Review: Megson, Folk At The Glee Club, by Peter Palmer
Two of the most engaging duos on the current scene kicked off a new folk season under the welcoming sign of the Glee Club.
No apologies for the sporting phrase, because Stu and Debbie Hanna derived The Longshot from their allegiance to Middlesbrough football club. Like most of their original pieces, though, the song moved from concrete detail to broader reflections on life.
The Hannas – who met in Cleveland Youth Choir and call themselves after a pet dog – opened with Working Town, another memento of their Teeside roots.
Accompanied by Stu on mandolin, guitar and finally banjo, and often by Debbie's white and silver accordion, Megson blended their voices in further ballads with a traditional flavour.
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Now that they have a small daughter, they've also created children's tunes for grown-ups. All The Shops Have Fallen Down clothed pertinent comment in rollicking humour.
Debbie's voice wowed the audience in a Riddle Song. An Appalachian air was an atmospheric interlude, and the couple departed with Baby And The Band.
Before Megson's evocation of handloom weavers, the Derbyshire duo David Gibb and Elly Lucas had a new piece about the Luddite response to industrial change in their native Crich.
Playing guitar or, briefly, ukelele, David also included a whimsical item about an object of desire in an antiques shop. Ellie's fiddle and viola enhancing some of their songs, this duo confirmed the big impression they made at the Poppy Folk Club.