Formed by Belfast born five-string banjo player Pat McGarvey and taking their name from the groundbreaking multi-racial union of sharecroppers and non-landowning tenant farmers founded in Arkansas in the 1930’s, the Southern Tenant Folk Union are an explosive new London-based folk and bluegrass outfit.
Pat McGarvey served his musical apprenticeship touring the world and recording a number of albums with UK/US Americana band The Coal Porters.
Keen to find a more personal outlet for his writing, in early 2006, McGarvey gathered a collective of like minded musicians that share his love of traditional music, but each with their own individual take on such tradition; Oliver Talkes (guitar), whose unique, soulful voice is at the heart of the band’s sound, Pete Gow (guitar), of the alt. country band Case Hardin who has performed with the likes of Chris Mills, Stacey Earle and Caitlin Cary, Frances Vaux (fiddle) with her background in jazz and Irish Folk and two stalwarts of the London folk scene, Eamonn Flynn (mandolin) and Matt Lloyd (upright bass).
Once up and running, Southern Tenant Folk Union released their debut album of original material in January 2007 to acclaim, positive reviews and national radio play. The rest of the year saw them playing festivals, arts centres and clubs around the UK and Ireland and only a little more than twelve months after the self-titled LP a follow-up was released. ‘Revivals, Rituals & Union Songs’ – a real step forward for them with its strong, confident tone and the darkly reflective yet heart-warming nature of the eleven brand new songs presented.
released 12 December 2008
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