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November 2020

Cover Story reaches 50 with Arthur McBride. Paul Brady, Planxty or Thile and Jarosz - but where's Dylan?

I first met Paul Brady when he was a member of the Johnstons and that memorable Irish band played at folk clubs I ran in Darlington and Bishop Auckland at the end of the 1960s or beginning of the 1970s.... Read more →

Cover Story (49). Van Morrison and the Chieftains: a great collaboration remembered

Apologies to Bill Taylor who knows why publication of this offering, suggested by me in self-flagellatory fashion several days ago, has been delayed. The reason, which I cannot go into here, persists and will do for days to come. This... Read more →

Cover Story: (48) Carrickfergus by Van the Man, the Dubliners or the sublime Allison Moorer?

What a great Irish ballad Carrickfergus is. How strange then, that it cries out to be better still and, for all we know, once was. On the face of it, we have a gorgeous song with striking, mournful lyrics of... Read more →

Crazy Pagan, Jez Lowe's new album: an FA Cup hero, a sex-change folk singer and talking dirty in Geordie

Photo: Jez Lowe at Fylde Festival, 2010. With thanks for permissions already granted to Review: Crazy Pagan, by Jez Lowe (available at Not to put too fine a point on it, I wanted to be Jimmy Montgomery. Who?... Read more →

Potted Jez Lowe: on Dylan and Durham Cathedral, Europe and getting older

It's the Jez Lowe mini-series. Today, another outing for the Salut! Live tradition of posing a set of quick-ask, quick-reply questions as a companion to the main interview. We heard from Jez at length at this link. Here, the questions... Read more →

The Big Interview. Jez Lowe: 160(+) covers of his songs, 160 gigs lost to Covid

Necessarily, and without apology, this mini-series of articles concerning Jez Lowe is dominated by the North East of England. That is where Jez is from and, but for the first few months of my life after my birth on the... Read more →