reniLocal chap and musician John Carver contacted me a week or so ago to ask me to give this fine folk gig a plug, starring a lady with a rather remarkable local tale to tell – and she’s supported by some rather excellent Welsh musicians, too.
The whole think takes place on Saturday evening at the Methodist Church in Silver Street, Brownhills, so what’s not to love? It’s only a fiver for a great night’s music and entertainment.
John Carver wrote:
I’m really not sure if we have met or not, but as a local Brownhills West resident for 36 years, and a life long Walsall (Staffordshire) man I have dipped in and out of your blog pages over the years, and have taken a closer interest in the issues with Chasewater Dam.
I have a piece of local event news which you may feel is appropriate to put into your diary and blog.
Local folk veteran Jean Ward is making a popular return to Brownhills Methodist Church on October 18th. Accompanied by her daughter Mandy , and long term guitarist John Carver the trio will be performing a number of old favourites and some new songs.
The evening will also feature the trio Brenig, who are visiting from Aberystwyth.
Come and join us , Doors open 6:30 entrance £5
Jean will be known to many local residents as she grew up in Walsall Wood as Jean Craddock, she married a local gas board man Larui Ward in 1957 and lived and worked in Brownhills for a number of years. She worked at Ducketts shop in Lichfield Road. She sang with Kenny Ball and other bands of that era, making records, radio and television appearances. Lauri and Jean were in the vanguard of the folk revival of the late 1960 & 70’s by running folk clubs in nearby Heath Hayes and the Hazel Slade. They brought many acts to the club before they became household names, Jasper Carrott, and Barbara Dickson to name couple.
Jean continued to sing for many years accompanied by a variety of local instrumentalists including Terry McCann, John and Mike Raven, Chris Towe, Pete Cocoran, and John Baker and John Carver.
In 1976 she released her own album Stay Not Late to the acclaim of many of the folk scenes commentators, but sadly after 1990 family problems and her husbands death she virtually gave up singing in public until a couple of years ago.
Now an octogenarian, with replacement hip and knee, she announced herself as the bionic granny to the directors auditions for the 2014’s Britains Got Talent. Singing as a trio with Mandy her daughter and John Carver she was eliminated at the second audition, but it was a good experience.
Mandy lives in Wales and is part of a group called Brenig, named after a local river. Along with Mary on violin, and Daniel they sing Daniel’s self penned songs about Wales and its history.
They are joining Jean for the event at the Methodist Church in October.