Gentlefolk2

The History Of Gentlefolk


Norman in 1976
Gentlefolk was a folk music programme on BBC Radio Birmingham (as it was known then) which I produced and presented for about three and a half years in the 1970’s. It went out every Sunday (repeated on Mondays) from April 1975 until December 1978. It included many local folk performers in session, features on nationally and internationally known artists and live concert recordings. I’m very proud of the fact that around 30 local performers made their radio debut on that programme. Not much remains from those days - there was just too much to keep it all, since it went out every week. There are a few classic bits in existence which have been included in some editions of the programme. In 1980 I presented Mercia Folk on Mercia Sound, the commercial radio station in Coventry. The interview with Martin Jenkins on the May 2014 edition is from that time.  From 1981 to 1985 I presented a late night programme on BRMB Radio - a general music programme but I slipped in the occasional folk track, like “The Highwayman” by Vera Aspey. Nowadays, I find myself as the organiser of Warwick Folk Club - more by accident than design - which is why you might hear one or two plugs for the club during the programme. Well, if you don’t blow your own trumpet, who will...? I also played at a lot of folk clubs in the 70’s but the jobs I had since mostly prevented being anywhere regularly. I’ve made four CDs of my own songs - not intended to suit the folk audience but another one of more general folk material and three of my own silly songs and monologues. You’ll hear something of mine each month, not necessarily something which has been released.