Ely Folk Club takes place in The Old Dispensary, 13 St Mary's Street, Ely, Cambs, CB7 4ER. There is no bar, but you are welcome to bring your own drinks or buy drinks from the pub across the road and bring them with you.
New start time: From September 2013 events at Ely Folk Club will start at 8.00pm, unless otherwise stated.
Concerts take place most months, usually on Wednesday evenings. We also hold occasional extra events.
Tickets may be booked in advance by telephoning 01353 740999 or 01353 664706.
Mick Ryan and Paul Downes present a history of Yule told through the eyes of a prosecution and a defence, charting paganism, wassailling and carolling through to dialogue between Dickens and Scrooge, the WW1 Christmas Day soccer match, and right up to our familiar modern over-indulgence, all with wit and great tunes. Mick Ryan started singing at the age of sixteen and, by the age of 18 he was neglecting his A Levels to gig in folk clubs with his school friend and musical partner John Burge. More recently, he has written and performed a number of 'folk operas' including the much acclaimed "Navvy's Wife". Paul Downes is no stragner to Ely Folk Club having played here both solo and with Phil Beer. Paul spent his youth playing classical guitar, rugby, soccer, cricket, the field and looking at maps. He played a solo recital in Westminster Abbey at the age of sixteen and subsequently took up folk music. From the age of 12, Paul's best friend was Steve Knightley; then at 16, they met Phil Beer. However, despite these drawbacks, Paul was reasonably well-balanced until, after giving up a promising academic career, he went on the road as a professional muso.
Andy Wall, Ruth Bramley and Ann Biggs will, between them, open the evening's music. Ruth has been running the club since 1993, joined by Andy in 1999. Ruth and Ann first sung together over twenty five years ago. Under the name Big Apple Pie they performed in many local schools, at children's parties and for 'grown-up' events too including a number of folk clubs and festivals. Although they don't do many gigs these days, they both still thoroughly enjoy singing together. Andy is a much more frequent performer, playing at many festivals, clubs and other events. In 2009 he finally released a much anticipated CD. As an added bonus for the evening, there will be something in the way of seasonal entertainment...oh, and mince pies, of course.
Jackie Oates is a phenomenon in the exploding folk-pop scene in the UK today. Originally a member of The Mercury-nominated The Unthanks (then Rachel Unthank and The Winterset), she has since carved out an astonishing solo career which has made her a name to conjure with in folk music circles, in demand for work with other artists, cosmetics stores, collaborative projects, even the subject of pop-art. She has recently been the inspiration behind a ‘Jackie Oates’ titled and specially produced tinted moisturiser for fair skin in Lush - the worldwide chain of seven hundred fresh handmade cosmetics stores. She has toured toured as support to Mercury nominated folk-pop star Seth Lakeman. She’s newly established as a member of the all-star multi-cultural folk band Imagined Village alongside Eliza Carthy, Chris Wood, Martin Carthy and more.
Owen is a solo melodeon player, performing traditional music from all over the world. Schooled in classical piano from an early age, he started playing the melodeon at the age of twelve. He played regularly with the Cambridge University Ceilidh Band in his four years as a student. Owen has developed a personal style of performance, marrying tunes from different cultures and different periods. Prepare for strange time signatures, fluctuating rhythms and lush harmonies.
With six critically-acclaimed albums to their name, Winter Wilson are known across the UK acoustic music scene for their fine original songs, stunning harmonies and off-the-wall humour. Kip Winter’s voice is simply one of the best in the business, delivering power and emotion in equal measure (described by one promoter as “from melting to belting”). In the past she has sung everything from jazz to opera, but is at her best and happiest when singing folk and blues. Described by the great John Tams (Sharpe, Warhorse) as a “magnificent” songwriter, Dave Wilson is now recognised as one of the best on the English acoustic scene, with his songs covered by some of folk’s “greats” including Vin Garbutt. Add to this a mellow, relaxed singing style and some mean guitar playing. Put these two together and you get great songs, beautifully sung and much laughter – a performance guaranteed to deliver superb entertainment.
It says this on Keith's website: "stand-up comic, fall-down comedian, surreal snigger-songwriter, guitar-hero, performance-artist, [tall] story-teller, philophoser, scriptwriter, [none can] compere, man-of-mystery, inner-childminder, actor, stuntman, metaphysical-poet, human ping-pong ball, life and soul of the [kids] party, world-class athlete, leading socialite, raconteur, business tycoon, wit, author, half-wit, secret[sh!]-agent, [vauxhall] astral-traveller, shamen, geordie-cultural-attache, word-juggler, snake-charmer, underline-dancer,unexpected clairvoyant, dream-weaver, daydream believer, psycho-linguist, shark-wrangler, smile sculptor, [compulsive] lying-tamer, Great-British eccentric, [alleged] international-jewel-thief, hot-dog-skier, alien-abductee, zen grand-master, champion tiddly-winker, sandancer, friend to the pantomime horse, erstwhile slice of bacon, and all-round good egg." Who am I to disagree?
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