A decade on from his debut here at The Brook supporting the legendary and great John Martyn, we welcome back John Smith, who, since then, has crafted, honed and perfected his skills to become a hugely respected and quite remarkable Folk Singer/Songwriter with inspirational qualities. This will be a powerful, intimate and wonderful show with Smith effortlessly transfixing our audience with his captivating music and style.
Born in Essex and raised in Devon, John Smith has gained a reputation through relentless touring as one of the UK’s finest guitarists and singer-songwriters. With five album releases in 11 years, his reputation now extends far beyond the UK folk scene, as reflected by sideman credits including Joan Baez, David Gray, Lisa Hannigan and Lianne La Havas.
Compared as a singer to John Martyn and Ray Lamontagne, Smith has evolved his own transatlantic blend of fingerstyle and slide techniques, switching between acoustic and electric guitars in various tunings. His uniquely intimate take on love, loss or even a mythic murder ballad, combined with his innovative guitar work, have won him a loyal following, made up of people willing to take part in the communion of a song.
He returns this Autumn for a 34-date UK / EU tour.
“The future of folk music” - John Renbourn
“He’s a magician” - Ben Howard
“Spellbinding” - Time Out
Singer, songwriter, and guitarist Courtney Hartman started playing guitar at the young age of eight, after having already spent several years on the fiddle and mandolin. Her early years were spent steeped in American Roots music, and today she has fused a diverse range of influences from Norman Blake to Bill Frisell, creating music that acknowledges and pays homage to her roots, while pushing beyond its defined boundaries.
Courtney was recently nominated by the Americana Music Association for 2017 Instrumentalist of the Year, following the release of her solo project ‘Nothing We Say’. Her songs are flush with intimate ruminations on her life as a traveling musician and a deep curiosity about the world around her. The luminous EP delivers on the promise always apparent in her work as a guitarist and songwriter for Della Mae, the Grammy-nominated string band, along with her collaborations with Bryan Sutton, Jim Lauderdale, and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ Mike Campbell, among others. Acoustic Guitar Magazine lauds Courtney as a “distinctive guitar stylist… and a songwriter that delights and disturbs.”