Mudcat Café message #2546192 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #116964   Message #2546192
Posted By: Big Al Whittle
22-Jan-09 - 12:45 PM
Thread Name: Why folk clubs are dying
Subject: RE: Why folk clubs are dying
Difficult one that. Sing in your own voice is okay for most of us, but what about people with plummy voices - or people who want to sing other kinds of folksongs. lots of people like singing irish songs for example.

As i said, I love the Watersons, but they have a style of presenting a song which isn't really a 'natural' voice. Some people try and take on the character of the narrator, rather like an actor does with a role.

i always thought Ewan MacColl was very studied - none the worse for that.

what the hell! just give it your best shot.

Sometimes some people can change your mind about a song.

I wrote a song about my Aunty Nelly, who came from St Helens and was really impressed with the American airmen in the war who were stationed down the road at Burton Wood. When I wrote it I saw it a chance to use bottleneck guitar in the style of driving Rev Gary Davis's Whistling Blues - to emulate the boogie woogie piano music of the time.

On a Folkus weekend - a guy from St helens said - why are you using an American accent -its about someone from St Helens. You can speak in a Lancashire accent - why not do that . So I did, and it seems to improve the song - to my ears. Although its a strange hybrid - a boogie woogie song in a St Helens accent.

i suppose if you're famous - you're stuck with having to do with what the audience expect. No doubt people would get pissed off with martin carthy if he did songs in a Jim Reeves style.

One of the few compensations of being poor and unsuccessful is that you can do what you like.