The 3 original members of Oysterband – John Jones, Alan Prosser and Ian Telfer! Oysterband make a modern, folk-based British music, acoustic at heart, sometimes intense, sometimes rocking. Since 1978 they’ve toured in 35 countries – festivals, concerts, bars, rallies, jails, bring ’em on! – won 5 BBC Folk Awards and made 13 studio albums and one DVD.
They are still full of ideas.
Find out more at oysterband.co.uk
BRYONY GRIFFITH & ALICE JONES
As established solo artists, Bryony Griffith & Alice Jones are no strangers to the folk scene, however the force of this phenomenal “new” duo is sure to turn some heads, and for very good reason. Hailing from the close knit communities of West Yorkshire, both are long-time purveyors and performers of traditional English folk music, united by a mutual fascination with folk song and tune collections from their native county.
Bryony and Alice draw on a wealth of stories inspired by the landscape and language of their surroundings, not to mention the local characters they have both grown up with and still live amongst today. Via villages, valleys and moorlands, they channel their own brand of Yorkshire folk music.
Combining their respect and understanding of traditional song, music and dance with their own more contemporary style of folk performance, they present a unique repertoire of harmony, history and Northern banter. Featuring Fiddle, Harmonium, Tenor Guitar and intricate close harmony vocals in their distinctive regional accents; Bryony and Alice’s music celebrates a shared love for community heritage that resonates throughout Yorkshire and beyond, connecting with musical communities the world over.
Find out more at bryonyandalice.com
Nick Hart is an award-winning singer and multi-instrumentalist whose work with English folk song is rapidly gaining him a reputation as one of the most acclaimed performers of his generation. His considered approach to accompaniment is informed by a deep respect for the nuances of traditional song and his his captivating live performances are a testament to the importance he places on story-telling.
Nick has released two solo albums, ‘Nick Hart Sings Eight English Folk Songs’ (2017) and ‘Nick Hart Sings Nine English Folk Songs’ (2019), both to critical acclaim. His predictably titled third album was released in April 2022.
Nick has performed as an actor/musician, has worked as a composer/musical director for theatre, and is a sought after teacher and workshop leader.
Find out more at nickhartmusic.com
“A one man folk industry” BBC Radio 2
Pete has been a professional musician since 1971, playing at festivals concerts, clubs, dances & schools throughout Britain, Europe, Asia, New Zealand & USA . During the ‘70s he toured and recorded with Chris Coe, was a member of the legendary New Victory Band & with Nic Jones, Tony Rose and again, Chris Coe, he was a member of Bandoggs. In the late ‘80s and early ‘90s he toured and recorded with Red Shift but since 1985 he’s mainly worked as a soloist & earned an enviable reputation.
His strong, distinctive voice is enhanced by his instrumental versatility, the ringing strings of his bouzouki, the sweet chords of his mountain dulcimer, the plaintive frailing banjo & the pulsing reeds of his melodeon. He’s also a country dance caller, creator & band musician. He sings, plays & step dances, sometimes all at once!
Pete Coe has had more than 50 years of music making on the English folk scene. Together with his wife, Sue, he received the Gold Badge Award from the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) in 2016 for their outstanding contributions to folk dance, music or song.
“it may be easier and quicker to list the talents that Pete Coe doesn’t have.”
Andy Kershaw, BBC World
“Pete Coe in many ways represents the backbone of the modern folk revival. A fine solo performer and an energetic activist for the scene as well, founding Ryburn 3 Step, running folk clubs, dances and workshops in Ripponden and beyond while also teaching music and dancing in schools. He’s still one of the most committed, most versatile, most important folk artists in Britain.”
Colin Irwin, MOJO
Find out more at petecoe.co.uk
NANCY KERR & JAMES FAGAN
Nancy Kerr and James Fagan are one of the best known duos in British Folk music, and have been playing together since 1995. They have twice won “Best Duo” at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards (2003, 2011).
Both highly regarded singers, they are also acknowledged as masterful players of their respective instruments of fiddle and bouzouki.
Find out more at kerrfagan.uk
Described as “The future of Folk”, Banter take English traditional music to the next level with their iconic interpretations of classic songs and dance tunes.
Following in the creative footsteps of the likes of Steeleye Span and La Bottine Souriante, Nina Zella, Simon Care and Tim Walker have lovingly reinvented what defines English Folk. This year the trio have added the multi-instrumentalist skills of Mark Jolley (TradArrr, Tickled Pink) to their lineup and have been receiving rave reviews from around the globe for both their live shows and particularly for their recently released third album THREE.
“… wonderfully, powerfully dynamic. They really rock wherever they go.” – Mike Harding
“…full of Invention.” – R&R Magazine 4* review
“… really atmospheric and exquisitely done.” – Mark Radcliffe (BBC Radio 2, The Folk Show)
“… Nina Zella…Easily comparable to Christine McVie” – Northern Sky
“…If you think there’s nothing new to hear in folk music these days, listen to Banter and think again.” – Folking.com
“…What the folk tradition is all about.” – Folk London Magazine
“…Trad is everywhere; it’s how it’s used that makes all the difference.” – Spiral Earth Magazine
“…Trad goes visiting the relatives.” – The Living Tradition Magazine
Find out more at banter.band
Nina Zella has been writing music and songs since she was old enough to sit at the piano and is now embarking on a solo project with a new album on it’s way.
Her music combines elements of all the styles of music she loves – pop,folk, jazz, soul, blues.. all wrapped up with heartfelt lyrics from a lifetime of adventures.
Brought up with a folk background, Nina grew up in Yorkshire but soon started performing around the UK and abroad playing anything from pop covers to jazz and more. All the time writing a mass of her own songs that are now only starting to see the light of day.
Recently likened to Christine McVie by BBC Radio 2’s Mark Radcliffe, she is now regarded as a songwriter, composer, musician and singer of the highest calibre gaining critical acclaim and praise across the music press and receiving airplay for her work around the globe.
Now living in Lincolnshire, Nina recently landed a solo gig at a festival in Ibiza and is excited to have been given a support gig with ex-Squeeze and Mike & The Mechanics front man, Paul Carrack, in July.
Find out more at facebook.com/ninazellamusic
SIMON CARE & GARETH TURNER
Simon Care and Gareth Turner – Two’s Up
In 1984, Gareth and Simon recorded the album Two’s Up. It was unexpectedly successful, and they toured the UK demonstrating their very unique twin box style. After fronting many bands between them (Little Johnny England, Edward II, The Phil Beer Band, The Albion Band, Tickled Pink, The Popes etc..) they decided to record the difficult second album – albeit 28 years later.
Come and catch the Squeezer Geezers in concert.
Find out more at facebook.com/pg/Simon-Care-and-Gareth-Turner
John Tams described by Mojo as “one of the ultimate British songwriters” has had a career spanning five decades in every medium. A member of the Albion Band and Home Service he is perhaps best known for his work at the National Theatre and as Rifleman Daniel Hagman in the Sharpe television series.
He is a seven times winner of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, including an award for Best Duo, with longtime collaborator and friend Barry Coope. He is the Songmaker for Warhorse, a member of the original creative team and has toured the world with the production.
Few raise the hairs on the neck in such inverse proportion to the hackles as John Tams. A must-hear.’ HMV Magazine
‘John Tams is a national treasure.’ – BBC Radio 2
‘John Tams…one of the best we’ve got or indeed we’ve ever had.’ – John Leonard, Smooth Operations/ Radio 2 Producer
‘John Tams has a voice that can heal. His work is older than Stonehenge but fresher than a morning daisy.’ Bob Hoskins
‘One of our best British songwriters.’ Mike Harding
Find out more at johntams.co.uk
HONEY & THE BEAR
British folk and roots duo Honey & the Bear combine delicately interweaving vocal harmonies with emotive and evocative songwriting. With a diverse range of sounds and textures, and rhythms that flow from the fast and furious to gentle ballads, their live performances are spirited and dynamic. Conjuring stories in song, they tell tales of Suffolk folklore, courageous people they admire, their passion for nature and the odd heartbreak or two.
The multi instrumentalist pair, comprised of songwriters Jon Hart (guitar, bass, bazouki) and Lucy Hart (guitar, ukulele, bass, banjo, mandolin & percussion), have been writing and performing together since early 2014, having met at a songwriting event two years previous. Since then, they have played at many revered venues and festivals across the UK as well as travelled across the channel for their first European tour. They supported Sam Kelly and the Lost Boys on two UK tours and opened for The Shires at world renowned Snape Malting’s Concert Hall.
“Their songs are just so comforting and full of hope and love….these two don’t preach, they write about love and both radiate love so authentically on stage like I have not often experienced before. Everyone feels wrapped in by their music and their lyrics, just like they sing in “Ocean”: “And in the dark I’ll find you, wrap my arms around you. When you think hope is lost I’ll let my love surround you.” Just gorgeous. I don’t hear many lines on love that speak to me – these lines do.”
Dagmar Brudnitzki – Fatea Magazine
“Lucy Sampson and Jon Hart have quickly established themselves as a must-see acoustic duo”
Stephen Foster – BBC Radio Suffolk
“Accomplished, easy-on-the-ear acoustic folk-pop for grown-ups”
“Beautiful harmonies and charisma from both aside, they were very obviously enjoying each other’s company which enhanced the atmosphere of the evening … Jon and Lucy spoke, played and sang with ease making it all look effortless …Their lyrics were significant without being contrived, and were enhanced by their storytelling and communication with the audience in between numbers.”
Ellie-Jane Arden – John Peel Centre
Find out more at honeyandthebear.co.uk