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JOHN CONOLLY & PETE SUMNER "Trawlertown" Fellside Records FECD135

Seventeen tracks devoted to the singing of the fishing, sung principally by John Conolly and Pete Summer, but with instrumental and vocal help from half a dozen other folk, who from time to time have been associated with John and Pete.

There's a couple of traditional tracks, Hull is represented by songs written by Mike Waterson and Keith Marsden whilst Fleetwood's writers are Ron Baxter and Ross Campbell. Dave Evardson and Pete Addison contribute towards Grimsby's portion but the bulk of that area is covered by the song writing of John Conolly and Bill Meek although it's nice to see a credit being given on "A Lumper's Life! to Martin Haxby, one of the stalwarts of the Grimsby folk club that spawned John and Bill.

As might be expected, the CD includes John Conolly's "Fiddler's Green", written away back in 1966, and now part of many a singer's repertoire, and sometimes mistaken for a traditional song. Of the other Grimsby-inspired compositions "The Grimsby Lads" and "Married a Trawlerman" from the Conolly/Meek stable stand out, rivalled by Dave Evardson's "The North Wall". Mike Waterson's "Three Day Millionaire" just pips the others from the non-Grimsby offerings.

The CD comes with a twelve page insert including some appropriate illustrations, mainly from the National Fishing Heritage Centre, Great Grimsby. The words of the songs are not included but the introductory and song notes (unfortunately without a credit) are excellent, and add greatly to the package.

Bob Blair

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This album was reviewed in Issue 31 of The Living Tradition magazine.