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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Ian Burdon Davey Graham: what a waste (310* d) RE: Davey Graham: what a waste 28 Oct 07

I saw Davy at Edinburgh Folk Club two years ago. As far as I could tell he was not drunk and, again at least as far as I could tell, wasn't drinking. The first half of the show really wasn't very good - he was playing Italian and Spanish tunes with a plectrum on a Fylde guitar with a soundhole pickup and not playing especially accurately (by his standards at least). The result was an overamplified mess (nothing to do with the soundman by the way)   The second half was much better: he played fingerstyle and was cracking jokes from the stage. Towards the end when went back to the plectrum and the quality dipped again.

I spoke to him during one of his breaks when he was happy to sign some old vinyl for me. Again there was no trace of alcohol as far as I could tell, although no attention was being paid to the smoking ban then in force in Scotland - and neither was it tobacco smoke.

From the posts above it would appear that something has happened in the past two years which is a shame.

I was surprised by the tone of some of the posts above. Whatever the rights and wrongs of his continuing to perform if his personal circumstances have robbed him of his skills, his contribution to the development of the guitar in British folk music - both in terms of the capabilities of the instrument and the movement away from four-square picking as an accompaniment - is surely unchallenged. Neither Bert Jansch nor John Renbourn mentioned above would, I think, demur from according him his due status - indeed as I recall one of the things which the young Renbourn set out to do was to learn by heart all of DGs arrangements on The Guitar Player. It is undoubtedly true that the "eclectic" nature of his explorations means that some of the material he recorded on his later albums in the sixties has not stood the test of time, but he is hardly alone in that.



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