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Late Junction Sessions
Debs Newbold, Mary Hampton & Dave Price
'A Midwinter Tale'
December 2009

For the December Late Junction Session Verity Sharp brought together a storyteller, folk singer and experimental percussionist, to weave a unique tapestry of sounds, story and song on a Winter theme. Debs Newbold, Mary Hampton and Dave Price had never worked together before Late Junction approached them and they spent a day at the BBC’s Maida Vale studios crafting an evocative story, part soundscape, part folk ballad, telling ‘A Midwinter Tale’.
 
Debs Newbold, story teller in residence at Cecil Sharp House, was inspired by a tale collected by the late Duncan Williamson, in which Old Father Time visits a couple in their remote house on an unforgiving winter’s night. Crafting the story anew, Debs worked with folk singer Mary Hampton to create a musical narrative that would match her new tale. When the two met percussionist Dave Price, and his battery of instruments, for the first time at Maida Vale they added further layers of musical expression to the story. As well as tam-tam, kit drums, timpani, vibraphone, and celeste Dave played temple bowls hidden inside a prepared grand piano, and also managed a spot of fiddling and singing. Mary added melodic elements on guitar and piano, but also sang and played toast racks and metronomes, adding to the layers of sound that underpinned the tale. Every part of the session, except the sound of the arctic wind, blowing in from the depths of the BBC sound effects archive, was created on acoustic instruments and recorded live. The story ends with a new, enthralling version of ‘The Cherry Tree Carol’ written especially for the session by Mary Hampton.


Late Junction Session Score
Late Junction Session Score drawn by the artists
 
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