New CD now available: HARCD 052 Love Songs and Fighting Talk
April 2013– News
The sun is shining and there’s no frost on the rooftops – amazing! Time to get out there and sing. It’s been a slow start to the year with some events having to be cancelled because of bad weather conditions, however, the Soundpost event in Dungworth mid March was a wonderful thing to be part of, and I am looking forward to other events in the coming months, solo things like Holmfirth Festival on the 12th of May (concert spots and a workshop) and the anti-capitalist roadshow on 16th of April in Leek, Shropshire. (See www.anticapitalistroadshow.co.uk for info.) I will be doing a solo gig in London at the Walthamstow Club on June 23rd, and at a small local festival at Felledge, near Addingham /Ilkley on the 26th of July. This will be a fun do, with lots of good local artists, good food, T’ai Chi, lovely walks in the surrounding countryside. Over the summer I will also be working on a singing project to take into a women’s prison in the autumn. This is with a good Natural Voice Practitioner buddy Jenny Goodman. I have also just taken a solo booking for Brewton Folk club in September.
It’s a busy summer for choir work, with East Lancs Clarion Community Choir doing their usual stint to commemorate the Chartists on Blackstone Edge on May 5th, (see http://www.clarion-choir.co.uk ) then at Burnley Mayday celebrations in Burnley on Monday 6th. Some of us will be at the Sing for Water north Water Aid event in Manchester on June 2nd, and a big choir picnic and sing at the Clarion House Tearooms on June 23rd (from which I will dash down to Walthamstow for the solo gig!). We’re having a “Three Choirs Meet” in Earby Community Hall with East Lancs, Settle Voices, and Silsden Singers on July 13th – come to the wee concert in the evening, it’ll be great fun and we’ll be singing all our favourite stuff! You could see if you wanted to join one of the choirs … :o) Details on the Tour Dates page – finally for choirs, the Street Choirs Festival is in Aberystwyth this year, and so we’re all piling off to West Wales on the 20th of July. Hurray!
More lovely stuff coming up with JigJaw in the south, though some of the gigs are private parties. We are doing Chippenham Festival at the end of May, always a good do. The new JigJaw album is nearly there but we have had some problems in production so unfortunately it’ll be out later than we hoped. Watch the JigJaw website or facebook page for news.
again to Whitby Festival in August, where I will be doing solo slots as usual,
but all four of Sisters Unlimited
are there in different guises, so we will no doubt do a bit of something together.
My partner Jim Woodland
is also booked as a solo guest, and I know lots of people will be pleased to
hear him singing his own songs. There are some of his songs that I sing too,
so we’ll have to fight over who gets to do them, or do them together……
All the best
Janet's Tour Info
Singer, vocal workshop leader, arranger.
Janet first made a name for herself on the folk circuit in the ‘80’s as a young singer songwriter writing with hard-edged humour about issues affecting women. Her “Secretary’s Song” was the most requested song on “Folk on 2” in 1987/8, and “Breastfeeding Baby in the Park” has been taken up by the pro-breastfeeding lobby nationally and internationally. Her work on Scottish traditional material with Scottish singer Christine Kydd has received huge critical acclaim, particularly in her native Scotland, and in the US.
Janet has now worked on the folk scene professionally for more than 20 years, starting in Edinburgh pubs, in 1980/81, and has experience of folk clubs, arts centres, concert halls, church halls and village halls of all sorts and sizes in the UK, Europe, and the USA. Throughout this time Janet has worked with other musicians, such as Sisters Unlimited colleagues Sandra Kerr, Rosie Davis and Peta Webb, and Scottish singing partner Christine Kydd, and also toured the show “Take These Chains from My Heart”, written by partner Jim Woodland with storyteller Taffy Thomas. Janet worked as musical director for Mikron Theatre for ten years, and is recognised as an accomplished vocal harmony workshop leader. She is a member of the Natural Voice Practitioners’ Network and a director of Yorkshire Dales Workshops, “promoting participation in folk arts”. At the end of 2001 Janet produced the first English performances of “The Christmas Truce” with Coope Boyes and Simpson. “Well done. Professional, moving, beautifully sung.... Best wishes - Roy” (from Roy Bailey) a show which received a standing ovation at the Sheffield Raise Your Banners Festival in November 2001. The show ran successfully again in November 2002. In March 2005 the same team put on two performances of “Hearts of Coal” celebrating the lives of miners and mining communities with the Roses and Thorns choir, a magnificent group of 80 voices from across northern England.
Janet leads three community choirs, in Silsden, Burnley, and Settle and continues to perform and to facilitate voice and harmony workshops whilst bringing up her two sons with partner Jim Woodland.
Solo recordings include:
"Love Songs and Fighting Talk" - Harbourtown Records, HARCD 052
“Gathering the Fragments” – Harbourtown Records, HARC 003
“Bright Shining Morning?” – Harbourtown Records, HARCD 026
With other artists
“Janet Russell and Christine Kydd” – Greentrax CDTRAX 011
“Dancin’Chantin’” – Greentrax CDTRAX 077
“Take These Chains from my Heart” a narrative tape with songs about a performer’s fightback from a stroke. With Taffy Thomas, storyteller. TT Tapes 006
“The Stones of Callanish” (various artists) DOG 005/6
“No Limits” with Sisters Unlimited, – Harbourtown Records, HARCD 013
“No Bed of Roses” with Sisters Unlimited – Fellside FE104
“The most striking feature of Janet Russell’s arresting voice is a lower register whose distinctive power and edge make dramatic listening” Tony Rose, The Guardian
Recordings available from Harbourtown Records:
CD now available:
HARCD 052 Love Songs and Fighting Talk
HARCD 003 Gathering The Fragments - Previously cassette and vinyl only - now re mastered for CD and re-released August 2005
HARCD 026 Bright Shining Morning?
and with Sisters Unlimited, (Peta Webb, Sandra Kerr, Rosie Davis, Janet Russell)
HARCD 013 No Limits
See details in the catalogue
Janet's Tour Schedule