Jon Boden, Seth Lakeman and Stick in the Wheel among the new guests
Folk on Foot, a popular new podcast that captured the imagination of folk music fans, walkers, nature lovers and more this summer, is to return for a second series.
Folk on Foot – which raced to No 1 in the iTunes music podcast chart on its launch day – will be back from October 19, with a new collection of monthly podcasts featuring some of the UK’s most celebrated folk musicians.
The brainchild of Matthew Bannister, one of the country’s leading broadcasters, Folk on Foot lets listeners ‘walk’ alongside as the musicians and singer-songwriters take Bannister to the heart of locations that have inspired their diverse music — and exclusively perform songs alfresco.
The new series will feature Jon Boden, Seth Lakeman, Kerry Andrew, Fisherman’s Friends, Stick in the Wheel and Julie Fowlis. They follow in the footsteps of The Young’uns, Karine Polwart, Steve Knightley, Cara Dillon, Eliza Carthy and Sam Lee who steered the opening series to more than 20,000 downloads – and still growing.
The opening episode of Season 2 features Jon Boden, flamboyant former frontman of one of the greatest folk bands to date –the multi-award winning Bellowhead. He takes Matthew on a walk near his home in the Loxley Valley just outside Sheffield.
This is the landscape that inspired his 2009 concept album Songs from the Floodplain, which creates a vision of a post-apocalyptic future when industrial architecture is decaying and people are returning to a more rural way of life.
As they walk down the valley, Jon sings Going Down to the Wasteland; by a whirlpool in the River Loxley he performs April Queen and then heads for a disused brick factory – where empty kilns and rusting girders are being overwhelmed by trees and weeds – the perfect setting for Dancing in the Factory. Finally Jon and Matthew clamber up onto a disused World War Two anti-aircraft gun emplacement and Jon sings Aubade from his latest solo album Afterglow.
Subsequent programmes will feature composer and novelist Kerry Andrew, who performs alt-folk under the moniker You Are Wolf, enticing Matthew to take the plunge at London’s famous Brockwell Lido; Cornwall’s famed shanty group Fisherman’s Friends in Port Isaac; London’s uncompromising English trad folk five-piece Stick in the Wheel (Epping Forest); Gaelic singer Julie Fowlis taking Matthew for a winter walk on the shores of Loch Ness and the ‘poster boy’ who nudged folk into the mainstream, Seth Lakeman on his native Dartmoor. (Seth’s new album The Well Worn Path is released October 26).
Says Bannister: “I have been delighted with the amazing reaction to the opening series. It proves there are thousands of people who appreciate great music, great landscapes and great conversation. I think it’s true to say that people are more open about themselves whilst walking side-by-side. Season 2 will be every bit as compelling with even more top artists sharing their inspiration and putting on their walking boots.”
Folk on Foot will be available to download from www.folkonfoot.com or via Spotify, iTunes, Podbean and other podcast apps. The podcast is produced by Sally Spurring and Natalie Steed at Wire Free Productions.