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Last Featured on this show May 31, 2016

John Reed
John Reed is a singer-songwriter from the North of England. His debut album Moorscape was released in April and that was quickly followed up by his single Dry The Life in July. Now working on a seven track EP for Dry The Life, John will be releasing a new album in the middle of 2017 entitled The Breeding Ground Of Vile.

John’s main instrument is the ‘cittern’, which is often confused with the Indian ‘sitar’. The cittern is a Renaissance instrument and has been used in British and Irish folk music for centuries. Part of the mandola family of instruments, the cittern has various manifestations. John’s first cittern inspired Moorscape, and is a ten string instrument, but there are also 8 and 12 string citterns just as there are 10 string bouzoukis which look just the same.

To confuse the mandola story still further, John plays the cittern as more of a rhythm guitar where it is normally plucked in more folky melodies. During the recording of Moorscape, he found that there were many other ways to get sounds out of a cittern and that has led to some slide work on the Dry The Life EP and some extraordinary sounds from just bending the strings – for which you need fingertips of iron!

Moorscape is a concept album about the sights, sounds, political, and social history of the British moorlands. It is a politically driven album and draws comparisons between historical injustices and the injustices that we see around us today. Moorscape comprises a mix of descriptive songs, protest songs, love songs, and songs of hope.

The album sees John playing cittern, 6 string and 12 string guitars, and a Spanish guitar that his parent’s bought for him one Christmas when he was 15 years old. Dry The Life was inspired by a friend lending John an African instrument called an N’Goni, which is best described as a 12 string harp on a gourd. The single Dry The Life was recorded and mixed 8 days later.

The EP of Dry The Life will be released in November, and that sees John picking up a Fender Stratocaster on a couple of the songs as well as introducing two other versions of the single. John’s 2017 album will be an album of protest, and will carry with it a more punky feel while remaining faithful to his English folk roots.

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PST Name length
9:00 The Drovers Trail 03:49
9:03 Water grove Farm 05:11
9:09 The Cart 03:04
9:12 Standing Stones 04:50
9:17 Peat 03:20
9:20 Clouds 03:29
9:24 Intermission 01:22
9:25 Guns 02:56
9:28 The Denied 04:21
9:33 Blizzard 04:02
9:37 MoorScape 07:25
9:44 Dim Blue Light 04:33
9:49 Night 02:59
9:52 The Farthest Point 05:09
9:57 Resting Place 03:51