Thursday, 29 April 2021

A Life In Music: Joe Broughton. From child prodigy to the peerless UFQ, the Folk Ensemble, and much more.

The Conservatoire Folk ensemble will be back!
Power Folk at the Spotted Dog will be back!
UFQ will be back!
Proper lessons at the Conservatoire will be back!

... but Lockdown's a bitch, now ain't it?

Joe Broughton is a non-stop phenomenon. From his days on the Folk circuit as a teen prodigy, his ebullient approach: nothing should be passed by, cos you never know what might come up. 

This podcast is a companion piece to go with Lives In Music podcast Series 3 - the tenth in the series. After which I lie down in a darkened room and plan series 4. The podcast is here, or you can scroll down and play it off the blog post. 

Years and years ago, I navigated the dusty corridors in the old Birmingham Conservatoire building, to write a blog post about the Conservatoire folk ensemble. It was a thrill, ducking and weaving through that old building, getting closer and closer to the explosive NOISE that Joe was whipping up. 50 or 60 students of all shapes and stripes, contributing to an exhilarating blast of music. Now, of course, under lockdown. the Folk Ensemble can't perform. But here's hoping they will, in a year's time. And many's the Conservatoire graduate, now making their way in music, who passionately missed the time they spent with Joe.  

So, there's been a steady, if exhausting to put together, stream of YouTube work, and you can catch a lot from the Links, which joe sent over. 

I've talked to Joe lots, been to several Urban Folk Quartet gigs, caught the Folk Ensemble in person and on YouTube and it's always been a complete pleasure. This is the first podcast he's done with me, and of course, a lot of the chat revolved around lockdown, which has stopped a lot of Joe and co's work in their tracks. It's not all doom and gloom, though – a chat with Joe is always a huge pleasure. 

Links (largely recommended by Joe)

Trimukhi Tala  Clap/ Clap/ Little /Ring /Middle /Clap/ Clap/ Wave/ Clap /Clap/ Wave/
UFQ remix from Josh Wunderlich: Waterbound Conservatoire Folk Ensemble remix from John Wunderlich: Sleep Talk
Jeff Beck live: Cause We're Ended as Lovers 
Bach Cello Suite No 2 in D minor / Paul Tortelier  
Joss Stone & Urban Folk Quartet - Solsbury Hill (Quarantine Live 2020)
and most important - Support the Urban Folk Quartet

The Podcast

A footnote: the intro and outro flourishes I'm using in this series of Lives in Music podcast come from Vo Fletcher who is featured in this series, along with Loz Kingsley, here. I asked him for a bit of live impro, and this was the result.  

The Lives in Music Podcast series has been running for about two years now. These are interviews with local musicians, looking at how music has shaped them throughout their lives. Series 3
also looks hard at how lockdown has had an impact. There are some lovely stories. To see all the artists, here's a link to every episode.

The Radio To Go blog

This blog has been going since 2007. I started it to focus mainly on radio stories, as the industry went through convulsive changes. Those changes aren't over yet, not by a long chalk. I then expanded the range of topics to cover local music, another subject close to my heart. I think it was a Destroyers gig that pulled me in that direction. I've banged out several hundred posts since then, and of course deleted quite a few. But if you're interested in thoughts on the local scene and/or radio futures, by all means visit the full topic index on the Radio To Go blog.

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