Hello and Merry Christmas!
We hope that you are all coping during these bizarre and difficult times. We've been hunkered down for the last few months, trying to understand what tier we're in and who we can meet for a walk. But we've had a few highlights amongst the madness.
In September, we were over the moon to be able to play at the real-life, in-person, non-virtual Beardy Folk Festival. And without being too over the top, it was the best weekend ever. We saw music and friends and drank beer, whilst watching music and seeing friends. And although it seems like a hazy memory now, it made us remember that we'll be back there one day, queuing for a portaloo in a muddy field, stumbling over poorly placed guylines in the darkness and waking up in a tent the temperature of the sun. Until then, we'll just have to remember ...
In other news, we got a mention on BBC Two's Saving Britain's Pubs with Tom Kerridge, which we were quite excited about, albeit in relation to the absence of live music at the moment and the terrible impact it's having on pubs and venues.
We were thrilled to be included in Launchpad's Tracks of Yorkshire 2020 playlist on Spotify, along with the Arctic Monkeys and other bands blessed with being from from God's Own County! And our recent album - Tidings - was added to the British Library Sound Archive, a national collection that preserves music for generations to come.
But with a few snippets from the last months out of the way, it's time for the promised Big News.
Today we announce that Polly Bolton will be stepping down as our mandolin player to focus on other projects. We’ve had a blast playing with her over the past couple of years and have memories and stories that will last forever. And so we wish her all the best in her future endeavours!
But all endings mark new beginnings and we are really excited that today is the beginning of a brilliant new chapter for The Magpies. We will be coming out of Covid hibernation in the new year with some really exciting announcements, so stayed tuned for more big things to come!
The first big news is that we will be joined by the incredible Kate Griffin Music.
Kate is a magnificent clawhammer banjo player, singer and composer. Described as ‘one of the top banjo players in the country’ by virtuoso Dan Walsh, her innovative banjo style combines traditional UK and American folk. She’s the perfect addition to our line-up and we can’t wait to begin our adventure with her, so please give her a huge Magpie welcome!