Last year I wrote about how a man from Scotland went to Holland for a holiday and came back almost 2 years later (!!!) for a one off gig with a Dutch No. 1 under his belt. The venue was Captain`s Rest in the west end of Glasgow where the prodigal son returned with Two very special guests Amy Belle and Alan Frew to play an inspired set to an awe- struck crowd.
That was the night that a new band was to form now known as The Follies. It is a natural progression and an exciting prospect to anyone who was there who witnessed the unified talent and he charismatic on-stage presence between the Three that night.
I spoke to Raymond about it over the telephone from his House in Holland where he said "It was a special night in the Captain`s rest that night so forming a band was a no-brainer. I think we were all thinking he same thing onstage as everything just seemed to click"
Amy Belle`s name has recently snowballed ino super fame after International megastar Miley Cyrus covered one of her songs `Giving You Up` (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrnzLaIEm7s ) a fine twist of fate for an Anniesland lass born and bred who has worked hard over the year`s whether it`s been in the industry or busking on the strees of Glasgow. She has a powerful yet sweet vocal that even Rod Stewart couldn`t resist. He asked her to play Royal Albert Hall with him and can`t praise her performance enough. She sings, she writes and can even play guitar and banjo.
And then there`s Alan Frew completing the trio, a master of musicianship from Ayrshire well known in the live circuit who can turn his hand to anything. He travelled round Europe wih just a guitar on his back, The Troon troubadour as he is affectionately known has played with he legendary Albert Lee, Paulo Nutini and played in front of 20,000 people whilst suppporting Texas and has worked with Mel C, Heaher Smalls and Speedway. He also plays the Nick Drake memorial every year as a special guest.
Together to create a truly special and unique sound that captivates and enthrals crowds. Traditional folk with a modern twist, no gimmicks just stripped down live music of the highest magnitude. “We're now working with 3 part harmonies as well as the three guitars/banjo/mandolin on the go - this gives us an even fuller, richer sound and is really our thing. I think when you see us before it was only Amy and me on vocals - it's now even better and a LOT tigher”
The last point is hard to believe if you seen them play before but in actual fact they had only had `One and a half` practises before Captains Rest. It was mostly Raymonds own material hat night but when you get three world class musicans togeher then it`s obvious something beautiful is going to occur.
The fact it can get better and tighter is a frightening thought so when Feb 18th comes around at Oran Mor his will be a band playing at it`s full strength and probably the last chance you`ll ever see them in an intimate venue such as Oran Mor before superstardom springs them into orbit.
They are also going to be recording a 3 track taster from the forthcoming album in time for the gig produced by none other han Jamie Duffan (son of Wet Wet Wet`s Graeme Duffin). It all bodes well for a bright year ahead .
The Follies play Oran Mor, Glasgow on February 18th and they will be announcing very special guests next week exclusively to music-news.com