Fairport Convention - Rosie (1973)

Fairport Convention are a successful English band who are credited with inventing ‘electric folk’, a subgenre of folk rock based heavily on traditional English folk songs.

By the time of their eighth album, Fairport Convention contained no original members. Simon Nicol had left in late 1971, the last of the founding members to do so. The band was now under the leadership of Dave Swarbrick, who led them through various confusing line-up changes, until by 1973 they had settled on the refreshed line-up of Swarbrick (vocals/fiddle/mandolin/acoustic guitar), Trevor Lucas (vocals/guitar), Jerry Donahue (lead guitar), Dave Pegg (vocals/bass/mandolin) and Dave Mattacks (drums). Lucas and Donahue were no strangers to the Fairport scene, as they had both been part of Fotheringay, the band formed by Sandy Denny after she had left in 1969. Lucas was also by this point married to Denny!
Rosie came out in 1973. It turned out to have a more diverse sound than their last few records, no doubt due to the presence of Lucas (an Australian) and Donahue (an American). They brought more diversity to the English folk style the band had been pursuing over the last few years, in particular Donahue's country-tinged guitar adding a new element to the band's sound. The material itself was less dependent on traditional sources - with the exception of one folk instrumental which had by now become a standard Fairport album feature, the songs were all originals, mostly written by Swarbrick, who proved himself as a fine singer-songwriter. In particular the title track is worthy of great praise. The album also featured several musical guests - there are appearances from ex-Fairport members Sandy Denny and Richard Thompson, guitarist Ralph McTell, and Fotheringay drummer Gerry Conway. Conway actually drums on three songs, and Tim Donald does on another three, with Mattacks only appearing on four - he briefly left the band during the making of the album, but came back in time to finish it.
Rosie proved that Fairport were going to keep making music regardless of who was in the group, and were keen to keep expanding artistically. It proved so admirably.

Babbacombe Lee (1971) <|> Nine (1973)
More from Fairport Convention


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thanks...been a " Fairport" fan since i was 15 years old...long time ago :) ...Rosie is a favourite