Kronos Quartet – Folk Songs I

by Ken Hunt, London] This interview with David Harrington of the Kronos Quartet took place on 11 July 2014 – long before Folk Songs (released by Nonesuch Records in June 2017) was even conceived. It is published for the historian-minded. This sliver ends with talking about Ukrainian composer-musician Mariana Sadovska.

19. 6. 2017 |

Nek Chand (1924-2015)

[by Ken Hunt, London and Jalandhar] Visiting Nek Chand’s life’s work known as the Rock Garden of Chandigar – the union capital of the Indian states of Haryana and Punjab – must have once felt like being somewhere in a gigantic a work in progress. Since his death on 12 June 2015 at the age of 90 – and speaking more romantically – his Rock Garden of Chandigarh entered another phase.

11. 3. 2017 |

Best of 2016

[by Ken Hunt, London] 2016 proved to be a particularly good year for the roses. Well, the artistic ones at least. (In England the garden roses and the garden as a whole suffered somewhat thanks to the English climate’s vagaries of rain and sunshine.). Nevertheless, it truly was a year to remember musically. That was assisted by chance musical encounters that made me stop and stare and listen.

31. 12. 2016 |

Momentum, Trio Dhoore

[by Ken Hunt, London] One of the most life-changing discoveries of my life was being handed a linguistic skeleton key in the spring of 1971. Turning 20 working in the print on the German-Danish border, every day it was Hochdeutsch to management and Plattdütsch or Low German to nearly everybody else. Plattdütsch is a working-class language that straddles the Schleswig-Holstein boundary between Germany and Denmark.

13. 12. 2016 |

Eliza Carthy’s Generations, Sage Two, The Sage, Gateshead, Saturday, 4 June 2016

[by Ken Hunt, London] The Sage is the hub of so much arts-related activity on Tyneside and the north-east England region. It was meet and right for the venue to host this much anticipated project. Its promotional literature described Eliza Carthy bringing together second-generation folk artists, like herself, from across Europe. Her accomplices were the genre-stretching Czech vocalist-violinist Iva Bittová, the Greek singer and lute player Martha Mavroidi,

9. 11. 2016 |

Remembering Jerry Garcia (1942-1995)

[by Ken Hunt, London] In April 1981 I walked into the anteroom of hotel round the corner from Green Park tube station in Central London to do the first of a series of booked interviews with members of the Grateful Dead. A hirsute gentleman, actually an aureole of hair with a splash of face, eyed me up and crossed the room to talk to me.

9. 8. 2016 |

Singing From The Floor – A History of British Folk Clubs

[by Ken Hunt, London] Britain’s folk clubs must seem strange to anyone visiting them for the first time. They are an exceedingly British institution, only found on English, Northern Irish, Scottish and Welsh soil – or, allowing for poetic licence, on foreign soils as British forces’ transplants, such as RAF Luqa’s Malta Folk Club and the British Army on the Rhine. To interject a personal observation, the folk club equivalents in Eire, Germany, the Netherlands, Germany and the USA all have altogether different characters.

19. 2. 2016 |

The Conscience of the Folk Revival – The Writings of Israel “Izzy” Young

[by Ken Hunt, London] This fascinating gathering of writings from Israel G. Young appeared in 2013. The elder of two sons born to Polish Jewish parents in March 1928 on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, he reveals himself as a clear-sighted and sometimes curmudgeonly commentator, catalyst and chronicler of the New York folk scene. (California and Europe barely get walk-on parts.)

6. 1. 2016 |

Best of 2015

[by Ken Hunt, London] As years go, 2015 was one that over and over again plucked some remarkable rabbits out the magician’s hat. That’s what keeps me keeping on. A note on the process when it comes to these decisions. Part of it is to do with whittling.

31. 12. 2015 |

Giant Donut Discs © – July 2015

[by Ken Hunt, London] This month’s collection is a mixture of project-related listening and music listened to just for pleasure. In the latter case that doesn’t happen too often. On 5 July 2015 Shirley Collins celebrated her 80th birthday in London as All in the Downs but I was working in Germany on that date.

15. 12. 2015 |

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