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All My Own Work 

For me there's nothing more rewarding than working for three months or so on creating a new album.
I love all the pre-production stuff like writing, arranging, learning and recording the music and lyrics - this is what takes most of the time.

Then again I am consumed by the process of engineering the tracks to make them the best I can with the facilities and funding I have.
The software I use, Band In A Box and Cakewalk, isn't top of the line but is reliable and allows me to experiment with my music.

This is…Read more

Neil Colquhoun RIP 

How sad to hear of Neil Colquhoun's passing.I first met Neil at Folk Routes in Wellington four years ago where I was performing as the main guest. Neil was there to launch the re-issue of his book "Song of a Young Country". We hit it off immediately and chatted for quite some time about what it was that motivated us both - the preservation of our respective folk-heritages.
He gifted me a copy of his book and very kindly signed it on the inside cover "To Phil - a fantastic English folk-heritage musician…Read more

Ethnic English Folk-Culture in New Zealand 

The National Library of New Zealand, Alexander Turnbull Library has added my albums Two Ravens, The English Lament, and The Best English Singalong Folksongs CDs to its online audio collection of ethnic immigrant folk-heritage music. They join my first album Full Circle  whch was adopted in 2010.
This is a clear indication that New Zealand (unike the Dis-United Kingdom) clearly recognises the contribution that immigrant ethnic English people and their folk-culture continue to make to New Zealand's evolving…Read more

What Is Folk Music? Well I don't know about you but I'm not in the least bit confused. 

What is folk music?
There are two types of what nowadays we call 'folk music'. Neither is a true, identifiable music genre, like blues or jazz or classical music.

The first type is what I call "Folk Heritage Music" and what Neil Colquhun (Kiwi author of "Song of a Young Country") calls simply "Heritage Music".
My feeling is that "folk-heritage' music better differentiates it as music of the common people as opposed to more highbrow forms of heritage music.
Neil attended a concert I did at Wellington Folk Club…Read more


If you’re someone who likes down-to-earth, rollicking, sing-along songs with beefy choruses then
The Best English Singalong Folksongs Volume 1
is just the thing for you.

The Best English Singalong Folksongs Volume 1    features 22 contemporary & traditional English folksongs (newly arranged and recorded) and an accompanying 48-page Songbook with lyrics, musical notation, and song bios.
It can be purchased either in CD format (2 CDs with printed songbook) or in mp3 Downloadable form (165Mb including MS…Read more

Manchester Sports Guild Reunion Concert 

Absolutely brilliant night on Sat 12th in Cheetham Hill. Great to see a couple of humdred people from the MSG old days and join such an illustrious lineup on stage including Gary & Vera Aspey, Alan Bell, John Howarth, Tony Downes, The Hometowners, Pete Ryder and Marie Little. A bit spooky meeting some folks I haven't seen for 40 years, but what a really great 'Lancashire neet'. Grand job by Stanley Accrington putting the whole show together, and wouldn't have missed it for the world.

My new album "The English Lament" is now available from 

I'm pleased to say my new album "The Englisc Lament"  is now available. It's a compilation of traditional and contemporary folk-roots songs that celebrate ethnic English folk-heritage and features a title track that highlights a topic that is taboo in New Britain - the plight of the native, ethnic English people.  The Englisc Lament may not find approval with Anglophobes and the politically-correct brigade but, as always used to be the case in English folk clubs back in the 60s and 70s, that's what realRead more

What Guitars Do I Play? 

At every gig I'm always asked one question - what are the guitars I play.
I got this message in my MySpace Inbox a few weeks ago from a guy called Luke, who by the way is worth checking out at
"Phil, Awesome songs and website. I was wondering what Yamaha models you play besides the LS16.... what is the one with the tortoise pickguard and diamond fret markers? What pickups do you use in your guitars? All the best... Luke."

So for Luke and anyone else who's interested…Read more