Traditional and contemporary folk from the British Isles

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COME ALL MY LADS THAT FOLLOW THE PLOUGH: THE LIFE OF RURAL WORKING MEN & WOMEN TSCD655

Volume 5 of The Voice of The People.
The Life of Rural Working Men & Women.
An anthology edited by REG HALL.

1 MARY ANN HAYNES voice: Hopping Down In Kent
2 JOE HEANEY voice: The Rocks Of Bawn
3 DAVIE STEWART voice: The Tarves Rant
4 SAM LARNER voice: The Pleasant Month Of May
5 BOB FORRESTER voice: Copshawholm Fair
6 POP MAYNARD voice: The Weaver’s Daughter
7 JINKY WELLS fiddle & voice: The Maid Of The Mill
8 STRAIGHTY FLANAGAN voice: The Grazer Tribe
9 JOHN MacDONALD voice & accordeon: The Mains O’Fogieloan
10 FRED JORDAN voice: We’re All Jolly Fellows As Follow The Plough
11 BOB HART voice: The Farmer’s Servant
12 DAVIE STEWART voice: I am a Miller To My Trade
13 HOCKEY FELTWELL voice: Four Horses
14 JIMMY MCBEATH voice: Nicky Tams
15 PADDY TUNNEY voice: The Lark In The Morning
16 LIZZIE HIGGINS voice: Lovely Molly
17 PADDY BEADES voice with fiddle & piano-accordion: The Bonnie Labouring Boy
18 JIMMY McREATH voice: The Barnyards O’Delgaty
19 HARRY UPTON voice: The Rich Lady Gay
20 TOM LENINAN voice: The Cranbally Farmer
21 WILLIE KEMP & CURLY MacKAY voice & piano-accordion: Wi’ Ma Big Kilmarnock Bonnet
22 WILLIE SCOTT voice: The Lads That Was Reared Among Heather
23 EDDIE BUTCHER voice: Tossing The Hay
24 JOHN MacDONALD voice: Sleepytoon
25 THE HYDE BROTHERS melodeons: Back O’ The Haggart

Available now from:
TOPIC SHOP, AMAZON, ITUNES and on SPOTIFY

THE BALLAD OF JOHN AXON TSCD801

A radio-ballad about the railwaymen of England by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

The first of the radio-ballads was inspired by a steam locomotive driver who died performing an act of heroism. It was based, like its successors, on many hours of tape-recorded testimonies and reminiscences, mixed into a continuous narrative interspersed with MacColl’s songs and Seeger’s music.

‘A generation from now, listeners will surely still be moved by this recording’ NEW STATESMAN

‘The Ballad of John Axton was ostensibly about the life and death of a train driver but, like ensuing ballads about the building of the M1, herring fishing and coal miners, it was really about the complex relationship between men and their professions.’ TIME OUT

‘No wonder it knocked England out that July evening.’ THE OBSERVER

>> Read more

THE COPPER FAMILY ~ COME WRITE ME DOWN (Early Recordings) TSCD534

The Copper Family of Rottingdean in Sussex has roots in traditional song that are at least two hundred years old. Their rare southern English harmony is presented at its most outstanding in these classic performances from the 1950s and early ’60s. Bob and Ron Copper came to prominence outside their immediate local environment when recordings of the duo were released during the early part of the folk revival. These newly remastered recordings are included here in their entirety. In addition, earlier recordings involving Bob and Ron’s fathers – Jim and John – are available for the first time. There are three songs which feature the full quartet.

The special packaging includes a 60-page booklet of extensive history, biography and social context as well as a 36-page booklet of song texts. Both booklets also contain historic photographs.



  • “inspirational … a testament to the strength of songs that have endured so long and the spirit at the heart of their survival … the whole package (is) a lesson in quality” fRoots Magazine
  • “Topic Records reputation a the great UK folk label is further enhanced by the release of (this) wonderfully packaged collection of early recordings of the legendary Copper Family. More than just a record…both an historical document and a vital part of the living tradition of English folksong” Get Rhythm magazine
  • “Resonates with a weird primitivism” Sunday Times
  • “These robust mournful songs of life’s travails and treasures have a directness and authenticity that puts most rock music to shame”Mojo
  • “Make sure to buy three copies of this CD: one for yourself to play and play all day; one to give as a present to the person who means most to you; and one to bury in the garden for the Martians when they land, to show them us Human Race were capable of real excellence. …the first booklet contains the lyrics to the songs, but with the added bonus of deeply interesting notes by Steve Roud on every one of the songs. This booklet in itself would put most CD booklets in the shade. But then, even THIS is trumped by the second booklet: a 58 page “beaut” consisting of extensive notes…it is genuinely a compulsive page turner. As for the CD content…it is all sublime.” Musical Traditions magazine
  • “These extraordinary songs breathe life into a tradition that stretches back to the Napoleonic Wars and beyond. They are the aural equivalent of remote viewing on to a vanished world. There are seafaring ballads, aching laments and songs of farewell, drinking songs alongside more ancient ballads.” The Guardian

>> Read more

MY SHIP SHALL SAIL THE OCEAN: TEMPEST & SEA BATTLES, SAILOR LADS & FISHERMAN TSCD652

tscd652 webVolume 2 of The Voice of The People.
Songs of tempest & sea battles, sailor lads and fishermen.
An anthology edited by REG HALL.

1 CYRIL POACHER voice: A Broadside
2 PADDY TUNNEY voice: The Lowlands Of Holland
3 TOM WILLETT voice: Riding Down To Portsmouth
4 JOHNNY DOUGHTY voice: Come My Own One, Come My Fond One
5 JOHN RAE dulcimer: The Sailor On The Rope / The Bonnie Bunch Of Roses
6 SAM LARNER voice: In Scarborough Town
7 LIZZIE HIGGINS voice, with chorus: Sandy’s A Sailor
8 TURP BROWN voice: The Streams Of Lovely Nancy
9 GEORGE LING voice: On Board The Leicester Castle
10 MARY ANN CAROLAN voice: In London So Fair
11 WALTER PARDON voice: A Ship To Old England Came
12 FRANK VERRILL voice: Jesus At Thy Command
13 HARRY UPTON voice: The Royal Albion
14 HARRY COX voice: The Pretty Ploughboy
15 MICHO RUSSELL voice: The Poor Little Fisherboy
16 BOB HART voice: Cod Banging
17 JOHNNY DOUGHTY voice: Round Rye Bay For More
18 PHIL TANNER voice: Young Henry Martin
19 CYRIL POACHER voice: A Sailor And His True Love
20 BOB ROBERTS voice, with chorus: The Fish And Chip Ship
21 JUMBO BRIGHTWELL voice: The Oak And The Ash
22 WILLIE SCOTT voice: The Banks Of Newfoundland
23 FRED JORDAN voice: The Dark-Eyed Sailor
24 WALTER PARDON voice: Jack Tar Ashore

Available now from:
TOPIC SHOP, AMAZON, ITUNES and on SPOTIFY

Eliza Carthy & The Wayward Band – Big Machine

Eliza Carthy & The Wayward BandPioneering English traditional folk powerhouse, Eliza Carthy, first assembled the Wayward Band in 2013 in order to explore and celebrate her long and varied career in folk music. To do this Eliza put together a team of hugely talented musicians from across the UK and together they hit the road to promote her “Best Of” compilation, ‘Wayward Daughter’ (Topic Records), which coincided with a biography of the same name. Eliza and the Wayward Band loved playing together so much – as well as becoming a festival favourite – that it seemed natural and inevitable, as well as characteristically ambitious, that this 12-piece would set about recording an album. The result is ‘Big Machine’, recorded at the renowned Real World and Rockfield Studios and produced by the multi-talented Jim Sutherland. The Wayward Band line-up is a veritable dream team of musicians comprising Sam Sweeney (Bellowhead), David Delarre (Mawkin), Barn Stradling (Blowzabella), Saul Rose, Beth Porter, Lucy Farrell (Emily Portman Trio), Will Molleson, Andrew Waite (Tyde), Laurence Hunt, Nick Malcolm and Adrien “Yen-Yen” Toulouse. ‘Big Machine’ (their debut album) will be released by Topic Records on 3rd February 2017.

The material on ‘Big Machine’ represents a healthy slice of everything good that is happening in traditional music now, across a sparkling spectrum of sound. The album features three contemporary songs; Eliza’s own “You Know Me” about the refugee crisis and notions of hospitality (featuring MC Dizraeli), a powerful cover of Ewan Maccoll’s Radio Ballad “The Fitter’s Song” (at the behest of Peggy Seeger – and the song which inspired the album title) and an affectionate reworking of “Hug You Like a Mountain” (Rory MacLeod), re-imagined here as a duet with Teddy Thompson.

There are also several examples of the Broadside ballad collections housed in Chetham’s Library in Manchester given a new twist with music by Eliza and the band. This follows a programme Eliza presented for BBC Radio 4 about the Manchester Ballads, covering everything from songs about and caused by domestic abuse (“Devil in the Woman”, the sumptuous and searing “Fade and Fall (Love Not)”, to the seafaring life in “The Sea”. Added to that a couple of brilliantly constructed instrumentals, a song about dying from custard poisoning and a heartbreaking traditional ballad “I Wish that the Wars were all Over” (performed live with the band onstage in Real World Studios’ Studio One and featuring Irish superstar Damien Dempsey), and you begin to get the picture. A very big picture, a Big Machine firing on all cylinders.

“Big Machine” is certainly one of Eliza Carthy’s most adventurous and accomplished works to date – and given that Eliza is the most passionate and groundbreaking English traditional singer of her generation, “Big Machine” is an album you really won’t want to miss.

BIG MACHINE is available now from:
TOPIC SHOP, AMAZON, ITUNES and SPOTIFY

“No quarter is spared in the pursuit of the grand gesture designed to sweep all before it in an exhausting whizz-bang barrage of sounds, ideas, technique and colour.”
fRoots (5 stars)

“an irresistible collection that amply demonstrates the vibrancy of today’s traditional music scene”
R2 (5 stars)

“This confident collection whips her characteristic fondness for adventure into ever grander and more colourful directions, aided by a 12-piece big band that includes urgent brass, searing guitar (Dave Delarre) and guest vocals from Teddy Thompson, Damien Dempsey and rapper MC Dizraeli..”
MOJO (4 stars)

“Big Band, big sound, big album, big machine. Bold, brassy and bendy, Eliza Carthy’s Big Machine is a monster of an album”
Songlines (4 stars)


New Internationalist Magazine

“Big Machine has all the hallmarks of a vastly important release, and should cement Eliza Carthy’s place as one of our most valuable musicians.”
Folk Radio UK

“Big Machine resets Carthy’s career as a big, big statement at a time of considerable turmoil and change. It is most welcome.”
The Arts Desk (4 stars)

“..Big Machine is grounded by Carthy’s voice. Her warm, intimate, earthy tone is perfectly suited to the material. In many ways this is Carthy’s album through and through. The first big hit of 2017.”
Bright Young Folk

The New HIGH LEVEL RANTERS TSDL425

This was the first recording made by the New High Level Ranters. It sees the group changed by the departure of Alistair Anderson and Tom Gilfellon, wholeft to pursue their own ways in making their own kind of music. The two lads who replace them are Jim Hall and Peter Wood, who contribute their particular skills in playing and singing, thus continuing the Ranters’ commitment to British folk music and especially the music of the North East of England.

The original members of the group are Colin Ross and Johnnie Handle, who are perhaps too well-known to merit description. Anyway, Colin plays the fiddle and pipes and Johnnie sings and plays the accordion. There was never any doubt in their minds that the group would carry on after Ali and Tom left, so it was only natural that Jim and Pete, fellow members of Folk Song and Ballad Club, Newcastle, be asked to come into the Ranters.

1  Fisherman’s Friend / Black and Grey
2  Ca’ Hawkie
3  The Old Drove Road / Kennedy North
4  Jim Jones
5  The Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade
6  John Peel
7  Durham Regatta / Little Jenny
8  The Snows They Melt the Soonest
9  Yellow Haired Laddie / The Glen Coe March
10  New Song of the Coal
11  Skipper’s Wedding
12  The Duke of Fife / Maggie Laudert

First published by Topic Records 1982

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JIMMY McBEATH Wild Rover No More TSDL173

One of Scotland’s best known traditional singers, Jimmy McBeath, was a former farm servant and traveller from Banffshire. He sang in a direct any authoritative style bothy ballads and songs learnt on the road. His 1967 album has long been regarded as a very important collection of traditional song.

1  The Bold English Navvy
2  Come A’ Ye Tramps an’ Hawkers
3  Johnny McIndoe
4  The Wind Blew The Bonnie Lassie’s Plaidie Awa’
5  The Merchant and the Beggar Maid
6  Nicky Tams
7  The Barnyards o’ Delgaty
8  I’m A Stranger in this Country
9  The Moss O’ Burreldale
10  The Highlandman’s Ball
11  McPherson’s Rant
12  Grat For Gruel
13  Drumdelgie
14  Wild Rover No More

First published by Topic 1967

Enter your name and email address to download JIMMY McBEATH Wild Rover No More pdf booklet

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MARTIN SIMPSON ~ VAGRANT STANZAS TSCD589

Vagrant Stanzas is a splendid, intimate new recording from finger-style guitar maestro Martin Simpson. Encouraged by his near neighbour Richard Hawley, Martin set out to record his new album completely solo. The ambition was to record just one man and his guitar (or banjo) close-miked and personal. Most of the performances are first or second takes. So much material was recorded that the deluxe edition includes an extra CD of eight outtakes from the recording sessions – quite honestly they’d have made the cut on just about anybody else’s album.

“This is not a record of repairs and corrections, this is what I do at a gig. It’s the first time I’ve made a studio album which deliberately tries to capture the immediacy of a live performance…. in fact it is the intimacy of playing to a friend which is at the heart of this album.”

The album sees Martin collaborate with some of the best producers and engineers in the business, including multi-Grammy Award winning mastering engineer, Silas Brown. The CD has been co-produced by Martin alongside American producer Peter Denenberg and, our own Richard Hawley, who produced the UK part of the CD in Sheffield, at the legendary Yellow Arch Studios. Vagrant Stanzas is made up of a mixture of Martin’s original compositions, including a song commissioned by BBC Radio 2 for their award winning Radio Ballads series, alongside classic songs by Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Chris Wood, Leon Rosselson and, of course, the ubiquitous ‘Anon’ of Folk ballad fame.

“One man with guitar and banjo and an acutely tuned ear for a good tune and a powerful lyric can certainly whip up a lot of different moods and styles. It’s all down to attitude.” fRoots

“There is a distinctive brilliance to Simpson’s guitar and voice – these are vocals from the back step, from the songs’ stark interiors, understood and played out by a man in the third age of life.★★★★ Songlines

“What you get is pure and fluent Simpson musicianship. A very fine record.” ★★★★ The Telegraph

CD 1
1 Diamond Joe
2 Jackie and Murphy
3 Shepherds Rejoice
4 Come Down Jehovah
5 Molly As She Swings
6 Palaces of Gold
7 Blue Eyed Boston Boy
8 Delta Dreams
9 Waly Waly
10 North Country Blues
11 Lorena
12 Lady Gay
13 Stranger Song
14 Come Write me Down

Available now from:
TOPIC SHOP, AMAZON, ITUNES, SPOTIFY

MARTIN SIMPSON ~ VAGRANT STANZAS TXCD589

Deluxe limited edition 2CD set

Vagrant Stanzas is a splendid, intimate new recording from finger-style guitar maestro Martin Simpson. Encouraged by his near neighbour Richard Hawley, Martin set out to record his new album completely solo. The ambition was to record just one man and his guitar (or banjo) close-miked and personal. Most of the performances are first or second takes. So much material was recorded that the deluxe edition includes an extra CD of eight outtakes from the recording sessions – quite honestly they’d have made the cut on just about anybody else’s album.

“This is not a record of repairs and corrections, this is what I do at a gig. It’s the first time I’ve made a studio album which deliberately tries to capture the immediacy of a live performance…. in fact it is the intimacy of playing to a friend which is at the heart of this album.”

The album sees Martin collaborate with some of the best producers and engineers in the business, including multi-Grammy Award winning mastering engineer, Silas Brown. The CD has been co-produced by Martin alongside American producer Peter Denenberg and, our own Richard Hawley, who produced the UK part of the CD in Sheffield, at the legendary Yellow Arch Studios. Vagrant Stanzas is made up of a mixture of Martin’s original compositions, including a song commissioned by BBC Radio 2 for their award winning Radio Ballads series, alongside classic songs by Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Chris Wood, Leon Rosselson and, of course, the ubiquitous ‘Anon’ of Folk ballad fame.

“One man with guitar and banjo and an acutely tuned ear for a good tune and a powerful lyric can certainly whip up a lot of different moods and styles. It’s all down to attitude.” fRoots

“There is a distinctive brilliance to Simpson’s guitar and voice – these are vocals from the back step, from the songs’ stark interiors, understood and played out by a man in the third age of life.★★★★ Songlines

“What you get is pure and fluent Simpson musicianship. A very fine record.” ★★★★ The Telegraph

CD 1
1    Diamond Joe
2    Jackie and Murphy
3    Shepherds Rejoice
4    Come Down Jehovah
5    Molly As She Swings
6    Palaces of Gold
7    Blue Eyed Boston Boy
8    Delta Dreams
9    Waly Waly
10    North Country Blues
11    Lorena
12    Lady Gay
13    Stranger Song
14    Come Write me Down

CD 2
1    Fair Annie
2    Kaga Re
3    Blind Willie McTell
4    Old Paint
5    The Bell
6    Diamond Joe
7    The Death of Queen Jane
8    The Green Linnet

With ‘Vagrant Stanzas’ Martin Simpson makes a career defining statement
– solo, intimate performances captured in a series of jewel-like recordings.

Buy Vagrant Stanzas now from:
PROPERMUSIC.COM, AMAZON and ITUNES

JUNE TABOR ~ ASHORE TSCD577

June Tabor’s recording career has consistently reached ever higher standards of performance and interpretation. Each of her albums has sought to match the highest technical standards with emotionally powerful performances and scintillating musical arrangements. Her forthcoming album – a stunning collection of songs concerning humankind’s relationship with the sea – is already being hailed by critics and long-time fans as another career highpoint.

June’s range and depth are unparalleled, and with Ashore she fully justifies her reputation as England’s foremost song interpreter. Ashore features a powerful set of contemporary songs alongside classic traditional ballads like ‘The Bleacher Lassie Of Kelvinhaugh’ and ‘The Great Selkie Of Sule Skerry’. The contemporary material includes a spine-tingling version of Elvis Costello’s ‘Shipbuilding’; a new recording of Ian Telfer’s ‘Finisterre’ (first recorded by June with the Oyster Band on ‘Freedom & Rain’) and two remarkable songs from the pen of Cyril Tawney – ‘The Grey Funnel Line’ and ‘The Oggie Man’. The album was recorded with June’s regular musicians – Andy Cutting, diatonic accordion; Mark Emerson, viola and violin, Tim Harries, double bass and Huw Warren, piano.

The Bleecher Lassie Of Kelvinhaugh : JUNE TABOR by Topic Records

“It’s 35 years since June Tabor’s debut album, but this has to be among her best.” ★★★★ The Times

“A thing of compelling beauty, and stands head and shoulders above most folk albums you’re likely to hear this year… Pure class.” English Dance & Song

“This deeply affecting collection of sea stories demonstrates the core of her art almost to perfection.” ★★★★ Mojo

“This is wonderful. England’s foremost folk singer performs 13 fascinating songs that key into our historical and emotional relationship with the sea. It’s a remarkable record.” The Word

“June Tabor has always resolutely pursued her own heart without recourse to the conformities of genre, expectations of audiences and especially not the pressures of orthodox commercial appeal.”
Colin Irwin / BBC Music online

>> Read more

ARCHIVE DIGITAL CATALOGUE

In common with most record labels, Topic releases new albums both on CD and as digital downloads.

Topic Records is also the custodian of a tremendous catalogue of archive recordings. Early in 2009 as part of the label’s 70th anniversary celebrations we began a programme of digital releases from the archive.

Classic recordings from Ewan MacColl, A L Lloyd, The Oldham Tinkers, Lizzie Higgins, Vin Garbutt, John Kirkpatrick, The Cheviot Ranters and many more are now available for full album and individual track download from all the best digital retailers, including:


TSDL018  PEGGY SEEGER  Come Along John
TSDL035  DOMINIC BEHAN  Down By The Liffeyside (Irish Street Songs)

TSDL044  DOMINIC BEHAN Easter week and after
TSDL051  A L LLOYD  Outback Ballads
TSDL052  JEANNIE ROBERTSON  Great Scots Traditional Singer
TSDL069  The LIVERPOOL SPINNERS  Songs Sung In Liverpool
TSDL070  DAVY GRAHAM  3/4 AD
TSDL079  EWAN MacCOLL & PEGGY SEEGER The Jacobite Rebellions
TSDL084  THE WILLETT FAMILY  The Roving Journeyman
TSDL091  JOE HEANEY Irish Traditional Songs in Gaelic & English
TSDL093  RAMBLING JACK ELLIOTT  Talking Woody Guthrie
TSDL103  A. L. LLOYD & EWAN MacCOLL English and Scottish Folk Ballads
TSDL104  EWAN MacCOLL & PEGGY SEEGER Steam Whistle Ballads
TSDL105  JACK ELLIOTT & DERROLL ADAMS Roll on Buddy
TSDL106  JACK ELLIOTT Muleskinner
TSDL110  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Farewell Nancy ~ Sea Songs & Shanties
TSDL113  PEGGY SEEGER & TOM PALEY  Who’s Going To Shoe You’re Pretty Little Foot?
TSDL117  HEDY WEST  Old Times and Hard Times
TSDL118  A L LLOYD  First Person
TSDL120  THE CAMPBELL FAMILY  The Singing Campbells
TSDL125  VARIOUS ARTISTS  New Voices
TSDL128  RAY & ARCHIE FISHER et al  Bonny Lass Come O’er the Burn
TSDL130  EWAN MacCOLL  Bundook Ballads
TSCD134  JESSE FULLER  Move On Down The Line
TSDL137  THE FISHER FAMILY  Traditional & New Songs From Scotland
TSDL138  The STEWART FAMILY  The Stewarts Of Blair
TSDL139  PADDY TUNNEY  A Wild Bee’s Nest
TSDL143  The EXILES  Freedom, Come All Ye
TSDL146  HEDY WEST  Pretty Saro
TSDL147  EWAN MacCOLL  The Manchester Angel
TSDL153  PADDY TUNNEY & ARTHUR KEARNEY  Ireland Her Own
TSDL163  HEDY WEST  Ballads
TSDL164  The EXILES  The Hale & The Hanged
TSDL165  PADDY TUNNEY  The Irish Edge
TSDL171  SARAH OGAN GUNNING  A Girl of Constant Sorrow
TSDL172  FRANK HARTE  Dublin Street Songs
TSDL173  JIMMY McBEATH  Wild Rover No More
TSDL175  WILLIE CLANCY  The Minstrel From Clare
TSDL179  The STEWART FAMILY  The Travelling Stewarts
TSDL182  MRS. SARAH MAKEM  Ulster Ballad Singer
TSDL183  WILLIE SCOTT  The Shepherd’s Song
TSDL184  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Breeze From Erin
TSDL185  LIZZIE HIGGINS  Princess Of The Thistle
TSDL186  The HIGH LEVEL RANTERS Northumberland For Ever
TSDL190  DAVE & TONI ARTHUR  The Lark In The Morning
TSDL193  PHOEBE SMITH  Once I Had A True Love
TSDL200  PETER BELLAMY  The Fox Jumps Over The Parson’s Gate
TSDL203  A L LLOYD  The Great Australian Legend
TSDL204  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Owdham Edge – Popular Song & Verse from Lancashire
TSDL206  THE OLDHAM TINKERS  Oldham’s Burning Sands
TSDL209  IRISH COUNTRY FOUR  Songs, Ballads & Instrumental Tunes of Ulster
TSDL210 VARIOUS ARTISTS The Wide Midlands
TSDL212  OAK  Welcome To Our Fair
TSDL214  THE CHEVIOT RANTERS  The Sound Of The Cheviots
TSDL215  HARRY BOARDMAN, DAVE HILLERY  Trans Pennine
TSDL216  FRANKIE ARMSTRONG  Lovely On The Water
TSDL217  ROY HARRIS  The Bitter & The Sweet
TSDL222  THE CHEVIOT RANTERS  The Cheviot Hills
TSDL223  PETA WEBB  I Have Wandered In Exile
TSDL225  BOB HART Songs from Suffolk
TSDL226  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Streets of Glasgow
TSDL227  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Wild Hills O’Wannie
TSDL228  The BROADSIDE From GRIMSBY  The Moon Shone Bright
TSDL229  VARIOUS ARTISTS  English Country Music From East Anglia
TSDL230  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Lark In The Clear Air
TSDL236  HARRY BOARDMAN A Lancashire Mon
TSDL237  THE OLDHAM TINKERS  Best O’ T’ Bunch
TSDL239  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Bonny North Tyne
TSDL240  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Boscastle Breakdown
TSDL243  BOB HART, PERCY WEBB, ERNEST AUSTIN  Flash Company
TSDL244  SAM LARNER  A Garland For Sam
TSDL245  THE CHEVIOT RANTERS  Cheviot Barn Dance
TSDL247  JOHN KIRKPATRICK & SUE HARRIS  The Rose Of Britain’s Isle
TSDL248  JOHN LYONS  The May Morning Dew
TSDL250  SEAMUS ENNIS  The Wandering Minstrel

TSDL251  THE RUSSELL FAMILY Of Doolin, County Clare
TSDL253  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Songs Of The Open Road
TSDL254  VARIOUS ARTISTS  When Sheepshearing’s Done
TSDL255  GARY & VERA ASPEY  From the North
TSDL256  ROY HARRIS  Champions Of Folly
TSDL257  PACKIE MANUS BYRNE  Songs Of A Donegal Man
TSDL258  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Sussex Harvest
TSDL260  LIZZIE HIGGINS  Up And Awa’ Wi’ The Laverock
TSDL261  JUMBO BRIGHTWELL  Songs from the Eel’s Foot
TSDL264  PADDY TUNNEY  The Mountain Streams Where The Moorcocks Crow
TSDL266  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Caledonian Companion
TSDL267  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Morpeth Rant
TSDL268  THE MUSIC OF SCOTT SKINNER  Traditional Scots Fiddling
TSDL270  JOHNNY HANDLE  The Collier Lad
TSDL273  FRANKIE ARMSTRONG  Songs and Ballads
TSDL274  BOB DAVENPORT  Down The Long Road
TSDL275  BOB CANN  West Country Melodeon
TSDL276  THE OLDHAM TINKERS  For Old Time’s Sake
TSDL277  ARCHIE FISHER  Will Ye Gang, Love
TSDL280  J SCOTT SKINNER  The Strathspey King
TSDL282  TOM GILFELLON  In The Middle Of The Tune
TSDL283  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Holey Ha’penny
TSDL284  THE GAUGERS  Beware of the Aberdonian
TSDL285  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Green Grow The Laurels
TSDL286  GEORGE MAYNARD  Ye Subjects Of England
TSDL287  SEAN McALOON & JOHN REA  Drops Of Brandy
TSDL288  FELIX DORAN  The Last Of The Travelling Pipers
TSDL289  PADDY TUNNEY  The Flowery Vale
TSDL292  The LING FAMILY  Singing Traditions Of A Suffolk Family
TSDL293  DAVIE STEWART
TSDL294  PAT MITCHELL  Uilleann Pipes
TSDL295  JOHN KIRKPATRICK & SUE HARRIS  Among The Many Attractions At The Show…
TSDL297  THE HIGH LEVEL RANTERS  Ranting Lads
TSDL299  GARY & VERA ASPEY  A Taste Of Hotpot
TSDL303  JIMMY McBEATH  Bound To Be A Row
TSDL304  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Travelling Songster
TSDL305  THE O’HALLORAN BROTHERS  The Men Of The Island
TSDL306  JIMMY POWER  Irish Fiddle Player
TSDL307  BELLE STEWART  Queen Among The Heather
TSDL308  FRANK HINCHLIFFE In Sheffield Park
TSDL314  KEVIN MITCHELL  Free And Easy
TSDL315  DICK GAUGHAN  Coppers & Brass
TSDL316  ROSE MURPHY  Milltown Lass
TSDL317  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Songs & Southern Breezes
TSDL318  BOB DAVENPORT  Postcards Home
TSDL319  BOB SMITH’S IDEAL BAND Ideal Music
TSDL321  The CAMERON MEN
TSDL323  THE OLDHAM TINKERS  Sit Thee Down
TSDL324  JOHNNY DOUGHTY  Round Rye Bay For More
TSDL325  JOSIE McDERMOTT  Darby’s Farewell
TSDL326  JOHN BURGESS  The Art Of The Highland Bagpipes vol. 2
TSDL327  ROY HARRIS  By Sandbank Fields
TSDL328  BOB COPPER  Sweet Rose In June
TSDL329  CHRIS FOSTER  Layers
TSDL334  LEN GRAHAM Wind and Water
TSDL335  TOMMY HEALY & JOHN DUFFY  Memories Of Sligo
TSDL337  JACK & CHARLIE COEN  The Branch Lin
TSDL338  VINCENT GRIFFIN Traditional Fiddle Music from County Clare
TSDL339  PACKIE DUIGNAN & SEAMUS HORAN Music From County Leitrim
TSDL348  JOHN WRIGHT  Unaccompanied
TSDL349  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Devon Tradition
TSDL350  BOB DAVENPORT & THE RAKES  1977
TSDL351  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Folk Music Of Norway
TSDL352  TERRY TEAHAN & SEAMUS HORAN  Old Time Irish Music In America
TSDL353  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Music of Cape Breton vol: 1
TSDL354  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Music of Cape Breton vol: 2
TSDL355  JOHN KIRKPATRICK & SUE HARRIS  Shreds & Patches
TSDL356  VERA ASPEY  The Blackbird
TSDL359  JOHN REILLY  The Bonny Green Tree
TSDL361  BOB ROBERTS  Songs From The Sailing Barges
TSDL362  MARY-ANN CAROLAN  Songs From The Irish Tradition
TSDL364  HUGH GILLESPIE Classic recordings of Irish traditional fiddle music
TSDL366  DAN SULLIVAN’S SHAMROCK BAND
TSDL368  JOHN DOONAN  At The Feis
TSDL369  THE LAMBS ON THE GREEN HILLS  Songs from County Clare
TSDL371  ALISTAIR ANDERSON  Corby Crag
TSDL372  GEORGE HANNA & SARAH ANNE O’NEILL  On The Shores Of Lough Neagh
TSDL373  JOHN REA  Traditional Music on the Hammer Dulcimer
TSDL374  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Earl Soham Slog
TSDL375  VARIOUS ARTISTS  Sing, Say and Play – Traditional Songs & Music from Suffolk
TSDL378  VIN GARBUTT  Eston California
TSDL380  SHIRLEY & DOLLY COLLINS  For As Many As Will
TSDL382  NEW VICTORY BAND  One More Dance & Then
TSDL385  VIN GARBUTT  Tossing A Wobbler

TSDL386  BARRY DRANSFIELD  Bowin’ & Scrapin’
TSDL388  THE HIGH LEVEL RANTERS  Four In A Bar
TSDL391  CHRIS FOSTER  All Things In Common
TSDL392  WALTER PARDON  A Country Life
TSDL395  TRAVELLERS  Songs, Stories and Tunes from English Gypsies
TSDL398  JOHN DOHERTY  Bundle And Go
TSDL399  THE OLDHAM TINKERS  That Lancashire Band
TSDL403  ALISON McMORLAND & PETA WEBB
TSDL405  CILLA FISHER & ARTIE TREZISE  Cilla And Artie
TSDL407  GARY & VERA ASPEY  Seeing Double
TSDL408  JOHN KIRKPATRICK & SUE HARRIS  Facing The Music
TSDL414  ROBIN DRANSFIELD  Tidewave
TSDL416  UMPS AND DUMPS The Moon’s In A Fit
TSDL421  The HEMLOCK COCK & BULL BAND All Buttoned Up
TSDL425  The NEW HIGH LEVEL RANTERS
TSDL428  VIN GARBUTT  Little Innocents
TSDL429  HAUK BUEN, KNUT BUEN, TOM ANDERSON, VIDAR LANDE  Ringing Strings – Fiddle Music of Norway-Shetland
TSDL430  MARTIN SIMPSON  Grinning In Your Face
TSDL435  CURLEW  Fiddle Music From Shetland & Beyond
TSDL438  MARTIN SIMPSON  Sad Or High Kicking!
TSDL439  THE HOUSE BAND  The House Band
TSDL440  THE COCK AND BULL BAND  Eyes Closed and Rocking
TSDL441  BILL CADDICK  The Wild West Show
TSDL445  THE HOUSE BAND  Pacific
TSDL446  MARTIN & JESSICA SIMPSON  True Dare Or Promise
TSDL447  ANDREW CRONSHAW  Till The Beast’s Returning
TSDL451  THE HOUSE BAND  Word of Mouth
TSDL453  JOHN KIRKPATRICK & SUE HARRIS  Stolen Ground
TSDL468  BATTLEFIELD BAND  Opening Moves
TSDL479  VARIOUS ARTISTS  The Bird In The Bush
TSDL501  BRASS MONKEY  Sound & Rumour
TSDL502  EWAN MacCOLL  Chorus From The Gallows
TSDL1028  BLOWZABELLA  Vanilla
TSDL1050  ANDREW CRONSHAW  The Language Of Snakes
TSDL1502  BERNARD O’SULLIVAN & TOMMY McMAHON  Clare Concertinas
TSDL1503  CHRIS DRONEY  The Flowing Tide
TSDL1504  JOHN KELLY  Fiddle and Concertina Player
TSDL1505  BERNARD O’SULLIVAN, TOMMY McMAHON  Play Irish Traditional Music of County Clare
TSDL1506  IRISH TRADITIONAL CONCERTINA STYLES

More releases from the archive will follow. Please join our mailing list or keep checking back for updates.


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THE OLDHAM TINKERS For Old Time’s Sake TSDL276

The Oldham Tinkers specialise in the local songs and ballads of their native South Lancashire, and have an immense following. All the salt and savour of Lancashire song and humour is to be enjoyed in their records. ‘For Old Time’s Sake’ their third album for the Topic record label was popular with the late John Peel. He played their material often on his BBC radio programme, especially the tall tale of ‘John Willie’s Horse’.
1  Signora
2  Eaur Joe’s Lad
3  John Willie’s Horse
4  Barefoot Days Medley
5  Lancashire Witches
6  Come Whoam to Thi Childer an’ Me
7  Johnny Bugger
8  Billy Winker
9  Bits O’ Bromley Street
10  The Condemned Cell
11  The Maypole
12  For Old Time’s Sake

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THE TRAVELLING PEOPLE TSCD808

A radio-ballad about Britain’s nomadic peoples by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

The last of the radio-ballads deals with gypsies, tinkers and the rest of Britain’s travellers – ‘people talking about what it means to be a tenth-rate citizen in a civilised land.’ MacColl’s song The Travelling People was so true to their lives that it was taken up by travellers and absorbed into their repertoire.

‘The final episode, The Travelling People, had MacColl at the peak of his lyrical intonation.’ DAVE HENDERSON, Q

‘The Radio-Ballads are, in the literal sense of the word, wonderful ….. they changed the course of broadcasting history. What makes them so important now is that, at their best, they tell you things you don’t forget. The Travelling People is even more powerful than it was in 1964’ GILLIAN REYNOLDS, THE DAILY TELEGRAPH

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THE FIGHT GAME TSCD807

A radio-ballad about boxers by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

Part documentary, part allegory, The Fight Game takes the listener into the gladiatorial arena of professional boxing.

‘In The Big Hewer, about coal mining and The Fight Game, about boxing, the radio-ballads find men titanic enough to live up to their pretensions. Listening to these two, you can really believe that there were giants in those days.’ THE INDEPENDENT

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THE BIG HEWER ~ VARIOUS ARTISTS TSCD804

A radio-ballad about Britain’s coal miners by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

The Big Hewer – ‘a poetic documentary with worker heroes,’ as The Times called it – charts the lives of Britain’s coal miners, in the Northeast, East Midlands and South Wales.

‘In The Big Hewer, about coal mining and The Fight Game, about boxing, the radio-ballads find men titanic enough to live up to their pretensions. Listening to these two, you can really believe that there were giants in those days.’ THE INDEPENDENT

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SINGING THE FISHING ~ VARIOUS ARTISTS TSCD803

A radio-ballad about Britain’s herring fishing communities by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

Britain’s herring fishing communities are the subject of this, perhaps the best-remembered and most widely heard of all the radio-ballads. It was broadcast in more than 80 countries, and won the 1960 Prix d’Italia for radio documentary. Several of MacColl’s songs for Singing The Fishing quickly entered the repertoire of a generation of folk singers.

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SONG OF A ROAD TSCD802

A radio-ballad about the building of the M1 Motorway by Ewan MacColl, Charles Parker & Peggy Seeger

The second of the remarkable Radio Ballads Song of a Road tells the story of the making of the M1, Britain’s first motorway. The road building was a suitably iconic and newsworthy project for Parker, MacColl and Seeger to develop their ground-breaking radio techniques. Among the songs MacColl created for this radio-ballad was Hot Asphalt.

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TOPIC70 VARIOUS ARTISTS ~ THREE SCORE & TEN

TOPIC70 packshot webTHREE SCORE AND TEN is seven CDs in a ten by ten inch hardback book, with dust jacket containing 108 profusely illustrated, full colour pages with a narrative portrait of Topic from 1939 to the present day. Also included separately is a complete discography of every Topic release from 1939 to the newest releases in 2009.

There are 144 tracks that cover all aspects of Topic’s recording history in 7 themed CDs with many rare tracks never before on CD. The extensive text gives a detailed recording and social history with profiles of the essential recordings, principle artists and key personages. The many hundreds of illustrations are a revelation in themselves, anchoring the whole project with photos of the artists, album sleeves, advertising leaflets, snapshots and memorabilia.

A quote from page 92 of Three Score and Ten sums it all up pretty nicely:

“From its first release in 1939 and it’s origins in the Workers’ Music Association through the folk revival to the present day Topic Records has always endeavoured to make classic and definitive recordings of traditional music available to the public; a catalogue of records to inform and inspire the listener.” Since the 1950s, Topic has stood virtually alone in continuing to make recordings of traditional music and the tradition based music of the British Isles.

The aims and objects of the Workers’ Music Association (as published in 1944) still stand as a fair description of the ambitions of Topic Records in 2009:
- To present to the people their rich musical inheritance
- To utilise fully the stimulating power of music to inspire people
- To stimulate the composition of music appropriate to our time
- To foster and further the art of music on the principle that true art can move the people
- to work for the betterment of society

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The Voice Of The People

THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE
THE TRADITIONAL MUSIC OF ENGLAND, IRELAND, SCOTLAND & WALES

The first TWENTY volumes : TSCD651-670

harry cox web margaret barry web scan tester web


“My favourite sit-down-and-listen records”
Norma Waterson

This series makes available nearly 500 recordings of English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh traditional music drawn from the archives of Topic Records and from private collections.

Compiled as thematic anthologies, each volume stands on its own, but the series as a whole presents an extensive and varied picture of traditional singing, instrumental music-making and dancing throughout the course of the 20th century. Many of the singers and musicians and their recorded performances presented here are classic, but the inclusion of some less well-known performers and genres broadens the horizon by offering glimpses at some little-known nooks and crannies of traditional music-making. This is the home-spun art and entertainment that enriched the lives of working people in pubs and cottages, in social clubs and village halls and on the street, and was made, in the words of one of the musicians in the series, “by people with dirt under their finger nails.”

Society has moved on, but the artistry of these singers and musicians and the emotional impact of their performances are timeless. The timbres and textures of the language and musical expression, the performance skills and techniques, the social values contained in both the material and the performers’ life stories, and the subtleties of meaning in the song texts could easily be lost sight of forever. The cultural voices of these farm workers and men on the buildings, the housewives, the shepherds and cowmen, the gardeners and estate workers, the miners and trawlermen, the dealers in scrap, the country policeman and the village postman, the chambermaid and the hospital nurse are therefore worthy of serious and prolonged attention. Their singing and music-making have made a striking and significant contribution to the cultural roots of these islands.

Best known as a dance musician, Reg Hall is a visiting research fellow at the University of Sussex and, in compiling and annotating this series, he has called on the experience of a long, personal involvement with traditional music-making and an academic historian’s view of its history and social context. His commentary pays tribute to the pioneer pen-and-paper folk-song-collectors of the Edwardian era and to those professionals in the early post-war years equipped with tape recorders. The 1960s and 1970s saw the rise of a small number of enthusiasts, both professional and amateur, who recorded traditional music and broke new ground in discovery and evaluation, and this series owes a great deal to their creative efforts and co-operation.

Ever a critic of the concepts of ‘folk-song’ and ‘folk-dance’, Reg Hall challenges the ground rules of both movements and directs the emphasis in this presentation towards the lives of the performers and the communities and circumstances in which they performed. The songs and dance music had meaning and purpose for the singers and musicians, and the exploration of those realities, as far as we are able to understand them, is far more exciting than perpetuating the myths.

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