21 Tracks: About the Bush, Willie * Dear Tobacco * The Black And The Grey * None So Pretty * Cuckoo's Nest * Bobbin Joan * The Bonny Pit Laddie * Pour Quoy * Boyne Water * Riggs Of Marlowe * Green Bracken * I'll Go And Enlist * Hunt The Squirrel * Stingo * Packington's Pound * The Far Away Waltz * Idbury Hill * Kettledrum * The Wounded Hussar * Trunkies (Wheatley) * Woodicock / An Old Man Is A Bedful Of Bones.
A debut album from melodeon player Frank Lee from the north of England.
"I began to play melodeon in 1977 after my then wife, Angela, bought one to play for Sue Allan's morris team in Wigton, Cumbria'. Neither of us could make much sense of it until I had a 'light bulb moment' about how the left hand worked! From then on, I began to try to arrange all the tunes I knew for it. My parents played recorder and piano, and my primary and junior schools in Durham imbued us with local songs. I started going to Newcastle Folksong and Ballad Club in 1958 – smuggled-in underage – so I had a headful of music, mostly from the North of England. Over the decades I’ve picked up a lot more from radio, and from friends in sessions, and I’ve had to learn lots of tunes to play for the Carlisle, Hexham, and Black Gate Morris teams. I had been flattered by encouragement from a few friends to make this CD; perhaps they thought I was looking my 77 years and once I'd popped my clogs the melodeon arrangements would be gone forever. So I have to thank Steve for turning up at my house with a microphone and a recording device, putting his time where his mouth was, spending an evening recording the tunes, and then adding his matchless hurdy-gurdy (and other instruments) playing where appropriate. Steve and I had worked together in a band some 20 years previously. My wife Corrie joins some tracks on recorder or violin. The CD is really a record of a random selection of my arrangements of somewhat 'off-the-beaten track', but almost all traditional, melodeon tunes, perhaps in case any box players might find it of interest. All my arrangements are in a state of flux, but this is where they are right now." Frank Lee.
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