Folk in Spalding and the wider area

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A regular column from Spalding Folk Club’s Martin Browne.

We are very lucky to have such a well-appointed arts centre here in Spalding. Two weeks ago I went to see progressive bluegrass band the Railsplitters open their UK tour at the South Holland Centre and it was a treat to see its auditorium almost bursting at the seams with a very enthusiastic and appreciative audience.

So, bluegrass music mentioned in a folk column; why not I would add. The respective genres are not that far removed from one another and the former is really only a migration and subsequent evolution of the latter. Emigrants from the old world took their traditional music and instruments with them as they crossed the Atlantic and the tunes and songs were often adapted for the purpose of community dancing and entertainment.

The Railsplitters showed us that this transition has indeed worked well and their musicianship and youthful energy soon had the near capacity audience enthralled. The instrumental line-up of guitar, mandolin, banjo, fiddle and double bass is the traditional bluegrass format and each one of the band had ample opportunity to display their considerable skills. This was enhanced in good measure by clear vocals and sweet harmonies. I am looking forward to similar concerts in future.

Looking ahead, tonight at the Welland Yacht Club, Cradge Bank, Spalding Folk Club holds its monthly, third Thursday, singaround (8pm).

Bourne Borderers Morris side are busy performing at the St George’s Day Fayre in March on Sunday (starting 10.30am) and at the historic Running Auction in Eastgate, Bourne, on Monday (6.30pm). Also on Monday there is a tune and song session at the Pig and Whistle, Market Place, Swineshead (8pm).

Especially for performers in the 14 to 25 years group there is another Acoustic Café session at South Holland Centre on Tuesday (6-7.30pm).

Anna Massie and Mairearad Green are the guests at the Baston Barn concert next Thursday, April 28 (8pm). Often a sell-out it is advisable to contact 01778 560497 to check for ticket availability.

Lincolnshire duo Winter Wilson launch their new album, Ashes and Dust, at a concert at the Sleaford Playhouse, Westgate, Sleaford on Saturday, April 30 (7.30pm).

John Dipper and Dave Malkin host an afternoon of traditional music workshops (2.30pm) and an evening concert (7pm) at Woodlands Organic Farm at Kirton on bank holiday Monday, May 2. Tickets are available only from

Finally Spalding Folk Club’s next guest at South Holland Centre on Wednesday, May 4 is Canadian singer songwriter Dan McKinnon. Dan has a rich, smooth baritone voice and an accomplished guitar style. He is a great interpreter of Stan Rogers songs and has written some lovely songs too.