Unicorn Magazine Issue 143 is now out…

Unicorn Magazine Issue 143 is now out..!

Just to say that Issue 143 of Unicorn Magazine (July, August & September 2018) is now out! It is instantly available online as a downloadable PDF from the usual places (our website, ISSUU etc), and the hard copies are being distributed now.

Please also remember to sign up to our mailing list and read this blog for amends in between issues…

Download Issue 143 here >>


Watford Folk Club news – please read!

This just in from Watford Folk Club:

“As you may have seen from recent facebook posts, Watford Folk Club needs your help. After running the club for 9 years now we are desperately sad to have reached this stage. Over the last year or so our funds have been depleted as we’ve made huge losses on almost all of our guest nights due to lack of attendance, sometimes amounting to hundreds of pounds worth of losses in a single month- you can see how damaging this is to our future survival.

Our Singarounds remain popular but we still only pull in enough to cover the weekly rent. We increased the minimum donation for Singarounds and Spotlight Singarounds to £5, our first increase in 9 years, but this hasn’t stemmed the tide very much.
So, where are we now? We have arranged a “Gala Fundraiser Night” ( see our flyer attached) to help increase our funds and enable the club to continue into the future and carry on booking major guests.

We are extremely grateful to the artists taking part as they have all agreed to donate their time and play the concert for no fee.

All folk clubs we know are having similar difficulties but this is the only club in Watford and has an enviable reputation for it’s welcoming atmosphere and the quality of it’s floor singers and regular performers. October will be our 10th anniversary, and we hope to make it to our 20th and beyond!!

So, please do what you can to help by coming along on the 13th of July. It will be a great night & we look forward to seeing you there.

Many Thanks for your support!

Pete & Kim

Download the Fundraiser Flyer here>>



‘Guitars and Strings’ concert at The Old Bull Inn on Sunday 8th July 2018

This just in from Creative Royston and Royston MusicFest:
Creative Royston and Royston MusicFest are staging a unique concert ‘Guitars & Strings’ at The Old Bull Inn on Sunday 8th July featuring Jeremy Harmer & The Ad Hoc Strings, Schrodingers Strings and Thursday’s Band. Tickets are only £10 in advance and bookable online where more details can be found at either www.creativeroyston.org or http://www.roystonmusicfest.uk/
The tickets are only £10 in advance and the price has deliberately been held down because it fulfills our remit of promoting the arts, in this case music.

St Albans Folk Festival 2018

This just in from the St Albans Folk Festival:

Leading national performers join a multitude of local talent at St Albans Folk Festival, June 15-17

Folk dancers and musicians will be making their way to St Albans City Centre on Saturday June 16 to take part in a day of music and dancing, culminating in a concert at 19.45 at the Maltings Arts Theatre, The Maltings, St Albans AL1 3HL featuring two nationally known groups, the highly acclaimed Dovetail Trio and Granny’s Attic, a trio with a rapidly rising reputation. During the day, there will be many free performances along with opportunities to join in.

This year, a record 19 dance groups will be taking part in the Day of Dance in the City Centre. Eight of them, St Albans Morris, Wicket Brood Border Morris, Tappalachian, English Miscellany, Young Miscellany, the Louise Walsh Irish Dancers, Rinceoiri le Cheile Irish Dancers and an Indian group, the Purnagayan Dance Academy, are local. Apart from international guests Spånga Folkdansgille from Sweden, the other groups will be coming from surrounding areas. The dancing will start at 10am outside the Alban Arena, after which there will be dancing in the City Centre in St Peter’s Street by Nationwide Building Society, in Christopher Place, by the Clock Tower, outside the west front of the Abbey, at the Fighting Cocks, with all the groups coming together to dance outside the west front of the Abbey at 14.45.

After the opening display outside the Alban Arena, Young Miscellany will invite children to have a go at maypole dancing from 11.15 and then to join in some other dancing with them.

Local singers together with others from further afield will give live showcase performances starting at 11am in Waterstones bookshop at 11am and then from 13.00 in five pubs, The White Lion, The White Hart Tap, The Hare and Hounds, The Farmer’s Boy and the Garibaldi. For singers and musicians who want to join in, there will be informal singing and music sessions in the Goat Inn and the Courtyard Café.

During the day, there will be a series of workshops at the Maltings Arts Theatre. Shooting Roots, the folk arts project run by and for young people will be coming to the Maltings Arts Theatre to run two ‘taster’ workshops, described as a Funky World Band workshop and a Give-it-a-go song workshop. The aim of these workshops at 12.30 and 13.45 is to give young people aged 12-18 a chance to try folk music and singing.

Four other workshops are for people of any age. Three of these, a ukulele workshop led by Steve Wragg of the Ver Players, a workshop led by the Chiltern West Gallery Quire and a singing workshop, led by the Dovetail Trio will be at the Maltings and Spånga Folkdansgille will be teaching Swedish dancing from 16.00-17.00 in Christopher Place.

Topping the bill at the festival concert at 19.45 will be the Dovetail Trio, made up of BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominee Jamie Roberts, BBC Performing Arts Award winner Rosie Hood, and singer and melodeon, mandolin and fiddle player Matt Quinn. Together, they have a considerable reputation for their fresh approach to English traditional folk songs, exploring familiar narratives and modern themes with infectious energy and a passion for musical heritage.

They will share the bill with Granny’s Attic, a young trio of exceptional musicians, Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne, George Sansome and Lewis Wood, who are making waves with their interpretation of a range of English, Irish and Scottish traditional music as well as their own compositions.

Spånga Folkdansgille will open the festival concert. The concert will also include sets from singer songwriter Julian Mount, winner of the 2017 Watford Folk Club song writing competition and New Roots finalist, Lizzy Hardingham, from Kings Langley.

Tickets cost £14, students £10 and can be bought in advance, by booking online at http://www.ticketsource.co.uk/ovo by phone on 0333 666 3366, in person at St Albans Central Library, The Maltings, Chequer Street, St Albans, AL1 3JQ or on the door.

The festival will start on Friday evening, June 15, with an open evening hosted by Friday Folk social dance group. It will continue Sunday June 17 with informal music making at the Robin Hood in Victoria Street, the Hollybush in Redbourn and the Great Northern in London Road. Full details of festival events, including timings, are available online at http://www.stalbansfolkatthefestival.org.uk

Further information: Alison Macfarlane Tel 01727 852111 (home) 0207 040 5832 (work) 0770 801 2991 (mobile)






Friday 18 May 2018, Watford Folk Club with Steve Warner!

This just in from Watford Folk Club:

Friday 18 May 2018, it’s a guest night at Watford Folk Club with Steve Warner!

Steve says: “I am a singer/songwriter busy playing the local folk clubs of Hertfordshire and beyond. I write songs about things that matter, about the world around us and the people in it!”

He’s great, don’t miss him! £6 (suggested minimum contribution).

Floor spots & Real Ale available too.

8-11 pm in the Colne River Room at The PumpHouse, Local Board Road, Watford, Hertfordshire WD17 2JP.

THIS FRIDAY: 4 May 2018 at 8pm, Mandy Woods & Harry Brzezinski, The Watford Folk Club!

This just in from Watford Folk Club:

THIS FRIDAY, 4 May 2018 at 8pm it’s Mandy Woods and Harry Brzezinski as our guests at The Watford Folk Club!

Mandy spent a decade in Austin, Texas, where she sang with fellow singer songwriter Lara Linette. After a number of years back in the UK, she made a return visit to the States in 2010, drawn to Nashville, Tennessee, where she wrote several songs with singer songwriter Terri Calderon. She has since been back to Nashville several times to write and perform. She is now living near Oxford, England, where she grew up.

It was October 2016 when Mandy met talented guitarist Harry Brzezinski at a local folk session and a new musical partnership was born!

Harry is an accomplished Dobro player, an iconic sound which perfectly complements Mandy’s Americana-style material. He also plays flamenco guitar on a number of her songs.

“Down-to-earth words, rugged beauty in the voice”

 Admission £7 suggested minimum donation

The Watford Folk Club,

the Colne River Room

 The Pumphouse,

Local Board Road,


Hertfordshire WD17 2JP.

Email: WatfordFolkClub@outlook.com

Website: WatfordFolkClub.co.uk_






Windborne, Watford Folk Club on Friday 20th April at 8pm

This just in from the Watford Folk Club:

Windborne: Song on the Times
“The best musical discovery of the year…Stunningly powerful vocal harmony…
Windborne sets a new bar for folk harmony singing today”
-Brian O’Donovan, WGBH-National Public Radio

Internationally acclaimed vocal band Windborne will be making an appearance at Watford Folk Club on Friday 20th April at 8pm (Details below). They are touring in support of their new project: Song on the Times: A Songbook and Album for Social Struggle.

Windborne was catapulted to wider recognition after a video of them singing a protest song from the 1840s outside Trump Tower went viral, gaining over a million views between YouTube and Facebook. Windborne had set out to raise $5,000 for the project, but ended up raising over $80,000 from 2,600 people, from every state, and 22 countries around the world!

“Picking up the torch of folk protest music…old songs for new struggles”
Song on the Times is an illustrated songbook and album that collects music from working class movements for peoples’ rights in the US and UK over the past 400 years, and sings them for the struggles of today. The album features Windborne’s richly harmonized arrangements, accompanied by a book of beautifully illustrated lyrics and music alongside guest essays providing historical context from activists, singers, and scholars such as Eliza Carthy, Reggie Harris, John Sayles, Tony Barrand, and more.

The album has been getting rave reviews; SingOut! Magazine named it “One of the Best Albums of 2017” and praises Windborne as “Some of the finest singers of protest and folk music that I have ever heard.” No Depression writes: “Completely enthralled with them from the first notes…their harmonies are gorgeous,” and Blues and Roots Radio calls Song on the Times “Spectacularly good…utterly brilliant, a hugely impressive album.”

While all four singers had other careers, ranging from trapeze artist to dance anthropologist, the outpouring of requests for performances led them to make spreading this music and message their full time work, and they are now touring across the US and UK, with performances in 20 states this year. Their performance in Watford is sure to be a highlight that will amaze and delight audiences! Full schedule windbornesingers.com/events

The Watford Folk Club,
The Colne River Room,
The Pump House Theatre & Arts Centre,
Local Board Road, Watford. WD17 2JP

Entry: £10 (minimum donation) on the door.

Email: watfordfolkclub@outlook.com

Trump Tower Video: tinyurl.com/WBTrumptower
Website: WindborneSingers.com
Facebook: Facebook.com/WindborneSingers
YouTube: Youtube.com/WindborneMusic

News from St Albans Folk Music…

Two new bits of breaking news from St Albans Folk Music:

  • They now have a new home for the ex-Rose and Crown Wednesday session, now to be found at the Robin Hood in Victoria Street
  • An Dha have dropped out of Folk at the Maltings concert on June 1 and have been replaced by Rosie Hodgson and Rowan Piggott.

Contact them for more information…

Unicorn Magazine Issue 142 is now out…

Issue 142 is now out!

Just to say that Issue 142 of Unicorn Magazine (April, May & June 2018) is now out! It is instantly available online as a downloadable PDF from the usual places (our website, ISSUU etc), and the hard copies should be being distributed now.

Please also remember to sign up to our mailing list and read this blog for amends in between issues… For example, there is already an amend necessary to the printed version of 142 (we may be changing the download version if / when new ad artwork is available)… The Place Theatre have said that their ad on page 10 (and the Diary on page 27) contains an incorrect date – the Calan concert on 19th April is in fact on the 18th April… Please amend your diaries accordingly….

Download Issue 142 here >>

Martin Simpson gig, 21st April – last few tickets available

This just in…

The organisers of the Martin Simpson concert (Four Rivers Folk Club), Saturday 21st April at St Andrew’s Church, Hertford, have told us that of the 150 total seats available, 114 have already been sold! So if you want to go see this folk legend in an intimate performance, do get in fast. Tickets are available from martin’s website:


Four Rivers have also added a new surprise FREE concert addition to their March programme. In addition to the Hunter Muskett duo on 11th April, you can also see the whole Hunter Muskett band performing at the club as a one-off special performance at the club on Thursday 29th March. Contact Pat Crilly for more information: patcrilly@hotmail.com