JOHNNY COPPIN NEWSLETTER FEBRUARY 2017
P O Box 27, Stroud, Glos. GL6 0YQ
tel no. 01453 885088
Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/johnnycoppin
“Unquestionably at the top of his game” – Acoustic magazine
“Arguably the clearest and most soothing male vocal in the world of British folk music” – Folk Radio UK
What’s in this newsletter?
– Latest News
– Songwriting Weekend in March – only 2 places left
– Spring Tour dates
– Reviews of All On A Winter’s Night album in full
– More feedback from new album, Christmas Tour, and other dates – your emails and letters!
– My BBC acoustic radio shows – available on listen again
There are such amazing snowdrops around at the moment and a hint of Spring in the air!
No dates this month – but if you’ve always fancied writing 1 or 2 songs with help and guidance, my Songwriting Weekend in Sussex is next month (24-26 March), and has 1 or 2 places left — for more details see below.
Last month the Stroud Wassail event goes from strength to strength – with the town packed with mummers, and morris sides. I sang my New Stroud Wassail song at lunchtime outside the Sub Rooms, and inside at the evening Midwinter Revels backed up by singers from Gloucester Diamonds and Shepherd’s Crook choir.
Then a few days later, MIke Silver and I had a great night at Hitchin Folk Club celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Maureen running the club. We were very honoured to be playing this event, and to a sold-out and friendly audience – there’s lots of feedback later in Newsletter.
Some great news recently – Sarah Jarosz, one of my favourite US singer/songwriters has won 2 Grammy Awards. Her album Undercurrent won Best Folk Album , and the track House of Mercy won Best Americana Roots performance. Other nominees for Best Folk Album included Rhiannon Giddens, The Avett Brothers, and Judy Collins. Judy sang Suzanne in tribute to Leonard Cohen – you can see this on the net. Also it was wonderful to read that Joni Mitchell was well enough to attend a pre-show event.
The BBC Folk Awards nominees have been announced – and some of my favourites are there.. Daoiri (Derry)Farrell (Ire) for both Horizon Award and Folk Singer of the Year, Fara (Sco) for Horizon Award, Jim Moray ( Eng) for both Best Album, and Best Original Track, and John McSherry (Ire) for Musician of the Year.
Really enjoyed seeing the Scottish quartet Fara live recently at the Prince Albert in Stroud – 3 amazing young fiddle players (Catriona Price, Jeana Leslie, Kristan Harvey) with stunning piano from Jennifer Austin.
Then on same theme, last month I was at the Scottish Night at Minchinhampton Folk Club (ev Thursday at The Old Crown,Paganhill, Stroud) performing with Blondes with Beards – and enjoying a great variety of local singers and musicians.
*SPRING TOUR DATES 2017
Sat 18 Private event
24-26 Songwriting Weekend in Sussex – 2 places left – details below –
Tel 01453 885088 or email email@example.com
Wed 5 BBC Folk Awards in London
Sun 30 BIRMINGHAM – Kitchen Garden Café, King’s Heath, B14 7SA– a double–header with Harper’s Ferry (up and coming Gloucestershire folk-rock/americana band ) 8pm. Tickets http://www.wegottickets.com/event/391401
Fri 5 FOLK ON THE PIER at Cromer – with MIKE SILVER info/tickets http://www.folkonthepier.co.uk
Sat 20 Private event
Fri 26 POYNTON – “Acoustic Sessions at the Centre, Poynton” – Community Centre, Poynton, Cheshire. Doors 7.45pm Tickets 07766 10 30 57.
Sat 3 June – NATURE IN ART, Twigworth nr GLOUCESTER with PAUL BURGESS Doors 7pm tickets 01452 –731422 natureinart.org.uk
Sat 10 June – BOSCASTLE with MIKE SILVER – Village Hall, Boscastle, Cornwall
Fri 16 June – SWINDON – with MIKE SILVER – United Reform Church, HIGHWORTH – Tickets 01793 762070
WE ARE TAKING BOOKINGS FOR 2017/18
Do get in touch… You may know of a potential venue or Village Hall?
or even like to put on a house or celebration concert!
*A SONGWRITING WEEKEND in Sussex with Johnny Coppin 24-26 MARCH 2017 at a house just north of Brighton
THERE ARE JUST 2 places AVAILABLE for the weekend course – so why not give it a go?
Each songwriter will have their own room for creativity – there’ll be an introduction on Friday evening, informal session on Saturday evening, and final shared performance “concert” on Sunday afternoon But most of the time I’ll be working with each songwriter in turn on a one-to one basis.
Course Fee is £200
including supper on Friday and Saturday/ lunch on Saturday and Sunday plus tea/coffee/drinks etc
A cheque for £100 deposit is required to confirm booking
post to Johnny Coppin, P O BOX 27, Stroud, Glos, GL6 0YQ
Tel 01453 885088 or email Johnny@johnnycoppin.co.uk
Balance of £100 to be paid on the weekend
*ALBUM REVIEWS for ALL ON A WINTER’S NIGHT Full reviews
“Christmas ditties were coming thick and fast as this mag went to press, with Johnny Coppin the latest to add his name to the long list of luminaries knocking out their favourites. Although, in fairness, it’s unlikely that Johnny was looking to rival Slade as 2016’s big hitter. Inevitably there are a few hoary old chestnuts lurking in the selection, but Johnny steps outside of the box to come up with unlikely contenders, notably a feisty reading of ‘Welcome In Another Year’, an Irish tune (wrong!) enlivened by Paul Burgess’s fiddle, and the gentle ‘Snow In The Street’, a setting of a William Morris poem. This is fine music performed by a veteran English folk singer, unquestionably at the top of his game”
Folk Radio UK:
Christmas is nearly upon us, and acclaimed Gloucestershire singer/ songwriter and Radio Gloucester presenter, Johnny Coppin is currently on his annual tour taking the All On A Winter’s Night Christmas concert to various place in the country. Johnny has been doing a run of Christmas concerts in December for a number of years, with various musicians in his band such as Paul Burgess, Dik Cadbury, Karen Tweed, and Geoff March. Sadly missing is the guitar playing of Mick Dolan, who died in 2014, and who had played in bands with Johnny for a number of years, going back to his Decameron days.
Johnny decided to put some of the lovely songs which are played at these concerts on an album, and it has now just been released. All of the above artists play on the new album with the addition of Steve Trigg on flugelhorn and trumpet and percussionist David Pickering-Pick.
This album is a real treat to listen to, a selection of songs that warm you for the Festive season and midwinter. Johnny has a lovely melodic voice that brings out the best in all these tunes, whilst playing his haunting keyboard in his own inimitable way. I’m not a big fan of Christmas, but love this album, as it takes us back to the true value and meaning of Christmas. Not about rushing out to feed retail outlets and less meaningful things. It’s about the true tradition and anticipation of Christmas, of family and reunions, of loved ones not present, The Nativity and all things of midwinter including warm fires!
The tracks included on the album are ‘All On A Winter’s Night’ – a lovely intro, that conveys the joy of anticipation of Christmas, ‘Counting The Hours To Christmas’ – a song of reunion, ‘The Christmas Star’ ( by Kimmie Rhodes) which is one of my favourite tracks, ‘Halsway Carol’ (by Nigel Eaton) named so after Halsway Manor – the National Centre for Folk Arts based in Somerset, ‘Welcome In Another Year’ (by Zoe Mulford), ‘A Connemara Christmas’ written by the late Mick Dolan, especially for the Christmas shows, ‘Snow In The Street’ (from a poem by William Morris), and classics like ‘God Rest You Merry Gentlemen’, the traditional carol ‘In The Bleak Midwinter’ (to Gustav Holst’s tune ‘Cranham’) which we all know and which is a fabulous version on this album, ‘Gabriel’s Message’ (A Basque carol with English words by the Reverend Sabine Baring Gould from Devon), and ‘O Holy Night’ – which you may not know – is a 19th century carol.
All the photos on the album are by Martin Fry, who does the amazing pictures for the Christmas shows and the album is on sale at the Christmas concerts in December 2016. Alternatively purchase through Johnny’s website where you can also find out where Johnny is out on tour. – Jean Camp – Folk Radio UK
Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
Christmas has a horrible habit of feeding many addictions, of allowing the schmaltz and the more commercial, the more consumed side of the festive period to be seen in all disturbing glory. It is hard not to be cynical about the time of year when so many people are either left alone or in want of conversation, a roof over their heads or something to eat; it is the time of year that can bring out the very worst in people…and thankfully the absolute best, the most beautiful in humanity, it is a credo that Johnny Coppin adheres throughout his sincere and wonderful arranged album All On A Winter’s Night.
Like many of his musical kin, Johnny Coppin turns to the real point, the salient and proper point of the time of year, one of reflection not greed, one of harmony and not destruction, the very peace we all search for but for many arguably is one that comes with a price tag and with the only hope that it does not make too much of a noise.
Not perhaps so much Christmas with all its glitter and gold, the fashionable fighting for space with the five minute comfortable, instead this is honest contemplation, the community tree in the square, the signs of good things not cash till singing out as profit becomes a new and unsightly god. In all of this Johnny Coppin marks out the album with sincerity, with style and most important of all, true worth; it is a worth that has the smooth voice of the musician captivating his audience and one that is perfect for the time of year, one without a cola bottle in sight, just friends and loved ones enjoying Time.
With wonderful tracks such as How Far is Bethlehem?, Counting the Hours Till Christmas, Snow In The Street and a very superb version of the traditional song In The Bleak Midwinter, All On A Winter’s Night is a response to the commercial and the forever consumed that enough is enough, let the light be bright by all means but instead of fighting for that last extra pound to which some cannot afford, sit round a fire, tell stories, listen to your loved ones without reply and take in music that isn’t based on 20th century corporate machine, instead one of the best things you can do is listen and love Johnny Coppin. Ian D. Hall
“a fine album with great arrangements of both traditional and new songs.”
*LATEST FEEDBACK – your recent emails and letters
“Thanks to you and Mike Silver for the fine evening you gave us last Sunday to help celebrate Maureen Jones 50 years of running Hitchin Folk Club. Who’d have thought we’d come out singing ‘Up on Cripple Creek ‘ ! Wonderful !” R.A from Hertfordshire .
“Everybody enjoyed the evocative celebration in Hitchin last night, thanks mainly to you and Mike, but obviously we cannot forget all those others over so many years – and Maureen. We were especially pleased that you managed to fit in our request. After it, the gentleman sitting next to us was heard to gently exclaim “What a lovely song”.For the future, we look forward to “The Merry Wives of Windsor” (The Festival Players summer tour) , and your next appearance in Hitchin.” G & D.M in Hertfordshire
‘Thank you so much for the wonderful music last Sunday – it was perfect! I always enjoy you and Mike together. The feedback from the audience has been brilliant. Hopefully we will catch up with you at a duo gig soon” Maureen Jones, Hitchin Folk Club
“Thank you so much for Sunday, it was a truly memorable night. We’ve had loads of texts and emails telling us just how much people had enjoyed it” – Kieron Jones, Hitchin Folk Club
“Your song (New Stroud Wassail) is now an ear worm for my wife and I. We greatly enjoyed singing it with you yesterday (at The Stroud Wassail) and look forward to singing it again in the future.” – R.B in Gloucestershire
“We have been enjoying the new album. It is another triumph of melody, tradition and good cheer, a fine companion to a ‘A West Country Christmas’. They join a few other choice CDs on the 5 disc turntable for the holiday season (which still continues in our household). Sunday evening we had a birthday dinner party for a friend and five other guests. We augmented the Christmas mix with BBC podcasts of your Christmas and New Years radio programs.” – D.W in USA
“Superb show at Stroud Johnny. Your voice, and the arrangements, the sound, and the stage were perfect. Congratulations..you’ve pulled it off again!” – B & C.P in Gloucestershire
“A long overdue thank you … my daughter and I thought the Christmas concert at the Bacon Theatre was just superb, really wonderful” – T.P in Gloucestershire
“Great to hear all the concerts were such a success, and that everyone was moved by O Holy night. I Wrote last year suggesting you record it.!! BUT we missed you in LICHFIELD- so please come again soon.!” A.W. In Staffordshire
“We have only met twice but I have been interested in your career since hearing you sing during the Ivor Gurney Celebrations of 1990 in Gloucester. I have several of your tapes and CDs which I continue to enjoy listening to very much.
My partner in life is a member of The Housman Society and The Gerald Finzi Society. Ivor Gurney and his music/poetry has also been of great interest throughout the years. Also J. Coppin! We have heard you in Bromsgrove. So glad your life’s work seems to have gone so well, and has given pleasure to so many of us.” – F.P in Worcestershire
*My BBC ACOUSTIC RADIO SHOW – is every Saturday from 5.30pm on BBC Radio Gloucestershire playing acoustic music on FM, AM, DAB, Freeview 735, online and listen again for up to 30 days!!! on http://www.bbc.co.uk/radiogloucestershire
SCHEDULE – JOHNNY COPPIN SHOWS available on listen again- with playlists and gig guides
Still available to listen again are:-
Sat 21st Jan – There’ll be Scottish tracks from Eddie Reader, Skerryvore, and Robyn Stapleton- new albums from Carmina, Alistair Anderson & Northlands, Daoiri (“Derry”) Farrell, Dipper Malkin, Adam Sweet, And Stroud singer/songwriter Lara Conley
Sat 28th Jan – Features an interview with singer/songwriter Steve Ashley talking about his new album. There’s also new tracks from Imar, Donal Clancy, Dempsey Broughton Plus music from Fairport Convention, Sarah Jarosz, Darlingside, Ange Hardy & Lukas Drinkwater
Sat 4 Feb – This week there’ll be new tracks from Chris Wood, Megson, Skerryvore, Emily Maguire, Robyn Stapleton and Gloucestershire singer/songwriter Keith Thompson Plus music from Fisherman’s Friends, Spiro, Luke Jackson, and The Battlefield Band
Sat 11 Feb – This week there’ll be new tracks from Faustus, Stephen Fearing, Sean Taylor, Brendan Hendry & Jonny Toman, Dipper Malkin, and Gloucestershire singer/songwriter Hattie Briggs, Plus music from Fara, Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman, and Michael McGoldrick
Sat 18 Feb – There’ll be new tracks from Police Dog Hogan, The Hut People, Eilis Kennedy, The Shake The Chains project, Lewis & Leigh, Imar, and Geoff Lakeman – father of Seth, Sean, and Sam- Plus music by Kimmie Rhodes, Kitty McFarlane, and local band The Bob Porter Project
Thank you so much for your continued support –
I hope to see you somewhere this year.
With kind regards,
Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/johnnycoppin