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Vashti Bunyan


Country of origin:

England

Type of music generally:

Ethereal folk

Status:

Most recent release, Heartleap (2014)

See also:

Vashti Bunyan's site

Comparisons:

Vashti Buyna is the precursor for many contemporary folk artists

Covers/own material:

Own

General comments:

For years as I listened to English folk I kept running across Vashti Bunyan's name as one of the major figures of late 60s/early 70s folk, and so many mentions talked about how she had disappeared entirely. Eventually (in 2000) I was able to track down a Spinney re-release of her sole album (at the time), Just Another Diamond Day. Her fragile sound was echoed a little in other female singer songwriters of the time (e.g. Joni Mitchell's early albums), but its influence has been strong in the new psychedelic folk of the 2000s. Interest in her work made people track her down, which led to the release of Lookaftering in 2005.
     Sometimes deliberately naïve-sounding, almost twee, her music isn't something everyone will like, and for myself a little of it goes a long way, but it's truly lovely and unique work. (Neile)

Recommended first album:

Either

Recordings:


Just Another Diamond Day

Release info:

1970; various reissues

Availability:

U.K.

Ecto priority:

Highly recommended for fans of psychedelic folk

Group members:

Vashti Bunyan—vocals, guiatar

Guest artists:

Christopher Sykes—piano, organ
John James—dulcichord
Robin Williamson—fiddle, mandolin, Irish harp (2, 8, 13)
Dave Swarbrick (Fairport Convention)—fiddle, mandolin (5, 9, 14)
Simon Nicol (Fairport Convention)—banjo (5, 9, 14)
Robert Kirby—string arrangements, recorder arrangements (1, 6, 11)
Mike Crowther—guitar (17)

Produced by:

Joe Boyd

Comments:

A collection of beautiful and fragile songs sung softly, like they were meant to be whispered to you. (Neile)

Lookaftering

Release info:

2005—DiCristina—STEP06

Availability:

U.K. and U.S.

Ecto priority:

Recommended

Group members:

Vashti Bunyan—vocals, guitar, nylon acoustic guitar

Guest artists:

Max Richter—Hammond, glockenspiel, backwards glock, wine glasses, piano, recorder, mellotron, fender rhodes, pneumonium, vibraphone
Louise Fuller, Frances Dewar, John Metcalfe, Ian Burdge, Fiona Brice, Gillian Cameron—strings on 3 tracks
Rebecca Wood—oboe on 2 tracks, coranglais on 1 track
Adem—harmonium on 1 track, autoharp on 1 track
Devendra Banhart—steel acoustic guitar on 1 track
Kevin Barker, Otto Hauser—electric guitars
Joanna Newsom—harp on 2 tracks
Adam Pierce—hammer dulcimer on 1 track
Robert Kirby—trumpet on 1 track
Marcelo de Oliviers—guitar on 1 track

Produced by:

Max Richter

Comments:

The return of Vashti Bunyan's soft and fragile vocals and gentle tunes after many years. This album is very like her first, in sound and spirit. My favourite song on here is "Here Before", which to my ear makes the very best use of the lovely sound of Vashti vocals and light songwriting. The rest of the album is also lovely too, though! (Neile)

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DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.

Entry last updated 2014-10-06 16:22:40.
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