English Sketches

Hilary James with Simon Mayor

‘One of Britain’s finest voices’ BBC Radio 4Hilary James

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An evocative English musical journey from Land’s End to Hadrian’s Wall viewed through traditional song and new musical settings of poems by A E Housman, William Barnes, Wm Shakespeare, John Masefield and Christina Rossetti.In a show that was originally developed for The Museum Of English Rural Life, and which gave Simon Mayorbirth to her acclaimed album English Sketches, Hilary traces the history of English Rural Life in song: bell-ringing, country dancing, high days and holidays, love, lust, loss, landscape and labour.
Simon Mayor adds virtuoso accompaniment on guitar, fiddle and mandolin plus a hearty dose of wit and repartee.


ProgESK_CDangled‘Hilary James’s celebration of all things rustic has blossomed into a serene disc that blends traditional songs with settings of Shakespeare, Houseman and Hardy.’   
 * * * *  The Sunday Times

‘Irresistible.’  * * * *  The Scotsman

‘Evocative virtuosity and faultless singing’
The Daily Telegraph


Listen…

  Searching For Lambs (trad arr James/Mayor)

  Weathers (music: Simon Mayor, words: Thomas Hardy)


Bredon Hill
from the album ‘English Sketches’.
Music: Simon Mayor & Hilary James, words: A E Housman