Gawain Erland Cooper

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Gawain Erland Cooper
Erlandandthecarnival copyrightGalvin2009.jpg
Background information
Birth name Gawain Erland Cooper
Also known as Erland Cooper
Origin Orkney, Scotland[1]
Genres Alternative, folk, folk-rock, shoegaze, psychadelic rock
Occupations Singer-songwriter, musician
Instruments Guitar, vocals
Years active 2007-present
Labels Static Caravan
Associated acts Erland & the Carnival, The Magnetic North, Hannah Peel

Gawain Erland Cooper is a Scottish folk guitarist and singer. He is the front man of cult band Erland and the Carnival and The Magnetic North, with whom he has released a number of well-received albums and singles. The Erland and the Carnival album Nightingale charted at #21 on the UK Indie Chart.

Cooper is well known for his contemporary arrangements of traditional Scottish and English folk songs, resulting in a "wild pastiche of digital trickery and oral tradition that channels the spirit of '70s progressive rock while staying true to pop-song brevity."[2]

Early life[edit]

Gawain Erland Cooper was born and raised on the Scottish island Orkney.[1] He was raised with his siblings on the small island by his parents, describing it as a remote and creative place to grow up. He left at age 18 to travel, seeing locations like London, New York, and Edinburgh.[1] Cooper spent years studying Bert Jansch and Davey Graham, sourcing old British songs from the Vaughan Williams Museum near where he grew up, and developing his writing skills.[1]

Music career[edit]

Erland and the Carnival[edit]

In 2008 he co-founded the band Erland and the Carnival in London with multi-instrumentalist Simon Tong (formerly of The Verve, Blur and The Good, the Bad & the Queen) and drummer/engineer David Nock (The Orb, The Cult, The Fireman, David Gilmour, Paul McCartney).[1]

In 2010 they released their critically acclaimed eponymous debut album, and a year later released Nightingale, which earned 4/5 stars from Allmusic. Nightingale charted at #21 on the UK Indie Chart.

The Magnetic North[edit]

In 2011 Cooper joined long-term collaborator Simon Tong in forming a band with Hannah Peel (pictured)
Main article: The Magnetic North

In 2011 he co-founded the British shoegaze band The Magnetic North with Simon Tong and singer, composer and orchestral arranger Hannah Peel.[3] Formed in London, they released their debut album, Orkney: Symphony of the Magnetic North on May 6, 2012.[3][4]

Writing credits[edit]

Erland Cooper is best known for his contemporary arrangements of traditional Scottish and English folk songs, including most notably "Love Is a Killing Thing", "East and West" and "The Derby Ram" collected by Ralph Vaughan Williams.

His writing credits are currently linked in partnership with Simon Tong and David Nock. There are no solo records released to date.


With Erland & the Carnival[edit]

Studio albums

With Magnetic North[edit]

Studio albums
  • 2012: Orkney: Symphony of the Magnetic North

Other recordings[edit]

Further reading[edit]



  1. ^ a b c d e Valish, Frank (Feb 21, 2011). "Erland & The Carnival - Psychedelic Folk Dreams". [[Under the Radar (magazine)|]]. Retrieved 2014-03-25. 
  2. ^ Monger, James Christopher. "Nightingale - Erland & the Carnival". Allmusic. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Tyler, Kieron (6 March 2012). "Interview & Video Exclusive: The Magnetic North". The Arts Desk. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 
  4. ^ Malone, Ailbhe (5 April 2012). "Indie bands get into the island life". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 October 2012. 

External links[edit]