The folk scene is still relatively small and often feels like a big family. Alan was definitely seen as an important member of the family by many artists. He and Sandra have supported hundreds of musicians, right from the beginnings of their careers, and have always had an eye for spotting potential.
Not only that, they have also given opportunities to more established artists to create new works for the festival, whether they be new collaborations between artists, new dance shows, or new repertoires of songs. Shrewsbury Folk Festival continues to support and contribute to the ongoing evolution of our music. If we want this music to thrive, this is exactly what organisers of festivals need to be doing and it’s what makes this festival particularly special.
This is why I have been moved to create this album – all profits from which will raise funds for a new trust which will give out grants and support to young and emerging musicians and new projects. As someone who has benefitted from the generosity of Shrewsbury Folk Festival, I want to take the baton and keep some of this support and momentum going. It seems like a very fitting way to serve Alan’s memory.
The tracks on this album are all from artists who have had strong links with the festival and some are songs which we know were favourites of Alan’s. I hope this album will capture some of the spirit of the festival and the passion that Alan had for this music.
With huge love and respect for Sandra and the team.
All profits from this album will go to the Alan Surtees Trust which will give grants to young and emerging musicians and new musical projects.
All photographs taken at Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Cover photo – Mike Dean
Drone photograph – Virtual Shropshire www.DroneRangers.co.uk
All other photos – Alan Cole folkfestivalphotos.co.uk
Design – Alan James at Rendition Graphics
A huge thank you to all the artists who have donated their music and photography to this album free of charge and to Andy Bell for doing the technical stuff.