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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Big Al Whittle The current state of folk music in UK (2105* d) RE: The current state of folk music in UK 26 Oct 19


Question:
Maybe the ringbinder and tablet readers do get on my nerves a bit. But I'd rather have that inclusivity. I want people to feel that they all have a right to have a go. I don't want people to feel intimidated like I did.
But would you agree with my post earlier that whereas it may be OK for someone to come and read a song that they have not bothered to learn in a free admission singaround, it is simply not good enough in a situation where people have paid an admission fee?
My answer:
I suppose I have an advantage, in that I was brought up listening to all sorts of nonsense in Quaker meetings. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus told us 'Judge not,lest ye be judged.' And so I judged not.Try it. Fuck knows what sort of life leads one to read out song lyrics in public. Either that or put a contract out on the stupid bugger.

Then later he wrote:-
However Froots has bit the dust mainly because of its dogged unshakeable belief that we had nothing much to offer compared to the Zulu's, Mexicans, Norwegians etc.
.... and in a previous thread, you wrote that it was Mongolian Nose Flutes (though there are no such thing!) that caused the demise of fRoots. Could I ask you, Al, if you have read my post at 15 Oct 19 - 06:16 AM where I explain that their policy of spreading their editorial content beyond these shores had nothing to do with the magazine's demise? In fact their readership and subscriptions had increased considerably in the years since they started to include World Music, yet the content was always at least 50% from English speaking countries or the minority British languages.
You have claimed elsewhere that the decline in folk clubs has been caused by the concentration on what you seem to regard as the sterility of those with a serious approach to folk songs in favour of the type of performer that you admire - and you have named Derek Brimstone and Alex Campbell. If we are to exlude the British tradition and we ignore foreign language roots music, are we not left with a folk scene with a very narrow compass indeed?

Answer
Well I think we disagree about what you call a serious approach to folk music. The reason I loved Brimstone is because I was doing a job I hated and I found a bloke who for the last five years since I last met him, had found a way to sing folk songs and make a living. His repertoire ranged from Broonzy, the Copper family, to the African guitarist Jean Bosco M'wenda and further afield. In following him. I found my own muse and skill set
That's what I call a seriouds approach. I can assure you, it takes dedication. Not an indifference to your audience and a willingness to bore the bollocks off them and arrogantly demand respect. .

Froots never engaged me because it talked about the lateest product the 'world music' was trying to foist on us. It had NO interest in the practicalities of thousands (possibly Millions) of us running the folk clubs. You put it down, no wiser than when you picked it up. It had no interest for the activists and ground troops. Thats why people stopped reading it.




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