The admission charge is £9:00 (£8:00 concessions).
A date for your diary in May:
Pete Coe will be launching his new CD “The man in the red van” at the Malthouse on Wednesday 10 May with a party for friends, Musicians, singers, and dancers. Click HERE for more information or visit Pete’s website HERE….
The Ryburn 3 Step Barn Dances always take place on the third Saturday in the month from October through to April which was Easter Saturday this year. Although some of our regular dancers were away on holiday, we had a good number of dancers and an enjoyable evening’s dancing.
Caller Sue Coe recently received a gold award from the English Folk Dance and Song Society, in part for her work in promoting traditional English dance in schools up and down the country. Sue encourages the children to create their own dances and we were treated to three of these; ‘Westfield Four Star’, ‘Railtrack’ and the ‘Zetland Circle Dance’ (the latter with its distinctive clapping pattern which is harder than it looks). Many of the other dances were favourites such as ‘Bridge of Athlone’ and ‘Clopton Bridge’, and the evening was rounded off with everyone on the dance floor for ‘Soldiers Joy’.
Tenterhooksprovided a varied range of tunes which were well-matched to the dances. Particularly enjoyable was the pair of Lakeland jigs selected for the Circassian Circle called ‘Liberty for the Sailors’ and ‘Kendall Ghyll’. ‘Barley Break’ was pushed along in fine style by the jigs ‘Trip to the Lakes’ and ‘Whip her and Gird her’ and the various combinations of instruments gave a pleasing variety to the music.
This dance was Ryburn 3 Step’s final barn dance of the 2016-7 season and the 2017-8 season begins on October 21st with Baz Parkes and Phoenix. However, there will be dances at Waring Green on May 20th and September 16th courtesy of Dave Webster.
The TenterhooksBand line-up was:
Chris Partington – fiddle Paul Roberts – fiddle and border pipes Johnny Adams – piano and fiddle
Sue’s dances included:
Circassian Circle – single circle Buttered Peas – Sicilian circle Bridge of Athlone – 4 couple longwise Holmfirth Square – 4 couple square Zetland Circle Dance – double circle Cumberland Long Eight – 4 couple longwise Cumberland Square Eight – 4 couple square
Westfield Four Star – Sicilian circle Barley Break – 4 couple longwise Circle Waltz – single circle Grapevine Twist – 4 couple square Railtrack – 4 couple longwise Clopton Bridge – 4 couple longwise
Some of our club singers have known Chris and Johnny for over 40 years, and always loved their performance – the sureness of the songs and singing and the dedication to the music, language, landscape and people of the North East and Scotland. All of this warmth and sharing made for a very special night.
Chris is one of our great singers /interpreters, particularly of the ballads. Her rich sure voice draws you quickly into the songs and the introductions were just right, giving us often a very visual experience and context of the songs. We were left in no doubt that these stories were about real people and their daily lives and struggles – with their pride, fortitude and humour. The same goes for Johnny and his songs of the Pits – often recounting his own experiences in the coal industry and we enjoyed the fruits of his wide research. His voice is mellow now and his musical skills arranging the accompanied songs on the accordion and putting to poetry of the regions show a light and sure touch.
The first half took us into the area of the farming – the bonnie plough boys – idyllic sometimes? A poem by Aaron Watson (The Mackerel Song) now has a fine tune by Johnny telling of the overfishing and the activity putting out the fishing boats when mackerel appear in the bay. It’s a story of hard times but refusal to give in – a degree of acceptance. The tones of the accordion suit Chris’s voice well. This set finished with a real treat as Chris sang the Ballad of the Four Marys. This is a strange, savage song which they put to two tunes, deepening the contrast between the cruelty of the child murder and the acceptance of Mary of her fate – which almost draws the audience into feeling sorry for her. A complex song, hard to sing and Chris told the details of the story in a controlled way. It was a masterful piece of storytelling. Chris and Johnnie have no problems working with the emotion of a story.
The second half dealt with the lives of the workers in the shipyards of the Clyde and stories of the colliers in the pits of the North East. Chris sang one of my favourite songs – Archie Fisher’s Fairfield Apprentice and I cried as I always do when it’s sung well! In this set the landscape shapes we saw as hills and coast were translated into mighty rivers and cranes painted bright colours and up to 300 feet high. (The Crane Song written by Barrie Temple is a fine piece of writing.) Songs and stories of the 2 industries with the onset of hard times, the battle for a decent wage and better conditions and their final demise up to today. The lives and struggles of the women. The songs, monologue and tunes painted a vivid picture of Northern industrial history and the people who lived and worked in it.
Altogether a wonderful evening of warmth, humour and love of the people and their songs , performed by 2 skilled musicians dedicated to the material. It was good to hear Johnny’s mad accordion interludes again– always done in the best of taste! And Chris’s wonderful controlled, expressive voice.
Thanks to them and to all our quality residents who make such evenings possible and successful.
On Wednesday 16 November Pete and Sue Coe received their Gold Badge awards from the English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) presented by the Chair of the EFDSS Board, Alistair Anderson.
Over 100 friends attended the event, which included songs and music from many of the performers that Pete and Sue have collaborated with, taught, or encouraged over careers of more than half a century of Folk song, music, and dance. Four other Gold Badge holders were among the friends attending: Bill Leader, Alistair Anderson, Derek Schofield, and Vic Gammon.
Pete’s contributions include traditional song research, song writing in traditional style, the founding of several seminal bands, plus solo and duo performances, dance calling, recording, field research, local folk activism in Ryburn Three Step and teaching at various levels. He has worked extensively in schools throughout the country as a visiting musician both on his own account and for the EFDSS on the Take 6 Project. He was the founder member and visionary force behind three particularly ground breaking groups – The New Victory Band, Bandoggs and Red Shift – all of which brought something new to the folk scene.
As well as developing a wide range of traditional songs for performance, Pete has had an illustrious songwriting career with many songs covered by other artists. His collecting of a single verse of Marching Down through Rochester with its Waltzing Matilda tune, and its subsequent expansion to a full song has made him the focus of attention by various researchers in search of the roots of the famous Australian song. Most recently Mark Radcliffe featured his rather personal Rolling Down The Ryburn on his BBC Radio 2 programme, sung by Greg Russell and Ciaran Algar.
Pete has contributed a number of field recordings including Caleb Walker (musician for Manley Morris), travellers Charlotte & Betsy Renals and Sophie Legge, and Willy Taylor. He has carried out extensive research into the work of Frank Kidson, which resulted in a touring show and a CD under the title of Five Finger Frank.
Sue successfully gained funding and promoted Ryburn Three Step in the early days as well as teaching Appalachian step dance and the Ryburn Longsword dance team, which she formed 22 years ago. As well as Appalachian dance and Longsword, Ryburn Three Step also organises a range of regular activities for local people including clog step dance classes, a singing group, an offshoot rapper side, a mummers side, monthly folk club and dances, occasional workshop days plus weekly music sessions in the local pub.
Sue led and developed Ryburn Longsword for many years, recruiting youngsters from local schools and including their mothers in the dancing, resulting in a junior and a senior team. Along with team members she developed new dances with a local flavour and has presented the team regularly at dance festivals. In addition to her ongoing Longsword and Step dance activities she now runs weekly workshops around West Yorkshire for disabled and wheelchair bound youngsters, developing dances suitable for their abilities and providing for them a very necessary inclusion.
An Independent Folk Development Project in the Ryburn Valley