Renowned folk singer Johnny Coppin will perform a special concert at Lansdown Hall to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the release of Forest and Vale and High Blue Hill.
This album of Gloucestershire poems set to music, was first launched at the Cheltenham Literature Festival to wide critical acclaim, and led to a BBC TV programme, another Gloucestershire album English Morning, and the Edge of Day album with Laurie Lee.
This unique event portrays the beauty of Gloucestershire, the Cotswolds and beyond through the music of Johnny Coppin, with Geoff March on cello, and the stunning photography of Martin Fry. They are all passionate about this landscape that has inspired poets, writers, artists and composers over the years.
Among the songs are words by poets such as Laurie Lee, Ivor Gurney, F W Harvey, Frank Mansell, Eva Dobell, and Leonard Clark, including much-loved songs like This Night the Stars, A Song of Gloucestershire, and Cotswold Lad. As well as the local songs – now on The Gloucestershire Collection CD – the concert will also include material from Johnny’s latest CD River of Dreams.
“One of the finest voices in the UK” – Q magazine
“A gifted songwriter”- Daily Telegraph
From reviews of Forest and Vale and High Blue Hill:
“A delightful collection” – MUSIC WORLD
“Outstandingly good… beautifully composed, arranged and performed” – TAPLAS magazine
Johnny’s gorgeous and seemingly effortless vocals have graced the acoustic scene since the emergence of Decameron in the early 1970s. An experienced solo performer, accompanying himself on piano and guitar, he is a talented songwriter and a fine interpretative singer. Johnny has recorded over fourteen albums including The Winding Stair, Borderland, Edge of Day with writer Laurie Lee, The Gloucestershire Collection, and his latest album River of Dreams released early in 2022. He also presented the Acoustic Music Show on BBC Radio Gloucestershire for over twenty years.
Geoff March is a longstanding musical collaborator on cello and vocals. A fellow member of the band Decameron, he regularly plays in my concerts and Christmas shows, and features on many of my albums. After Decameron, Geoff took up a successful career in arboriculture for the following 35 years, and has been a singer with The Cappella Singers chamber choir for around thirty years.
A Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society, Martin’s images have received over 500 awards in international exhibitions across 37 countries. Martin is renowned for his Audio-visual sequences and is a recipient of the RPS Dobson Henry Medal for Services to this medium.
A retired Gloucestershire Headteacher, Martin is an Honorary Life Member of Cheltenham Camera Club. Last year, his achievements in The Arts were recognised by Cheltenham with the award of the prestigious Joyner Cup. A great deal of Martin’s photography is inspired by the beauty of his native Gloucestershire and the ever-changing light that creates different moods and emotions.