The Sorrow Songs: Folk Songs of Black British Experience is the new album by Cornwall-based folk singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Angeline Morrison, her first record for the historic Topic Records label.
Produced by Eliza Carthy and featuring some of her beautiful, soaring string arrangements, The Sorrow Songs was recorded in Cornwall at Cube Studio and is a work of what she calls 're-storying.'
"The traditional songs of the UK are rich with storytelling, and you can find songs with examples of almost any kind of situation or person you can think of. But whilst people of the African diaspora have been present in these islands since at least Roman Times, their histories are little known - and they don't tend to appear in the folk songs of these islands."
Angeline Morrison began to wonder if she could discover more about the lives of these ordinary and extraordinary Black ancestors and create an album of songs in the sonic style of UK folk and traditional music, in the hope that this silent space could then begin to be filled with stories. With the help of Arts Council National Lottery funding, Angeline began what became a year of research into this neglected area of Black British history. The Sorrow Songs: Folk Songs of Black British Experience is the result.
Released to commemorate Black History Month in October, this powerful record is intended to honour these Black ancestors who lived in these islands and to act as a gift to the folk community.
The musicians on the album are: Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne (anglo concertina, melodeon, vocals), Clarke Camilleri (guitar, banjo, vocals), Hamilton Gross (violin, vocals), Rosie Crow (piano, vocals), Alex Neilson (drums, vocals), Eliza Carthy (violin, fiddlesticks, vocals), Martin Carthy (guitar) and Angeline Morrison (vocals, autoharp, double bass).