Thomas Anderson revisited…

…not by me, but by my wife, who put up an article on her TRAVEL WORDS blog about the Shoemakers’ Arbour in the Dingle, in Shrewsbury’s Quarry park. Actually, it’s just the gateway to the arbour, which is long gone but once stood over the river on Kingsland, close to where Shrewsbury School is now. It still stood on Kingsland when the stone statues of Crispin and Crispinian stood silent witness to the execution of Thomas Anderson in 1752: it was moved to the Dingle in 1875 or thereabouts.

Anyway, if you want to read more about that story, it’s in my article on this site, along with a demo version of the song and the article by Ron Nurse on which it’s based. Thomas Anderson [demo]

No, there isn’t a direct Cornish connection, though Jude wrote the article after we moved to Penwith. But we didn’t always live here, and she has the photographs to prove it. 🙂

David Harley


Review for

My first review for looks at a CD/DVD/Blu-Ray set by Andrew John & Lissa.

Here’s a link to my first music review for (a great site with excellent reviews and much more), of a CD/DVD/Blu-Ray set from Denmark: ANDREW JOHN & LISSA – At Home (Last Resort Records LRCD010).

There are some older album reviews (by no means necessarily of new releases or re-releases) on Sabrinaflu (mostly mine, but one by Fliss), though any future reviews that don’t fit’s brief will probably be posted first here.

There’s now a review page on this site, with links to the and Sabrinaflu reviews cited above.

David Harley

Gooseberry Blues [demo]

Words & music (c) David Harley


A slightly weird little song. Rediscovered lurking in my things-to-get-back-to folder. Barebones arrangement: vocal and rough rhythm track (because I discovered I didn’t like the original chords as much 30 years on). Words and music copyright David Harley, 1976

Going down the upline to your heart
Changing stations for a brand-new start
If you’d asked I might have stayed
But since we met it’s been stop signals all the way

Going back to the Badlands where I’m known
So I don’t have to sing those backstage blues alone
If you ask I might just say
The gooseberry blues is one tune I don’t play

Going down the upline to your heart
Changing partners for a brand-new start
If you asked I might just stay
But since we met it’s been stoplights all the way

The Barley and the Rye [demo]

Trying out some new studio gear, I had an unexpectedly folkie moment. A song collected in Norfolk from Harry Cox by E.J. Moeran in 1927.

If I remember correctly, I first heard it sung by Martin Carthy, who I think sang it unaccompanied. I’ve used a more or less spontaneous acoustic guitar accompaniment here, though. I need to get used to it, but that’s probably going to be basis for the final version. Ironically, the guitar is somewhat Carthy-esque.

I read somewhere that Peter Bellamy used to threaten to sing it with two verses only, regarding the third verse as an anti-climax. As it were… It works for me, either way, but I included the third verse here and will probably continue to, if I ever sing it live.

David Harley

Putting on Poetry

Here’s an article from the Poetry School on How to Put on a Poetry Reading flagged by my friend Jean Atkin, who puts on regular readings in Ludlow at which I’ve occasionally been allowed to assault the ears of an audience. (If you’re in that part of the world, I include poetry events on the Sabrinaflu blog as well as folkier stuff.)

It’s a bit London-centric, but worth a look if you’re planning a poetry event. Come to think of it, some of those tips are applicable to musical events too.

Which all reminds me that I haven’t visited any poetry events around Penwith yet. Oh, Cornwall, what a treat you have in store. 😉

David Harley