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Eliza Carthy and the Wayward Band - Lichfield Cathedral

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by Tony Collins (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer specialising mainly in health and education and living in Staffordshire. Find me on Linked In
A folk music treat from the daughter of legends
She comes from a very rich pedigree, but Eliza Carthy is successfully ploughing her own distinctive musical path these days.

The fiddle-playing daughter of English folk legends Martin Carthy and Norma Waterson delivered a wonderful, energetic two-hour set within the unusual but delightful musical venue that is Lichfield Cathedral.

Eliza Carthy, The Wayward Band, Lichfield Festival, Lichfield Cathedral, Bellowhead, Saul Rose
Eliza Carthy with members of The Wayward Band at Lichfield Cathedral

With an apparent army of musicians to support her, Eliza gave a performance - both in her singing and fiddle playing - that lifted the soul and caused the heart to soar.

Her set was crammed with traditional folk material of murder, romance, pirates and highwaymen drawn from throughout her career and her chart topping 'Best Of' double album, Wayward Daughter.

But there was nothing wayward about her performance despite a 'confession' (what else in a cathedral) that the sound had been "challenging" throughout the concert.

Eliza Carthy, Saul Rose, Lichfield Cathedral, Lichfield Festival
Eliza Carthy performing with Saul Rose at the start

Eliza began in more genteel folk music style for the first 20 minutes or so, backed only by melodeon player Saul Rose.

But as the other musicians, which included members of Bellowhead, Mawkin, Blowzabella, Edward ll, Emily Portman Trio, Peatbog Fairies, Dreams of Tall Buildings and Tyde, took to the stage, so the energy and noise levels were cranked up.

Eliza Carthy, The Wayward Band, Lichfield Cathedral, Lichfield Festival
Eliza Carthy and band

Although Eliza's vocals were occasionally masked by the band, they created a great collective sound, in particular on songs such as Worcester City and The Rolling Sea.

This was very much traditional folk music with oomph, and plenty of it.

Lichfield Cathedral, Lichfield Festival, Eliza Carthy
Lichfield Cathedral, home to several Lichfield Festival performances

Eliza Carthy was performing as part of the Lichfield Festival, which runs until July 12.

For further information about further shows and tickets please call 01543 412121 or visit
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Why? A rip-roaring, foot-tapping night of great folk music
When: 7 July 2015
Phone: 01543 412121
Where: 19A The Close, Lichfield, Staffordshire WS13 7LD
Cost: Tickets 12-24
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