Bob Evans: crwth
Anthony Ingle: piano accordian and vocals
Sarah Harman: vocals (track10)
(Fellside Records; FECD 208 ) (Enquiries/Mail Order: Paul Adams, Fellside Records. 01900 61556 www.fellside.com.
“Frankie Armstrong, indomitable woman, inspirational teacher, and great, great singer, has been a force on the folk scene for many years, bringing her searchlight of a voice to a corpus of songs ranging from Child Ballads to Brecht, and back again.”
“Her voice conveys utter conviction and great humanity, even on record (although live performance is the best way to hear her if possible). She is an incredible storyteller and has me on the edge of my chair listening to “Tamlin”, even though I’ve heard it dozens of times. You might find yourself unaccountably reluctant to go out for a walk in the woods after listening to it. The very scary Queen of Elfland might still be lurking in the bushes…”
“Encouragement is Armstrong doing what she does best, bringing her considerable interpretative skills to a collection of traditional and contemporary songs. Whether a cappella or understated and sympathetic accompaniment from : the supporting musicians, Anthony Ingle (piano and accordion) and Bob Evans (crwth), she gets under the skin of her chosen material, brings the songs vividly to life and invites the listener to consider the political subtext which underlies many of them.”
“Encouragement. Courage at the heart. To give people courage. The idea is central to this CD, as it is to the soundtrack of Frankie Armstrong’s life, from her past work with those who have less than others, to her present job of giving people the strength to find the voice within themselves. And, of course, we are talking mainly about the courage of women… “Fair Annie” and “The Demon Lover” have accompaniments by Bob Evans on crwth, and the stark simplicity of the instrument complements Frankie’s performance, creating a rich, dark texture.”