Sunday, 2 February 2014


The Arc, Stockton
All accomplished artistes in their own right, Lucy Ward, Emily Portman and Emma Sweeney combined (with ''honorary woman Matt''!) to create Womenfolk for a short tour of Northern England. We were fortunate that an appearance at The Arc was on the agenda.
Two of the singers were new to me; I had booked for the show on the strength of Emma Sweeney's appearance with Cara Dillon back in 2011. For some reason I was expecting the trio to play a short set each and I was very pleasantly surprised when it became apparent they were all playing together.
All three artistes had their own individual style. Lucy Ward (centre of the photos) took the lead role of the show and her powerful voice was ideal for driving home her potent songs. Emily Portman (left) was more in the genre of traditional folk, with a more subtle vocal delivery, while Emma Sweeney and her antique fiddle (together with Matt, on guitar) performed a lively series of (instrumental) jigs and reels.

Womenfolk played with great skill and a healthy slice of humour. There were many highlights, the top one being when the whole group performed harmony vocals towards the end of the evening.
The two hours flew by. It would be good to see Womenfolk reunite for another tour at some point and bring their uplifting fusion of styles back to light up the North East again.

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