Midsummer is here! The year has gone by so fast it’s unreal!
We’ve had some excellent adventures so far and have more to come! Our biggest adventure has to be going to Moscow! Starting the Saturday of the weekend was us playing for the Dartford Spring Fayre. We often don’t get to see pictures taken of us unless we spot them on Facebook, so we were delighted to be sent a drawing of us in the park. Amazing! Thank you for sending it! We finished our lunchtime set there and headed straight off to the airport to get to Moscow! We were there as part of Daria Kulesh’s Long Lost Home Band. Because of other
commitments we were only in Russia for the 34 hours for the concert, but we had a nice view of the city in the taxi ride home after the concert! It was an amazing experience and loved playing in the Russian band too playing Ingush music. Maybe it’ll happen again some day!
Since then our feet have barely touched the ground! We were picked up from the airport by John so we could do more recording for Purcell’s Polyphonic Party, from there straight to Chester Folk Festival, Maghull Folk Club, Red Lion Folk Club (to support and see our friends Cloudstreet), Rhyl Folk Club then up to Cumbria to rehearse as seriouskitchen.
Time to breath!
We’re hoping to have the PPP album ready for Sidmouth – but we think that we’ll be doing pre-orders there. Sometimes you can’t rush these things – but we are in the mixing stage now!
So where are we over the summer? We’ll be mixing and learning and writing music, but in between those times you’ll find us here:
01.07.17 – Bury Folk Festival – afternoon concert
01.07.17 – Kimpton Folk Festival – evening concert
07-09.07.17 – Furness Folk Festival, Furness Cumbria
28 – 30.07.17 – Festival at the Edge, Shropshire
04-11.08.17 – Sidmouth Folk Week, also as PPP
Hope to see you at one of these places. I’ll leave you with a little youtube video celebrating midsummer – playing nyckelharpa outside in the garden!
Vicki & Jonny
May already?? The time has just flown by! We’ve got a few weeks at home at the moment, but we’re working our little socks off! Still recording the Purcell’s Polyphonic Party album. Jonny has been working incredibly hard on this! We’re playing for the Saturday night dance at Chester Folk Festival, so we finished putting a dance tune list together and are all ready to go for that.
We’ve had an unexpected gig come in. It’s not your normal Vicki Swan & Jonny Dyer gig, but we’re both involved. We’re off to a secret location for a secret gig. Well it’s not really secret, but it’s certainly going to be an adventure! We’re off to Russia to play as part of Daria Kulesh’s Long Lost Home Band. The Gradsky Hall in Moscow. It’s been a frantic couple of weeks sorting out visas and travel and writing new parts for different instruments! More anon!
Vicki & Jonny
Happy Easter everyone!
As usual time has got away from us and I’ve not blogged in a couple of months! We’ve got a couple of gigs coming up at the end of the month, this will be here before you know it!
We’ve been busy recording the new Purcell’s Polyphonic Album, it always takes longer than you think! We’ve had another review through for Paper of Pins, from EDS. Click on the picture on the left to read it!
Next month we have more Wind in the Willows rehearsals and then we start to hit festival season!
Vicki & Jonny
Then we are on the slippery slope of heading back to Halsway Manor on the 10th March. In-between then we’ve got gigs, rehearsals for Wind in the Willows, a launch concert to prepare for with Daria Kulesh at Cecil Sharp House and more Smörgåsballads.
In all the spare time we’ve finally started recording the Purcell’s Polyphonic Party album. You’ll have to watch this space for news of that when it arrives. At the moment Jonny is beavering away researching up speeds and numbers of times each tune needs to be played to make sure that not only is it fun to listen to, that it’s danceable too!
Vicki & Jonny
It’s finally out in the open! Our secret mission back in October was to be Swedish musicians for Holby City! We sat and watched the episode last night and in-between the guts and gore we had a lot of fun spotting us and our dancer friends. All four of our scenes were kept and all music we recorded was used. We were very happy that Fikavalsen was kept in, especially as we’ve released it as a single! The episode will be up on BBC iPlayer for the next month, so it’s not too late to watch us! We’re also the sound track to the behind the scenes video. You get to see a bit more of what we experienced that day. We’re very happy to say that the nyckelharpa is now well and truly introduced to the mainstream BBC1 TV audience.
This is what we played:
Bridal March: Jämtlands Brudmarsch
Recessional: Polska efter Byss-Calle Nr. 32
First Waltz: Fikavalsen
|Buy the single from our website!
It was a really fun week, especially fun as we do this for weddings anyway, just not quite so dramatically!
The BBC has a behind the scenes video – this sums up our week on Holby City to a T. 😀
We’re at the very end of the trailer:
Vicki & Jonny
It’s been an amazing autumn and winter. We love doing our Christmas tour and we can’t believe it’s over already! We travelled the country from south to north and back again. We’ve already got some dates in for next December and will be putting together the rest of the tour early in January – so if you want us to come and give you some Christmas cheer next December drop us a line!
Although we’re not entirely revealing the story behind releasing Fikavalsen we can reveal that it has a lot to do with the image on the right! Click the picture to go to the BBC website – and keep then watch Holby City on the evening of Tuesday 3rd December. You might just recognise a couple of musicians (and quite possibly some dancers!) We haven’t seen any of the episode, so we have no idea to what extent you’ll see us and how much music you’ll hear, but we’re hoping that Fikavalsen hasn’t been cut!
Although this tour is now finished we’ve got quite a few gigs in January and quite a few Smörgåsballads coming up to banish the winter blues. Check the gig list to see if we’re anywhere near you. As well as touring we’re going to be recording the Purcell’s Polyphonic Party Dance album and finishing the script / music for Vicki’s new nyckelharpa show.
It’s going to be a busy spring!
Vicki & Jonny
Fikavalsen – The Single
Available from all good digital download stores.
In Swedish ‘fika’ is to have a cup of strong coffee with a cinnamon (or any kind of) bun. As often as possible. It is a Swedish institution to stop for fika. Swedes drink really strong coffee. This waltz was written to be calming when you’ve had too much caffeine.
Back in September 2016 Jonny and I were called in to take part in some filming for the BBC. We ended up using this tune for one of the themes. We got home and re-recorded it (it’s on Gleowien, which is now sold out) and we’ve released it in readiness for January 3rd. Once the episode has aired we’ll add to this page! In the meantime we’re keeping very quiet, except for the music! Enjoy that and watch out for it (unless it got cut!!!) January 3rd BBC1 – 8pm. (That’s a tiny hint!)
Vicki: nyckelharpa and oktav-nyckelharpa
Jonny: piano and bass
It’s been a frantic autumn with Jonny performing at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse in London. Thankfully the beard has now gone! Vicki has been working hard on the concept of her new nyckelharpa show (the details of which are being kept a closely guarded secret, but you can see some of the preparatory work in the youtube playlist below. (Sometimes drastic actions are required to improve your playing).
We are delighted to have been interview for the 116 edition of The Living Tradition Magazine over the summer and amazed and very pleased that we made the front cover! You can read the interview on the website!
This brings us up to Christmas! It’s nearly time for the Christmas tour. We love Christmas and we love our Christmas show! We’ve got two different shows this year! A Victorian Music Hall Christmas Celebration – (MH) and A Festive Pick-n-Mix – (PnM)
24.11.16 – Maidenhead Folk Club, Maidenhead
25.11.16 – Baccapipes Folk Club, Keighley – (seasonally adjusted)
30.11.16 – Haverfolk, Romford, Essex – (PnM)
03.12.16 – Gurnard Village Hall, Gurnard, Isle of Wight – (PnM)
10.12.16 – Moreton Village Hall, Shropshire – (MH)
11.12.16 – Readifolk, Reading – (MH)
12.12.16 – Herga Folk Club, Pinner, Middlesex – (MH)
13.12.16 – Hoy at Anchor Folk Club – Leigh on Sea – (MH)
14.12.16 – Halsway Manor – (MH)
15.12.16 – Huntingdon Hall, Worcester – (MH)
16.12.16 – Northwich Folk Club – (MH)
17.12.16 – Kingsnorth Folk, Ashford, Kent – (MH)
18.12.16 – Granary Theatre, Wells-next-the-Sea – (PnM)
19.12.16 – Croydon Folk Club – (MH)
20.12.16 – St Barnabas, Cressing, Essex – (PnM)
22.12.16 – Private Christmas Performance, Kendal – (MH)
So hope to see you somewhere on the road this December – we’re covering enough miles to hopefully be able to catch everyone!
Vicki & Jonny
We had the most amazing summer! Things are calming down now, but we’re off to The Netherlands for the weekend next weekend. SO if you’re in the Hague region – come and see us!!!
We love catching the ferry to go to gigs, so it’s a lovely adventure. We’ll make sure we take lots of CDs and books with us. Come and say hello!
Vicki & Jonny