Fairport Convention: Liege & Lief, What We Did on Our Holidays, Unhalfbricking (1969)

Fairport Convention are a British folk rock band. Formed in 1967, they are widely regarded as a key group in the English folk rock movement. Their seminal album Liege & Lief is considered to have launched the British folk rock movement, which provided a distinctively English identity to rock music and helped awaken much wider interest in traditional music in general. The band have drawn heavily on the Child Ballads, songs of the British Isles from the later medieval period until the 19th century. … Bassist Ashley Hutchings met guitarist Simon Nicol in North London in 1966 when they both played in the Ethnic Shuffle Orchestra. They rehearsed on the floor above Nicol’s father’s medical practice in a house called ‘Fairport’ on Fortis Green in Muswell Hill – the same street on which Ray and Dave Davies of the Kinks grew up. The house name lent its name to the group they formed together as Fairport Convention in 1967 with Richard Thompson on guitar and Shaun Frater on drums. After their initial performance at St Michael’s Church Hall in Golders Green on 27 May 1967, they had their first of many line-up changes as one member of the audience, drummer Martin Lamble, convinced the band that he could do a better job than Frater and replaced him. They soon added a female singer, Judy Dyble, which gave them a distinctive sound among the many London bands of the period. Fairport Convention were soon playing regularly at underground venues such as UFO and The Electric Garden, which later became the Middle Earth club. After only a few months, they caught the attention of manager Joe Boyd who secured them a contract with Polydor Records. Boyd suggested they augment the line-up with another male vocalist. Singer Iain Matthews (then known as Ian MacDonald) joined the band and their first album, Fairport Convention, was recorded in late 1967 and released in June 1968. … Before their next recording Judy Dyble was replaced by the band with Sandy Denny, a folk singer who had previously recorded as a soloist and with Strawbs. Denny’s distinctive voice, described by Clive James as ‘open space, low-volume, high-intensity’, is one of the characteristics of two albums released in 1969: What We Did on Our Holidays and Unhalfbricking. …”
W – Fairport Convention, W – What We Did on Our Holidays, W – Unhalfbricking
YouTube: Liege & Lief – Matty Groves, Crazy Man Michael, Come All Ye, Tam Lin
YouTube: What We Did On Our Holiday – She Moved Through The Fair, Fotheringay, Nottsmun Town
YouTube: Unhalfbricking – Genesis Hall, Who Knows Where the Time Goes?, Million Dollar Bash, Percy’s Song

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