Muckram Wakes

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This largely traditional folk UK unit specialized in songs, and later, dance music of the Midlands. Formed in 1970, the original line-up comprised Roger Watson (b. 7 February 1946, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire,…
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This largely traditional folk UK unit specialized in songs, and later, dance music of the Midlands. Formed in 1970, the original line-up comprised Roger Watson (b. 7 February 1946, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, England; concertina, tuba, melodeon), Helen Wainwright (b. 16 May 1951, Marchington, Staffordshire, England; harmonium, whistle, piano, bouzouki) - Helen and Roger married in 1972 - and John Tams (b. 16 February 1949, Derbyshire, England; fiddle, banjo, concertina). They made their debut in 1973 with A Map Of Derbyshire, which included a handful of Watson and Tams originals on a largely traditional set. Tams left to join the Albion Band later in the year. Shortly afterwards John Adams (fiddle, banjo, trombone) and Suzie Adams (drums), were added to the line-up. In this format they continued until 1980, gaining much respect on the folk circuit. They also contributed to the short-lived 11-piece New Victory Band, and their highly-regarded 1978 release One More Dance & Then.

In 1980 a complete change of line-up, brought about by personal and professional break-ups, meant that the unit comprised John Adams, Keith Kendrick (concertina), Barry Coope (vocals) and Ian Carter. This line-up only lasted for a short while before disbanding. Roger Watson also performed and recorded with American banjo player and singer Debbie McClatchy, and he also worked with Robb Johnson before going on to become director of TAPS (Traditional Arts Projects), in Berkshire. In the early 90s, Helen Watson (later Hockenhull) went on to form Grace Notes with Maggie Boyle and Lynda Hardcastle (ex-Mountain Ash Band).