Shammick Acoustic programme
Feb 24

Derek Gifford: Another previous Open Night featured artist, it’s a delight to welcome this mellow-voiced singer for a full concert.  Former teacher Derek, has made the most of his retirement to spend more time fulfilling his main interests in life, folk singing, wine appreciation and birding (of the feathered variety, I hasten to add!), which used to be confined to school vacations, starting way back in 1981.  Over the years, he has amassed an enormous number of songs, both traditional and modern, from a wide variety of sources.  He collaborated with Bury poet Keith Scowcroft, setting many of them to music, and also became known as a specialist in maritime songs, having appeared at the local Lancaster Maritime Festival for many years, then backed this up by working with singers Keith Kendrick and Geoff Higginbottom as Three Sheets to the Wind.  Derek also has numerous recordings to his name, most recently ‘Songs from the Past…Into the Future’ on the WildGoose label (on which can also be heard voices from Shammick in Tom & Barbara Brown).  Accompanying himself on guitar or bowed psaltery or just singing unaccompanied, a relaxed, laid-back and humorous evening can be anticipated, with loads of good choruses with which to sing along.

Mar 10th Open Night:
Mar 24

Kieran Towers and Charlotte Carrivick:  Charlotte Carrivick first came to Shammick with her twin sister Laura back in 2011, and they stunned us with their Devon ‘greengrass’ music and songs!  Now not restricting themselves to only playing with each other, Charlotte has teamed up with old-time fiddle champion, Kieron Towers.  Charlotte started her musical adventure at the age of nine, playing classical guitar, later going on to mandolin, flatpick guitar, clawhammer banjo, and fiddle, being awarded first place in the Friends of American Old Time Music and Dance contests for banjo and fiddle.  Now one of the UK’s most sought-after bluegrass and old-time musicians, as well as being a multi-instrumentalist, Charlotte is a singer, songwriter and composer performing internationally.  As to Kieran, he has been playing this music for as long as he can remember.  There are few fiddle players who can rival his creativity, and his love of the music and of playing are obvious in his performance.  The two of them make a sound that is simultaneously new and refreshing yet rooted in tradition.  A bit of old-timey music always goes down well at Shammick, and this one’s going to be a great one!

Apr 14 Open Night:
Apr 28

Saul Rose & James Delarre: These two make a quite exceptional duo, combining thrilling fiddle performance with some of the finest melodeon playing to be heard on the folk scene.  Having started playing melodeon when he was just ten years old, Saul has been a professional musician on and off since his late teens, and has played with some of the greats of the scene, most notably with Eliza Carthy and Nancy Kerr in the Kings of Calicutt, Waterson:Carthy, and most recently, Faustus.  He also spent a year as ‘Songman’ in the West End production of ‘WarHorse’.  His voice is rich and warm, and beautifully suited to traditional English songs.  Likewise, James has been playing violin from a young age, mostly self-taught, and turned professional very early on, working with Jim Moray, Mawkin:Causley and others, and later appeared in a number of television series and feature films.  The pair met and worked together at Sidmouth Folk Week some ten years ago and became firm friends, the music flowing whenever they get together.  As a duo, they harness all the subtleties of traditional music while still producing an exciting and energetic display of musicianship.  The joy with which they experience music together is hypnotic, captivating and addictive.

May 12 Open Night:
Jun 9 Open Night:
Jun 23

The Teacups:  Comprising the talents of four graduates of Newcastle’s Folk and Traditional Music degree course, this a capella quartet has been singing up a storm across the UK circuit during the past few years, with acclaimed performances at Shepley, Beverley, Warwick, Sidmouth, Whitby and many other top folk festivals, as well as in Europe.  One of their number, Alex Cumming, is no stranger to Shammick Acoustic – in fact, he regards it as one of his favourite clubs – having performed here with Nicola Beazley and with James Finlay.  Now living in the US, he is a multi-talented performer and workshop leader in both countries.  Kate Locksley, concentrates on songs and singing, whether it be with The Teacups, the all-female a capella trio Wychwood, or with the folk trio Night Fall.  Rosie Calvert is another multi-talented person who teaches, composes,makes and plays instruments as well as singing, and performs with female trio Speldosa and in a duo with the other member of The Teacups, Will Finn, who she describes as ‘awesome’.  As a whole, The Teacups provide “a proper feat of English folk songs sung with intelligence, heart, and soul.”  Can’t wait!

Jul 14 Open Night:
Jul 28

Tim Edey:  How can one man be a virtuoso musician on two such different instruments?  Tim Edey is – on both guitar and melodeon he is quite exceptional.  Originally from Kent but of Irish descent, Tim honed his style of playing by shutting himself away in his bedroom, listening to his musical heroes, and practicing until he could make the same sounds as they did – and then exceeded them!  He has toured the world and recorded with most of the major names in Celtic/contemporary roots music, including The Chieftains, Christy Moore, Sharon Shannon, Natalie MacMaster, Stockton’s Wing, Dougie MacLean and Mary Black, to name just a few!  He’s now a name on the world stage in his own right, and is rated by many to be one of the world’s finest ever melodeon and guitar players, with a personality to match.  An evening with Tim is a stunning mix of world music-inspired instrumental virtuosity and passion with a strong Celtic theme, plus chorus songs for an audience to partake in, and above all, a highly entertaining night of musical genius.

Aug 25

Guest artist to be confirmed

Sept 8 Open Night:
Sept 22

Colum Sands:  Colum Sands, one of the famed Northern Irish musical family, is a universally acclaimed songwriter, having performed in over thirty countries around the world.  Not only that, but he often discovered that some of his songs had arrived before him, taken up by other performers such as Andy Irvine, Tommy Makem and Liam Clancy, and Roy Bailey.  His songs and stories observe the minute and often humorous details of life, and are not afraid to quietly point out the absurdities and results of historical and political happenings throughout the world, from Northern Ireland itself to Berlin and Israel.  With his touring, both solo and sometimes with the family band, and no less than nine albums to his credit, one wonders how he finds time to do anything else, but indeed he does.  For many years he presented Radio Ulster’s Folk Club programme, as well as broadcasting a series of programmes of Radio 2, and a series for RTE Radio, plus a Radio 4 documentary tracing the work of early folk music collectors in Ireland.  In addition he has produced countless albums for other songwriters and for traditional singers, been short-listed for a Grammy nomination, and been received the Living Tradition award for services to Folk and Traditional Music.  But quite apart from all that, he is warm, witty, moving and funny as a performer, and whether performing to three or three thousand people, makes everyone feel as if they were sitting in his living room.  Through the weaving of his songs, he has a gift of breaking down cultural barriers through choice words and eloquent music.  Welcome, Colum!

Oct 13 Open Night:
Oct 27

Pegleg FerrettThis three-part harmony group’;s pedigree goes back to the late 1960s, and they toured extensively for over twenty years before parting company to pursue their individual careers.  But it seems you can’t keep good singers apart forever, and the group reformed in the new century, following it up with their album ‘Not Fooling Anyone’.  The trio comprises Keith Pollard, Geoff Anderson and Benny Graham, who is no stranger to North Devon having been a concert guest at Shammick Acoustic eight years ago, and more recently as part of ‘The Pitmen Poets’ at The Plough in Torrington.  They specialise in a capella singing, mostly of traditional songs or those written in traditional idiom, many from their native North East of England, and have performed both nationally and throughout Europe, as well as on radio and television.  Several festivals have enjoyed their performances recently, including the famed Durham Miners Gala, reportedly attended by over 50,000 people!  Their album credits include work with the WarHorse’s ‘Songman’ Bob Fox, shanty man Jim Mageean, and the late Johnny Collins, which may give some idea of both their quality and their style of singing.  To get this trio down to North Devon is quite a coup, so don’t miss out on a great evening of humour, fine singing, and audience participation.

Nov 10 Open Night:
Nov 24

Moira Craig & Carolyn Robson:  Previously two-thirds of the much-loved harmony trio Craig; Morgan; Robson until the sad passing of Sarah Morgan, these stunningly fine singers have kept the music alive, mainly concentrating on their native songs of Scotland and Northumbria.  Moira Craig is from East Kilbride, where music and singing was at the heart of family life, and although she left to work as a nurse in South East England more than thirty years ago, singing has still taken up most of her free time.  She has long been recognised for her superb interpretations of traditional songs and ballads, winning Sidmouth International Folk Festival’s ‘Sidmouth Singer of the Year’ award, and contributing to the CDs produced by the Pastimes shop, and performing in Britain, Germany and the USA.  Originally from the North East border country, Carolyn Robson has long been a professional singer and musician specialising in traditional folk song and dance.  With a number of albums to her name, Carolyn also has a wealth of singing and teaching experience, has made countless club and festival appearances, featured on radio and TV, and is widely recognised as one of the country’s finest female singers.  These two could charm the birds off the trees, and will have no difficulty in enthralling the audience at Shammick Acoustic.

Dec 8 Open Night:
Dec 22

WINTER WARMER with Vicky Swan and Jonny Dyer:  A welcome return to Vicki & Jonny, who were last guests at Shammick Acoustic way back in 2011.  This duo have impressive musical backgrounds, Vicki having studied at the Royal College of Music, and plays a huge variety of instruments, from various types of bagpipe to the nyckelharpa, a Swedish keyed fiddle, and is almost single-handedly responsible for the huge upsurge in the popularity of that instrument.   Jonny too shows outstanding technical ability on guitar and other stringed instruments, and on piano accordion.  His wide-ranging musical taste has made him a tireless and forceful musical innovator.  Rather than their usual traditional and original folk music, this time they come ready to charge everyone up for Christmas with their Winter Warmer show, a fun-filled festive evening of well-known singalong carols interspersed with famous Music Hall numbers and other seasonal favourites.  Performed in Victorian costume, this will appeal to everyone, young and old, as they present their light-hearted, humorous and fun show.  Come along and get in the mood!