Music from North Eastern England

The Trimdon Grange Disaster: the deadly cost of coalmining and a fitting musical testament

CLICK ANYWHERE ON THIS PARAGRAPH TO EXPLORE THE FULL COVER STORY SERIES - COMPARING DIFFERENT VERSIONS OF THE SAME SONGS AND SOMETIMES TUNES My Sunderland AFC losing 6-0 today will be labelled a disaster. It is nothing of the sort.... Read more →


Death in the mines, more thoughts on the Trimdon Grange explosion - and the Unthanks' excellence

Back when hacking was an adjective for a certain kind of cough and phone-tapping was something only spies did, Mike Amos got me my first job as a journalist and taught me how to be a reporter. It is no... Read more →


At last: the Pitmen Poets singing The Workers’ Song. And how to resolve the winter of discontent

Just when I thought I had one solution to the failure of my attempts to showcase Ed Pickford's noble anthem in appreciations of ordinary people, The Workers’ Song, as sung by the Pitmen Poets, a much better one popped along.... Read more →


Song and performance of the year: Pitmen Poets and Ed Pickford's Workers' Song

I do not always nominate a best-of- year album or other piece of work. This year, I feel bound to do so. I have heard nothing better all year than the Pitmen Poets' rousing and timely rendering of one of... Read more →


Sorrow and solidarity in the coalfield, with Bob Fox, Benny Graham, Jez Lowe and Billy Mitchell

Jagged forks of lightning tore across the sky above Marseille as I began a two-hour drive home from the airport, listening to the opening tracks of Bare Knuckle, a copy of which had been waiting for me on a fleeting... Read more →


Music from North Eastern England. Season two: (2) Amelia Coburn, Richard Grainger, the Wilsons and Pete Davies's tribute to Vin Garbutt

For the second instalment of the second season of Music from North Eastern England, I turn my attention to Teesside. Nothing could be more appropriate: I am writing as I set off from London King's Cross on a trip back... Read more →


Music from North Eastern England. Season two (1): Geordie Black, a song in search of its true tune

December 2021: season two of Music from North Eastern England had its origins in this post from Bill Taylor, published in August. Now that I have reposted, with minor updates, all seven instalments of the original series, it is time... Read more →