—— folk family and jam


What can you find here - and how did it happen?

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There are three people who are mainly responsible for these pages.
Three brothers.  Dave (DJ, the eldest), Steve (SR, the youngest of the brothers) and myself.  (RA)
I was fortunate in being sandwiched (see the picture) between two brothers who were both, in their different ways, gifted musically. 
Something rubbed off.  I never had their gifts, but saw what they could do, and thought - hey that's just Stephen and David (as I called them then), if they can do that, then I can too.
It wasn't quite that simple, but they taught me stuff, they brought home stuff.  And Steve and I did jam sessions on acoustic guitars, banjos, mouth organs and tin whistles.  And recorded the stuff on my trusty Ferguson tape recorder.  We thought it was fun.  And continued on and off for 20 years. 
Other people had their part to play, I suppose.  New Horizon - a strange youth club run by an eccentric Swiss, Erik Gander was the way it all started.  

Plum and Jill, two members.  Tom Westbrook, a slightly nutty American, about 6 ft. 6 ins., who later went to work in Cripple Creek.
And records.  Johnny Cash (Al's present to the family).  The first three LPs I bought were Bob Dylan's Freewheelin'; Joan Baez in concert; Pete Seeger in concert.  I could go on, but the list is long.  And popular music was different then; there were all sorts of things going on.  Jazz bands (Acker Bilk, Chris Barber, Kenny Ball) made the top ten.  Lonnie Donegan and his skiffle band did the same.  Dylan; Judy Collins in 1961; Peter Paul and Mary 1962; Donovan in 1965; The Byrds picked up Pete Seeger's Turn, turn, turn; the Animals picked up Dylan's version of House of the Rising Sun.  I could go on.
And then, just as now, it seemed more fun to sing yourself.
I've always liked singing.  Even in the days when I wasn't particularly good at it. 
And I like the sound of my own voice, I admit.  And I hope there is someone out there that does too.