An Introduction to June Tabor (Topic Records)
This is a compilation of June Tabor’s albums from her 1976 release Airs and Graces to 2011’s reunion with The Oysterband, Ragged Kingdom. It will provide a good introduction to a singer universally recognized to be one of the truly great folksingers of the last 40 years.
Things get underway with a jaunty reading of While Gamekeepers Lie Sleeping, accompanied by the brilliant guitar work of Martin Simpson. This is immediately followed by an unaccompanied and suitable haunting version of Eric Bogle’s seminal anti-war song And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda.
Shallow Brown, which is strongly influenced by Percy Grainger’s folksong setting, allows her to give full reign to her vocal expressiveness, and Unicorns is perhaps the prettiest of all the songs on offer here.
This is an outstanding collection of some of June Tabor’s finest work, which you can only be excused from owning if you already have all of the recordings represented here.