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The Tradition Lives On CD

The tradition Lives On: A Celebration of the folk culture of North Tynedale and Redesdale. The beautiful area of North Tynedale and Redesdale has fascinating history and a rich culture of music, song and poetry. The region, even now, is quite isolated and still worked by hill farmers and shepherds. In ther past local folk worked hard on the land and in their leisure time had to make their own entertainment. Music was composed and played on Northumbrian pipes and fiddles etc. Songs and poems were written and at weekends country dances took place. This tradition is still alive and well in the region and continues to evolve today, inspired by new generations of local musicians, singers and poets. The Heritage Centre at Bellingham covers North Tynedale and Redesdale and felt there was both a need and a demand to capture this folk culture and record it onto DVD and CD for posterity, to promote the area and its cultural traditions and to provide a new platform for local perfromers.

Notes on CD Tracks:


1.) The Hesleyside Reelers

Rachel Pearson, Gwennie Fraser, Don Clegg, Martha Carr, Keith Gustafson and Stephen Fry

Jamie Allen/ Salmon Tails up the Water/ Davy Nick Nack/ Border Fray

A set of four dance tunes popular in the region. Jamie Allen was as famous throughout Britain 200 years ago as Robin Hood is today. Jamie Allen was a celebrated Northumbrian piper and sometime villain, born in about 1734 at Swindon near Rothbury. Jamie was taught to play the pipes by his father, William “Will” Allen, who was born in Bellingham in 1704 and probably came from a farming family. Will was an expert player of various types of bagpipe and Salmon Tails Up The Water is one of his compositions.


2.) Landermason


This instrumental piece was written by Landermason at home during the summer months of 2011. Riverdale is a small settlement at the western edge of Bellingham in the North Tyne valley where Fiona Lander and Paul Mason live. The hypnotic patterns played on finger-style ukelele, together with the haunting whistle melodies, create a dreamy and relaxed mood



3.) Liz Law &Terry Conway

Bonnie Tyneside

 Bonnie Tyneside was published in 'Miscellaneous Poems' By George Chatt in 1866 although his poems may have already been published in the columns of the local newspapers, mostly in the Hexham Courant. George Chatt was born in Wall and lived by Dipton Mill, near Hexham. He was the first editor of West Cumberland Times and had connections with the literary departments of the Hexham Herald and the Hexham Courant. Chatt died on November 8th 1890 aged 53.


4.) Rachel Pearson & Gwennie Fraser

     The Curlew's Lullaby

A beautiful evocative tune written by Harry Pearson, father of Rachel. The sound of the curlew in the North Tyne valley is always associated with the coming of Spring.


5.) Mike Tickell

Bellingham Show

A story song written by Billy Bell of Low Byrness, Redesdale, just before the First World War.

Billy worked as a 'road man' maintaining the verges of the winding road from Byrness to Carter Bar. He wrote several versions of this song and this one is 'An Old Man's Experience at Bellingham Show'


6.) Jessica Lamb

The Breamish/Hareshaw Burn

The Breamish is a traditional tune named after delightful Breamish Valley in North Northumberland

Hareshaw Burn was written by Kathryn Tickell. Hareshaw Burn leads to the spectacular Hareshaw Linn waterfall before flowing through Bellingham.


7.) Stephen Fry

   Bonny at Morn

Bonny at Morn is a beautiful rural Northumbrian lullaby taken from the 'Northumbrian Minstrelsy' 1882.


8.) David McCracken

  The Banks of the Bonny North Tyne

Written and sung by David McCracken after moving to North Tyne from Coquetdale. The song follows the journey of the North Tyne from its head to its meeting with the South Tyne at Warden.


9.) Mike Gibson

  Them Northumbrian Hills

Robert Allen of Bellingham was a celebrated writer known as the 'Bard of the North Tyne'. He composed many excellent poems in the local Northumbrian dialect. This is just one of them.


10.) Don Clegg

   The Keel Row

The well known Tyneside tune dating back to 1770 is played here by Don on his 'moothie'.


11.) Sarah Hallberg

    Water of Tyne

From Bell's 'Rhymes of Northern Bards', 1812.

One of the best known Northumbrian songs, popularly thought to refer to crossing  the North Tyne at one of the deeper stretches near Chollerford.


12.) Gwennie Fraser

   Sweet Hesleyside

One of the most beautiful Northumbrian pipe tunes. Composed by A.Charlton (who may or may not have been one of the Charltons of Hesleyside).

Played here by Gwennie Fraser who lives on the Hesleyside estate and filmed on the main staircase in Hesleyside Hall.


13.) Mike Gibson


 Bushels of Mussels

The saga of Wark Bridge captured in verse. The first verse and chorus were written by Bob Bolam of Prudhoe several years ago when freshwater pearl mussels were found to be breeding beneath Wark Bridge preventing desperately needed repairs. Mike has updated the song and added more verses to include recent events in the tale of maintaining this historic bridge.



14.) Terry Conway


Hawkhope Hill

Terry wrote this song after working for the Council road works during the construction of Kielder Dam.

New houses were being built at Falstone to rehouse those made homeless by the creation of the dam.

There were many difficulties encountered, as this very amusing song testifies.



15.) Martha Carr

The Homecoming

This beautiful tune was recently composed by Derek Hobbs of Rossleigh Music, Northumberland and is found in the collection Bewick's Footsteps (A Garland of New Tunes).


16.) David McCracken

GYet GYet Tarset Tarret

The Tarset and the Tarret are two burns that flow into the North Tyne. An old border cry once heard in many a border fray involving North Tynedale reivers like the Dodds and Charltons was:

Tarset and Tarret Burn, Hard and Heather Bred. GYet! GYet! GYet!  (GYet means 'clear the way')


17.) Landermason

Saxophone Jig

This short and uplifting piece for soprano saxophone and guitar was written in 2004 by Landermason. It was inspired by the beautiful hills of Northumberland where they live.The track is featured on their album 'Angel of the North' which can be purchased at www.landermason.com


18.) The Hesleyside Reelers

Bonny North Tyne

A much loved Northumbrian waltz composed by Billy Ballentine who was born c.1890 and was a shepherd and piccolo player from Simonburn, near Wark, Northumberland.


19.) Mike Tickell

The Death of Parcy Reed

A Border Ballad from the Rede valley from about 1600 telling how Parcy Reed was betrayed by the Hall family from the same valley.



20.) Pete Stenhouse and Stephen Fry

 Wonderful Wark

Composed by Stephen Fry in 2009 when he lived in Wark. In praise of atruly wonderful village - and the words were topical at the time!


21.) Mike Gibson

The Canniest Place on Earth

Another of Robbie Allen's wonderful poems about his canny homeland.


22.) Jessica Lamb

 The Snows They Melt the Soonest

An evocative and haunting song. The melody was printed in Bruce and Stokoe's 'Northumbrian Minstrelsy'in 1882. The contributor of the song was Thomas Doubleday (1790–1870), who put it to a melody ("My Love is Newly Listed") learned from a Newcastle street singer.


23.) Don Clegg

The Dancing Hall

Product Features

ISBN: 5028843006183

Product Code: HI1059CD

24 Tracks

Product Images

Price: £ 9.99