Second time lucky! The next artist to join us for an hour or so on Friday (19th February) truly is an unmatched force of innovation in British folk. A multi-faceted performer, HANNAH JAMES’ virtuosic talent spans all her four disciplines: clog dancer, singer, composer and accordionist.

She has amassed an international touring career, multiple award nominations, and credits in some of Britain’s most respected folk projects, including LADY MAISERY and SONGS OF SEPARATION. Hannah began life as a clog dancer, learning from her mother and is now acknowledged as a standard bearer and champion of this traditional dance form. Rhythm and percussion and a sense of playfulness are at the heart of everything she creates.

Also a seasoned collaborator, Hannah has worked with musicians from around Europe, Canada and India, picking up skills and ideas and making many important connections. She presents an impressive and diverse portfolio of shows which can suit a range of venues and settings and allow her to express her many layers of talent and vision, including an Ensemble, Duo and Solo shows.

In October 2019, she released the album, The Woman & Her Words with The JigDoll Ensemble. Recorded with with support from the Budapest Music Centre, it clearly establishes Hannah as a composer and performer of note.

The focus of our "an hour or so with..." events is very much on chat, although each guest will play a few live songs too. You are invited to ask questions in the comments, so it is very interactive... the more people watch and engage, the better it will be for everyone. The events are free, although there is a PayPal donations box, with 100 per cent of the donations (after PayPal charges) going direct to the guest. You can donate at www.paypal.me/downendfolkclub. There's also a link and a QR code at the bottom of this page

We’ll keep these sessions going for as long as we’re locked inside. Watch this space, and do sign up for our mailing list HERE to make sure that you don’t miss anything.

In a slight change of plan from what was announced last Friday evening, our guest for an hour or so next week (Friday 12th February) will now be the wonderful JACK RUTTER, who will join us for a chat and a few songs on our Facebook page at 8.00pm.

A highly-respected folk singer, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist, Jack grew up in the Holme Valley area of West Yorkshire, a place steeped in a wealth of traditional song, and following a BSc degree in Countryside Management at Newcastle University has forged a highly successful career playing music across the UK and Europe. In addition to his acclaimed solo work, he has become a highly sought after collaborator for a host of the biggest names in folk music such as Seth Lakeman, Sam Sweeney and Jackie Oates, as well as playing in the celebrated instrumental trio Moore Moss Rutter.

His second solo album Gold of Scar & Shale was released in 2019. Produced by Joe Rusby and recorded as live, the new album continues the stripped back approach of its critically acclaimed predecessor, Jack’s debut solo outing Hills. The songs are unearthed gems from the folk canon – almost all of them rare and many previously unrecorded – gathered from old books and source singers as Rutter uncovered material for this major new release of traditional song. 

Jack’s soaring vocal takes centre stage on the album, delivering each folk tale in a fresh and current way; his masterful playing and arrangements providing the perfect accompaniment. Jack contributes guitar, bouzouki, duet concertina and harmonium to the album with featured guest musicians Sam Sweeney on fiddle, Alice Robinson on Northumbrian pipes and Sam Fisher on flugelhorn. There is a strong sense of place on the new record too, with over half of the songs having some sort of Yorkshire connection. The album title itself, Gold of Scar & Shale, comes from a line in one such track, ‘The Hills of Longdendale’, with words written by ‘The Moorland Poet’ Ammon Wrigley (1861-1946).

Jack has kindly agreed to swap weeks with our scheduled guest HANNAH JAMES, who we announced during last Friday's session. Hannah will instead now join us on Jack's scheduled Friday of 19th February, so you're not missing anything... you're just getting them the other way around! Huge thanks to Jack for his flexibility.

The focus of our "an hour or so with..." events is very much on chat, although each guest will play a few live songs too. You are invited to ask questions in the comments, so it is very interactive... the more people watch and engage, the better it will be for everyone. The events are free, although there is a PayPal donations box, with 100 per cent of the donations (after PayPal charges) going direct to the guest. You can donate at www.paypal.me/downendfolkclub. There's also a link and a QR code at the bottom of this page.

We’ll keep these sessions going for as long as we’re locked inside. Watch this space, and do sign up for our mailing list HERE to make sure that you don’t miss anything.

We welcome back a firm Downend Folk Club favourite for next Friday's (5th February) online "an hour or so with..." session.

West Country-based singer-songwriter GAVIN OSBORN first appeared on our stage back in November 2017, and his support set that night went down so well that our regulars demanded more! Gavin returned for a headline show of his own in January 2019, and we're thrilled to welcome him back for a third visit, albeit virtually, as we spend an hour or so chatting, with a handful of Gavin's brilliantly-crafted songs thrown in for good measure.


Known for his storytelling shows with comedian Daniel Kitson (Stories For The Starlit Sky) and now with five studio albums under his belt, Gavin is a regular on the festival scene (Latitude, Green Man, Indietracks), and is familiar to listeners of BBC Radio 4 (Alun Cochrane's Fun House).

Gavin's shows feature life-affirming, funny, personal and political songs, including some from his most recent album, Echo Bridge, which the Observer called "one of 2017’s most relatable releases”. Gavin was also featured as The Guardian's One To Watch, following the release of the album, praised as "a comfort blanket for post-Brexit alienation”. These are songs aimed directly at the heart, delivered with Gavin’s trademark intelligence, honesty and wit. Mixing the personal with the political, any night spent in Gavin's company is full of lyrical loveliness, truth and passion.

The focus of our "an hour or so with..." events is very much on chat, although each guest will play a few live songs too. You are invited to ask questions in the comments, so it is very interactive... the more people watch and engage, the better it will be for everyone. The events are free, although there is a PayPal donations box, with 100 per cent of the donations (after PayPal charges) going direct to the guest. You can donate at www.paypal.me/downendfolkclub. There's also a link and a QR code at the bottom of this page.

We’ll keep these sessions going for as long as we’re locked inside, and certainly until February half-term at least. Watch this space, and do sign up for our mailing list HERE to make sure that you don’t miss anything!