Shirley Collins Photograph Katie Vandyck

"Shirley Collins is without doubt one of
England's greatest cultural treasures"


Billy Bragg

Shirley's Links

Fledg'ling Records Topic Records EMI
David Tibet Free Reed Fellside
David Suff Shapiro Bernstein Brighton Morris
Lewes Bonfire Societies John Kirkpatrick Billy Bragg
The Copper Family fRoots Albion Morris
The Royal Oak at Lewes Harvey's Brewery Martin Wyndham Read
Shooting Star Productions Asian Dub Foundation Pete Cooper
Katie Vandyck Dave Arthur The Amati Collection
Elle Osborne The Brighton Consort Gary Holder
English Folk Dance and Song Society Stewart Lee
Vaughan Williams Memorial Library Online

 

Links to previous items of news:

For the first time in its 107 years' existence, the Hastings Music Festival introduced English folk music into the competition. On 12th March 2016 Shirley adjudicated five classes in the Sussex Hall at the White Rock Theatre.

It was the first time Shirley has been back there since she sang in the Hastings High School for Girls choir in 1950, singing Henry Purcell's 'Nymphs and Shepherds'!

On 31st January 2016 Shirley was Michael Berkely's guest on Radio 3's Private Passions. Have a look at - and a listen to - her choice of music.

Here is an album of pictures from Rook Lane in Frome, where America Over the Water was staged on 12th July 2015, preceded by a performance of Polly Marshall's Little Gypsy Girl. Pictures courtesy of Ciara Nolan.

The team behind Way of the Morris are currently raising funds to make a film about Shirley's life and work. You can contribute or find out more at:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/shirleycollins/the-ballad-of-shirley-collins

Thanks to all the 718 people who pledged on Kickstarter for The Ballad of Shirley Collins, the film that Rob Curry and Tim Plester are now making.

Nick Abrahams who made the award-winning short film Ekki Mukk, featuring the music of Sigur Ros, in which Shirley voiced the part of a lonely snail, alongside Irish actor Aiden Gillan, has now issued an equally enchanting Vinyl EP ‘Lions and Tigers and Bears’. Once again voicing a snail, Shirley reads a prose poem written by Nick.  It’s probably the most beautiful sleeve you will see this year.

Meanwhile, Topic have re-issued ‘Heroes in Love’ on vinyl, an EP first released in 1963, and Shirley’s first recording for Topic Records. It has the original cover, but a new, charming inner sleeve. The songs are ‘The False Bride’, ‘Locks and Bolts’, ‘Rambleaway’ and ‘A Blacksmith Courted Me’.

While Fledg’ling Records have re-issued an even earlier EP ‘The Foggy Dew’ recorded in 1959. The songs are ‘The Berkshire Tragedy’, ‘The Foggy Dew’, ‘Geordie’ and ‘Brigg Fair’. This, too, has the original cover, and a new inner sleeve.

Shirley Jean Richie and Alan Lomax

 

 

Farewell to Jean Richie - singing with Shirley and Alan Lomax

Mike Norris of ‘The Wireless’ devoted the whole of a two-hour long broadcast to an interview with Shirley, playing many of her songs. It was on Monday 25th February 2013 from 7pm – 9pm on www.ageuk.org.uk/thewireless

On Thursday 17th January 2013 at the Royal Oak in Lewes Shirley was presented with the Froots Critics Poll award for Best Compilation Album of 2012 -"I'm a Romany Rai" - and here she is with the ceramic artist who made the award, Marion Brandis. Ben Mandelson made the presentation.

On Saturday 2nd February 2013 Shirley gave a lecture The Outskirts of Culture at the Purcell Room in the QEH on the South Bank, as part of The Rest Is Noise - the rise of nationalism weekend, and was afterwards in conversation with Malcolm Taylor of the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library. Morris dancing courtesy of the Belles of London City. You can listen to the lecture and conversation by clicking here.

Recently come to light - an extract from a BBC film of the Cottesloe 'Lark Rise' production with Shirley and Martin Carthy singing The Bonny Labouring Boy

www.theguardian.com/music/2014/feb/10/folk-singer-shirley-collins-35-years-union-chapel

thequietus.com/articles/14471-current-93-shirley-collins-live-review

Jude Rogers’s blog about Shirley’s work:

www.theguardian.com/music/musicblog/2014/feb/11/shirley-collins-five-best-songs

Shirley narrates the short Nick Abrahams film Sigur Ros - Ekki Mukk, featuring Aiden Gillen.