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This Willowed Light

5.0 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (7 July 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Restless Head Records
  • ASIN: B00K2K34U6
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 107,564 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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Product description

Product Description

'A vocal performance that stops you dead in your tracks' (FATEA Magazine) Maz O'Connor is a gifted singer of traditional and self-penned songs. In 2013 she was nominated for the BBC Folk Awards Horizon Award and selected for a creative fellowship with the English Folk Dance and Song Society at London's Cecil Sharp House, funded by the BBC Performing Arts Fund. She sings both traditional folk songs and her own compositions, and accompanies her uniquely pure voice with guitar, shruti box (an idea she "nicked" off fellow folk artist Karine Polwart), piano and harmonium. Maz has been singing on the UK folk scene since she was 13 years old. Her first festival appearance was as an entrant in a young performers' competition, previously won by Kate Rusby. Persuaded to enter by her brother, his band were runners-up while she scooped first prize: 'I think he was trying to encourage me to be more confident,' she says, 'but it kind of backfired on both of us when I won. He actually wanted to perform in front of 1000 people...' She's been gigging ever since. But it was while at Cambridge reading English that she fell in love with the folk songwriters of the 1960s; Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, Neil Young. These influences, along with her literary leanings, make 'This Willowed Light' such an intriguing work. She effortlessly blends traditional material such as the Child Ballad 'The Grey Selkie' with intelligent, original songs like 'Derby Day' (which commemorates the death of suffragette Emily Wilding Davison) and 'The Mississippi Woman' (a feminist rewrite of the Adam-and-Eve story), which she was commissioned to write by Broadstairs Folk Festival. 2013 was a busy year for Maz: alongside her BBC fellowship, and singing Laura Marling's music in the RSC's 'As You Like It', she found time to team up with the highly acclaimed producer and award-winning folk artist Jim Moray to record 'This Willowed Light', her extraordinary second album. Together they crafted this beautiful record which unites Maz's contemporary sound with her love of traditional folk song. When 'Derby Day' was recently 'Song of the Day' on Folk Radio UK, Moray said of the album: 'I think it's the best thing I've ever worked on'. It may be the best folk album, perhaps even the best album, you hear all year.  Maz plays Cambridge Folk Festival and other festivals across the summer, and an online show 7 July 2014 at 9pm (8pm GMT) from her London living-room. Tickets available at www.stageit.com. For general information contact Polly Paulusma polly@wildsoundrecordings.com Innovating while honouring tradition is the challenge for any young folkie, and on this second outing Maz O'Connor carries it off with disquieting ease. She's helped by the expert production of Jim Moray, who lends her stalking bass, discreet strings and trumpet, but knows when to leave an old song such as London Lights alone. Melodic originals such as The Singing of the Ocean and Nightcap are among the standouts of a set that mixes youthful delight with gravitas, and Derby Day is O'Connor's touching tribute to suffragette martyr Emily Davison. Folk album of the year thus far. 4 Stars - The Observer


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on 12 October 2014
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on 11 September 2014
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on 3 September 2014
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on 4 October 2014
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