Thu 01 Jan 1970
Seated | 14+ (under 16s to be accompanied by an adult)
Sam Lee plays a unique role in the British music scene. A highly inventive and original singer, folk song interpreter, a passionate conservationist, committed song collector and a successful creator of live events.
Alongside his organisation The Nest Collective and fellow collaborators Sam has shaken up the live music scene breaking the boundaries between folk and contemporary music and the assumed place and way folksong is heard. Hes injected a renewed passion into this old material, helping to develop its ecosystem by not only inviting in a new listenership but also interrogating what the messages in these old songs hold for us today. With his forthcoming album, Old Wow, hes summonsed up a truly compelling and emotional album that takes his work to yet another level.
He may not intend to, but Sam Lee always surprises. When he released his first album Ground Of Its Own in 2012, he dared to dramatically re-work old songs by matching his direct and rich singing style against an extraordinary backdrop of sound, making use of anything from Jews harps, trumpets, fiddles, banjo or the drone effects of an Indian Shruti box. This bravely original set made possible by a prestigious Arts Foundation award, set up to support artists at a breakthrough moment in their careers made an immediate impact and the album was short- listed for a Mercury Music Prize. Three years later, Sams second album The Fade In Time saw him break further new ground and receive accompanying accolades including a Songlines Award for artist of the year.
But possibly the largest audience Sam found himself being heard by was when Guy Ritchie chose him to write the lead song for his epic Hollywood fantasy King Arthur: Legend of the Sword from which The Devil and The Huntsman was born receiving tens of millions of plays internationally.
And now comes Old Wow, yet another dramatic change of musical direction where, for the first time, Sam includes the instrument most notably absent from his recording career, the guitar and electric guitar at that, played by the albums producer Bernard Butler (of Suede and McAlmont & Butler fame). Sam explains,
Yes, Sam plays a unique role in the British music scene. And now, with Old Wow he has re-worked traditional songs to create what he describes as a timeless bridge, music that can be looking both backward and forwards, and a soulful accompaniment to an urgent need to fall back in love with nature if we are to know how to protect it.