Spalding folk concert hits high note

Miranda Sykes and Rex Preston.
Miranda Sykes and Rex Preston.
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Fortnightly column by Martin Browne, from Spalding Folk Club.

Every now and then, among an otherwise steady stream of competent and talented guests at Spalding Folk Club, we experience something a little more out-of-the-ordinary; something that engages the audience in a subtly different way where, upon leaving at the end of the night, there is a noticeable buzz of excitement among those passing through the door and descending the stairs.

Such a night was Wednesday when the Canadian trio Red Moon Road paid us a visit to start their UK and European tour. There was little evidence of jet lag – in fact it was as if they had hit the ground running to celebrate their first venture across the Atlantic as a group.

Lead vocalist Sheena Rattai’s versatile and beautiful voice was equally at home with songs with a flavour of folk, country or jazz and was ably backed by the two Daniels – Jordan and Peloquin-Hopfner – on guitar, mandolin, banjo and percussion. The two Daniels also led vocally on some songs and, throughout, all three voices blended with lush harmonies.

The musicianship was first class (all three being music graduates) and each number was preceded by a little story giving us an insight into the writing of the song or some historical background. Most of the songs were self-written and there were also beautiful versions of two Pete Seeger songs – My Father’s Mansion and Quite Early Morning – and Stan Rogers’ One Warm Line. In fine deference to their British hosts the trio gave us My Grandfather’s Clock for a rousing encore.

Looking ahead, tonight at the Lincoln Arms there is the Spalding Folk Club music session (8pm).

At the South Holland Centre on Saturday Cara Dillon and her band (Sam Lakeman, Niall Murphy and Luke Daniels) are in concert with support from Tommy Loose (7.30pm).

Boston Folk Club’s guests at the Eagle on Monday (8.15pm) are Lincoln-based trio Robinson O’Dwyer Kelly. Featuring traditional songs from Britain and North America.

Spalding Folk Club singaround is next Thursday at the Welland Yacht Club (8pm).

Finally, on Friday, April 17 at Aslackby Village Hall local lass Miranda Sykes is in concert with musical partner and mandolin wizard Rex Preston (7.15pm for 8pm).Tickets can be reserved on 01778 440974 or 07740 832750.