Cover Story (41): Roy Bailey - mourn the man, treasure his work. Another fine version of Richard Thompson's Beeswing
December 02, 2018
I had not intended to re-open the debate on Beeswing. But it is possibly my favourite song - a choice that changes from time to time - and this comment might otherwise be lost in the undiscovered, though eminently discoverable, archives of Salut! Live.
More importantly, the version I reproduce above is from a wonderful figure of the British folk world who has just died, Roy Bailey (see my report on his death).
A reader - yes, we have the odd one - responded, either to my sad piece recording the deaths of Roy and also Bill Caddick, or had stumbled on the earlier debate.
Pauline Woolley wrote this and only this: "The late, great Roy Bailey for me."
I had not heard it before, though I was very much aware of Roy's work. I have heard it now and agree it's an excellent rendition. I probably still err on the side of Christy Moore for the reasons already given. But Roy Bailey joins a clutch of other artists who have done Richard Thompson's exceptional song justice.
* PS: Pauline has written again, thanking me for this short piece but also drawing my attention to her own work on the subject. here it is (to be investigated by me later) ....
'If you want a longer story about my love of the song, you can take a look here: https://goldfired.livejournal.com/198629.html
Years ago, when I was keeping a Live Journal, one Christmas I picked out 12 songs (or pieces of music) and wrote about why they inspired me. Some folk, some classical music, even Nelly the Elephant. The whole list is here: https://goldfired.livejournal.com/tag/twelve%20records'
As posted at the earlier article in response to Pauline's (comment discussed above) .....
Oh definitely Roy Bailey, such colour and warmth in the voice.
The Christy Moore version is good and up there with Richard's but neither is a singer in the way that Roy was - he could play a bit too! His son-in-law said on 'Last Word' on Radio 4 that nobody on the circuit ever wanted to go on after Roy.
Posted by: Jane Russ | December 03, 2018 at 01:27 PM