Folk fans turned up in droves for Jurassic Folk’s inaugural Guest Night at the Grove, Seaton, to such an extent that it was standing room only.

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There was space enough for everyone but the Grove’s store of seats was exhausted!

Despite being out of circulation for over three years while he pursued his acting career, Tim is obviously still a big draw, and the audience was drawn from Somerset and Dorset, as well as Devon.

The concert started just about on time after a few teething problems with the sound system, which thereafter behaved impeccably, complemented by the quite excellent natural acoustics of the venue. In support were two of Jurassic Folk’s regulars, and it was Robin Nancarrow who started the evening off with an impeccably constructed set of his own songs, accompanying himself with his inspired guitar playing.

The other spot was in the hands of the Bard of Seaton himself, the incomparable Ted Dowse, who was undoubtedly on the top of his form.

He also performed his own material, but any similarity ended there.

Ted doesn’t write tunes, preferring to modify and adapt various familiar refrains, but as a wordsmith he is unsurpassed.

The songs and poems alternate without warning between rib-tickling humour and sensitive, heart warming themes, and were applauded loudly by the appreciative crowd.

Tim van Eyken (pictured left) needed no introduction when he came on and quickly got into the groove with his songs, quite a few of them brand new, accompanied by economic but totally appropriate guitar, but it was his melodeon which really got the heartstrings going again.

It doesn’t seem like he’s pressing the buttons, more like he’s waving a feather over the keys, so light and compellingly rhythmic is the sound that emanates.

His two sets lasted over an hour and a half and, after a couple of encores, everyone departed warmed by a most enjoyable evening of top notch music.

To the future, the next guest night is on Wednesday, March 7 and will headline the virtuoso Tim Edey, who has just recently won both the awards for which he was nominated at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, namely “Best Musician” and “Best Duo”, so this is going to be an unmissable occasion.

For more information call 01297 20064, visit www.midweekherald.co.uk and click on the link or watch this space for full details shortly.

Peter Arnold

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