Roman Candle Presents Jake Xerxus Fussell
Monday 17th October, 7.30PM.
Jake Xerxus Fussell
St Mary's ~ A Creative Space
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Roman Candle is delighted to welcome Jake Xerxes Fussell to St Mary's Creative Space, Chester. Special guest Katie Pencer.
Monday 17th October. Tickets £15 advance from See Tickets.
JAKE XERXES FUSSELL
Singer, guitarist, and folk music interpreter Jake Xerxes Fussell has distinguished himself as one of his generation's preeminent interpreters of traditional (and not so traditional) "folk" songs, a practice which he approaches with a refreshingly unfussy lack of nostalgia. By recontextualizing ancient vernacular songs and sources of the American South, he allows them to breathe and speak for themselves and for himself; he alternately inhabits them and allows them to inhabit him. In all his work, Fussell humanizes his material with his own curatorial and interpretive gifts, unmooring stories and melodies from their specific eras and origins and setting them adrift in our own waterways.
"... Fussell is the rare contemporary to approach folk in its pure form, shunning self-penned compositions about bummer relationships to concentrate on material handed down from bygone, hardened times." - The New Yorker
"Jake Xerxes Fussell is, to me, maybe the leading interpreter of American folk music right now..." - Ann Powers, NPR
"For Fussell a song is no older than the last time it was sung. His fourth album, Good and Green Again, is his most thoughtful, his most elogquent, and his most poignant explication of this idea." - Uncut
"He has the charm of the best bar raconteur, a storyteller who can sell fantastical yarns in a companionable way." - Mojo ****
Raised in the East Yorkshire flatlands on the fringes of Hull, Katie Spencer’s landscape has always been that of open skies and widening rivers. Industry still shapes the city here. The people, as with the land, are moulded by tides and stark horizons. Stand in the same place for long enough and you can watch the sun rise over the North Sea and then sink into crop fields, glowing auburn in late-summer sun. It is this sense of space and movement that flows through Katie Spencer’s music.
The songwriting, and most notably her guitar playing stems from a time when the steel-stringed instrument was truly finding its voice. Artists like Joni Mitchell, James Taylor and perhaps most evidently Michael Chapman, flow into her sound, carrying with them the warmth and idealism of the early 70’s folk and songwriter movements.
Katie Spencer’s highly anticipated new album, The Edge of the Land (2022), follows her debut release, Weather Beaten (2019) which was praised for its unique song-craft, spell-binding musicianship and crystal sonic clarity, as she brought together fans of music from all backgrounds and walks of life.
Delicate and un-rushed, the ten songs on The Edge of the Land drift by like ships on the horizon, yet intimacy and introspection still remain.
The inclusivity found in her recorded works is most apparent when on stage, with a personal connection and humour that allows the listener time to appreciate the emotion of the music. Her historical gig list is extensive, taking in the world-renowned Celtic Connections and Cambridge Folk Festival, whilst performances with Danny Thompson and Alan Thomson have left audiences in awe of her confidence and craftsmanship.
As live music returns to our world, we can expect to see Katie Spencer where she belongs once more, eyes closed, in the moment, performing.
'Katie’s guitar playing has echoes of my dear friend the late great Bert Jansch. Like a musical weaver she threads her poetic lyrics through the guitar’s strings and produces little tapestries of song.' – Ralph McTell