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Fairport Unconventional

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Dave Thompson
All but a handful previously unreleased, these 72 tracks serve up an alternate history of Fairport Convention in a manner that doesn't simply befit Britain's longest-running folk-rock soap opera, it actually amplifies the group's achievements beyond any past or possibly future collection ever could. The "official" story of the band, after all, can be traced on any number of collections, ranging from the original 1972 History Of album through to 1998's Fiddlestix and 2001's Some of Our Yesterdays. The group's often superior outtakes, radio sessions, and live odds and ends, however, have generally been scattered piecemeal across a plethora of other releases, many of which ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Dave Thompson
All but a handful previously unreleased, these 72 tracks serve up an alternate history of Fairport Convention in a manner that doesn't simply befit Britain's longest-running folk-rock soap opera, it actually amplifies the group's achievements beyond any past or possibly future collection ever could. The "official" story of the band, after all, can be traced on any number of collections, ranging from the original 1972 History Of album through to 1998's Fiddlestix and 2001's Some of Our Yesterdays. The group's often superior outtakes, radio sessions, and live odds and ends, however, have generally been scattered piecemeal across a plethora of other releases, many of which don't even appear under Fairport's own banner -- anthologies of Sandy Denny, Ashley Hutchings, and Richard Thompson, odd folk collections, passing label samplers, and so much more all bear treasures that even the hardcore collector might have missed. Fairport Unconventional, though it by no means scoops up each and every one of these, does at least reference them in the accompanying voluminous 170-page booklet, then sets out to offer even more esoteric fare, drawn from sources as disparate as early TV and radio sessions, world tours, session outtakes, rehearsal tapes, and festival dates, spanning the full history of the band. Indeed, the earliest performance is a 1967 recording that marks the band's first-ever demo, and the latest is a cut from 2002's XXXV 35th anniversary album. In between, there's probably not a "favorite" Fairport song that doesn't get an airing, be it a BBC broadcast of the epic "Tam Lin," a live take on "Sloth" with Denny unexpectedly audible on the chorus, a Liege & Lief-era stab at "Sir Patrick Spens," or a Cropredy reading of "The Hiring Fair." The fact that the all-star Cropredy gathering itself is responsible for only nine of the 24 post-1979 tracks included speaks volumes for the versatility of this compilation. Another area in which Fairport Unconventional stands alone is in its refusal to bow to the tyrannies of chronology. Rather, the four CDs are presented in strictly thematic style -- even the first disc, "Fairport -- A History," only arranges the song titles themselves in chronological order. The performances themselves date from all over the place. Of the other discs, "Rareport Convention" emphasizes live and session recordings, "A Fairport History" purports to teach the history of Britain through folk ballad and rocker, and "Classic Convention" re-creates the "ultimate" Fairport compilation from the ultimate Fairport rarities. A Pete Frame family tree poster, the Cropredy Chronicles souvenir booklet, a wealth of related flyers, a mail-order fifth CD of Cropredy rarities, and the aforementioned historical/discographical booklet complete a well-stuffed package, but perhaps the most notable inclusion is the penultimate track on the fourth CD. "The Matty Groves Megamix" is a seven-minute tapestry built up from any number of different performances of that particular song, one line at a time. It's a remarkable concept, an astonishing execution, and a true labor of love. Just like the box set itself.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/16/2002
  • Label: Free Reed Imports
  • EAN: 5016700923520
  • Catalog Number: 35
  • Sales rank: 247,405

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Meet on the Ledge (Overture) (0:36)
  2. 2 Wings (Excerpt) (2:16)
  3. 3 If I Had a Ribbon Bow (2:37)
  4. 4 Lay Down Your Weary Tune (3:39)
  5. 5 (A) Shattering Live Experience (3:23)
  6. 6 Nottamun Town (3:37)
  7. 7 Si Tu Dois Partir (2:24)
  8. 8 Come All Ye (5:00)
  9. 9 Tam Lin (7:46)
  10. 10 Dirty Linen (4:02)
  11. 11 Staines Morris (3:42)
  12. 12 Journeyman's Grace (4:08)
  13. 13 Angel Delight (4:23)
  14. 14 The Time Is Near (2:39)
  15. 15 Polly on the Shore (3:42)
  16. 16 Rising for the Moon (4:15)
  17. 17 Reynard the Fox (2:53)
  18. 18 Rubber Band (3:11)
  19. 19 Naked Highwayman (4:49)
  20. 20 The Wood and the Wire (4:23)
  21. 21 The Crowd (2:44)
  22. 22 One Sure Thing (Excerpt) (2:53)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Sir B. McKenzie (1:18)
  2. 2 Suzanne (5:32)
  3. 3 Time Will Show the Wiser (3:02)
  4. 4 Mr. Lacey (3:07)
  5. 5 Reno, Nevada (7:48)
  6. 6 Percy's Song (5:31)
  7. 7 Dear Landlord (3:45)
  8. 8 I Don't Believe You (3:46)
  9. 9 The Deserter (3:53)
  10. 10 Farewell to a Poor Man's Son (4:52)
  11. 11 Sad Song (5:03)
  12. 12 Autopsy (4:26)
  13. 13 Maverick Child (3:56)
  14. 14 Fiddlestix (2:49)
  15. 15 It's Now or Never - Steve Tilston (4:19)
  16. 16 The Lady Is a Tramp (2:12)
  17. 17 General Taylor (1:42)
  18. 18 Accountancy Shanty (0:50)
  19. 19 A Sailor's Life (9:27)
Disc 3
  1. 1 Sir Patrick Spens (3:48)
  2. 2 Wat Tyler (6:27)
  3. 3 Flowers of the Forest (4:02)
  4. 4 Fotheringay (3:12)
  5. 5 To Althea (5:05)
  6. 6 Red and Gold (6:48)
  7. 7 Lord Marlborough (3:25)
  8. 8 Adieu Adieu (2:30)
  9. 9 Here's to Tom Paine (4:37)
  10. 10 Bonny Bunch of Roses (14:55)
  11. 11 Breakfast in Mayfair (4:01)
  12. 12 Battle of the Somme (4:54)
  13. 13 Summer Before the War (4:20)
  14. 14 Get Together (2:57)
  15. 15 Genesis Hall (3:50)
  16. 16 Jewel in the Crown (3:33)
Disc 4
  1. 1 Walk Awhile (3:58)
  2. 2 John Gaudie (4:58)
  3. 3 Hexhamshire Lass (2:28)
  4. 4 Slip Jigs and Reels (5:08)
  5. 5 Poor Will and the Jolly Hangman (5:37)
  6. 6 Crazy Man Michael (4:43)
  7. 7 Rosie (4:25)
  8. 8 Farewell, Farewell (2:31)
  9. 9 Now Be Thankful (3:09)
  10. 10 Hiring Fair (6:48)
  11. 11 Stranger to Himself (3:09)
  12. 12 Sloth (18:06)
  13. 13 Who Knows Where the Time Goes? (4:15)
  14. 14 The Matty Groves Megamix (7:36)
  15. 15 Meet on the Ledge (2:39)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Fairport Convention Primary Artist
Alexis Korner Guitar, Vocals
Martin Carthy Guitar, Vocals
Shirley Collins Banjo, Vocals, Guest Appearance
Tim Hart Guitar, Vocals
John Kirkpatrick Accordion, Vocals
Dave Swarbrick Fiddle, Mandolin, Violin, Vocals
Sandy Denny Guitar, Vocals
Maddy Prior Vocals
David Rea Guitar
Eddie Jobson Keyboards
Jimmy Cliff Vocals
Ian Anderson Flute, Vocals
Joe Cocker Vocals
Cat Stevens Guitar, Vocals
Richard Thompson Guitar, Vocals
Stomu Yamashta Percussion
Michael Garrick Piano
Gary Boyle Guitar
Jerry Donahue Guitar
Steve Gibbons Guitar, Vocals
Dorris Henderson Vocals
Ashley Hutchings Bass, Vocals, Acoustic Bass, String Bass
Trevor Lucas Guitar, Vocals
Jackie McAuley Guitar, Vocals
Steve Miller Bass
Simon Nicol Guitar, Vocals, 12-string Guitar
Dave Pegg Bass, Guitar, Vocals
Kieran Halpin Guitar, Vocals
Ralph Richardson Guitar, Keyboards
Martin Allcock Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
Martin Barre Guitar
Dan Ar Bras Guitar
Mickey Barker Drums
Barriemore Barlow Drums
Phil Beer Fiddle, Mandolin, Vocals, Hand Percussion
John Bonham Drums
Bob Brady Piano
Dave Bristow Piano
Victor Brox Keyboards, Vocals
Paul Burgess Drums
Mike Burney Saxophone
Roger Burridge Fiddle, Mandolin
Tony Carter Saxophone
Ron Chesterman Bass, Vocals
Dave "Clem" Clempson Guitar, Vocals
Gerry Conway Drums
Steve Cooke Bass
Mark Craney Drums
Jonathan Davie Bass
Alvin A. Davies Guitar
Kevin Dempsey Guitar, Vocals
Pat Donaldson Bass
Sue Draheim Fiddle
Alan Dunn Accordion
Judy Dyble Vocals
John Etheridge Guitar
John Evan Keyboards
Hughie Flint Drums
Trevor Foster Drums
Robert Fripp Guitar
Graham Gallery Bass
Steve Goldstein Keyboards
Alan Greed Vocals
Mark Griffiths Guitar
Sue Harris Oboe, Vocals
Roger Hill Guitar, Vocals
Ian Holder Accordion
Tony Hooper Guitar, Vocals
Georg Hultgreen Bass, Vocals
Gordon Huntley Pedal Steel Guitar
Karl Jenkins Piano, Saxophone
Martin Jenkins Vocals
Chris Jones Guitar
Rick Kemp Bass
Geoff Krivit Guitar
Martin Lamble Drums
Ronnie Lane Guitar, Vocals
Chris Leslie Fiddle, Mandolin, Vocals, Hand Percussion
Cathy Lesurf Vocals, Hand Percussion
Kerrilee Male Vocals
Dave Mattacks Drums
Ian Matthews Vocals
Ian McDonald Keyboards, Vocals
Jacqui McShee Vocals
Doug Morter Guitar, Vocals
William Murray Drums
John "Poli" Palmer Keyboards, Vibes
Doane Perry Drums
Terry Potter Harmonica
Cozy Powell Drums
Bruce Rowland Drums
Alan Spenner Bass
Larry Steele Bass
Liza Strike Vocals
Roger Swallow Drums
John Tams Vocals
Graeme Taylor Guitar, Vocals
Drachen Theaker Tabla
Linda Thompson Vocals
Jerry Underwood Saxophone
Peter-John Vettese Keyboards
Peter Watkins Bass
Royston Wood Concertina, Vocals
Gay Woods Vocals
Terry Woods Guitar, Vocals
P.J. Wright Guitar
Pete Zorn Bass
Rory McFarlane Bass
Jean Rouselle Keyboards
Danny Thompson Bass
Steve Borrell Bass
Vic Gammon Concertina
Jimmy Holden Drums
Binky McKenzie Bass
Spencer Cozens Keyboards
Julie Matthews Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
Chris While Guitar, Vocals
Dave Jenkins Keyboards
Jimmy O'Neil Keyboards
Ric Sanders Violin
Neil Marshall Drums
Brian Clark Bass, Guitar
Steve Hiett Vocals
Reginald Jones Vocals
Mike Giles Drums, Vocals
Mike Rosen Guitar, Vocals
Ian Campbell Folk Group Guitar, Vocals
Lorna Campbell Vocals
John Dunkerley Banjo
Mike Gregory Percussion, Drums
Shaun Frater Drums
Pete Giles Bass
Peter Knight Fiddle
Steve Alrey Guitar, Vocals
Don Alrey Keyboards
Bob Johnson Guitar, Vocals
Buddy Ash Vocals
Gordon Bache Saxophone
Carl Barnell Guitar, Vocals
Richard Bremner Bass
Ayshea Brough Vocals
Randy Buchanan Bass
Frank Devine Drums
Bugsy Eastwood Drums, Vocals
Roy Everett Vocals
Vo Fletcher Guitar
Graham Grounds Keyboards
Mick Haase Vocals
Pete Hodges Vocals
Rick Kay Keyboards
Lyan King Washboard
Tom Farnell Drums
Technical Credits
Dave Swarbrick Arranger, Composer
Sandy Denny Composer
Fairport Convention Arranger
Clive Gregson Contributor
Richard Thompson Composer
Ashley Hutchings Composer
Trevor Lucas Arranger
Simon Nicol Composer, Liner Notes
Dave Pegg Composer
Harvey Brooks Composer
Christine Collister Contributor
Bob Davenport Composer
Jim Glover Composer
Joji Hirota Instrumentation
Chris Leslie Composer
Dave Mattacks Composer
Ian Matthews Composer
Ken Nicol Composer
John Richards Composer
Don Walker Mastering
Lal Waterson Composer
Mike Waterson Composer
Al Jackson Jr. Vocal Arrangements
Neil Wayne Producer, Liner Notes
Pete Frame Drawing
Nigel Liner Notes
Traditional Composer
Neil Liner Notes
Nigel Stonier Composer
Nigel Schofield Producer, Liner Notes, Concept
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