photo/design john haxby




a t   t h e   w o o d's   h e a r t



Released 17th October 2005 on Topic Records TSCD557


....the hopes and fears we endure in the name of love, the nightmares and dreams that pursue us....


Drawn mainly but not exclusively from traditional sources, here are pictures of universal situations and emotions -' the pain of losing you is overwhelming, I can't go on' (Ah, The Sighs) -' I thought I loved you, but I don't. But maybe I do after all... Damn!' (Johnny Johnny) - 'You don't really believe what people are saying do you? I love you, you've got to believe me!' (Do nothing 'til you hear from me). Three songs that span 400 years, from the reign of Henry VIII to an Ellington standard - all timelessly relevant to our own experience. This is not an easy journey - when was love ever easy? 

                        - but remember,


"there's many a dark and a cloudy morning turns out to be a bright sunshiny day"                      (The Banks of the Sweet Primroses)



The inspiration for June's choice of songs on At the Wood's Heart was the particular group of musicians she put together for her BBC4 'Sessions' concert in 2004. "Obviously I was already aware of the strong character of each musician's playing within existing partnerships, but what I was not prepared for was the impact of the ensemble as a whole, as well as the undreamed of textures and colours of new permutations within the group". So, in the live performances which preceeded and shaped this album, a wealth of new material has come to life and been captured alive in a brief few days recording in the South Shropshire countryside in late Spring 2005. For good measure June also asked Iain Ballamy to play on a couple of songs and really make her day!


The musicians performing on this recording are: Huw Warren piano, Martin Simpson guitars, Andy Cutting diatonic accordion, Mark Lockheart tenor and soprano saxophones, Tim Harries double bass, Mark Emerson viola and violin, Iain Ballamy tenor saxophone.


Track Listing

The Banks of the Sweet Primroses (trad) ~ The Broomfield Wager (trad) ~ Ah! The Sighs (anon C16th) ~ Now Welcome Summer (anon/Chaucer) ~ Heart Like a Wheel (Anna McGarrigle) ~ Johnny Johnny (trad) ~ Oh! Alas, I Am in Love (trad) ~ Do Nothing 'Til You Hear from Me (Duke Ellington) ~ Les Choses les Plus Simples (Gabriel Yacoub) ~ She's Like the Swallow (trad) ~ The Cloud Factory (Bill Caddick) ~ Lie Near Me (trad)

Go to LISTEN for samples of some of these tracks

Read a 5-star review from The Guardian of the concert which celebrated   At the Wood's Heart at London's QEH on Sunday 6th November '05