recorded for ‘Causley Reads Causley’ on Sentinel records.
Grew up in Yorkshire, studying classical music and jazz. After a period of freelance performing and composing, and a few years teaching he moved to Cornwall in 2002 to embark on a new career with more time to give to the local music scene.
Launceston based harmony vocal & guitar band playing a mix of popular music and songs from Cornwall. Formed from the popular Countryman Inn Open Mic Sessions. Six middle-aged musicians with tight four-part harmony vocals and a token Cornishman. With a relaxed and light-hearted presentation style they take the audience on a journey through the history and culture of Cornwall, featuring their own arrangements of traditional and contemporary songs, as well as some original material. Interspersed with the occasional pop cover to lighten the mood when required, there is no mistaking that to a man, they love Cornwall with a passion. thecountrymen.co.uk
Bound together by lifelong friendship and shared experience for more than 25 years the Fisherman’s Friends have met on the Platt (harbour) in their native Port Isaac to raise money for charity, singing the traditional songs of the sea handed down to them by their forefathers.
In 2010 they signed a major record deal and their album “Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends” went Gold as they became the first traditional folk act to land a UK top ten album. Since then they’ve been the subject of an ITV documentary, released the hit albums One and All (2013) and Proper Job (2015) and played to hundreds of thousands of fans at home and abroad.
Flats & Sharps
Hailing from Cornwall and based in Penzance, Flats and Sharps blur the lines between Bluegrass, Folk, Country & Pop, gaining recognition for performing their own highly original songs as well as their renditions of Bluegrass classics. These five incredible young musicians honed their skills in 350 live performances over nearly five years charming and wowing audiences along the way.
Harry (Safari) Glasson
Harry was born in 1951 attended Crowan CP School then to Treswithian Secondary Modern at Camborne. He joined the Merchant Navy straight from school and has worked at farming, building then running his tour guiding business in latter years. Even as a child growing up in Praze-An-Beeble he was interested in local history and has always loved to read. Harry just loved writing stories but never had the application for long narratives, so he told his stories in songs. He would hope that his love of Cornwall, it’s people, history and traditions come through in the songs he has written. Follow Harry on Facebook. facebook.com/harry.glasson
Grass Valley Male Voice Choir (California)
The Grass Valley Male Voice Choir is the direct descendant of the Cornish miners’ choirs that flourished from the Gold Rush era well into the twentieth century. Grass Valley in Nevada County, California, was the centre of hard rock gold mining. Cornish miners came to Grass Valley, where their mining skills were needed to extract gold from the earth. They stayed and put down permanent roots in the community. The Male Voice Choir has been an active and beloved part of the Nevada County musical scene from that time. We have remained close to their Cornish roots, and the choir has toured Cornwall in 2000, 2002 and 2017. They have also participated in annual Cornish reunions in America, and hosted visiting Cornish choirs in Grass Valley in the early 2000’s. gvmalevoicechoir.org
STAVER AN HAL (Walker on the Moor).
Penwith Cornishman, author, playwright, poet, musician, singer and performer. A Bard of the Cornish Gorsedh in recognition of services to West Cornwall,
by creating the Penwith Community Archive which inspired the annual revival and renewal of Penzance’s ancient mid-summer festival of Golowan – Gol Jowan – ‘The Feast of John’ and the many Golowan community projects he directed for 17 years.
NEDHORSES HWEDLOW (Spinner of Tales).
Liz, who was born in Newlyn, specialises in dialect verse and prose. Her work has appeared in Scryfa and the Western Morning News, and three collections – Now ’Ark To Me, Now ’Ark Some More and Now ’Ark To Aunt Sarah Anne – are published by Scryfa.
Sue Ellery-Hill is a Penzance maid, currently living with husband Chris in St Just. She is an antiques trader, and has just completed a biography of her mother, Cornwall’s First Lady of Song, Brenda Wootton, whose poem, Bagatelle, she reads on this CD.
You can discover more about Brenda on her website brendawootton.org
Julie is the lead singer/songwriter of the band Naked Feet, formed in 1999, as well as a solo artist. Julie’s songs and Naked Feet have won the Pan Celtic Awards 2 years in a row. Julie has appeared at all Europe’s major Celtic festivals, and recently recorded an hour length live show appearing on German/Austrian/French television to an audience of over 5 million.
I learned about the band from the book ‘Hark! The Glad Sound of Cornish Carols’ By Hillary Coleman and Sally Burley
Kescana is an a capella folk group from Mid Cornwall with a unique rhythmic sound and beautiful harmonies. Kescana has sung, laughed and eaten cake together for over 20 years. Check out their Facebook page facebook.com/Kescana
Katie Kirk and Rick Williams
Both hailing from West Cornwall, Katie & Rick’s arrangements spring from an appreciation of the timeless quality and stories of folk ballads old and new, some self-penned. They have been enthusiastically received at the Eden Project as well as folk clubs and festivals around Cornwall. facebook.com/KatieKirkandRickWilliams
Marazion Apollo Male Choir with St Michael’s School Choir
Formed in 1904 and reputedly the oldest male choir in Cornwall. It is based in the ancient charter town of Marazion, close to Penzance, facing the jewel in the Cornish crown, St Michael’s Mount. The choir has a long and distinguished history of success in music competitions throughout the country, including winning the Male Voice Choir Advance Class and Championship Cup at the 2009 St Austell Music Festival. marazion-apollo.com
With the release of her new album, If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous, the Madrid-born, Chicago-raised, Cornwall-based singer/songwriter has expanded her battery of instruments to include piano, electric guitar and drum, and it’s drawn critical raves internationally: Dutch music magazine Heaven hailed it as “an early contender for folk album of 2018,” the UK’s fRoots said it was “a collection to savour” and the USA’s PopMatters called it “a gateway into a true innovator’s soul.” sarahmcquaid.com
Ralph hardly needs an introduction. One of the great storytellers, Ralph McTell, is now celebrating more than 50 years on the road. Known for his virtuoso guitar style, he is primarily a prolific and gifted songwriter. With a style that invites you into a unique world, he weaves a narrative that is both significant and poignant. Ralph made his debut in 1968 with the album ‘Eight Frames a Second’ and in 1974 the release of ‘Streets of London’ earned him an Ivor Novello Award. In May 1970, Ralph was able to fill the Royal Festival Hall in London. In August of that year, he played the huge Isle of Wight Festival alongside Jimi Hendrix, Joan Baez, and Leonard Cohen. Ralph toured Cornwall in the late sixties and bought a cottage in Cornwall in 1972. In 2002 he was presented with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Ralph continues to tour and has been actively involved in opening centres for the homeless. ralphmctell.co.uk
Metropolitan Male Choir of South Australia
The choir has been entertaining audiences for over 90 years and was founded by a Cornishman. They currently have about 70 members aged between 20 & 90. A vast number of Cornishmen settled in South Australia to mine copper. Mining ceased in 1923 and many moved to Adelaide to work at Holden Motor Works. Mr. Holden heard them singing and organized them into a choir. This was the beginning of the Metropolitan Male Choir of South Australia. mmcsa.org
Mevagissey Male Choir
(With Ladies Choir)
Currently numbering almost 60 singing members, Mevagissey Male Choir is one of the most successful in Cornwall. Formed in 1974 by local men in Percy Mitchell’s Portmellon boatyard, the Choir still regularly fields up to six of its founder members on the risers. Each of them will have sung in the majority of the 1,000-plus concerts to date. meva-choir.co.uk
The Choir formed in 1909, and continues to represent the highest standards of male voice singing, raising thousands of pounds for charities each year as they do. The choir members are drawn from all over West Cornwall, and are a cosmopolitan group, representing many backgrounds, from labourers to head teachers, high flying council employees to painters and decorators, and aged from 16 to 88. Check their website for a complete list of CDs. mouseholemalevoicechoir.com
Winner of the ‘Best Cornish Choir’ award at the 2017 International Male Voice Choir Festival!
Annamaria Murphy of Kneehigh.
Anna is well known as a writer and ‘Word Witch’. She has worked with Kneehigh almost from the beginning. She has written shows including Tristan & Yseult (with Carl Grose), The Red Shoes, Don John, and Midnight’s Pumpkin, and leads the Kneehigh Rambles programme, working with young people and communities. For the past three years, she has been walking the Roads less Travelled in Cornwall, collecting, re-inventing and exaggerating stories heard along the way.
Launceston Town Councillor and author Jane Nancarrow has been named one of the 16 new bards of the Cornish Gorsedd for 2018, for services to Cornish literature. A well-known Lanson maid, Jane was a pupil and disciple of Charles Causley who works hard for the Charles Causley Festival and is one of the finest readers of Causley’s poetry. She is also well remembered for her performance as Mary Yellan in ‘Jamaica Inn’ and had a leading role in Edward Woodward’s last film ‘A Congregation of Ghosts’.
Like her daughter, Liz Harman, “Rene was a true native of Cornwall. She was renowned for her recitations of old local events – gems of native history. ‘The Mount’, recorded in 1970, gives the listener an opportunity to hear ‘real Newlyn’ as it should be spoken.” Sentinel Records.
North Petherwin Choir, Temayna, North Petherwin, Cornwall.
The track ‘Do You know the Song?’ is a North Pertherwin arrangement performed by The Newquay Choral Society of Cornwall (Pictured). The track came from a collection of ‘North Cornwall Carols’ collected by Terry Bale, Musical Director and Bard, of Bude.
SCRYFER CARN MARTH (Writer of Carn Marth).
Simon is a writer, publisher, editor and journalist. His plays include Third Light, Gonamena, Seven Stars, The Illegible Bachelor and A Star On The Mizzen. Among his published titles are Full As An Egg, Solid and Horses Stood Still. Founder of Scryfa and a member of Scavel an Gow.
Michael Kenneth (Mick) Paynter
Skogynn Pryv – (Worm’s Fool)
Mick is a retired Cornish civil servant, trade union activist, and poet. Apart from a period of study at the University of Newcastle, his home has always been in St Ives (Cornish Porthia). He is a member of Gorseth Kernow, and was initiated as a bard in 2003 on passing a Cornish language examination after four years of study, largely conducted during train journeys as a trade union representative.
The Rowan Tree
The Rowan Tree are a folk band from Cornwall and Norfolk who play traditional tunes and songs predominantly from Cornwall as well as original pieces with a Celtic feel. In May 2018 the band became the first Cornish act to win Liet International, described as a minority language alternative to Eurovision. The band won with their song ‘Tresor’ (Treasure) which celebrates Cornwall’s rich industrial and mining heritage. The Rowan Tree are passionate about promoting Cornish language and music and enjoy writing new tunes and songs together and finding previously undiscovered pieces from around the world. therowantreemusic.com
Fill the wagons up with copper
Send it down to sea
Off for smelting, South Wales’s waiting
Treasures from Porthreath
Ore in thousand tons
Taken by Tramroad from the mine
With it men leave Cuba bound
Glance Cornwall one last time
Here we stand surrounded
By tall peaks of our white gold
China clay beneath our soil
Sent out across the world
Sixty five thousand tons
Every year we men will mine
Charlestown it is sent
On Cornwall Minerals Railway line
Tin we take to Devoran
From the nearby Gwennap mines
Redruth and Chacewater Rail
Then ships out with the tide
Times they are a changing
And our fortune’s running out
As the tin prices fall
So the Restronguet Creek silts up
High above the sea
Three hundred metres up we dwell
Built upon the granite land
Whose spoils serve us well
Cheeswring to Goldiggens
The ground offers up its stone
Load the Liskeard Caradon line
And cross the seas from Looe
Where your treasure is in Cornwall
There will be your heart
Pauline Sheppard SKRIFORES GWARI (Playwright).
Pauline Sheppard lives in St. Buryan. She has written 40 original stage plays & adaptations for a variety of companies, most notably Dressing Granite (1987); Tin & Fishes (2005); The Ordinalia (4 community plays 2000 – 2004). She has also written for animation, radio and screenplays. The Cats of Boleigh (written for The Story Republic) is a true story. paulinesheppard.com
A six-piece close harmony singing group from South East Cornwall, their sound is augmented by harp and fiddle. Consisting of Jess Crosbie, Anne Hughes, Bethanie Lewis, Jessie Parker, Ele Waters and Elowen Waters, they represented Cornwall at the Pan Celtic Song Contest in Ireland in 2011 and have released an EP, entitled Dingling, Jess Crosbie was a finalist in TV’s The Voice.
St. Ives Community Choir – MD William Thomas
of Zion Congregational Church, St. Ives
This recording of ‘What Melody is This I Hear?’ is one of many Cornish carols and is sung here by men and women from St. Ives. Mr. Willie James does the introduction. The recording is taken from a carol evening held in St. Ives. It is a custom that on Christmas Eve the carol choir goes around the town, singing Cornish carols until midnight. Copies of the CD ‘Carols from St. Ives’ can be purchased from the bookshop at Zion Church in St. Ives. stivescommunitychoir.org.uk
Jenna and Morwenna Matthews.
These Cornish twins have been singing their renowned harmonies together for eight years. They have three albums, Twin Harmony (2008), As Long As We Have Music (2012) and Some Things Are Meant to Be (2016). They have been featured on Radio Cornwall and together they have raised over 25,000 pounds for charity. facebook.com/twinharmony
(1920-2016), lived and died in Newlyn aged 96. Sang in public with his father (who sang in the music halls in America) from the age of four. He was a lifetime member of Mousehole Male Voice Choir as a first tenor also singing with Penzance Choral Society, Newlyn Male Voice choir and competing successfully in various competitions as a soloist and with a quartet in his lifetime. He had his own dance band, the Leuconians, during the war playing the accordion and played the piano and latterly the organ and keyboards.
Canor Gwanethtyr – Singer of the Prairie
Jim Wearne is a proud Cousin Jack, a child of the Cornish Diaspora who cares very deeply about his Cornish Roots and about the condition of Cornwall today. From his home base in Chicago, he sings traditional Cornish songs to his New-World audiences and talks to them about Cornwall. He also writes and sings songs reflecting his relationship to Cornwall and Cornwall’s current condition. These songs are angry, sad, funny and wistful, and are all designed to represent Cornwall as a Nation and the Cornish as a People. Jim has been made a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedd for his services to Cornish Music in America. jimwearne.com
Born in Newlyn, where he lives today, Douglas was a journalist for over 50 years with music and drama among his leisure interests. He has written several books on Cornish subjects. He has sung as tenor soloist with operatic and choral societies and with male voice choirs throughout Cornwall. He was awarded the M.B.E. for his services to journalism and the community in Cornwall.
A key founder of the legendary Count House Folk Club in the 1960s, Brenda charmed Cornish, Celtic, National and International audiences with her rich voice, warmth and presence for 30 years. Singing in English and Cornish her Bardic name was Gwylan Gwavas (Seagull of Newlyn). wikipedia.org/wiki/Brenda_Wootton