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whole lotta rosey

Tony Rose died in 2002. His obituary in the Independent well summed up his impact: 'A beautifully relaxed interpreter of traditional song, with rare warmth and intimacy, Tony Rose made an indelible mark on the British folk scene. Emerging during the 1970s when folk clubs were still a force to be reckoned with, he was wholly committed to the grass roots scene, eschewing the seemingly sexier terrain of folk rock bands, modern song and political material that seduced so many of his contemporaries.

He loved traditional music and while it never brought him riches – indeed he returned to his first job as a teacher when the folk clubs themselves hit a recession in the late 1980s – he saw no reason to deviate widely from it. Accompanying himself on guitar and English concertina, he established an easy style that was instantly identifiable, putting him on a par with such giants of the era as Martin Carthy and Nic Jones.'

Whole Lotta Rosie is our celebration of Tony's music, featuring performers who have been influenced by him. It will include a full set by The Melsons - Melrose Quartet and the Wilsons - who create a powerful wall of harmony sound. Additional guests will be announced very soon.

We originally planned this concert to mark Tony's 80th birthday in 2021, which was scuppered by the pandemic. We presented a streamed version for a small invited live audience, but wanted to finally present the full concert live in the festival. We also waited till the Wilsons were back this year, to be able to do it properly!

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