John Booth - Songwriter
Biography


John has lived in many different areas but is still a Northerner at heart.  However it was during a long spell in the East Midlands that he became one of the founding members of the Leicestershire-based band Oakenshield for 5 years in the 80's, recording two albums of mostly traditional music.  After that he played on the pub circuit in the Coventry area and briefly in other folk bands (Grass Roots and RedHanded), until deciding to concentrate on his own songs, performing solo with guitar.  Then in the 90's, work brought him back to the North West where he teamed up with Ailsa (well, he married her, but apart from that...) and set up home in Cheshire. Ailsa, a Liverpudlian who was also proud of her Scottish and Welsh ancestry, came from a family rich in music. Her dad sang principal bass with the Liverpool Grand Opera Company and her mum was a talented pianist.  Ailsa had sung in choirs as a teenager and for some private functions, but on meeting up with John again (they had known each other for many years, but it's a long story...), they started to sing together and many people become fans of Ailsa's unique melodic style, equally at home on traditional ballads or standards from the thirties.
Sadly, Ailsa's fine voice was lost to us after a long illness in April 2019.

For many years, John & Ailsa were involved in the running of Northwich Folk Club, as well as appearing at many other clubs and festivals including Shrewsbury, Brampton, Woodford, Middlewich, Four Fools, Glasson and Ireby Village. They have also taken part in the community projects The Marbury Mysteries (2002) and Salt Tellers (2005) (for which John wrote the original music), Moulton Drama Group's musical productions - Smike! and Animal Farm - as well as providing the period music for the Harlequin Players production of Dad's Army.  They have also featured on Genevieve Tudor's Folk Programme on Radio Shropshire, Radio Stoke and Radio Hereford & Worcester and on Stan Ambrose's Folkscene on Radio Merseyside. They also did shows suitable for local groups such as WIs ("A Musical Journey Through Time" and "Folklore, Fancies & Seasonal Songs").

Now, though, John is going to concentrate on his songwriting - and letting those songs be heard - which means he will still be performing solo - and recording, like the new cd for 2020, "A Place Of My Own".



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