Thursday 30th March 2017 at 8:30 Entry:£6 (£5 members)
Phil Cockerham Trio Philip Cockerham is a singer, performer and songwriter based in West Yorkshire, but plays nationally on the folk and acoustic music scene.
His songs contain a range of sometimes humorous but always thought-provoking themes, with memorable hooks and irresistible choruses. There are also some familiar traditional songs, but delivered in a refreshingly different way. It's not surprising then, that Phil has been gaining a deserved reputation with his original material and his entertaining performances.
Supported with his collection of acoustic instruments, Phil Cockerham captivates audiences with his music in a range of styles. His relaxed and confident personality instantly engages and puts people at their ease. Whether he is performing solo, or as most often is the case when he is accompanied by ace double bass player, Dave Bowie and percussionist/harmonist Dickie Dixon, an enjoyable night is promised.
Since his emergence in recent years, many people have discovered Phil and his songs, and other musicians are now covering songs he has written and recorded.
His music is charismatic and powerful...totally traverses the old and new, yet Philip has his own style and take on things too... Jumbo Records
...he is an impressive performer and songwriter... with engaging songs ranging from topical and catchy tunes to thoughtful ballads -Craven Herald and Pioneer
Amazing voice, tells it like it is, one not to miss.... - Cleethorpes Folk and Cider Festival
TOPIC WEBSITE NEWS
We have added the club's Constitution to the website; linkable to right here at the moment, but more permanently at the top of the right-hand column of information links on our handy-dandy History page.
TOPIC CLUB MEMBERSHIP
£5 a year from 1st January. That gives you £1 off concert tickets, and you can get more involved with running the club too if you are interested. Still a good time of the year to become a member if you aim to come to five or more gigs in the year!
PS: CASTLE HOTEL Plenty of Topic regulars play and listen at the Castle Hotel in Bradford on Fridays - why not join them? March nights are: Mar 24 - Strid (Jennie & Simon); Mar 31 - Kerr Kennedy
Singers and musicians
A chance for you to sing a song or play a tune or just come along and listen. Entry free.
Iain Thomson has been described as a man who writes contemporary songs with a traditional twist. He was brought up in Dumfries and started learning the piano at 7. By age of 15 he moved on from the discipline of classical piano to take up the guitar and singing.
Iain moved to Mull in 1986 to run a large hill farm and became known as the "Singing Shepherd" after producing two successful tapes of self penned songs.
In 1996 he left Mull spending 7 restless years driving trucks and playing in bars.Due to changing circumstances and an almost magnetic draw he returned to Mull and his rural roots and within a short time produced the successful CD The Long Road Home which was played extensively on local and national radio.
In 2010 he brought out the His album Fields of Dreams consisting of 12 tracks of self-penned songs and tunes received critical acclaim. His sensitive songs and tunes of the changing face of rural Argyll move the hearts and souls of his audience.
Iain is at present concentrating on developing the duo he has formed with the wonderfully talented Marc Duff, known primarily for co-founding the notable Celtic band Capercaillie with whom he has toured extensively and made many successful recordings. Iain and Marc’s style and sound complement one another, definitely contemporary but with that traditional twist.
Since leaving Capercaillie in 1995 to pursue his own career, Marc has worked with many prominent artists, playing low D whistle, Bodhran, bouzouki ,wind synthesizer and latterly uilleann pipes. His distinctive style of playing has kept him in demand as a session musician and a teacher.
Marc has performed and recorded with an eclectic array of artists from many different musical genres including Def Shepherd, Fish, Iain Morrison, Dick Gaughan, Billy Bragg, Wolfstone and as a soloist with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra performing music for the BBC series A History of Scotland.
Previously two-thirds of established folk act ‘The Queensberry Rules’, Gary Wilcox and Phil Hulse have over 17 years’ experience of playing music together, releasing seven albums - three of these on the legendary Fellside record label.
Laden with strong harmonies and social conscience, the new songs on the First Born and follow-up Second Chance EP’s have been winning praise on the pairs’ exciting musical journey.
The Queensberry Rules gave us some great evenings in the past, and we welcome Gary and Phil back as the successful duo they are.
Featured support:Heather McNeill, singer-wongwriter from Saddleworth whose songs of personal experiences and places are delivered with her beguiling gentle voice and guitar playing. She recently released Seasons of the Heart, her first CD comprising twelve of her own songs.
The Rubber Wellies
The Rubber Wellies are a travelling folk band, who over the last seven years have cheered audiences all over from Galway in Ireland to Gisborne in New Zealand. After the success of Long Way to Be Free (2009) and The Bones on Black (2012), their third studio album, Bricks and Feather, was released in May 2015 with the help of the usual crew of far flung welly misfits.
Drawing on narratives from curious everyday occurances, global politics and folk legends, the Rubber Wellies' multi-lingual performances are a mix of musical story-telling and good-time sing-alongs that flip between poignant introspection and carefree raucousness. Their musical style is an international mash-up of sea shanties, mexican rancheras, bossa nova, reggae, old time and swing. Similarly their approach to writing and performance attempts to build bridges – between their own stories and those of others and between the band and the audience – in a sonic/emotional conversation that creates plenty of opportunities for thoughtfullness and laughter.
As the name might possibly suggest, this will almost certainly be something of a different evening.
One of my favourite bands of recent years - Mike Harding
Try and listen to… the Rubber Wellies and be anything but happy, it’s impossible! – BBC Radio Sheffield
May 4 Singers and musicians
A chance for you to sing a song or play a tune or just come along and listen. Entry free.
Jess & Richard Arrowsmith
Jess and Richard Arrowsmith are traditional musicians and singers who specialise in English music and song. They perform as a duo using voices, melodeon and fiddle, and also play with ceilidh band Hekety and concert band Melrose Quartet (with James Fagan and Nancy Kerr). Powerful vocals, subtle accompaniments and a broad spectrum of predominantly English traditional material are the hallmarks of this Sheffield-based duo.
Their latest project Off We Go Again!, released in November 2014, is a follow up to popular nursery rhyme & lullaby CD Off We Go! (2010); and in addition, Customs & Exercise, a full length studio album of songs and tunes (for grown ups!) was released in July 2012.
Susan Herndon (USA)
Playing around 200 gigs a year for more than a decade, Susan Herndon has retained that true troubadour’s ethos, sharing her passion for song and stirring thousands of kindred spirits throughout Oklahoma, Texas, the American heartland, and in Europe.
Born in St Louis, raised in Tulsa and bred in Oklahoma, she earned several degrees including one in French. Herndon’s youthful wanderlust took her to the south of France for many years, and while in that Gallic state of mind, she began her musical odyssey in the most humble – and purest – of ways: busking for francs on the busy streets of Pau deep within the Pyrenees.
It was there and on other thoroughfares throughout Europe that Herndon honed the skills and presence needed of a dedicated working musician and an immediately engaging entertainer. “Music really is our universal language,” says Herndon today. “And I do believe that good songs – in any language – can truly touch souls. I know they have saved my life on numerous occasions."
With an engaging smile and graceful charm, she touches upon themes both universal and deeply personal, from longing and loneliness, to home, family, faded memories and hopeful dreams. And she connects with her listeners in a voice that conveys equal parts innocence and knowing savoir-faire.
Susan Herndon is one of the best singer/songwriters in Oklahoma and her artful music is getting better and better....at her best she is as good as anyone around - Greg Johnson, Blue Door Digest
Susan Herndon sings the kind of songs that make you feel like hopping in your car, taking a long and leisurely drive, taking stock in the important things in life. There's something mystical about the voice, the stories and the music, almost as if Herndon successfully captures a world of experience into a brief moment in musical time....Maria Gus - Bartlesville Monthly
Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage
Huddled round a single microphone, singing intimate duets with just mountain dulcimer, dobro and guitar Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage are a folk duo that look & sound classically timeless, yet feel refreshingly unique. Fleetingly, they may evoke a memory of Gram & Emmylou, Shirley & Davey, or Gillian & David but their warm distilling of influences from both sides of the big pond produces a refined sound that is decidedly their own.
Both hail from folk-singing families in the flatlands of East Anglia. Hannah spent much of her formative years touring Europe with her family band in a converted school bus, singing folk songs a capella in the street in order to make enough money to move to the next city. However, a sea change and relocation to the US saw her soak up the influences from the American North East and take up the dulcimer. Meanwhile Ben was writing and touring with celebrated UK folk band The Willows whose albums Beneath Our Humble Soil and Amidst Fiery Skies were championed by the likes of the BBC’s Bob Harris and Mike Harding.
Within weeks of moving back the UK, Hannah braved her first time out solo at The Black Fen Folk Club, Cambridge and as fate would have it, Ben had just returned from tour. Ben went on to produce Hannah’s solo debut Charms Against Sorrow, released in early 2015 to critical acclaim
Nurturing an intuitive musical understanding and a love of the duet whilst touring Charms Against Sorrow the pair caught the attention of award‐winning Canadian producer David Travers‐Smith (Ruth Moody, Wailin’ Jennys, Jason & Pharis Romero), with whom they made their latest album Before the Sun in 2016
"Spellbinding… Hannah & Ben were born to play & sing together." fRoots
They have created an exquisite soundscape, which is the result of passion, precision and unbridled intimacy… R2 Magazine Featured support:Bernard Hoskin, a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist based near Cambridge. He has released 11 CDs and opened for loads of people including Bert Jansch, Martin Carthy, John Renbourn and Jacqui McShee, Phil Beer, Pete Atkin, June Tabor and the Oysterband, Megson, Greg Russell & Ciaran Algar, Steve Tilston and the Amy Wadge Band.
technically brilliant guitar and vocals - Rock 'n' Reel