As some of you will know, pasties & cream – as well as being the name of my humble blog – is the title of a seminal Cornish folk album (and song) by the late, great Brenda Wootton.
A folk singer from Newlyn, born with an extraordinary, pure voice, Brenda is to the county of Cornwall what Edith Piaf is to France, or Mercedes Sosa to Argentina. Clearly Cornwall is, ahem, a lot smaller, and those singers are infinitely more famous, but the stories and music share a number of similarities.
Brenda has been gone some time – she died in 1994 – and fans like me had to make do with her old, classic albums, most no longer even in production. Until, that is, a sound engineer in Porthleven unearthed a box of previously unheard, master tapes in his loft of a concert Brenda Wootton gave in the Bobino Theatre in Paris in 1984.
Against the odds, the tapes were in amazing condition and, after being remastered, have just been released as a new album entitled ‘All of Me’. I got given a copy for Christmas and… it’s the business. The sound quality is clear and crisp and even, and the song line-up – as is typical of her music – is rousing and gentle in equal measures. Cornish men and women around the world won’t be able to get enough of the Cornish pride positively dripping from every song!
In the era of Amazon and ebay, the £12.99-plus-postage pricetag might seem a little steep but when you read the story within about how the album has been released by a small group of fans, unsupported by a big label, it seems very fair.
You can read more about it and buy a copy at www.brendawootton.com.