“One of the great English bands” – Peter Gabriel
After a fourth sell-out show at London’s Royal Albert Hall in April 2012, festival favourites Show of Hands - 2010 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards double winners - come to Towersey Festival showing just why they have been showered with accolades.
Formed in 1977 to promote Ian Durys' album 'New Boots and Panties' on the first Stiff Records tour of the U.K. Chaz Jankel, Norman Watt-Roy, Charlie Charles, John Turnbull and Mick Gallagher became known as 'The Blockheads' In 1978 released 'What a Waste' that reached number five in the U.K. charts. They were then joined by saxophonist Davey Payne and toured the U.S.A supporting Lou Reed across North America ending with their own dates in California.
Known for their timeless, unsentimental and quietly subversive tales of loss, fear, booze, brawls, abuse and sorrow, siblings Rachel and Becky Unthank are honest, young storytellers outside of time, forging links between folk worlds old, new and other. It’s hard to imagine a British folk band with fans like Radiohead, Portishead, Robert Wyatt, Ben Folds, Elvis Costello, Rosanne Cash, Ewan McGregor and Nick Hornby, but The Unthanks occupy a unique place in music.
Home Service was originally formed from the creative nucleus of the Albion Band line-up that produced the classic “Rise Up Like the Sun” album, singer and songwriter John Tams feeling the need to explore more contemporary themes in his writing and its musical interpretation. Songs like “Walk my Way”, “Alright Jack” and “Sorrow” were anthemic observations on the unfairness of Thatcherite Britain and its social inequalities. The crushing irony is that they sound as potent now as they did then, thereby making this band’s work as relevant as ever.
From the seemingly placid shores of Lake Geneva comes a sonic earthquake. It’s the ragged punk Cajun sound of a Swiss trio. Fusing the old time French migrant music of Louisiana with garage rock’n’roll, Mama Rosin create an alternative raw incendiary music & attract international attention.
Born early 2007, the band immediately started to tour all over Europe, then released it's very first record on the legendary independant and underground swiss label Voodoo Rhythm Records.
We are thrilled to see Father and Daughter come together at Towersey in 2013 for a very special duo performance.
For more than 40 years Martin Carthy has been one of folk music's greatest innovators, one of its best loved, most enthusiastic and, at times, most quietly controversial of figures. His skill, stage presence and natural charm have won him many admirers, not only from within the folk scene, but also far beyond it.
For the past decade, Nidi d’Arac have been experimenting with mixing the music of the Salento region of southern Italy with electronica and contemporary dance beats. Lead singer of the band is the eclectic musician from Lecce, Alessandro Coppola, whose creativity and love for his land have produced a passionate and mindful research of contents coming from the tradition, the music, the poetry, the folklore of the Mediterranean culture, acquired and elaborated.
“The swagger of a Balkan wedding band; the riotous energy of Latin carnival!”
Orkestra del Sol’s explosive reinvention of global brass band music takes diverse influences – ska, porro, calypso,
klezmer and funk – and creates a living, breathing polka-ing, pogo-ing honkstep for the 21st century. Trumpet,
trombone, saxes, clarinet, accordion, two drummers and the epic bass of the sousaphone conspire perfectly to
create soaring horn lines and beautifully layered harmonies, driven by an uncompromising rhythm section who
John Spiers & Jon Boden are well known for their involvement as founding members of the big band folk phenomenon that is Bellowhead. They have played together as a duo for over 10 years now and have established themselves as a very well respected act on the English traditional music scene.
A firm Towersey favourite and back by huge popular demand! Wave goodbye to choirs as you know them. This one is a macho juggernaut - zany, black-clad, big as a behemoth and show-stoppingly good. Sounding as sacred as a high church choir one minute; wickedly off the wall the next.
Vin’s career has spanned over 40 years of constant world wide touring which must make him some kind of elder statesman of folk. His songs were inspired by the folk tradition at the beginning of his career, they still are but have transformed into gritty social comment and life observations. He is renowned for his hilarious intros but for him his song lyrics are the crux of his performance.