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After such a busy Musicport it seemed a sensible idea to slow things down a little in November and take a look at that lingering notion of reaching out for a little help with Northern Sky. Since my personal blog/journal - call it what you will - turned into the website you now have before you, I have pretty much run it single-handedly with a little help from my friends, so to speak, including Liam Wilkinson, Phil Carter, Kev Boyd, Neil King, Sam Hindley and one or two other writers and photographers who have offered their help and assistance over the years.
Midway through November I called out for help via social media and was greeted by a handful of willing souls, all who have pledged to send in reviews as and when they have the time. I'm chuffed to have on board Marc Higgins, Ian Taylor, Damian Liptrot, Tony Wilding, Mary Andrews, David Jennings and John Crisp. Some of their reviews have now started to appear in the reviews section and very good they are too. If you too would like to contribute reviews, either CD reviews or live reviews, then please get in touch. Who wants just my opinion anyway?
For the first time in a good while I've been able to publish no less than twenty album reviews in the period of one month, including albums by The Jigantics, The Revellers, Sara Watkins, Methera, London Klezmer Quartet, Coope Boyes Simpson, Billy Bragg and Joe Henry, Will Varley, The Gentle Good, Sweet Liberties, Gilmore and Roberts, Steve Tilston and Jez Lowe, Red Tail Ring, Southern Tenant Folk Union, The Way Down Wanderers, The Peter Edwards Trio, Georgia Ruth, Orkesta Mendoza, Ange Hardy and Lukas Drinkwater and Luke Jackson, most of which are featured in this month's edition of the Northern Sky Vaults radio/podcast.
On the live side, I was pleased to take part in the Guy Clark tribute night in York, organised by my good friend Chris Euesden, where almost thirty Guy Clark songs were performed by fans of the late Texan singer-songwriter. Liam and I went along and warbled through four of our favourite songs and we were pleased to be in such esteemed company, most of whom got up at the end for a finale of Desperados Waiting for a Train. The other live events covered this month include the excellent performance by Peter Knight's Gigspanner and the highly engaging performance by Scots country singer Jill Jackson together with her trio, both taking place at the Roots Music Club in Doncaster.
Well, I'm just about ready to brave the winter cold over in Skegness for the seventh Great British Folk Festival and I hope to see you there. For now, can I wish everybody the very best over the festive season and we'll all see you in the New Year.