We were amply rewarded this afternoon by a spectacular confluence of the stars. Bob Fox spent an hour this morning with Charlie Backfish on WUSB, sharing his talents with our community. Following Bob on Charlie's show was Julian Dawson, another Brit folk performer on tour. Although they'd never met before, they hit it off well, and Julian agreed to come back to our house concert and open up the show for Bob with three lovely tunes.
Later, to put icing on our cake, Steve Key (who performed last night at our Hard Luck Café) came and opened Bob's second set with a pair of his clever, humorous contest winning ditties.
Despite such delightful openings to compete with, Bob wowed our full house audience. Amiable and accomplished, Bob Fox, with one of the finest voices to grace the folk circuit, accompanied himself on acoustic guitar in richly sung North East Ballads. His performance was marked by warmth, humor and friendly exhortations to sing along with the choruses, even when the choruses can only be sung by talents such as Bob ... and we all appreciated his nimble finger picking guitar work.
Bob has been acclaimed to have one of the truly great voices from the North East of England, one of the best voices in England. We haven't heard a warmer, more resonant sound emanate from such a friendly Goergdy chamber.
In 1975, after spending 5 years as a floor singer around the many folk clubs in the North East of England as well as being a resident singer at the famous Davylamp Folk Club in Washington, Bob Fox met fellow North Easterner Tom McConville and his career as a professional folk singer/musician began.
In the duo with Tom he toured the vibrant folk club scene of mid 70's Britain, playing a mixture of Irish and Scottish dance music and singing mainly traditional songs primarily from their native North East, Tom on fiddle and Bob playing guitar and piano.
After two very successful years Bob and Tom parted and Bob formed a duo with Stu Luckley. This proved to be one of the most innovative and highly acclaimed collaborations ever seen on the UK folk scene and led to Bob and Stu releasing their first album Nowt So Good'll Pass, which was voted folk album of the year and remains a unique and classic album. The duo also toured Germany, Holland, Australia and New Zealand, and released a second album Wish We Never Had Parted in 1982 before breaking up to pursue individual projects.
Since that time Bob has continued to work as a solo artist, in a Celtic Band, as a Folk Artist in Residence, and in a duo with Benny Graham celebrating the rich and varied culture of the coal mining communities. Starting in the year 2000 Bob celebrated 25 years of singing folk songs professionally by making a number of tours both in the UK and abroad, including appearances as special guest on the Fairport Convention tour and continuing with folk club tours in Britain, Holland and Canada.
We were blessed that Bob kicked off his USA tour with his appearance is this very special House Concert . . . we look forward to his next appearance at one of our stages.
Link to Bob Fox's website: and music clips