The Poppy Folk Club. The Poppy and Pint, Pierrepont Road, West Bridgford, Nottingham. NG2 5DX. Poppy Logo. Pint pot logo.
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Sunday 23rd November 2014
Wendy Arrowsmith

We first met Glasgow-born Wendy Arrowsmith in 2012 when she performed to an audience of Folk Club organisers for a Folk 21 event at The Poppy & Pint. She stood out then as an excellent singer and songwriter and we knew we had to get her to come back sometime for a concert night.

Wendy sings her own interpretations of traditional songs, and has developed into a fine songwriter too. She mainly accompanies herself on guitar, but also plays mandolin, accordion, and whistles.

Wendy’s first set included one of my favourites of the concert - Wild White Swans - a really lovely song from the Shetland Isles. Other first-half highlights included ‘Sweeter by the Day’(dip your dreams in chocolate - what a great line!); ‘Are We Nearly There Yet’(for her children); a beautiful unaccompanied ‘The Poacher’s Dog’; and a singalong ‘Counting Dolphins’.

The second set began with a really gorgeous and unaccompanied version of the ballad ‘Annachie Gordon’, sung with great feeling and drama. That set the scene for some equally powerful songs, such as Burns’ ‘The Slave’s Lament’ and a version of ‘The Cruel Mother’ ballad. On a lighter note, Eric Bogle’s ‘The Wee China Pig’ was excellent (a china pig apparently being an earthenware hot water bottle). Wendy finished the second set with a song she had written about the best things of her home city -‘Glasgow’s With Me’; and the song she is probably best known for, ‘The Visitor’,based on the true story of the man-hauling of the Whitby lifeboat through the snow, over the hills to Robin Hood’s Bay to save the crew of a run-aground ship in 1881.

Of course, we had to have one more, and Wendy came back to calm us down with the lullaby ‘Sleep Well’. A fine end to a lovely concert.

Many thanks also go to Dave Walters and Jenny Bell for their songs from the floor to open the two halves;and to the singers and musicians who stayed behind for the post-concert singaround. We had songs or tunes from Jenny, Dave, Steve, Lynn, two Alans, Fran, Claire, Phil and Julie.

Tel: Julie & Phil: 0115 9812861
Mobile: Dave: 07790 943893
e-mail: phil@poppyfolkclub.co.uk