SOUTHERN Tenant Folk Union are bringing their sound to Wearside.
They were formed by Belfast-born five-string banjo player Pat McGarvey in 2006 and take their name from the ground-breaking multiracial union of sharecroppers and non-landowning tenant farmers, founded in Arkansas in the 1930s (the Southern Tenant Farmers’ Union).
The Edinburgh-based Southern Tenant Folk Union are now one of the most highly-rated folk and bluegrass outfits in the UK today.
With their fourth album, Pencaitland, they’ve continued to appropriate themes and ancient-sounding chord progressions from traditional folk songs.
Pat McGarvey served his musical apprenticeship touring the world and recording a number of albums with bands like The Arlenes & The Coal Porters in London.
That grounding, plus countless other collaborations, gave him the experience needed to fuse together the band’s American folk and British roots sound with his own Celtic heritage.
He joined forces with singer and guitarist Jed Milroy (The Aliens), Adam Bulley on mandolin (The Halton Quartet), Ewan Macintyre on lead vocals/cajon and three stalwarts of the Edinburgh folk music scene, Chris Purcell on guitar/vocals, Carrie Thomas on fiddle and Marty Camino on double bass.
l Southern Tenant Folk Union play Arts Centre Washington on January 21. For tickets Tel. 219 3455.