The Tolmen Centre is thrilled to be presenting world renowned guitarist, singer and songwriter Martin Simpson. The remarkable intimate solo performances Martin gives go from strength to strength – every gig is a masterclass. He travels the length and breadth of the UK and beyond, giving rapt audiences passion, sorrow, love, beauty, tragedy and majesty through his playing. In this show, he will be playing songs from his brand new album, ‘Trails and Tribulations’, to be released on September 1st, as well as older material.
40 years after he recorded his first album, Golden Vanity, in 1976, Martin is known as a guitarist of formidable talent. Equally at home playing English traditional folk, American folk and blues and his own compositions, he is consistently named as one of the very finest fingerstyle guitar players in the world. He is listed in Gibson Guitars’ Top 30 Acoustic Guitarists of all time, and Acoustic Guitar readers voted him number 12 guitarist in the world in 2005.
Universally acclaimed as one of the finest ever acoustic and slide guitar players, and a fine banjo-picker to boot, his solo shows bear witness to an artist at the very top of his game. Whether interpreting material from tradition or singing his own potent self-penned songs, Simpson is a remarkable storyteller: captivating and profoundly moving. His own songwriting produced the poignant ‘Never Any Good’, from Prodigal Son, 2007’s Folk Album of the Year.
Martin continues to collaborate with a dazzling array of people from across the musical spectrum: Jackson Browne, Martin Taylor, June Tabor, Richard Hawley, Bonnie Raitt, Danny Thompson, David Hidalgo, Danú, Richard Thompson and Dom Flemons are among the great musicians he has worked with.
He has had the most nominations of any performer in the 15 years of the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, an astonishing 31 times, 12 of those as Musician of the Year, winning that particular accolade twice.
A virtuoso player without question, but above all Martin Simpson conveys his diverse treasure trove of material from the heart, performing with rare subtlety, intensity and honesty. A true master of his art.
“Martin is in a class of his own. He is such an expressive player; he is ingenious in his use of the guitar. You can listen to one of his songs and three or four minutes in, he has only used the top four strings and not even played a bass note yet, and when he does, it feels like an orchestra coming in. His clarity of playing is just amazing.” Jackson Browne
“One of the virtuoso instrumentalists of the English music scene” ‘Sounds better than ever’ **** 4 Stars The Guardian
“Simpson has become a fine interpreter of traditional and other songs, as well as a notable writer of his own.” The Times
‘Simpson’s latest is a potent blend of the highest calibre…Simpson has never sung or played better’ Acoustic MagazineBook Online
Forged from the voices of Hannah James, Hazel Askew and Rowan Rheingans, Lady Maisery explores vocal harmony to breathtaking effect, through their fresh interpretations of songs and ballads.
The trio burst onto the scene with the release of the debut album, Weave and Spin in summer 2011, which received much critical acclaim and was declared an ‘Album of the Week’ by The Independent. Their live performances during the festival season created a real buzz and they were nominated for the Horizon Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2012 and for Best Debut at the 2012 Spiral Awards.
Lady Maisery breaks new ground as one of the first UK groups to explore the tradition of diddling or tune singing, which has nearly died out in England, but is still prevalent in Scandinavia and other parts of Europe. Whether singing unaccompanied, or with backing from their combined instrumental talents on accordion, harp, banjo and fiddle, be prepared to be enchanted by rich harmonies and sumptuous clashes.
“…they get the biggest ovation of the festival and loud requests for encores from a crowd that won’t take no for an answer.” eFestivals (reviews of Shrewsbury Folk Fesitval 2013)
“Tremendously captivating, spellbinding singers; expert musicians.” fROOTS
“Lady Maisery are women with ideas, purpose and urgency. They’ve packed these into Mayday and created a powerful, enthralling work.” Songlines
“Mayday sees the triumvirate of talent negotiate uncharted waters with ease – singing remains the main ingredient but Hazel’s harp, Hannah’s accordion and Rowan’s fiddle and banjo are taken to new heights of skill and applied with passion to this strikingly beautiful collection” Spiral Earth
“The multi-skilled Lady Maisery; just three of them but they sound like an orchestra.” Sean Rafferty, BBC Radio 3
NOT ONLY WILL LADY MAISERY BE PERFORMING ON THE SATURDAY NIGHT BUT ON SUNDAY MORNING FROM 11.00-12.30 THEY WILL BE RUNNING A SINGING WORKSHOP DOWNSTAIRS AT THE TOLMEN CENTRE. This will be suitable for singers of all ages and abilities, and will offer the chance to sing in harmony and to learn about the mysterious art of ‘diddling’.
Tickets £11, £10 (£5 for children): advanced booking is advised.
Sottish firebrands Talisk have stacked up several major awards for their explosively energetic yet artfully woven sound, including 2018’s Belhaven Bursary for Innovation & 2017’s Folk Band of the Year both at the BBC Alba Scots Trad Music Awards, and a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award.
Mohsen Amini – the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards’ Musician of the Year 2018, Hayley Keenan and Graeme Armstrong seamlessly meld concertina, fiddle and guitar to produce a multi-layered, enthralling signature that has effortlessly captivated audiences from the USA to Australia, and throughout the UK.
Appearances at world-leading festivals – including the Cambridge Folk Festival, Denmark’s Tønder, WOMAD UK and Las Palmas, the Philadelphia Folk Festival, Celtic Colours, Milwaukee Irish Festival and five successive outings at Glasgow’s Celtic Connections – have amassed a die-hard following, whilst the world’s folk and world music media have also lauded high credits upon the trio. The release of their hotly anticipated second album, Beyond, in October 2018 was met with a five-star ‘Top of the World’ review in Songlines, praising the band as “incredibly infectious and endearing… fresh, invigorating, accomplished and playfully frisky.”
Tickets £11 – Under 12s £5.50Book Online