Now what is that on the horizon, is it a series of just wonderfully entertaining songs that on a long day of isolation you can dive right into the world of sea shanties and have a really rip roaring time on your own learning how to create a classic shanty as Roly Witherow we feel is a master of this genre and we just hope he has logged his work into all streaming services under the tag #best sea shanty collection as this is what he has got and we think he is just great , so sit back , put your main sail ….is that the big one in the middle…up , and let Roly take you away with him.
Hailing from Peckham, London, though currently based in East
Portlemouth on the South Devon coast during the lockdown with his heavily
pregnant wife, Roly Witherow has composed for television programmes such as
BBC’s hit, Who Do You Think You Are? and Channel 4’s On the Edge as well as for
films such as 2014’s Gregor; Sex Ed (2017) and Try (2018). Ballads and Yarns
was written and recorded in Roly’s own home studio and was mixed by Joao
Noronha in Brazil (where his wife hails from). A nod to the past, present and
future, Roly Witherow’s Ballads and Yarns is 21st Century folk music in all its
Having made a name for himself as a successful composer of
music for film and television, Roly Witherow has chosen an entirely different
direction for the first solo release – traditional folk music. Telling stories
through his music comes naturally to Roly and by expanding his universe to
include sea shanties, styles from not just around the British Isles but also
around the world, as well as the whole gamut of life, love, death and a dash of
humour, Ballads and Yarns provides a modern yet classic celebration of the art
of folk music.
Simon D James has been described as mysterious and an enigma – a sensitive chameleon with a social conscience. Born as the son on 70s one hit wonder Brendon (‘Gimmie Some’), Simon learnt to play guitar in his teens and has been writing music ever since. Following his travels around the globe with nothing but a backpack and a guitar, the style presented in ‘My Everything’ expresses an absorption of inspiration – whether from spending time with babas in India, or volunteering in the Calais jungle (a migrant encampment rooted in the north of France), the track reinforces his claims as one of the most alluring musicians around.
Tucked away in an estate in Devon, Simon studied music in (what he describes as) a bizarre contemporary arts college. It was here he went on to contemplate many styles of music, and further his understanding of the conceptual ways of thinking about art. However, it wasn’t until late 2017 when his focus shifted to recording music after a cancer scare forced him to re-evaluate his priorities in life.
The track ‘My Everything’ began life as an improvised jam with friends on a venture to Mexico City, before being traversed across the Atlantic where it was pieced together in an even more abstract location at Greenmount Studios – located in the catacombs of a church in Leeds. The engineers at the studio – Jamie Lockheart and Lee Smith, who also produced and arranged the EP, actually learnt how to play the violin with a saw-blade to record the piece and is just one example of an unusual choral ambience which remains overwhelmingly powerful, even after repeated listens.