A public service upload: Alex Campbell (1931-87), the godfather of all modern troubadours in Britain – ‘there’ before all the 60s people – live at the BBC 1966-79. These recordings are sourced from transcription discs and give a flavour of his folk club act in the middle 60s and then a concert recording from the mid 70s and finally Cambridge Folk Festival in 1979.
Alex was foremost an entertainer – from the Paris streets in the 50s to being a top draw during the peak of the folk club boom in the 60s and on into being a grand old man of the European folk festival scene in the 70s and 80s. He did write some songs – ‘My Old Gibson Guitar’ is among the songs in the montage, while ‘Been On the Road So Long’ (not in the montage, alas) remains his compositional classic.
Repertoire-wise, he was a bit like Leadbelly in the US in the 30s and 40s – a repository of songs from all kinds of sources, from Scottish traditional songs to Music Hall numbers, blues, Woody Guthrie songs, and original songs by his peers that took his fancy. He was, for instance, among the first to » Continue Reading.