1971 had seen Fairport lose most of their more celebrated band members, shrunk to the quartet of Dave Swarbrick (fiddle/vocals), Simon Nicol (guitar/vocals), Dave Pegg (bass) and Dave Mattacks (drums). Swarb had found some old newspaper stories extolling the tale and the idea for an album was born. It is actually not a half-bad LP and has stood the test of time, perhaps better than some of their later output, possibly the reason why the current band, still including Nicol and Pegg, resurrected it for both a tour and a live recording, released in 2012. Here is the high point, the failed execution, in song, the 2 versions near 40 years apart. See which you prefer.
and 2012 (filmed in 2009):
Next year is Fairport Conventions 50th. They hold a yearly festival, Cropredy, in Oxfordshire. I was there for the 20th, 25th and the 30th birthday celebrations, unable to quite believe that last was nearly 20 years ago. I hope to return in 2017. Any of you be there? It will be history unfolding in itself. Again.
Buy 1971 or 2012