Talk:Fairport Convention

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Band members list[edit]

What is the logic behind the ordering and selected emboldening of the "Band Members" list? I am loath to fiddle if there is a deliberate scheme to break, but it looks kind of random from here. --Phil | Talk 11:50, Aug 16, 2004 (UTC)

The ordering seems to be alphabetical by first name. The 'emboldening' appears to be links to other articles in Wikipedia -- early hours, 21 Nov 2004

Andy F

22 Nov - latest edit correction[edit]

This text has again been changed to say that Fairport Convention.. "no longer organises the Cropredy Festival..."

This is incorrect. Despite uncertainty about the 2005 festival, it is now officially going ahead - organised by Fairport.

Furthermore, as no two people will agree on the best song or best album, I think it better to delete that line altogether. Mention of well-known albums appears in the history.

Andy F, 11.25pm, 22 Nov 2004

And yet again it has been replaced and deleted - I don't know from which newspaper the original writer gets his or her information, but if they check the stop press, they may be interested to hear that the Wehrmacht has invaded Poland!

A Friend 1543hrs GMT 23 Nov 2004

Who is this guy?[edit]

Thanks Slim for reverting this article, and ditto 'squonk999'. I am as sure of the facts in the article as one reasonably can be.

Someone seems hell-bent on putting Fairport into the metaphorical past tense and in denying Cropredy.

Well, whoever you are at, why don't you get a Wikipedia account and tell us what it is you know that we don't. Or do you prefer to peddle misinformation anonymously?

Andy F 18:33, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Somebody, who clearly is bereft of any clue at all.

Intro and NPOV[edit]

I have completely rewritten the introduction to this article.

The previous intro included...

"Dave Swarbrick, the band's fiddle player for many years, smoked long feminine (and sometimes distinctly un-tobaccolike) cigarettes, drank lots of booze, and had some of the most striking looking sideburns of any 70s musician."

This was, IMO, facetious in tone and hardly encyclopedic :)

["[Dave Pegg]], the bands bassist (and longest serving continuous member) is responsible for some of the most inventive and stunning bass parts ever comitted to vinyl..."

While I personally think Mr Pegg is a great bassist, the paragraph above is most definitely not a NPOV.

"Many critics point to his bass work in the song "The Bonny Bunch Of Roses" from the album of the same name, as his finest Fairport Moment."

This is purely subjective. There are probably as many 'finest moments' as there are Fairport fans.

I also think the sections need a bit more work. I'll have another look.

Andy F 02:20, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Reorganised section headed, deleted redundant external link. Andy F 02:37, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)

copy vio

copy vio[edit]

There is a suspicious similarity between this article and this website: Ogg 13:54, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)

If by copy vio, you mean that the material on Fairport Convention's website might be copyright, it isn't. And even if it were, it is based on my work; but to be certain, I hereby give myself permission to reproduce it on Wikipedia on the understanding it will be treated as copyleft and open source. Andy F 02:02, 15 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Just in case your head isn't swelled big enough to require a new hat yet, let me interject that whilst reading both this article and the version at the FP site, I'm sure I actually hear the voice of Ashley Hutchings reading it: you seem to have captured exactly the right tone (this is probably me recalling his narrative inserts on the "Cropredy Box" but the benefit of the doubt should be yours :-) --Phil | Talk 09:26, Dec 15, 2004 (UTC)
I'm trying to keep it hat-sized :)). Thanks for your kind words. Andy F 19:04, 15 Dec 2004 (UTC)
If we've taken a lot of content from one source that should be indicated explicitly, just like when (for example) we start from a public domain source or when we translate an article from a foreign-language Wikipedia. -- Jmabel | Talk 02:52, Dec 16, 2004 (UTC)
OK Jmabel, good point. I've acknowledged the shared source now and there are several other references I will add - out of print books, magazine articles - when I get time. Andy F 22:30, 16 Dec 2004 (UTC)

"In joke"[edit]

Well spotted, Jmabel. Ta. Andy F 19:04, 15 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Electric folk[edit]

Fairport themselves, at least back in the day, preferred the term "electric folk" to "folk rock", as did most similar UK bands. -- Jmabel | Talk 02:55, Dec 16, 2004 (UTC)

Yes, I remember the term 'electric folk' being used in the early 1970s. However, 'folk-rock' (or 'folk rock' or 'folkrock') became - and remains - the dominant usage. Andy F 22:11, 16 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Still, we ought to at least mention the term, because it is what they used themselves. -- Jmabel | Talk 02:55, Dec 17, 2004 (UTC)

Looking further at this (and our article): "...inventing folk rock...": this is just wrong. The Byrds had a hit covering Dylan's "Mr. Tambourine Man" and Pete Seeger's "Turn, Turn, Turn" in 1965. The Turtles had a hit with a somewhat overwrought version of Dylan's "It Ain't Me Babe" that same year. What Fairport and their associates can be reasonably be said to have invented "British folk rock", or "electric folk" (a term little used in the US), but to say they invented folk rock is wrong by several years. -- Jmabel | Talk 04:06, Dec 17, 2004 (UTC)

Yes, this is a very good point. I agree that The Byrds in particular were pioneers of melding folk and rock music. Come to that, so was Dylan when he went electric. Equally, I think that Fairport was the first band to bring electric rock treatments to English traditional songs. So it is important in the article to make that distinction - to use the qualification English (or British) folk-rock. At the same time, we can introduce the term 'electric folk'. Andy F 09:20, 18 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Electric folk is a subset of folk rock. -- TimNelson 12:53, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

I have tried to sort out this problem in the text, which results from a misunderstanding of the claim for Fairport created by the terminology. Folk rock, pioneered by the English band the Animals, was however a largely American movement begun by the Byrds, Dylan etc from about 1965 on. Fairport played this sort of music with an electric line-up from the start. What they did with Liege and Lief was to develop a version based on English traditional music, which is better described as English folk rock or Electric folk. The latter term seems to be preferred by writers on the topic. I think this is now much clearer, especially to confused American readers who, not surprisingly, have a different definition of what is meant by folk rock. --Sabrebd (talk) 09:55, 17 January 2009 (UTC)


I know Pete Frame did a great chart once of the comings and goings of members of Fairport, and according to [1], it's recently been updated. We should probably cite at least one source for the original and the updated version; I know the original was reprinted in Pete Frame's Complete Rock Family Trees, Omnibus Press (June 1, 1984), ISBN: 0711904650, but I'm sure that is not the original publication (which was at least 10 years earlier, I think in a magazine, maybe Creem or his own Zig Zag). -- Jmabel | Talk 02:55, Dec 17, 2004 (UTC)

Debut album[edit]

The "Official history"[2] says the debut album "came out before the end of 1967". "Expletive Delighted"[3] says it was recorded in November 67 and released in June the following year. The recent CD reissue says 1968, so I've changed the article accordingly. --  ajn (talk) 05:29, 10 September 2005 (UTC)

"According to her"[edit]

Re: Sandy Denny: "According to her, she was seeking to work with the band again before her death." Which we know through a seance? Or is there something citable from a very late interview? - Jmabel | Talk 04:12, 21 February 2006 (UTC)

  • It's been almost 2 weeks, no one has answered, I'm removing. - Jmabel | Talk 00:19, 5 March 2006 (UTC)

Should this page have a link to long song titles like this?[edit]

==See also==

-- Gbeeker 22:12, 23 March 2006 (UTC)

Tam Lin[edit]

I'm thinking that somewhere we should mention their version of "Tam Lin", a long ballad that, in most versions, inspires thoughts like "time to go get a beer while they wade through this one", but in Fairport's version is absolutely bone-chilling. Does anyone have anything citable that has been written about it? - Jmabel | Talk 06:05, 6 July 2006 (UTC)

I have added a reference to this in an expanded explanation of Liege and Lief. --Sabrebd (talk) 09:57, 17 January 2009 (UTC)


Replace this line:

In a bad luck of fate, Sandy Denny aged 31, died in 1978, of a cerebral haemorrhage after falling down a flight of stairs.


Tragically Sandy Denny died in 1978 at the age of 31 of a cerebral haemorrhage after falling down a flight of stairs

  • Or, more appropriately, leave out the leading POV phrase entirely. If we can quote someone actually saying something about Denny's death, fine. - Jmabel | Talk 18:54, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

Also I don't remember John Peel playing triangle on TOTP - is this apocryphal? Certainly no mention of it in his biography which states that his only appearance on the prog was as a host in 1968 (which was a disaster) until he mimed mandolin on Maggie May (he later became a host during the 8os).

  • I deleted this 'triangle' comment after checking Humphries book for refs to Peel playing. If someone finds a source we can put it back.--Sabrebd (talk) 17:10, 1 February 2009 (UTC)

I don't think the mention of Nick Drake is relevent here. 'Later the band would play with folk guitarist Nick Drake, who also had connections with Joe Boyd and whose popularity would slowly rise after his death in 1974'

  • Richard Thompson was later largely responsible for bringing out (and publicizing) the Nick Drake box set that is the main way anyone under 50 knows of Drake. But I don't have a citation on that. We should track down a citation indicating the importance of the connection, rather than remove mention from the article. - Jmabel | Talk 18:54, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

Finally this line:

Meanwhile, Dave Pegg had joined Jethro Tull and was the first of many Convention players who played in both folk rock preceptors.

This doesn't make sense on at least 2 counts! A preceptor is a teacher? I've never considered Jethro Tull as a Folk Rock band. Their first album, 'This Was' was Blues influenced, Stand Up and some later stuff may have had folk influences but could just as easily be described as Heavy Rock or more likely Prog Rock!

  • Largely concur; still while Songs from the Wood may not have many folk influences in the narrow sense, it does have influences from composed music of roughly the Elizabethan era, which were also to be found in a lot of UK bands usually counted as folk rock (Gryphon, Pentangle). - Jmabel | Talk 18:54, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 15 July 2006.

Why is it ironic that Nick Drake's music became popular after featuring on a VW ad? Odd, yes, unfortunate, certainly, but ironic? Also, the main article could be a bit more objective Ezy Rider

First recording[edit]

I believe that their first recording was a single for Polydor - titled "If I Had A Ribbon Bow" (late 1967 or early 1968 I think) - which was subsequently released on a multi-artist compilation album by that label. It certainly pre-dated their first album for Island. I think it should be referred to - and more importantly - reflected in the opening references to their first recordings. Davidpatrick 04:11, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Tone of Article[edit]

The tone of this article really doesn't sound very encyclopedic to me. The way the band's history is presented it almost sounds like a narration of a story. One thing that caught my eye was "calling it a day" which was used on several occasions to signify the band considering to break up. What are your opinions?

PokiToki 01:20, 4 September 2007 (UTC)

I have done a major overhaul of the tone and tried to remove such phrases, eg. 'a steady gig'.--Sabrebd (talk) 09:58, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Fairport 500.gif[edit]

Nuvola apps important.svg

Image:Fairport 500.gif is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images lacking such an explanation can be deleted one week after being tagged, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot (talk) 05:47, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Advertising link[edit]

The link to the Maidstone video is no more than an advertisement for a commercial product (and one not even associated, except by content, with Fairport Convention). It is certainly not encyclopedic. I removed it but the Rhe RevertBot reinstated it. I think this needs attention. BTW, I am Andy F, a long time associate of the band, and most of the original article is my work. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:47, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Band Members Timeline needed[edit]

As there have been quite a lot of change in line-up of the band from time to time. It will me more appropriate if someone could make a time line similar to the ones existing for The Who and Jefferson Airplane.

VivekTalk!! 05:59, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

I have added a graph of band membership that provides a timeline. It is just too complicated to state every incarnation of the band. I think this answers the issue, it certainly helped me understand what on earth was going on. Editors may object to its day glow colours and I am not aversed to its removal if it is felt to be too much. Even if it stays, the membership list should remain as otherwise there are no internal links to the persons not mentioned in the history. --Sabrebd (talk) 01:02, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Incorrect dates[edit]

If it is possible to edit the timeline would you please correct my (Judy Dyble) placing within it. I joined FC in early 1967 Ian Matthews joined in November 1967.Jude12 (talk) 15:01, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Not knowing the exact dates, I've amended as follows:
  • start date of Judy Dyble from 1 July 1967 to 1 January 1967
  • start date of Iain Matthews from 1 January 1967 to 1 November 1967
  • end date of Iain Matthews from 31 January 1968 to 31 January 1969.
see here. --Redrose64 (talk) 17:59, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
Are Judy and Iain's dates written down anywhere in a WP:RS? Thanks. Martinevans123 (talk) 18:18, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
I've conversed often with Jude12 (talk · contribs) (see her talk page: I've also met her in real life), and can vouch for her information. As for Iain Matthews leaving date, it's clear from Patrick Humphries "Meet on the Ledge", p. 25 that Matthews left around the time that What We Did on Our Holidays was released, and so 31/01/1968 must have been a typo for 31/01/1969; the family tree on p. 106 implies that Dyble's first gig was also the band's first gig - Spring 1967 - and explicitly states that Matthews joined in November 1967. --Redrose64 (talk) 18:39, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm sure these corrections are perfectly good improvements and I am not disputing any of them. Niether am I doubting Judy's memory! And I sincerely thank her for pointing these errors out. Unfortunately, on Wikipedia, personal reports count as little as does hearsay in a court of law. It matters not if you have met someome in real life, nor how often you have conversed, nor even if you happen to be married to them! We still need to use an WP:RS. I'd genuinely be surprised, however, if one could not be found. (Even the cover of "History Of .." immediately springs to mind). Nevertheless, I'd be intrigued to hear if Judy herself could confirm whether her first gig was indeed also the bands' first. Oh no, now I'm at it too! Thanks. Martinevans123 (talk) 19:18, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Hello Judy here.Sorry not to have replied to this before, only just seen it! My first gig with Fairport was not their first gig. I was asked formally to join them after Martin Lamble joined although I had been part of the coterie of musicians for a long time and they often played with me when there was a need. Can't do any exact dates though it must have been before July. I have looked in several books on Fairport and none can agree.. lost in the mists of time..Jude12 (talk) 12:50, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

Thanks Judy; if you turn anything up, please let us know. --Redrose64 (talk) 13:07, 27 August 2012 (UTC)


I've added "bass guitar" to the Dave Mattacks instrumental repetoire; he plays bass on their live version of "Brilliancy Medley" in a 1973 Whistle Test gig.

I can't find any other mention online of DM playing anything other than drums, although he certainly did ( [4] ) any ideas? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:03, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

I saw Fairport at a gig in Manchester or Bolton late 1980s/early 1990s; DM mostly on drums, but sometimes on keyboards. Also, the rear sleeve for "Gladys' Leap" states "Dave Mattacks - drums, keyboards, everything else" —Preceding unsigned comment added by Redrose64 (talkcontribs) 23:08, 22 July 2009 (UTC)
The sleeve notes for "Babbacombe Lee" say "DAVE MATTACKS: Drums, Electric Piano". --Redrose64 (talk) 17:28, 17 January 2010 (UTC)
Re the manchester/Bolton gig: he played keyboards on "The Hiring Fair", poss others. --Redrose64 (talk) 19:36, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

POV and Sources[edit]

I have restructed the second half of the history, incorporating some of the points made above (from Rising for the Moon on). The tone was suitable (as suggested above) for a dedicated website but not for an encyclopedia. I have removed some irrelevant points, tried to achieve a neutral POV and provided sources for any claims not obvious from albums. I think the first half needs a similar overhaul. --Sabrebd (talk) 17:50, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

I have now carried out a similar task on the first half, providing the best sources I can. Almost all the information is here, except a few unsupported points or statements of unclear significance. I have tried to preserve all the good work done on this article and have also tried to incorporate solutions to some of the problems outlined above. The major rewrite was in the introduction, most of the material from which was repreated later, it is now a statement of importance in line with Wikipedia guidelines and normal reference book practice (which I think more clearly demonstrates the band's significance). I suppose it can still be accused of being a narrative as it is largely chronological, but this is probably the only way of handling such a huge career. --Sabrebd (talk) 13:01, 15 January 2009 (UTC)

Alun Davies[edit]

From what I can tell, from his MySpace site, and comments from Gerry Conway, his old bandmate from the seventies when they worked together in the Cat Stevens band, I know Alun Davies has been active in Fairport Convention, yet, I see no mention of this anyplace in the article. Really, there are even photos of him performing with them onstage at the same festival of 2007, in Flickr. --Leahtwosaints (talk) 20:43, 9 January 2010 (UTC)

Please note that [[Gerry Conway]] is not Fairport Convention's drummer. The correct link is [[Gerry Conway (musician)|Gerry Conway]]. If you have been adding plain [[Gerry Conway]] links into Fairport-related articles, please fix them - it took me several days to clean this up in August 2009. --Redrose64 (talk) 21:41, 9 January 2010 (UTC)


The current lead image is very clear and looks very good, but does it need a caption? There is, however, only one other image in the article, and that one shows only two band members, from behind! Surely a few more colourful images would help to improve, particularly of earlier incarnations of the band? Martinevans123 (talk) 13:21, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

It would be great to have more images, unfortunately almost all that is copyright free are recent Cropredy images. If anyone can find any fair use images from the history of the band, please post them.--SabreBD (talk) 14:44, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

Single most important group?[edit]

  • "They are widely regarded as the most important single group in the English folk rock movement."

Hmm... But if there were two? Wouldn't Steeleye Span also deserve a mention, just as Fairport is mentioned in the Steeleye Span page?

Methinks they didn't grow up in a vacuum. Rather, they seem to have both pioneered the way on their own terms and been a couple of the most successful "electric folk" or "folk rock" bands of the period. Both were quite economically successful and popular. But, maybe I'm biased? (talk) 00:01, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

The difference is that Fairport came first, whereas Steeleye could only do what they did because of Fairport's existing work and owe their existence to a former member. In any case the are mentioned in the text. Steeleye are give due weight in the electric folk page, but this page is about Fairport.--SabreBD (talk) 08:21, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

Fairport Acoustic Convention[edit]

The band still tour as "Fairport Acoustic Convention", most recently in May 2010. This should be mentioned, although I don't have refs other than my ticket stubs and concert programmes. We could also do with a description of how "Fairport Acoustic Convention" differs from "Fairport Convention"; early on, it was whether they had a drummer or not (Acoustic = no drums), but by Autumn 2005 Gerry Conway was playing in the Acoustic band as well (Peggy was absent for some, if not all, gigs in November 2005). The 2009 and 2010 tours of "Fairport Acoustic Convention" featured all five members. --Redrose64 (talk) 12:01, 29 June 2010 (UTC)

So did the 2011 tour, and, according to publicity, the 2012 tour will do as well. --Redrose64 (talk) 12:26, 17 March 2012 (UTC)

Unused sources belong HERE, not in External links[edit]

Unused sources belong HERE, not in External links, which isn't a parking lot. They begin here. I moved the link farm from External links. Please do so in the future. I haven't checked them out to see if all are usable but here they are. Thanks! --Leahtwosaints (talk) 00:50, 17 March 2012 (UTC)


Which came first, Wikipedia's first paragraph or this BBC biography? Thmazing (talk) 16:00, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

Ours was first. The giveaway is on the BBC page, where at the bottom of the Biography box, it states "Read more at Wikipedia... This entry is from Wikipedia, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. ..." This is permitted reuse of Wikipedia content. --Redrose64 (talk) 18:11, 14 November 2012 (UTC)
Well. I'm embarrassed I failed to notice that. Thmazing (talk) 17:43, 15 November 2012 (UTC)