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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Howard Jones The current state of folk music in UK (2105* d) RE: The current state of folk music in UK 05 Nov 19

I think that, as always, Brian has summed things up very well. I don't think anyone would claim that the folk scene is as healthy as it once was, but neither is it as moribund as Jim would have us believe. There are certainly fewer folk folk clubs, but these have been at least in part replaced by other types of venue, and these are not all passive "bums on seats" but many allow for participation. I agree with Brian that the familiar folk club format may no longer be how people want to enjoy folk music.

There is a sizeable body of young performers who, as Brian describes, are full of both enthusiasm and respect for the music. However they are doing things their own way, and if those are not always what the older generation would approve of perhaps that is no bad thing. I am confident the music is in good hands.

One thing I find sobering is that at least one younger musician of my acquaintance regards me and others of my generation as genuine links in the chain of the tradition. I have always regarded myself as a revival singer and musician, and distinguished what I do from the source singers who were the "real thing". But because I have heard Walter Pardon, Fred Jordan and others sing and played in sessions with Oscar Woods and Reg Reader, because I have heard Peter Bellamy, Tony Rose and Swan Arcade sing live, he regards me as a direct link to all that. I used to go to listen to the "old boys", and now he sees me as one of them. That is quite a responsibility, and not one I feel I deserve. But that is what folk music is, it is passed from one generation to the next by whatever means possible.

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