It’s been a while, hasn’t it? But, like buses, you wait ages for an Old Songs Podcast episode and then two come along in quick succession. Because this edition is the first in a two-part thing. Today, we’re chatting to Jim Moray about passing the two-decade mark as a professional musician, about one of my favourite of his traditional arrangements, the ballad 'Lord Douglas' [Roud 23], about a new album coming soon, and about an upcoming festival in his name. The second part to this podcast is going to be recorded live, in front of an audience - possibly even you, dear listener - at the Jim Moray festival on Jun 17th at Cecil Sharp House in Camden, North London, where we’ll be joined by Jim, Nick Hart and a number of other guests. I’ll stick the tickets link on the page accompanying this episode.
We’re focusing this episode loosely around the song, 'Lord Douglas', which Jim originally released 10 years ago, winning Best Traditional Track at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in the process. We’re also using it as an opportunity to talk to Jim about his career so far. Listen out for tales about the time Amy Winehouse mistook him for a photographer’s assistant, his relationship with folk music and gadgetry, and his theories on how arranging traditional ballads is like writing a week’s worth of Eastenders.
And, as an extra special treat, listen out for the final track in the podcast - usually an unaccompanied ballad, but this time an exclusive - a recording of 'Lord Douglas' from the Abbey Road sessions that make up his new album.
Once again, our thanks to the English Folk Dance and Song Society for their ongoing support, and we hope to see some of you at JimFest on June 17th.
This article is accompanied by a partial transcript of the sections that discuss Jim’s career. You can find that in our Jim Moray interview.