Monday, 13 March 2017

Unthanks showcase music of Nick Drake's mother Molly

Molly Drake, the mother of the remarkable Nick Drake, was a poet and songwriter in her own right. 
She made recordings at home during the 1950s with the help of her husband and, though they were never released at the time, they share plenty of common ground with her celebrated son’s work. They are charming and bittersweet, yet dark and pensive. 
Now those compositions are forming the latest album project from Tyneside-based folk band The Unthanks, who embark on a major tour of How Wild The Wind Blows: Performing The Songs and Poems of Molly Drake.
Molly Drake shadowed by Rachel and Becky Unthank
The Unthanks say that Molly’s work is extraordinary enough to rank alongside and independently of Nick Drake’s.
With the full blessing and enthusiasm of actress Gabrielle Drake (Mollys daughter and Nicks sister) The Unthanks are bound to treat her story with the same love, diligence and imagination as they did when reinterpreting the work of Robert Wyatt and Antony & The Johnson's. 

They say: "A treasure trove only recently made public by the Drake family, if ever a body of work actually merited reappraisal and reimagining, Molly Drake’s is surely it."

Molly died in 1993, and some of her recordings were first featured on the documentary of her son's life, A Skin Too Few, in 2000. The first official inclusion in an LP release was on the 2007 album, Family Tree. Two of her compositions - "Poor Mum" and "Do You Ever Remember?" - were included on the release.

Nick Drake's increasing cult following led to further interest in his mother. In 2013 an album entitled Molly Drake was released with the intention of focusing solely on the work of Molly Drake. The 19 songs were recorded on a rudimentary setup at her home in the 1950s. It features Molly's soft vocals accompanied by piano on tracks that mainly last two minutes.  Nick's record producer, Joe Boyd, has stated that this compilation is "the missing link in the Nick Drake story".

In addition to the live re-imaginings by The Unthanks, the audio-visual tour will feature film footage of Molly, and her poetry, recorded and spoken by daughter Gabrielle.

The tour will be accompanied by the release of Diversions Vol. 4 - How Wild The Wind Blows: The Unthanks Perform The Songs and Poems of Molly Drake due for release in late May. 

TOUR DATES 2017

18th April – NEWCASTLE UNDER LYME New Vic Theatre
01782 717962 / newvictheatre.org.uk

19th April – MANCHESTER RNCM
0161 907 5555 / rncm.ac.uk

20th April – WREXHAM William Aston Hall
0844 888 9991 / glyndwr.ac.uk

21st April – KENDAL Brewery Arts Centre
01539 725 133 / breweryarts.co.uk

22nd April – EDINBURGH The Queens Hall
0131 668 2019 / thequeenshall.net

23rd April – BERWICK UPON TWEED Maltings Theatre
01289 330999 / maltingsberwick.co.uk

26th April – BIRMINGHAM The Glee Club
0871 472 0400 / glee.co.uk

27th April – CAMBRIDGE Corn Exchange
01223 357851 / cambridgelivetrust.co.uk

28th April – BASINGSTOKE The Anvil
01256 844244 / anvilarts.org.uk

29th April – CARDIFF Tramshed
029 2023 5555 / tramshedcardiff.com

30th April – BRADFORD ON AVON Wiltshire Music Centre
01225 860100 / wiltshiremusic.org.uk

1st May – BRIGHTON The Old Market
01273 201 801 / theoldmarket.com

2nd May – SOUTHAMPTON Turner Sims
023 8059 5151 / turnersims.co.uk

3rd May – LONDON The Albany
020 8692 4446 / thealbany.org.uk

6th May – CLITHEROE The Grand
01200 421599 / thegrandvenue.co.uk

7th May – BARROW IN FURNESS The Forum
01229 820000 / theforumbarrow.co.uk

10th May - RUNCORN Brindley
0151 907 8360 / thebrindley.org.uk

11th May – LEEDS City Varieties
0113 243 0808 / cityvarieties.co.uk

12th May – LEEDS City Varieties
0113 243 0808 / cityvarieties.co.uk

13th May – STOCKTON ON TEES ARC
01642 525199 / arconline.co.uk

14th May – NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE Theatre Royal
08448 11 21 21* / theatreroyal.co.uk * call charges apply

25th May – DUBLIN Vicar St
00353 (0)1 7755 800 / vicarstreet.com

28th May – LONDON The Barbican Milton Court (2 shows)
020 7638 8891 / barbican.org.uk

Tickets / Info: www.the-unthanks.com

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