Martin Carthy, Dave Swarbrick, James Yorkston and The Carrivick Sisters are to perform at Cecil Sharp House on 18 December for the Musicians Benevolent Fund. The evening will be hosted by BBC Radio 2’s ‘Whispering’ Bob Harris OBE.
Martin Cathy and Dave Swarbrick have been performing together for nearly 50 years and are among the most influential figures in British folk music. Dave Swarbrick – who, alongside his association with Martin Carthy, is known especially for his work with Fairport Convention – underwent a double lung transplant in 2004. He says “I honestly don’t know what my wife and I would have done without the Musicians Benevolent Fund. They sorted out my tangled finances and took us under their wing.”
The event, taking place at Cecil Sharp House, the spiritual home of English folk, will highlight the work of the Fund in supporting musicians throughout their lives – particularly at times of crisis when illness or accident can have a devastating impact.
Joining the duo in the line-up is Scottish troubadour James Yorkston. A member of the Fife-based Fence Collective, Yorkston’s recent album I was a cat from a book has garnered much critical acclaim. James says “When one of my children was suddenly taken ill, I had to cancel a year’s worth of shows to look after her. The Musicians Benevolent Fund stepped in and helped me out financially for the first few months so I could concentrate on the more important matters. I am truly grateful for them and am pleased to be playing this show.”
Opening the event will be South Devon twins The Carrivick Sisters, one of the UK’s top young bluegrass and folk acts. Laura and Charlotte Carrivick’s 2011 album From the Fields was recorded with the help of a Musicians Benevolent Fund grant for emerging artists.
The Carrivick Sisters said “the help we received from the Musicians Benevolent Fund made a real difference to our career and we are excited about performing at this very special concert to help raise awareness of the charity’s vital work.”
Speaking about his involvement, Bob Harris OBE said “I am delighted to be part of this wonderful event and hope that it raises the profile for the Musicians Benevolent Fund which is a vital lifeline for so many musicians, without which they would face a very uncertain future.”
Tickets and further information about the event and artists are available here:
This event has only been made possible by everyone involved donating their time and The English Folk Dance and Song Society generously allowing free hire of Cecil Sharp House.