Mudcat Café message #3889405 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162917   Message #3889405
Posted By: Big Al Whittle
20-Nov-17 - 05:29 AM
Thread Name: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
Subject: RE: What is Happening to our Folk Clubs
last night i was in a session.

there two of us singers who weren't using prompts. mainly electronic.

I sang Blueberry Hill, cos I still feel a bit tearful about Fats Domino. A Blind Lemon Jefferson song, I learned off Hamish Imlach and The Midnight Special, which I always loved from hearing Gerry Lockran singing it.

I think the determining factor in giving respect to a song is probably meeting people like Hamish and Gerry, who worked out ways of playing and presenting songs that were dynamic.

You're not going to like this Jim, but I do feel that part of the closing down of so many folk clubs was down to the influence of Ewan, Somehow he gave the impression that what you sang was much much more important than how you sang it. In a way -- it was natural for him to work and polish his work to a high standard - with his theatrical discipline. Many of his followers didn't understand this. I used to despair hearing guitarists trying modal tunings at a point in their playing career where learning One Man Went to Mow with two chords would have been more appropriate. Many saw singers like Fred Jordan, and just saw an old man singing songs - they missed the art. They thought - I can do that.

It became very fashionable to despise minstrelsy. And many of the minstrels seemed suddenly to have to be working for Ann Dex in Norway and god knows where.

Where are the people showing how it should be done, and how to hold an audience. There aren't the clubs any more, thanks to all that bad mouthing of the minstrels., coupled with people turning out and finding incompetents - highly self satisfied ones, keeping the tradition going.
I was offered a gig on the other side of the country - yesterday. No money of course, it was assumed I would do it for the love of my art.