Coope Boyes & Simpson
Photo credit: Willem Defijn - www.Defijn.be
"The incomparable Coope Boyes & Simpson" Mark
Coope Boyes & Simpson
Spring Tour details on
Concerts and Dates
early news of some other performances - though we never expected to make The
Sunday Telegraph's gossip column with it!
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See Lester's blog on how Coope Boyes & Simpson first got together and what
happened as a result in "Folk on Tour - Waking the Muse"
Roots Unearthed: Coope Boyes & Simpson
Welsh Proms - St David's Hall, Cardiff
album - available now
Coope Boyes & Simpson - Nominated for Best
Band BBC Folk Awards 2011
"As if..." - Nominated for Best Album BBC
Folk Awards 2011
Colin Irwin, MOJO ****
"The kings of unaccompanied harmonies plunder unlikely
sources as they knit immaculate vocals into songs of withering observation on
sleaze culture, modern politics and all points beyond. Richard Thompson's Keep
Your Distance nestles next to songs by Robert Burns, Clive James and Happy
Traum plus some erudite material of their own."
Robin Denselow, The Guardian ****
"One of the great strengths of the English folk scene
has been the tradition of close-harmony vocal work, and the trio of Barry
Coope, Jim Boyes and Lester Simpson have been amongst the finest
exponents....Now they have released their first trio set in five years, and
it's a virtuoso demonstration of their range.... sung a cappella, with
occasional minimal percussion and magnificent harmonies throughout."
“a new offering from the UK’s finest exponents of close
harmony singing ….. each item’s a thought-provoking gem in its own right ….
harrowingly beautiful… coruscating performance …. true warmth… deliciously
knowing political commentary … their finest hour on disc to date.” fRoots
Excellent!! Some really nice new tracks
and on top of that a whole Coope Boyes & Simpson CD again with many tracks I've
never heard, in spite of being a CB&S fan!
This is what I would call a bargain. I
thought I had all of CB&S, and really love what they do but here you get a bonus
CD with these marvellous singers and a really good guide to English Folk.
Live session on Radcliffe &
BBC Radio 2
"Astonishing …. Beautiful singing” Radcliffe & Maconie,
BBC Radio 2
"...tunes sung with natural, unfettered energy - isn't it
fabulous, that sound."
Natalie Wheen, Classic FM
To celebrate No Masters 20th Anniversary we've all contributed to a track
on the Folk Against Fascism website. A response to the BNP's decision to
infiltrate English folk music and 'reclaim it' in the name of racist bigotry,
it's called "Dance Idiot Dance" - hear it on:
AGENT: Belinda O'Hooley @ O&T
– Georgina Boyes
Barbican Hall, London
John L Walters
Monday September 22, 2003
What the trio does seems simple at first glance: just three blokes who stand
and sing in three-part harmony. Their songs, mostly written by Jim Boyes and
Lester Simpson, deal with social and environmental issues and the words are
clever and sharp. The harmonies are in the folk-country tradition, but with a
twist that mirrors the barbed lyrics, a wide pitch range and thrilling bass
sonorities swapped between all three.
Twenty-Four Seven - Simpson's critique of Britain's long-working-hours
culture - has a melody that turns the traditional work song on its head.
Privatise, by Boyes, covers the subject matter of Jonathan Coe's novel What a
Carve Up in a similarly angry yet entertaining way: "Dick the shepherd's
finger, ended up in shepherd's pies/And all you can do is criticise." If
there were such a thing as postmodern folk music, this might be it. Their medley
of Mike Waterson's Cold Coasts of Iceland and Three Ships (a memorial to three
Hull trawlers that sank in 1968) has a vivid immediacy that Simon Schama would
In Coope Boyes and Simpson's repertoire there is a hinterland of music and
culture that makes their work more multi-dimensional than that of the other acts
on the bill. Polemical reports of injustice and inequality are woven into tales
of everyday lives, told in plain words and distinctive tunes.
Coope Boyes & Simpson albums available now - www.nomasters.co.uk
BOYES & SIMPSON
their first appearance in 1993, Coope Boyes and Simpson’s powerful and
distinctive unaccompanied singing and songwriting have taken English roots into
radical new directions. Described as "quite simply the best purveyors of
acappella song on these Islands", the trio’s first record, Funny
Old World, was the rock magazine Q’s Roots Album of the Year
and their live debut on BBC Radio Four drew praise from the classical composer
Steve Martland. Subsequent solo and joint releases have led to awards and
outstanding reviews – the BBC Folk Website simply listed all their albums as
The trio’s sharp and evocative
writing and arranging has brought commissions for songs and music from a wide
range of organisations – and found a welcome place in the concert sets and
albums of singers like June Tabor and Maggie Boyle. Following a request from Andy Kershaw, they provided the signature tune
and songs reflecting the state of contemporary England
for his BBC Radio One series Kershaw Comes Home, and to celebrate the
Millennium, the town of Belper
in Derbyshire invited them to create a suite of songs about its past, present
and future. Their work for the Flemish arts organisation, Peace Concerts Passendale
has involved them in specially created concerts of songs and music growing out
of the events of the First War which have toured in England and Belgium, a
commission for a Suite to mark the eightieth anniversary of the Battle of
Passchendaele which has its first performance in the re-built town and
collaborations with the sixty-strong World Choir, Wak Maar Proper, on a words
and music commemoration of the Christmas Truces of the First War.
singers Coope Boyes & Simpson have appeared on the Main Stages of Festivals
to Bruges ,
Sidmouth to Skågen in Denmark ,
at Celtic Connections in Glasgow and Stimmen, Voices, Voix at Lörrach in Germany .
They’ve broadcast live in the middle of a thunderstorm at the opening of the
David Hockney Gallery at Salts Mill, given concerts in York Minster, Yprès
Cathedral and the twelfth century Abbey Ar Releg in Brittany
- and sung to an audience of twenty thousand at the Dranouter Festival in Flanders .
In November 2002, they provided the songs and music for Some Desperate Glory, a
memorable evening of First War poetry with readings by Oscar-winner, Jim
Broadbent, Jane Lapotaire, Susannah Harker, Samuel West, Chewetel Ejifor and
Saeed Jaffrey. Fittingly for such a collection of actors, the concert took place at Her
Majesty’s Theatre in London ’s West End ,
temporarily displacing the run of Phantom of the Opera. Other recent highlights have been storming Main Stage concert sets at
Celtic Connections and Cambridge broadcast on Radio Scotland and BBC4, joining
twenty-one musicians from across Europe to create Seeds of Peace, an
international concert marking the tenth anniversary of Peace Concerts Passendale
in Flanders and a run of sell-out performances for the Christmas words and music
production Fire and Sleet and Candlelight which featured the new six-piece
acappella combination of Coope Boyes and Simpson, Fi Fraser, Jo
and Georgina Boyes .
Live concerts by the band have been
broadcast on radio and television in Britain
and on record their singing is heard as often on BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction
as on Mike Harding’s Folk Programme on Radio 2 or Radio Klara, the Flemish
classical music station. Songs like Lester
Simpson ’s Polly
on the Shore, Ao Tea Roa and Twenty-four Seven and Jim
Boyes’ Unison in Harmony, Bringing in the Sheaves and Sharpen the Sickle have
been recorded groups and choirs in Britain
and North America .
Whilst tracks recorded by Coope Boyes and Simpson themselves have featured in
programmes as varied as BBC television’s Panorama, the BBC Radio 2 music
documentary Harvest Home and the Channel 4 film, The Underground War - they even
provide a musical test piece for the Cambridge University Advanced Course in
English for Foreign Students.
have already taken them throughout Britain ,
to the Netherlands , Belgium , Portugal , France
and America .
Their workshops for choral groups have crossed language barriers to encourage
performance and partici pat ion
in England ,
the Continent - and even Scotland .
“Their voices weave through and bounce off each other with a powerful
elegance,” wrote an American reviewer, “it’s nice to know that, even with
the numbing array of technology available, the human voice is still one of the
most expressive instruments around.
AGENT: Belinda O'Hooley @ O&T
CONTACT - Georgina Boyes +44 (0) 1709 464579
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