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Music

The Tolmen Centre has a great reputation for hosting outstanding performers representing every musical genre from classical to country.

This is the current crop – and the best of the rest who’ve entertained us over the past few years.

Budapest Cafe Orchestra

Friday 23rd September 2016
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Evoking vivid images of Tzigane fiddle maestros Budapest café life and gypsy campfires – with a few surprises along the way, the Budapest Café Orchestra play traditional folk and gypsy flavoured music from across the Balkans and Russia.

Tickets £10, £8
In association with Carn to Cove

budapestcafeorchestra.co.uk

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The Changing Room

Thursday 1st December 2016
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Tanya Brittain and Sam Kelly created The Changing Room just over two years ago, and have never looked back since. The band won all three categories of the 2015 International Pan Celtic Song Contest: Best Original Song (for Tanya’s shanty-style composition Row Boys Row), Best Traditional Song in a Celtic Language (for their rendition of Delyow Sevi which is on their new album), and Overall Winner.

Sam and Tanya are the two constant members of The Changing Room, and the door is left open for the line-up of other musicians to change and evolve. The band’s five-piece touring line-up includes Jamie Francis on banjo, Evan Carson on percussion and Morrigan Palmer Brown on harp. They are now touring with their second album, Picking up the Pieces.

£11/£10

thechangingroommusic.com

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Will Kaufman’s Woody Guthrie Show

Sunday 6th November 2016
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Hard Times and Hard Travelin’

The world’s leading expert on Woody Guthrie…as good an interpreter of Woody’s music as you’ll find. Woody Guthrie: Hard Times and Hard Travelin’ sets Guthrie’s songs in the context of the American 1930s – the Dust Bowl, the Depression, the New Deal and the state of popular music itself.

Such hard-hitting songs as “Vigilante Man”, “Pretty Boy Floyd” and “I Ain’t Got No Home” are brought into conversation with other relevant songs – from Joe Hill’s “The Preacher and the Slave” to “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?”. Altogether the show highlights the blending of music and radical politics that marks Guthrie’s most powerful work.

£11/£10

willkaufman.com

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Ten Strings And A Goatskin

Saturday 3rd September 2016
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Hailed on two continents as” infectious” and “the best of contemporary/traditional Celtic music” Ten Strings And A Goat Skin is a bilingual trad/folk/fusion trio, playing Irish, Acadian, French and original creations infused with modern and world rhythms. The band creates a fiery, contagious and unique sound which leaves audiences wanting more.

£11/£10

TENSTRINGSANDAGOATSKIN.COM

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Flats & Sharps

Saturday 16th July 2016
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Flats & Sharps blur the lines between Bluegrass, Folk and Country, and have gained recognition for performing their own highly original songs as well as their renditions of Bluegrass classics.

“…effortlessly entertaining …sublime five part harmonies …the pace of their performance is breathtaking – I recommend seeing Flats and Sharps at the earliest opportunity.” Mark Ellen Radio 2 magazine.

Tickets £11, £10

flatsandsharps.co.uk

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Chris Wood

Saturday 21st May 2016
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We are thrilled to welcome back Chris Wood, touring his new album.  Chris gave a superb performance at his last appearance with us, and we expect the same combination of original songs – both biting and tender – superb guitar work, and his uniquely engaging, and at times challenging, stage presence.

Tickets £11/£10

chriswoodmusic.co.uk

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Moulettes

Saturday 7th May 2016
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“Welcome to the world of prog folk… Moulettes are among the current leading practitioners of the sub-genre.  They are like a cross between Pentangle and the Kronos Quartet by way of Kate Bush and early Pink Floyd’s Syd Barrett” – Reuters.

Sounds intriguing?  Book early to avoid disappointment as this band is wildly popular on the festival circuit and we expect high demand for tickets.

Tickets £11/£10/£5 (children)

moulettes.co.uk

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Rob Heron and The Tea Pad Orchestra

Sunday 27th March 2016
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The band play their own brand of Western Swing, Blues, Gypsy Jazz and Country, or “North Eastern Swing” as they’ve coined it. Influenced by early 20th century American music, with the addition of “razor-sharp” solos, great arrangements and original songs; their music harks back to a golden age whilst staying perfectly modern.

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Gabby Young Duo

Saturday 20th February 2016
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A pared-down version of her 8-piece band Gabby Young and Other Animals, the duo consists of Gabby Young and guitarist Stephen Ellis, who present their unique blend of jazz, burlesque, gypsy folk and swing. Gabby says “we call it circus jazz, but you have to come and see us to know what that means”. Gabby’s quirky and colourful couture is as daring and different as her music.

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Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra

Tuesday 2nd February 2016
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Resonate Strings

Five gifted musicians, each representing one of the five string sections of the BSO. This engaging concert reflects a wonderful diversity from Vivaldi to Brahms, Mozart to Puccini and Handel to Scott Joplin.

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Lynched

Wednesday 25th November 2015
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Lynched are a four-piece folk group from Dublin who combine four-part vocal harmonies, concertina, Russian accordion, fiddle and guitar.

Their repertoire spans humorous Dublin music-hall ditties and street-songs, classic ballads from the Traveller tradition, dance tunes, and their own original material.

 

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Modou N’Diaye Cissokho & the Golden Kora Band

Sunday 11th October 2015
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Celebrated Senegalers composer and praise singer Modou N’Diaye  with the Golden Kora Band plays his own personal blend of Afro Mandingue music.

In association with Carn to Cove

Tickets £8, £6 Family £22

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The Busquitos

Friday 25th September 2015
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A quartet of madcap musical Dutchmen, the Busquitos’ music is rooted in trad jazz but may include rock’n’roll, pop and classical tunes. They describe themselves as a “jazzy jivin’ funky funny fiddle super saxy mental mobile great guitar singin’ swingin’ buskin’band”. This event will be downstairs and as the band always aims for some audience participation it promises to be a lively night.

Tickets £11, £10

busquitos.com

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Carrivick Sisters

Saturday 4th July 2015
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Twin sisters Laura and Charlotte Carrivick are widely known throughout the UK folk scene. Their years of experience performing all over the UK and abroad have gained them a strong reputation for engaging live performances, multi-instrumental dexterity (fiddle, banjo, mandolin, guitar and dobro), tight sibling harmonies and finely crafted original songs. They have a unique sound incorporating their musical background of American bluegrass and old-time but also being influenced by English folk lore, having grown up in South Devon.

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Bella Hardy

Tuesday 19th May 2015
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With The Dawn Tour 2015 – supported by Routes South West, Bristol Music Centre and Arts Council England.

Bella Hardy, BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards Singer of the Year 2014, tours her eagerly anticipated new album ‘With The Dawn’; a heartfelt collection of self-composed songs which tell a story of travel, of choices, of lessons unlearned, and also of hope. One of the most creative, prolific and original singers in the UK, her captivating voice inhabits her music and spins her narratives with an equal balance of strength and sensitivity.

£11/£10

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Josienne Clarke & Ben Walker

Saturday 14th March 2015
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Double BBC Folk Award nominees Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker infuse ageless stories of love and loss with their exquisite command of many instruments. Whether interpreting words centuries old or singing her own authentic lyrics, Josienne’s jewel-like voice finds the nuance in the simplest phrase and sends it, effortlessly, straight to your heart. Ben’s musical tact and flair for arrangement provide the perfect setting, allowing the song centre-stage.

Tickets £11

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Stefan Grossman

Saturday 4th April 2015
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Known to many an aspiring guitarist for his tutorial books, CDs and DVDs, Stefan Grossman began his own studies aged 15 at the feet of bluesman Rev.Gary Davis. Since then he has played with many of the biggest names in business, and has never stopped learning, teaching, recording and performing all over the world. This is a rare chance to catch one of the world’s greatest acoustic blues, fingerpicking and ragtime guitarists. Don’t miss it!

Tickets £11

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LEVERET

Saturday 28th February 2015
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Leveret features three of England’s finest musicians in an exciting new collaboration. Andy Cutting, Sam Sweeney and Rob Harbron are each regarded as masters of their instrument and are involved in numerous collaborations with a huge range of artists. Together their performances combine consummate musicianship, compelling delivery and captivating spontaneity.

Tickets £11

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Steve Knightley

Friday 16th January 2015
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The songwriting force behind the phenomenally successful acoustic duo (now trio) Show of Hands, Steve continues his solo ‘Grow your own’ tour of village venues with this appearance at the Tolmen Centre. He is renowned for his strong, trademark narrative songs which reflect the escapades, hopes and fears not only of people in his native West Country but of those beyond, and he pulls no punches when writing highly literate songs about bigger, global issues. Worth the ticket price just to hear the Cornish anthem ‘Cousin Jack’ performed by the Devonian who composed it, but expect an intense and engaging evening with a great musician.

Tickets £16

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Jim Causley and Lucas Drinkwater

Friday 21st November 2014
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Five times BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominee Jim Causley together with Lukas Drinkwater perform a variety of materials, including Jim’s popular settings of Charles Causley poems.

Tickets £11, £10 

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Lady Maisery

Saturday 25th October 2014
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Nominated for the ‘Horizon’ BBC Folk Award 2012 and for ‘Best Debut’ at the Spiral Awards 2012. Lady Maisery explore vocal harmony to breathtaking effect, through their fresh interpretations of songs and ballads.

Tickets £11, £10 (£5 for children): advanced booking is advised.

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Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman

Saturday 6th September 2014
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With a story that includes music making with the likes of Seth Lakeman, Cara Dillon, Levellers, Kate Rusby and Show of Hands, Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman have established themselves as pillars of modern British folk.

Tickets £11, £10

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Moscow Drug Club

Saturday 7th June 2014
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In association with Carn to Cove

Moscow Drug Club….is a curious musical place where certain elements of 1930’s Berlin Cabaret, Hot Club de France, Nuevo Tango & Gypsy Campfire meet, have a few to drink and stagger arm in arm into the darkness of some eastern European cobbled street on a mission to find the bar where Django Reinhardt & Tom Waits are having an afterhours jam with the local Tziganes.

Combining their original material with songs by the likes of Jacques Brel, Leonard Cohen, Tom Waits & Bertolt Brecht, Moscow Drug Club provide an intoxicating & intimate musical experience.

You are cordially invited to share a wry smile with us as you enter the darkly comic world of Moscow Drug Club…..this way please & mind the stairs!

£8 (concessions £6   Children £5)

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Chris Wood

Saturday 10th May 2014
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‘None The Wiser’

Nominated Best Original Song ‘None the Wiser’ BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2014

Folk Singer of the Year & Best Original Song ‘Hollow Point’ BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2011

£12 with £11 concessions.

Visit chriswoodmusic.co.uk

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Sarah Gillespie Trio

Friday 28th March 2014
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Anglo-American singer songwriter Sarah Gillespie has received critical acclaim for her 3 albums that mix elements of jazz, folk and blues with her trademark poetic lyricism. The Guardian’s jazz critique John Fordham describes Gillespie as “(joining) Bob Dylan’s lyrical bite and languid delivery to the forthrightness of Joni Mitchell, with a little rap-like percussiveness thrown in, she is an original.”

Playing tonight with renewed jazz composer Tom Cawley on piano and Ben Bastin on double bass, Gillespie will be performing a mix of songs from her new album ‘Glory Days’ as well as revisiting her back catalogue.

Tickets £9, £8

Visit Sarah’s website

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Jim Moray

Friday 14th February 2014
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Jim Moray is one of the most consistently inventive musicians working in English traditional music today. Winner of five BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, after five ground-breaking albums he is at the forefront of a new folk revival in the UK, and hailed as a pivotal influence by a new generation of folk musicians.

Tickets £11/£10

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Spiers and Boden

Monday 10th March 2014
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The Founders of Bellowhead

Twice winners of the BBC Folk Award for Best Duo

Spiers and Boden gave a storming performance at the Tolmen Centre in Spring 2013, and we are delighted to welcome them back a year later, when we expect another sell-out show. Their spring tour will be their last for the forseeable future, so this is one not to miss.

£13  (no concessions)

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John Etheridge

Sunday 17th November 2013
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Guitar legend, John Etheridge’s career spans four decades, and a range of styles from Soft Machine to hot club jazz with Stephane Grapelli and more recently playing with the eminent classical guitarist John Williams. He plays with awesome dexterity and his solo gigs are famed for their intimacy and warmth.

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Steve and Martha Tilston

Saturday 7th September 2013
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Martha Tilston is a captivating performer, an enchanting singer-songwriter blessed with a gloriously clear and seductively beautiful voice. Her father is acclaimed singer-songwriter Steve. Together they create an unmissable evening of atmospheric folk music.

Tickets £10, £9

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Andy Sheppard

Friday 28th June 2013
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Andy Sheppard, solo tenor and soprano saxophonist.

Don’t miss this! A real treat and not just for jazz lovers, this is a chance to get up close and personal with one of the UK’s leading jazz musicians and composers

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Spiers and Boden

Tuesday 21st May 2013
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Founder members of modern folk icons Bellowhead, Spiers and Boden are described by the Guardian as “the finest instrumental duo on the traditional scene.”

Together they have made the genre of spontaneous, punky English folk very much their own stomping ground.

“Joyousness reigns.” …The Observer
Tickets £12, £10

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Jackie Oates with Tristan Seume

Saturday 16th February 2013
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“Oates has emerged as a frontrunner among the new generation of Brit folkies, marked out by the purity of her voice”…The Observer

Tickets £10, £8, Children £4

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The Rua Macmillan Trio

Friday 28th September 2012
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Awarded the prestigious title of BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year in 2009, Rua Macmillan is one of the rising stars in the highly competitive world of Scottish traditional music.

Tickets £9, £8 Children £4
Café Tolmen will be open for pre show suppers for this event – booking essential.

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Jake Walton and Tinkers Cuss

Saturday 1st September 2012
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An evening of modern English folk music in aid of GNHCT, supporting orphan children in Africa.

Tickets £7.50, Children £4

Based in Cornwall Jake Walton is a unique singer songwriter who has toured extensively. Famed as a Celtic music pioneer he plays the guitar and hurdy gurdy. His music reflects both Cornish and Breton influences of Celtic myth and legend. Together with Tinker’s Cuss there will be a wide range of instruments and voices, both traditional and contempory. This will range from the slow and gentle to the more upbeat bluegrass.

This performance is in aid of GHNCT, a charity founded by Annette Montague-Thomas, a Cornish herbalist and qualified pharmacist.

The charity which is run from Truro, runs a clinic on a settlement in South Africa where the inhabitants live in abject poverty.  This was started in 2000 after Annette saw a programme about the suffering caused by the Aids/HIV pandemic in sub Saharan Africa.  She was so moved that she felt that she must do something about it and flew out and met officials from the Department of Health.

Following this she set up a clinic and an orphan’s reception centre to try to alleviate some of the suffering in one of the most impoverished areas in the world.

This is a free clinic in an area of 2,000,000 plus people.  There are now 15,000 patients and 13,000 babies and children being looked after in a foster care system.

By supporting this event not only will you be entertained but you will be supporting a worthwhile charity.

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Peter Knight of Steeleye Span presents Gigspanner

Friday 20th July 2012
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Peter Knight’s Gigspanner has been hailed by Songlines magazine as “another milestone in folk’s rebirth of cool moment”, but those in the know will tell you that there is far more to Gigspanner than meets the eye.

Fine British traditional music is to be expected from Steeleye Span’s legendary fiddle player, but Gigspanner’s musical reach probes into Eastern European, French, African and even Aboriginal influences. It is no surprise that author Terry Pratchett wrote that “Peter Knight can spin the world on his bow”. It is music played with a potency and love that leaves audiences spellbound.

gigspanner.com

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Endless Journey

Wednesday 27th June 2012
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‘Endless Journey’ brings together four musicians from two of Niger’s leading internationally known music groups, Mamane Barka and Etran Finatawa. Their swirling strings, driving rhythms and haunting vocals evoke the vast open spaces of the desert and the very soul of nomadic life.

Tickets £10, £8, Children £4

Dalla

Friday 20th April 2012
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An evening of Cornish based folk music from the inimitable Dalla, famous for their compelling dance rhythms and new and traditional singing.

Tickets £8, £7, £4

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Steven Sogo and Hope Street

Saturday 25th June 2011
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We are delighted to welcome back the amazing band Hope Street from Burundi led by Steven Sogo.   No-one who attended last year’s concert by this band – their first ever outside their home country – will forget the scenes as a full house of all ages simply stood up and danced – in the aisles, on the seats, and on stage – to the intensely natural but pulsating music delivered by Steven and Hope Street.   The tour went on to Womad and beyond, but we doubt if the atmosphere of that night could have been equalled!

They are back in UK for another visit to Womad and an extended tour – and their return visit to the Tolmen Centre promises another night to remember.    Tickets are still only £9 and £8 with children – and it was the kids who set it all going last year –  welcome at £4.


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Peggy Seeger

Friday 13th May 2011
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American Folk legend Peggy Seeger has written hundreds of songs, many now folk standards. Her partner Ewan Macoll’s song “The first time ever I saw your face” was inspired by her. She is a multi instrumentalist and a mesmeric performer. We are proud to present her at the Tolmen Centre.

Tickets £9, £8 Children £4

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Kit Downes Trio

Friday 4th March 2011
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Mercury Award nominated jazz pianist Kit Downes with bassist Calum Gourlay and James Maddren on drums.

A breathtaking improviser, and weaver of magical piano soundscapes, Kit Downes is world class’ ….Helen Mayhew, Jazz FM

Tickets £9, £8 Children £4

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Magenta

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Following sell out concerts at Blakehay Theatre, Magenta hit Cornwall for one night only. Using acoustic instruments, five voices and a generous sprinkling of humour, they play a range of traditional, contemporary and original songs.

In aid of the Heritage Centre

Tickets £9

Umdumo Wesizwe

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Soaring harmonies and tip toe dance by eight young men from Bulawayo. Unique vocals laced with Afro pop, RnB and Reggae tell of love, hope, worship and social commentary. “Only eight men, but with enough charisma and energy to light up a continent.”

The Herald Scotland

Tickets £8, £7 Children £4
In association with Carn to Cove

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Hank Wangford and Reg Meuross

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Hank Wangford is an authentic country singer/songwriter with a wide emotional range. Hank is renowned on both sides of the Atlantic for his originality and long years on the country music scene.

Reg Meuross is a modern day troubadour with some of the most beautifully disarming songs and lyrics ever written.

Together Hank and Reg have embarked on the ‘No Hall Too Small’ tour playing in two hundred and twenty village halls throughout England and Scotland.

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TG Collective

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An intriguing mix of gypsy jazz, flamenco, jazz and contemporary classical influences, TG Collective was born in Autumn 2006, built around the core of guitarists Jamie Fekete and Sam Slater, alongside the unusual combination of flutes, violin, double bass, trumpet, clarinet, cajón and percussion.

Creating ‘an exciting, sensuous sound’, TGC perform original music and arrangements, touching on influences as varied as Paco de Lucia, Django Reinhardt and JS Bach, and have built up a strong following with their intense live performances. The band is completed with the double bass and trumpet of Percy Pursglove; flautist Holly Jones; Louis Robinson on violin, Lluis Mather’s clarinet, and cajón/percussionist Joelle Barker, with interchanging shapes of ensemble within a performance.

tgcollective.com

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Larry Stabbins – Stonephace

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Larry Stabbins is a British jazz saxophonist, flutist and composer. Larry Stabbins learned clarinet at school from the age of eight, when his musical idol was Acker Bilk. He started playing saxophone at the age of eleven. He was soon playing in local dance bands, doing his first paid gig aged twelve, and later also playing in soul bands such as Bristol group The Strange Fruits, particularly the music of Junior Walker and James Brown.

He started working with pianist Keith Tippett when he was sixteen and later contributed to various Tippett projects such as Centipede, Ark, Tapestry and the Keith Tippett Septet.

Stonephace is a new jazz combo featuring Larry Stabbins and Adrian Utley from Portishead.

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Martin Carthy

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Martin Carthy is an English folk singer and guitarist who has remained one of the most influential figures in British traditional music, inspiring contemporaries such as Bob Dylan and Paul Simon and later artists such as Richard Thompson since he emerged as a young musician in the early days of the folk revival.

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Bill Brozman

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Bob Brozman is a guitarist like no other: an established and prolific recording artist, performer, producer, and author, Bob is a non-stop world traveler and tireless researcher in ethnomusicology. His work with musicians from around the world in the past several years has marked him as not only a virtuoso musician and slide guitarist, but also as a pioneer in finding a common thread among global musical cultures.

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Mick Abrahams

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Michael Timothy ‘Mick’ Abrahams is a guitarist and band leader, best known as being the original guitarist for Jethro Tull. Abrahams was born in Luton, Bedfordshire. He played on the album This Was recorded by Jethro Tull in 1968, but left the band after he’d clashed with Ian Anderson over their musical direction.

Abrahams went on to found Blodwyn Pig and recorded two albums, Ahead Rings Out (1969) and Getting to This (1970) before leaving in 1970 to form the Mick Abrahams Band.  Abrahams has continued to release albums by himself and with reunited versions of Blodwyn Pig.  His Tolmen Centre concert will be a solo acoustic set.

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Portico Quartet

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Nominated for this year’s Mercury Music Prize the Portico Quartet play melodic, rhythmic music that mixes the inspiration of Philip Glass and Steve Reich with a very contemporary kind of improvisation – engagingly chiming themes delivered by steel pan-like Hang drums, saxophone and bass.

“A singular talented outfit, pivoting on a beautifully lithe rhythm section and foregrounding Jack Wyllie’s fluent saxophone to a meditative and mesmerising effect ” Time Out

Tickets £8, £7 Children £4

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Bombay Jazz with Larry Coryell

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Guitar legend Larry Coryell, George Brooks, Indian bamboo flute master Ronu Majumdar and tabla virtuoso Aditya Kalyanpur join forces to create the finest Indian-inspired jazz and jazz flavored raga. These world music visionaries blend the ancient improvisational art of Indian classical music with jazz, Americas’ own classical music, to create a soul satisfying, original music filled with rich melodies and dynamic rhythms.

Bombay Jazz made their debut at the Jazz Yatra in Mumbai, India in 2003, receiving critical and popular acclaim. A whirlwind tour of Europe (21 performances, 10 countries, 23 days) in the fall of 2004 and US performances in 2005 and 2006 solidified the group’s relentless pursuit of compositional and improvisational excellence. In October 2007, Britain’s Asian Music Circuit presented Bombay Jazz, for a 12-city tour of the UK. In 2008, Bombay Jazz, again toured the US, with sold out shows at New York’s Jazz Standard. 2010 brought us another tour of the US and Canada with standout performances at NYU’s Skirball auditorium and the beautiful Palais Montcalm in Quebec.

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