FESTIVAL OF CHICHESTER: Picnic festival finale

The BeauBowBelles

The BeauBowBelles

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Foot-stomping swing-folkers The BeauBowBelles say they have dragged themselves from their classical roots through the earth of folk, the dusts of country and the fires of gypsy swing.

You can judge for yourself when they join the Festival of Chichester as part of the Amici concert series. They are performing on the final day of the series, which is also the final day of the festival: July 17 at Halnaker Park Cottage, at the far end of Park Lane, Halnaker (PO18 0QH).

Bertie Anderson (vocals/viola/percussion) said: “We have been going for about six years now. There are four of us, though we occasionally have other friends join us, but there are four core players. We recently changed our line-up when one of the original members left, and we were joined by Mitch. The music is hard to describe, but we call it swing folk because when we first started it was three of us girls and a lot of close harmony singing, a bit like the Andrews Sisters style. But when we started writing our own material, we went in a more country direction, but we still hark back to the swing style. We come from a classical background as well. We have a lot of things going on! We do the odd cover, but we mostly write our own material. We are all writers. We do a bit of writing separately and some together. Our last album was a mixture of all our own songs and stuff we had written together. We have just started writing new material together.

“We released an EP in 2011, which was five tracks. Last year we released our album called A Thing of Reality. A Thing of Reality is a lyric from one of the songs from the album, but we had been going quite a long time before we managed to release our first album, so it was also a thing of reality finally in that sense! It was really exciting. We were working in the same studios with the same producer as we had done for the EP, and we didn’t rush it. We really wanted to get it right. It sounds quite orchestral. We have got a lot of brass friends that came and played. When we are on the stage, there is only so much that four people can do, but you can do so much more in the studio.

“We are now writing new songs so that Mitch can give us his compositional input and also so that we can use his voice. We have started writing, and we have got quite a few songs written already. We have been held up having to work with Mitch with the older repertoire so that he knows that, so I don’t think the second album will be this year. It is more likely to be the start of next year. For the last album, we did a bit of crowd-funding to help with the expense, and we might do that with the next one – unless someone wants to give us a lot of money!”

In the meantime, they are looking forward to the Festival of Chichester when their concert will be an outdoor picnic event .The concert starts at 3pm. Picnics from 1.30pm. Parking available. Bring low chairs.

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