There are moments when I sit before my Apple Mac staring at the screen in amazement and wondering. My iTunes folder has more than songs and tunes on it, all folk and all of them great stuff. And on my shelves in the shed are hundreds more CDs that I haven’t transfered to the lap-top yet: stuff like the entire Watersons collection, my old Cyril Tawney CDs and the huge collection of American Old Timey and Jug Band music that was so much part of my musical growing up. I mean I have to be a bit weird  – don’t I? In the 60s and 70s I would be listening to Gus Cannon and his Jug Stompers one moment and Bert Lloyd and Ewan MacColl the next; one moment Willie Clancy and Finbar Dwyer the next Steeleye Span. And when it came to comedy – Lenny Bruce and Lord Buckley would rub shoulders with Chick Murray, Billy Bennett and George Formby. An eclectic mix you might say – but worse still,  in the pub I would be singing Chuck Berry’s Johnny B Goode straight after the Manchester Rambler and King Cotton would be followed by Albert and the Lion. No wonder I’m not well in my head.
Which brings me to my main point – Jack E McAuley. I’ve never understood why Jack is not better known; a brilliant singer and musician who has written some superb songs (Bad Day at Black Rock and Ride The Peace Train) and has also performed some great versions of  songs from the canon like The Auld Triangle and Come On In My Kitchen. I am tempted to begin a one man crusade to get the chap’s music better known. Meantime I will put his great song Blind Willie Johnson into one of the forthcoming shows – it’s the least I can do.