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DAVE WEBBER & ANNI FENTIMAN "Constant Lovers" Dragon DRGNCD981

Dave and Anni have been stalwarts of the folk scene for some years, and with their sublime harmony singing, are popular and respected performers at both clubs and festival. Despite being a studio recording this CD has successfully captured the feel, that intimacy, of one of their live sets - just close your eyes and you're there with a chorus of club singers, lovely every minute! In fact here the glorious chorus harmonies are provided by Danny and Joyce McLeod, Barrie and Ingrid Temples, Pete and Trish Walkinson, plus Johnny Collins who provides bass lines to shake your speakers off the wall! In addition there is some exquisite fiddle from the man with the permanent smile - Tom McConville, and the whole effect is really something rather special.

If you've heard Dave and Anni sing, then the material will be familiar and welcome. They've picked the cream! Wonderful solos from each, marvellous duets, and great chorus songs. "Hexamshire Lass", "Barbara Allen", and "Constant Lovers" from the tradition; Bellamy's "Sir Richard's Song" and a fine version of John K's "Old King Coal". Add to that two songs and a tune from Dave's own writing; "The Young Walsers" has Dave on melodeon accompanied by Tom on fiddle; and the first of his songs is "My Lady of Autumn". This regularly has my local club awash, when the heartfelt sincerity and emotion of this couple's singing has the power to really move people. A rare gift. Dave's other song "The Blackbird" ends with the lines - "After love, I ask of life just one simple thing, pray never let me see the time, that does not let me sing" A wholly appropriate sentiment for this remarkable duo.

No record collection is complete ... This is a way-marker recording of traditional singing, a classic, buy it.

Mel Howley

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This album was reviewed in Issue 30 of The Living Tradition magazine.