I have wanted to see the folk trio, Leveret, in concert for years. Tonight I got my chance as they played a gig at the Sage in Gateshead and what a brilliant concert it was. I have their albums and, in my opinion, they are the pinnacle of English folk music at this moment in time. They are very talented musicians but they also have a whole lotta soul. I can listen to them for hours and often have done.
To make tonight even more special they were joined on stage by Emma Reid, a fiddler who has created a fusion of English and Swedish folk music. How she manages to play a Hardanger style drone at the same time as the melody on an ordinary fiddle is beyond me. But that's what she did. Even Sam Sweeney looked completely gobsmacked at her playing.
Supporting them was the National Youth Folk Ensemble, a group of young folk musicians (aged fourteen to eighteen) who the Leveret chaps and Emma had been tutoring all this past week in Allendale. Their playing was very lovely but even more impressive were their composing skills.