Leigh Folk Festival | C. Joynes & Robin Alderton
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C. Joynes & Robin Alderton


Robin Alderton is a stalwart of the Dead Rat Orchestra – who are apt to take everything that folk purists hold dear about their traditional musics and chuck it in a blender, mixing songs from hundreds of years ago with avant-garde drones, Arabic classical music, rusty blues and hoarse-throated hollering. The result is an open-ended devotional music, its rusty clonkings both ritualistic and euphoric. Joy and sorrow in our hearts, boys. ‘Cambridge Primitive’ acoustic guitarist C Joynes deploys a heavy thumb-led finger-picking technique that harks back to traditional country-blues and early ragtime. However, he uses this technique to explore alternative melodic traditions: the English folk-tune; North and West African music; elements of classical Indian music; proto-minimalist and impressionist musics from the European classical tradition. His approach to the recording and compositional process contains a subtle and unassuming experimentation, at times including collaged fragments, field recordings, processing, en-plein-air recordings, and cut-and-paste. “An inheritor to Davy Graham; a lone operator prone to unexpected collaborations, with a repertoire that crosses continents and time zones with consummate ease.” – The Wire. The pair’s collaboration is a natural one with their shared slightly quizzical relationship with traditional music, and thirsty connoisseurship of non-European music and immersion in the sinuous complexities of African or Middle Eastern blues. Sonic fragments from Joynes’s collection of cassettes, gathered during many years wandering the globe, are the basis for this new set of pieces, enlarging them and reworking them into a series of dense and swirling compositions, lovingly crafted ethnological forgeries that throb and hum with life while paying tribute to the musical cultures that originally birthed them.

Where to find them

Clarendon Scout Hut: Sun 25, Start: 16:45 – Finish: 17:10

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Music, Sunday