The Narrowboat Sessions are just that, recording sessions on a narrowboat, a wonderfully simple concept developed by Mark and Sue Holdsworth. Travelling the beautiful canals of the UK, Mark and Sue invite musicians onto their home and get them to play a few songs which are videoed and recorded for future charity CD’s. Southbound Attic Band were recorded during a warm sunny day in July in Chester in 2014 and the videos of the three tracks are now included in video form on our Music/Video page. The track the Ballad of George and Maude has been selected for the first of the CD collections (Launch date TBA) which also includes, amongst many others, tracks by Henry Priestman and Les Glover, Steve Tilston and probably the last ever recordings by the late, lovely Maggie Boyle. We consider it a real privilege to have been involved and I’ve included here a video from the same sessions of Steve and Maggie and their rendition of Silver Dagger, for no other reason other than I love it and it always brings a tear to my eye (in a good way!)
Here’s a link to last night’s Billy Maher’s Weekend Inn show on BBC Radio Merseyside. Ronnie and I are there chatting to Billy and making a general nuisance of ourselves from the start, then our music slot starts 58 minutes in with 5 live songs, including Valparaiso Bound(Additional vocals by B. Maher!) from the Willows Suite especially for our antipodean friend Ken O’Flaherty. He’s a lovely man that Billy Maher. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03gmd05#playphoto by Ken O’Flaherty
Christmas is here and we’ve released a Christmas EP. Entitled Christmas Has Come Around the EP also features the Southbound Attic Band version of The Fair and a new song Give Me A Sign, a jug band/skiffle type song with Ronnie ‘s versatility coming to the fore on washboard. The EP is available for £3 including P&P in the UK from firstname.lastname@example.org or through the site contact page. You can hear the title song Christmas Has Come Around Here. Or see a video Here. Many thanks to everybody who has played a track or a video or been to see us play or who has heard us on the radio and been in touch and to all those who came to the revival of The Willows Suite or who came to the Acoustic Dustbowl sessions. Chris, Mark and I have decided to suspend the Acoustic Dustbowl nights for now, after 3 years so many thanks especially to all our regulars who we now count as friends. An extra special thanks to our friends overseas who we’ve met through Billy Maher and Ken O’Flaherty and the Bushwackers Club on BBC Radio Merseyside; have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Barry and Ronnie,
Southbound Attic Band
Folkscene with Stan Ambrose 22 November 2015 Once again we are indebted to Stan Ambrose for featuring The Willows Suite by Southbound Attic Band and an interview with Barry about the writing of the piece, for a full hour on his BBC Radio Merseyside programme. We are really fortunate and grateful to have had the support of Stan and Billy Maher as well as Billy Butler and Spencer Leigh and Geoff Speed before he retired. Add to that the support we’ve had from Michael Hooton at Mon FM on the beautiful Isle of Anglesey Ian Tinsley, Sally Tapia Bowes and Tony Higginson at Halton Community Radio and Billy Kelly at Mersey Radio and we really do feel privileged. Many thanks to you all.
As well as great support from Stan Ambrose and Folkscene, we’ve been very lucky to have the support and friendship of Billy Maher and last night Ronnie and I were privileged to be invited into Billy Maher’s Weekend In(n) programme on BBC Radio Merseyside to meet Ken O’Flaherty all the way from Queensland, Australia,and his Brother-in-law, Alan, to have a chat and to play a few songs. Ken has a regular slot on Billy’s programme on the phone from Australia, but is on his travels at the moment and has been on the programme in person. You can hear the programme again here http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p033c5yl#play; we’re there from the start in the background and our music slot starts around 01:01 in, and it will be available for a month. We played four songs including three from the Willows Suite, with some of the background stories. It was a real treat for us to be there and get a chance to communicate with Billy and Ken’s friends from the Bushwackers Club Downunder, a Facebook community with members from all over the world which you can find here; https://www.facebook.com/groups/802348899805528/?fref=ts . We have had renewed interest in The Willows Suite following on from two recent successful performances at a new independent bookshop Write Blend; http://bobstone189.wix.com/write-blend?fb_ref=Default on South Road, Waterloo, Liverpool, thanks to Tony, Bob and Sally-Anne. Ian D Hall of Liverpool Sound and Vision came to the first night and gave us a wonderful 5 star review for which we are eternally grateful. You can read that here; http://www.liverpoolsoundandvision.co.uk/2015/09/25/the-southbound-attic-band-gig-review-write-blend-waterloo/
Stan Ambrose has been producing and presenting Folkscene on BBC Radio Merseyside for something like 49 years now, and has featured all 3 of our earlier CD’s, The Willows Suite, No More Tears and Living The Dream, and on 2 August 2015 featured our latest CD Our Day In The Sun. We feel privileged to know Stan and very, very lucky to have his support of our music. The hour long programme is available on I player until the end of August.
There is a film about Stan’s life which is very interesting and illustrates what a lovely man he is, now 86 years of age. If you get a chance it’s worth watching, you can find it here. https://youtu.be/AUiHjT8u_88
A few weeks ago we played at The Scarisbrick Marina for a charity event and Brian Conlan from Ormskirk Hospital Radio was there and interviewed Barry and recorded a few Southbound Attic Band tunes for an interesting half hour programme which is now available on Soundcloud. You can find that here; https://soundcloud.com/radio-ormskirk-general/scarisbrick-marina-open-weekend-2015 .
Partly thanks to the song being played on Billy Maher’s Radio Merseyside programme and partly thanks to Ronnie and I playing the song live over the last few weeks, there has been some demand to make this song easily available and so I’ve added this link in again.
It’s last year’s entry to the Liverpool Acoustic Songwriting Challenge, but still seems to be attracting some plays on the Soundcloud player, for which I am profoundly grateful.