Category Archives: Julie Atkin

The album is out!

The Julie and Gavin Atkin album Sentimental Journey is officially out and is available to order from the record label Red Admiral, and as downloads on Amazon and iTunes.

Here’s what the record label blurb says:

‘A 19-track album stuffed full of well-known songs from a bygone age and which you have been hearing all your life – maybe initially on your mothers knee.

‘Julie’s soulful voice is accompanied by Gavin on his Jeffries duet concertina, and melodeon.

‘Recorded in a natural environment they are virtually in the room with you, performing the often nostalgic combination of Tin Pan Alley songs and music from the twenties and thirties.’

And it’s just in time for Christmas! See the Red Admiral website.

Julie sings Summertime

It was only a matter of time before Julie would add this classic lullaby by George and Ira Gershwin classic to her repertoire – and here it is. It’s great to have her singing more again.

Arranging it was quite a challenge for a two-row melodeon, but I like the way my old C/F Koch box’s mellow tones sit alongside Julie’s silvery voice.

Julie sings with Gav’s melodeon

Dashing Away with the Smoothing Iron and Nobody Knows You when You’re Down and Out are a couple of songs we’ve been singing in the sessions and folk clubs lately – so we thought it was time to share them.

Dashing is a bit of a departure for Julie, who usually leaves traditional songs to others (but may sing a few more now). I gather from our pal Barbara Brown that it was collected at Minehead by Cecil Sharp – and that he got it from a Captain Lewis. That makes a nice connection, so thanks Barbara!

Nobody Knows You is a prohibition era song about how life can go all wrong for the black market booze dealer. Well, if he or she don’t like their friends, perhaps that’s something to do with the sort of people they hang out with…

 

Frank Loesser’s Slow boat to China

We’ve been learning some new songs ahead of a gig at Islington Folk Club on the 1st October – and this is one of them. Julie and I think it’s a hoot – Frank Loesser’s chords for Slow boat to China alone are wild and wonderful.

The splendid postcard of the liner United States is courtesy of the Wikimedia, by the way – but in the interests of peace between our two nations, I guess I should point out that the slow boat in question is the yacht – not the Blue Ribband-winning liner.

A letter from Towersey Festival

Oxfordshire’s Towersey Festival is an almost overwhelming experience – colourful, crowded, exuberant and crammed with good music, singing, dancing and a range of other entertainments.

Gav was involved with several this year including a dance band booking with Florida and some workshops to lead. So on Sunday lunchtime we took the opportunity to drop into a quiet lunchtime singaround at The Three Horseshoes.

We weren’t sure how many of them knew what was coming when Gav started playing this popular old Fats Waller song on his ‘tina – you may just hear the crowd gasp in surprise if you listen carefully to this recording – but by the end you can also hear how pleased they were that we happened by.

A few moments later, they were probably just as surprised when I hit them with the ballad of McCaffery – still a powerful song nearly 150 years since the events it describes took place.