Mudcat Café message #3187535 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #138735   Message #3187535
Posted By: Phil Edwards
14-Jul-11 - 12:41 PM
Thread Name: Do purists really exist?
Subject: RE: Do purists really exist?
I stopped listening to folk in 1976-7 and got into it again 25 years later, so I basically slept through the Great Decline that people are talking about. But what's struck me recently, particularly from browsing the vinyl at the Oxfam shop in Manchester city centre, is how huge the scene was in the 70s, at least relative to what it's like now. An album by a local band called the Wassailers had a sleevenote describing them as "one of the hardest-working bands in the County Palatinate". I don't think there are enough active folk groups in Lancashire now to make that kind of comparison - it'd be like saying that silver is one of the best Olympic medals.

On balance I think I suspect Snail is closer to the truth of it than either Jim or Al, for two reasons. Firstly, I don't think that you can judge if a club is likely to get cliquey and stale, or that it won't be able to counter the appeal of the telly, from the style of music it offers. Where I live there's an anything-goes FC where standards are very variable indeed & self-composed stuff is the norm, and (as Jim would predict) it's pretty much driven the traddies out. However, it's still packed out week after week - and the traddies are fine, as we meet somewhere else on a different night. Which is my second reason for thinking that Snail is closer to the mark: in my experience things just aren't as bad as both Jim and Al are making out.