Coming up this week – a UK tour by a couple of the finest exponents of rootsy acoustic music working today – steeped in the traditions of bluegrass and old time music, but with a modern twist. Cahalen Morrison and Eli West have been refining their gorgeous blend of songs and tunes for several years now, with bang-on duo harmony singing front and centre. They are also classy and soulful instrumental pickers (on mandolin, guitar, clawhammer banjo and bouzouki) . Cahalen’s original songs are of superb quality – among my favourites are Stone to Sand, Fleeting Like the Days and All For the Sake of Day. They also put their own impressive stamp on a well-chosen sprinkling of covers (Church Street Blues, Loretta) and traditional songs (Green Pastures, I’ll Not Be a Stranger).
You can find the full tour listing here. Kicking off in Fyfield, Essex on Wednesday 30th April and continuing at the Green Note, London on 1st May (those two dates at least are sold out) there follows a handful of gigs in Wales and the Borders, a quick trip to Ireland, also taking in the fabled Baltimore Fiddle Fair in West Cork, and then up to Gateshead followed by a week of Scottish dates. Do not miss this duo if at all possible! I have been following them for several years now and in my opinion they are among the finest musicians touring at the moment. Catch ‘em in one of these intimate venues while you can!
Cahalen and Eli recently released their third album together. I’ll Swing My Hammer with Both My Hands was produced by the legendary multi-instrumentalist and singer Tim O’Brien and features guest musicians including Brittany Haas and Ryan Drickey on twin fiddles. You can listen (and buy a digital edition) of this and their previous recordings at their Bandcamp site here. Happy listening, and I hope to see you at one of the shows!