Friday, 28 October 2011

O, she will sing the savageness out of a bear!

Desdemona will, according to Othello. According to Shakespeare.

Kate Rusby will, according to me.

We went to see her in concert last night at Tunbridge Wells and it was just the most uplifting experience.

It's hard to explain to someone who doesn't know what a broad Yorkshire accent sounds like - she's from Barnsley - but she has one. Here, for your edification, if edification should be needed, is a phrase in that dialect:  

Ah-cud eet a scabby donkey 'tween tu Bre't-Vans.

Translation: I could eat a scabby donkey between two bread vans...that is to say, I'm very hungry. (For some strange reason I am unable to find a picture to illustrate that!)

That, pretty much, is how Kate Rusby speaks and I could listen to her all day. The thing is, that when she sings, she has a voice like an angel, as pure and as clear as any voice I've ever heard, which is somehow unexpected when you've just heard her talking.

Here's a link to my favourite song of hers, just for you:

Underneath The Stars

Kate Rusby is generous, too. A year or so ago, I was creating a DVD for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission about a young lad in the Second World War who lied about his age so he could enlist in the army and was killed shortly after the Normandy landings, aged 16.

I asked Kate if I could use one of her songs for the soundtrack - an English folk song. 'Of course!' was the immediate answer - none of this 'maybe, but it will have to be licensed and it will cost you X hundred pounds for 30 seconds and you can only use it in the UK and only for 5 years.'

So my soft spot for Kate Rusby is even softer.

Here's a link to that song:

The Unquiet Grave

I'd love to be able to make such a difference to the world with my work.