Actions and Detail Panel
Chris Wood/Paul Littlewood
Fri 3 March 2017, 19:30 – 22:30 GMT
Chris Wood is an uncompromising writer whose music reveals his love for the un-official history of the English speaking people. With gentle intelligence he weaves the tradition with his own contemporary parables. A self-taught musician, composer and song writer, Chris is a lifelong autodidact whose independent streak shines through everything he does. Always direct and unafraid to speak his mind, his song writing has been praised for its surgical clarity. He cites his major influence as “Anon”.
His eagerly awaited new album ‘So Much to Defend’ was officially previewed at Cambridge Folk Festival last summer and includes reflections on minor league football, empty nest syndrome, learning to swim, Cook-in Sauce and, not least, the Gecko as a metaphor for contemporary society.
Hollow Point; his chilling ballad of the shooting of Jean Charles Menezez, won a BBC Folk Award (he's won six.) and emphatically secured Wood’s place as a serious speech-master for the unofficial history of England. Collaborators include Martin Carthy, Dizraeli, Billy Bragg, Andy Cutting, Andy Irvine, Karine Polwart, Jean Francois Vrod, The Imagined Village, Hugh Lupton, Martin Butler and many others.
On stage Chris has the air of a craftsman who no longer needs to be precious about his art. Without any apparent effort he reaches deep into an enviable repertoire of songs before revealing another gem.
"... at art school they said I had a remarkable eye for trivia, like it was a bad thing."
The Herald ***** 5 Stars
“As close as it gets to a perfect union of voice and guitar, lyrics and melody, compassion, irony, realism, wit, and humanity.”
THE IRISH TIMES ***** 5 Stars
“Nobody comes even close to equaling his bird’s-eye-view.”
MOJO **** 4 Stars
“a rarefied talent, both as writer and interpreter.”
Praise for ‘None The Wiser’:
INDEPENDENT ***** 5 Stars
“The title track alone is a masterpiece”
EXPRESS ***** 5 Stars
“Wood has honed his songwriting to perfection here… heartbreaking purity.”
THE GUARDIAN **** 4 Stars
“Remarkable for the settings as much as the lyrics.”
“a quietly powerful, astute and vivid set of songs… A folk–soul album”
“Chris takes a traditional song and has you absolutely gripped…. He makes it really obvious why it is of contemporary relevance. On the flip side, he has managed this magical thing, writing songs on contemporary themes, or putting music to Hugh Lupton’s words, that absolutely fit hand in glove with traditional songs, but are totally modern.”
— Ian Anderson (fRoots Magazine)
Nominated Best Original Song ‘None the Wiser’ BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2014
Songwriter of the Year – Spiral Earth Awards 2014
Folk Singer of the Year & Best Original Song ‘Hollow Point’
BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2011
British musician and singer-songwriter, originally from Swinton, South Yorkshire. He has released music under his own name and with a number of bands including Fights, Fallen Trees and Eastern Seaboard Radio Station. He also runs DIY label, Anklebreka Records. He creates haunting songs that stay with you, with a sparse guitar sound and one of the most compelling voices you will hear this year.