The Lady: A tribute to Sandy Denny - The Anvil, Basingstoke, Hants, England 2012-05-24

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Thea Gilmore joined a unique line up of artists including former colleagues and friends Dave Swarbrick, Maddy Prior, and Jerry Donahue, alongside Joan Wasser (aka Joan As Police Woman), Green Gartside, PP Arnold and young admirers including Lavinia Blackwall (Trembling Bells), Sam Carter, Blair Dunlop (The Albion Band), Ben Nicholls, and other guests. Together with members of Bellowhead, who formed the core of a house �super group�, they created this unique, adventurous homage to the artist described by Richard Thompson as �the greatest British female artist of her generation�.

Sandy's songs were performed by a remarkable gathering of musicians drawing from contemporaries such as Maddy Prior, Dave Swarbick, Jerry Donahue and PP Arnold alongside present day performers such as Joan Wasser (aka Joan As Policewoman), Green Gartside, Thea Gilmore, Bellowhead, Sam Carter, Lavinia Blackwall and Blair Dunlop. All will brought something of their own talent and experience to this unique tribute to Sandy Denny.

Like Sandy, Maddy Prior came out of the 60's folk clubs to find wider recognition as part of the successful folk-rock group; Steeleye Span with whom she still performs. Maddy Prior has also released an acclaimed series of solo albums and worked with fellow folk singer June Tabor in their duo Silly Sisters. Renowned fiddler Dave Swarbrick was a rising star of the folk scene having worked with A.L. Lloyd, Ewan MacColl and Martin Carthy when he joined Fairport Convention in 1969; alongside Sandy, the two of them helped to shape Fairport's milestone recording Liege & Lief: He is now recognized as one of the most influential violin players in Britain. Jerry Donahue is one of the world's most respected guitarists, known for his left hand technique and string-bending style. He joined Sandy in Fotheringay, the group she put together on leaving Fairport Convention and continued to accompany her throughout her solo career and when she later re-joined Fairport Convention. PP Arnold the American-born soul singer, enjoyed considerable success in the UK in the 1960s as part of the Ike and Tina Turner Revue and as a solo performer on the Immediate label working with Andrew Loog-Oldham and Mick Jagger. A series of collaborations with high profile artists followed including Eric Clapton and the Bee Gees and perhaps more surprisingly Nick Drake and Steeleye Span.

Of the younger artists, the American musician Joan Wasser, is one of the most respected of the current generation of female singer-songwriters. She has released three acclaimed albums as Joan as Police Woman, and worked with a wide variety of artists including Lou Reed, Rufus Wainwright and Antony and the Johnsons. Thea Gilmore has developed a respected reputation as a songwriter and interpreter and managed to combine both gifts brilliantly in bringing to life a selection of Sandy Denny's unrecorded songs recently discovered in her archive on the album �Don�t Stop Singing�. Green Gartside is the founding member, singer, songwriter and guitarist with Scritti Politti, whose unique punk-pop was distinguished by Green's philosophical wordplay. In recent years Green has taken part in homages to The Incredible String Band and Nick Drake.,

Also taking part in the tour is Bellowhead member Benji Kirkpatrick who plays on Thea's album (His father John Kirkpatrick had also played on the album 'Sandy' back in 1972). Bellowhead are in many ways a Fairport for the present day in the way they continue to create equally ground-breaking folk music, and maintain a formidable live reputation; Pete Flood and Andy Mellon of the group also join the tour band; Lavinia Blackwall, is the singer and keyboardist of Trembling Bells; one of the key groups influenced by the psychedelic folk-rock sound of the 1960's. Lavinia's soaring vocal style has also drawn favourable comparison to Sandy's. Sam Carter is one of the finest young finger picking style guitarists and was voted Best Newcomer in BBC Radio 2's Folk Awards in 2010. They join rising star Blair Dunlop, a 2012 BBC Young Folk Award nominee, who is now featured in the first ever Albion Band not to feature his father, Ashley Hutchings, a founding member of Fairport Convention. Ben Nicholls is a multi-instrumental musician and double bass player performing with the award winning Seth Lakeman Band amongst others. He fronts his own band Dennis Hopper Choppers released an acclaimed album 'Be Ready' last year. Ben will be performing, and also joins the band on bass.

This was recorded from row H, Centre Stage.

Total Lenghth:- 2hr 22min 15Secs

01 Intro from Andrew Batt
02 A Sailor's Life - Lavinia Blackwall
03 Late November - Lavinia Blackwall
04 North Star Grassmen and the Ravens - Green Gartside
05 Stranger to himself - Green Gartside
06 Glistening Bay - Thea Gilmore
07 London - Thea Gilmore
08 Bushes and Briars - Sam Carter
09 Fotheringay - Maddy Prior
10 John The Gun - Maddy Prior
11 The Sea - Blair Dunlop
12 It'll take a long time - Blair Dunlop
14 By the time it gets dark - Joan Wasser
15 The Lady - Joan Wasser

Second half:-

16 Intro from Andrew Batt / Matty Groves - Ben Nichols
17 Long Time Gone - Thea Gilmore
18 Don't stop singing - Thea Gilmore
19 Quiet Joys Of Brotherhood - Lavinia Blackwall
20 It suites me well - Sam Carter & Dave Swarbrick
21 Nothing More - Green Gartside
22 Solo - Maddy Prior
23 I'm a Dreamer - PP Arnold
24 Like an Old Fashioned Waltz - PP Arnold
25 Take Me Away - PP Arnold
26 No More Sad Refrains - Joan Wasser
27 Band Introductions
28 Who Knows Where The Time Goes - Ensemble

The band:

Pete Flood..................Musical director/drums/percussion
Jerry Donahue...............electric guitar
Benji Kirkpatrick...........mandolin/accoustic guitar
Nigel Stonier...............accoustic guitar
Andy Mellon.................piano/trumpet
Nick Pynn...................violin/viola
Ben Nichills................bass
Sam Carter..................accoustic guitar

Various artists in the ensemble sang backup vocals, changing for every song