Folk music in south Lincolnshire

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

Sometimes, when writing this fortnightly column, the timing is such that there might appear to be little going on locally to report about.

The great thing about Lincolnshire, however, is that you do not have travel a very significant distance before you come across a live music event that is well worth a visit.

So it was on Saturday, November 28 at the quaint and cosy setting of Aslackby village hall. This venue has all the ingredients for providing that superb ambience typical of what makes folk music so appealing. Organiser Dave Smith and a hard-working team of helpers have made this lovely old hall very welcoming. You feel you are up close and personal with the performers and this interaction has a reciprocal effect that is quite palpable.

It helps a great deal when the act is in itself of a very high standard and in this case it was with Sleaford-based duo Winter Wilson. Kip and Dave have had a faithful following in the county over many years but employment related life changes nudged them towards going full-time professional. It takes a lot of hard work as well as talent to make it on the modern day folk music scene but they have lacked neither and are securing regular bookings countrywide plus some in Europe.

After a lovely opening support set from Dave Smith and Patty Vetta, Winter Wilson gave us an evening of delightful songs, written mainly by Dave, plus a haunting rendition of Scottish pipe tune Dark Island showcasing Kip’s adept flute playing. We enjoyed some quality songwriting, a mixture of skilful playing on guitar, banjo, piano accordion and flute, and two amazing, complementary

voices, all held together by some engaging and often self-deprecating humour.

It is a shame that Dave Smith is having to take a well-deserved rest from promoting these concerts for the foreseeable future but it is hoped that they will continue some time.

Looking ahead, Chris Newman and Maire Ni Chathasaigh (guitar and Irish harp) are in concert at Stamford Arts Centre next Wednesday (8pm) and next Friday is the No Frills Ceilidh at St Mary’s church hall, Pinchbeck, with the Beltonas and Slapdash Appalachian dancers (7.45pm).

Next Sunday there is a singaround at the Hare and Hounds, Haconby (8pm), and on Monday, December 14 Boston Folk Club holds its Christmas party at The Eagle, Boston (8.15pm).