Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Recommended Albums of 2015

As another year comes to a close it is time to put together my lists of recommended albums and there have been plenty of excellent new releases from artists old and new to choose from. Despite the inevitable lack of time to really give all the albums I'm sent a proper listen, artists who I've found myself going back to include Johny Corrigan, Fabian Holland, Annie Keating, The Kennedys, Danni Nicholls, Rab Noakes and Vanessa Peters

Thanks to Geraint Jones for the steady stream of downloads throughout the year and to Jane Brace, Bob Buchan and Martin Hadden for the CDs. And thanks also to the musicians who have sent me copies of their music.

The news from Beyond Radio is that they have found a premises in the centre of Lancaster for their studios and office but a fair amount of work needs doing before they can start broadcasting. If you've got any spare cash please consider making a donation on their Crowdfunder page...

Wishing all my listeners a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year!

Recommended UK Albums

Ross Ainslie - Remembering
Barluath - At Dawn of Day
Barrule - Manannan's Cloak
Clype - Clype
Johnny Corrigan - Down The Line
Peter Knight's Gigspanner - Layers of Ages
Gilmore & Roberts - Conflict Tourism
Philip Henry & Hannah Martin - Watershed
Fabian Holland - A Day Like Tomorrow
Dana Immanuel - Dotted Lines
Jenny Lascelles - Fairy Lights
Calum MacLeod - Leam Fhin (Just Me)
Mad Dog Mcrea - Almost Home
Mariearad & Anna - Best Day
Danni Nicholls - Mockingbird Lane 
Rab Noakes - I'm Walkin' Here
Damien O'Kane - Areas of High Traffic
Rura - Despite the Dark
Skerryvore - Decade
Robyn Stapleton - Fickel Fortune
Becci Wallace - Fragmentality
Lucy Ward - I Dreamt I Was A Bird

Recommended Rest of the World Albums

Blind Willies - Every Day Is Judgment Day
David Celia - Double Mind
Annabelle Chvostek - Be The Media
Alice DiMicele - Swim
The Foghorn Stringband - Devil In The Seat
Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors - Medicine
Malcolm Holcombe - The RCA Sessions
Annie Keating - Make Believing
Maura Kennedy - Villanelle - The Songs of Maura Kennedy & B.D. Love
The Kennedys - West
Anna Laube - Anna Laube
Sam Lewis - Waiting On You
Old Man Luedecke - Domestic Eccentric
Vanessa Peters - With The Sentimentals
Danny Schmidt - Owls
Kyrre Slind - Open Airs
Sver - Fryd
April Verch - The Newpart

Listen to tracks from selected 2015 albums at: 

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

OTBT video selection 9th December

Danni Nicholls - Between Forever and Goodbye

Danni Nicholls is one of UK's finest singer songwriters and a big favourite with the folks at Little Rabbit Barn. Her blend of smoky soul, & heart wrenching alt-country delivered with power and subtlety is something to behold. This is from a gig she played there back in April.

Luke Jackson Trio - Misspent History

Luke Jackson, one of the most exciting young acoustic performers to emerge in recent years is to join forces once again with Cardiff singer songwriter Amy Wadge for what promises to be a dazzling double header tour in the new year. Between January 9-31, Luke will tour England and Wales with Amy, known for her winning songwriting collaboration with “Britain’s hottest pop star” Ed Sheeran.

Gordon Duncan Junior - 11:11

From his new album Tides. Gordon launched the album at Pitlochry Town Hall on December 5th.

Rebecca Pronsky - Snowing Sideways

Written during the cold, dark New York winter of 2013-2014, Rebecca Pronsky’s new single ‘Snowing Sideways’ is a song about hope, about looking around us for those who know us best and can help us through times of struggle.

Produced by Pronsky’s husband and multi-instrumentalist Rich Bennett at Acme Hall Studios, a space the two own together in Brooklyn, ‘Snowing Sideways’ is more sonically acoustic than some of their recent records, and focuses more on the sound the two have developed over the years performing live as a duo.

‘Snowing Sideways’ will also be featured on Rebecca's as yet untitled new album, due for release in May 2016.

Saturday, 5 December 2015

OTBT mix 5 December \ Andy Semple

This mix is dedicated to a guy called Andy Semple who passed away this weekend. I met Andy through a Martin Stephenson internet discussion list back in the early 2000s. As well as being an online community there were annual get-togethers, known as Gatherings, which took place in Martin's adopted home in the Highlands of Scotland at a wee place called Portmahomack. 

The first Gathering I attended I got the train up to Aberdeen and then on to Inverness. Andy had already driven up to the Port, as it's known, and very kindly offered to drive down to Inverness to pick me up. I attended two further Gatherings, another at the Port and one in the North East of England which is where Martin is originally from. I remember these weekends as consisting of good company, good music and a fair few pints of beer would be drunk as well. Andy was a well-loved member of the egroup. Sadly due to mental health problems I had to leave the egroup and subsequently lost touch with most of those I had got to know. 

So I was a bit surprised at how shocked and saddened I was to read on Facebook about Andy's death as I hadn't seen him in over 10 years but I guess it shows the impression he had made on me back then. He lived in Manchester which isn't that far from where I have been living for the last ten years but while we were friends on Facebook I'd never thought about meeting up with him. Now it is too late which is a great shame.

As well as being a music fan Andy was a big football fan so I have included some football-related songs by Kirsty MacColl, Megson and Jez Lowe. When I read about his death I was listening to Johny Corrigan's new album, Down The Line, and some of the lyrics just seemed very appropriate for the emotions I was feeling on learning about Andy's passing.

So Andy, sorry we didn't get to meet up again but this mix is dedicated to you.

Martin Stephenson & The Daintees - Running Water
Johny Corrigan - Let It Shine
Roddy Frame - Small World
Kirsty MacColl - England 2 Columbia 0
Megson - The Longshot
Johny Corrigan - One Way Train
The Icicle Works - Up Here In The North Of England
Jez Lowe & The Bad Pennies - It's A Champion Life
Martin Stephenson & The Daintees - You Really Had A Heart
The Levellers - One Way
Johny Corrigan - Stay Young

Myself, Andy and various others at The Caley Hotel, Portmahomack in, I think, the year 2000.