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Swarb! Forty Five Years Of Folk's Finest Fiddler

Audio CD | Box Set

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, 21 Jul 2003
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Product details

  • Audio CD (21 July 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: Free Reed
  • ASIN: B00008YGW1
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 307,705 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Jack Orion: with Bert Lloyd, 1969
  2. Finale Medley: with Martin Carthy, 1966
  3. Our Captain cried all hands: with Martin Carthy, 1967
  4. Streets of Forbes: with Trevor Lucas, 1971
  5. The Heilanman/Drowsy Maggie: with Beryl Marriott, 1976
  6. The Lark in the clear air: with Savourna Stevenson
  7. Around Cape Horn: with Peter Bellamy, 1979
  8. 79th's Farewell to Gibraltar set: with Simon Nicol, 1982
  9. Pittengardner's/Floggin' Reel, Folk City, NYC, 1984
  10. White Dress, with Ralph McTell, 1992
  11. The Pepperpot/Sailing into Walpole's Marsh/Bunker Hill, USA, 1990
  12. Mrs Bermingham/No. 178/Blind Mary, Cropredy Festival, 1992.
  13. Days of 49, with Alistair Hulett, The Basement, 1996
  14. Nathaniel Gow's Lament/Rory of the Hills, Denmark, 1996
  15. I Know my Love, with Kevin Dempsey, Fairport Tour, 2000
  16. Byker Hill, Carthy 60th Birthday Concert, 2001
  17. Banksie, with Kevin Dempsey, 2003

Disc: 2

  1. The Bride's March from Unst: with Beryl Marriott, 1981
  2. The Blind Man he Could See: Ian Campbell Folk Group, 1964
  3. Tail Taddle: Ian Campbell Folk Group, Hullabaloo, 1965
  4. Tunes my mother taught me: Fairport Convention, BBC, 1970
  5. Dirty Linen: Fairport Convention, Philadelphia, 1970
  6. Me with you: Fairport Convention, Rosie sessions, 1973
  7. Hexhamshire Lass: Fairport Convention, 1974
  8. Rising for the moon: Fairport Convention, 1975
  9. Country Pie: Fairport Convention, Australia, 1977
  10. Sword Dance/Young Black Cow: Fairport/Richard Thompson, TV, 1981
  11. Brilliancy Medley/ Cherokee Shuffle: Fairport Convention, 1982
  12. Boadicea: Dave Swarbrick, Flittin', 1981
  13. Carolanning: Whippersnapper, Coventry, 1983
  14. Farewell Lovely Nancy: Whippersnapper, Cropredy 1985
  15. Hen's March: Whippersnapper, Denmark, 1987
  16. Waltzing's for Dreamers: Keith Hancock Band, Southport, 1991
  17. Nonesuch Medley: Band of Hope, Live, 1994
  18. Mad about you/Siege of Sydney Streets: Eureka! Jamming with Gypsy, 1997
  19. Fiddlestix: Fairport Convention, The Cropredy Box, 1997

Disc: 3

  1. Royal Seleccion #13: with Simon Nicol, Germany, 1982
  2. The Bark Gay Head: with Ewan Maccoll, 1961
  3. Interlude - Pembroke Unique Ensemble: Young Tradition, 1968
  4. Tam Lin: Fairport Convention, Stockholm, 1971
  5. General Taylor/Mason's Apron: Fairport Convention, Chicago, 1970
  6. Pleasure and Pain: with Brian Maxine, 1975
  7. Frog Up the Pump: with Martin Carthy, Rehearsal Tape, 1977
  8. When First to this Country: Fairport Convention, Capital Radio, 1976
  9. Now Be Thankful: 3 Desperate Mortgages, Kenilworth, 1976
  10. Rosie/Pachelbel's Canon: Whippersnapper, Burning Post, 1983
  11. My Little Fiddle: Whippersnapper, 1985
  12. Foolish: Whippersnapper, Tønder, 1987
  13. Ship in Distress: with Martin Carthy, McCabe's, USA, 1990
  14. Bonny Black Hare: with Martin Carthy, Albert Hole, 1993
  15. Isle of Man set: with Beryl Marriott, Wing Village Hall, 1998
  16. Sloth: with Simon Nicol, Topic Folk Club, Bradford 1983

Disc: 4

  1. Bonaparte's Retreat: solo, Swarbrick 2, 1977
  2. Rocky Road to Dublin/Drops of Brandy: Ian Campbell Folk Group, 1963
  3. The Widow of Westmoreland's Daughter: Bert Lloyd, 1967
  4. Earl of Moray: Ian Campbell Folk Group, Highland Songs, 1967
  5. Hen's March Medley: with Martin Carthy, Archive Recording, 1967
  6. Father Kelly/Skopje/Sligo Maid: with Carthy & Disley, 1967
  7. Praties they Grow Small: with Lorna Campbell, 1968
  8. The Liege & Lief Medley: Fairport Convention, Philadelphia, 1970
  9. The Hangman's Reel: Fairport Convention, BBC In Concert, 1970
  10. Hanging Song: Fairport Convention, Fairport Live, 1972
  11. Rosie: Fairport Convention, Manor Sessions, 1974
  12. Sheebeg and Sheemore: with Simon Nicol, Chicago, 1981
  13. The Gravel Path/Leighton Buzzard Shuffle: Dave Swarbrick & Friends’, Cambridge,
  14. Loving Hannah: Whippersnapper, Folk on 2, 1984
  15. Carthy's March/The Lemon Tree: with Martin Carthy, USA, 1990
  16. The Trip we took over the Mountain: with Martin Carthy and Savourna Stevenson, 1991
  17. Bonny Black Hare: solo, BBC, 1994
  18. The Wives: with Kevin Dempsey, The Basement, 1996
  19. Two Magicians: solo, Melbourne Assembly Hall, 1996
  20. Lassies of Neilston: with Alistair Hulett, 2002
  21. My Heart's in New South Wales: with Kevin Dempsey & Fairport Convention, Fairfield Halls, 2000

Product description

Product Description

This lavishly packaged, authoritatively researched 4CD long-box set is the first in-depth anthology of the music and 45-year career of Dave Swarbrick, one of Britain's best loved and most influential folk fiddle players. The 73 tracks (over five hours of music) stretch from Swarb's earliest recordings to his latest, including selections from every duo, band and session line-up he has been involved in, legendary 'lost' recordings, and out-takes and alternate takes from all of his key albums. Among the many individuals and groups he has performed with are Ewan MacColl, the Ian Campbell Folk Group, Martin Carthy, Fairport Convention, Beryl Marriott, Richard & Linda Thompson, Whippersnapper, Eureka and Band Of Hope, all featured here along with other well know names from the British folk music scene. The superb package includes a 120-page illustrated, colour book with career overview, definitive discography, detailed track notes, many interviews and Peter Frame's "Family Twigs" of the multifarious Swarb connections…. The definitive tribute to one of the great names of British folk music.


If anyone deserves a tribute as impressive and comprehensive as this Swarb!! box it is surely mercurial fiddler Dave Swarbrick. Like legendary bluesman Robert Johnson, the man affectionately known to all as Swarb must surely have done a deal with infernal forces in return for his prodigious talent. Since his early days with the Ian Campbell Folk Group, through landmark collaborations with Martin Carthy and his long stint with Fairport Convention--during which he effectively invented electric folk-rock--no single figure has had more influence on the British folk scene. His zest for the pleasures of life--principally beer and cigarettes--and his superabundant sense of humour have always been evident in his music: qualities that make his fiddle playing so unique, so full of character, and so universally admired.

This luxurious box set is another in Free Reed's exemplary series--previous boxes have been devoted to Martin Carthy and Fairport Convention. Here four CDs of diverse recordings drawn from every phase of Swarb's career are accompanied by another of Free Reed's massive illustrated biographies and, joy of joys, a selection of Swarbrick fiddle tunes transcribed by Maartin Allcock. Despite the notional themes of each disc, the track listing ranges fairly randomly across the years, from the early 1960s recordings with Ian Campbell, Bert Lloyd and Beryl Marriott, through the Carthy, Fairport and Whippersnapper years, solos, duets and guest spots with other groups, to an extract from 2003's English Fiddler album. Happily, sound quality is on the whole pretty good, with the many live recordings coming up generally very well indeed. It's avowedly not a "Best of" collection, so anyone unfamiliar with Swarbrick's output should begin elsewhere; instead, this is a delightful treasure trove of alternative or unknown recordings from the vast repertoire of Britain's greatest fiddler. --Mark Walker

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11 September 2003
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31 July 2003
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