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Riverboat Records

New Found Land



FatDog are the musical torchbearers of a new found land - a mythical island in the North Sea, where musicians from Scandinavia and Britain meet to play and swap stories.


FatDog are the musical torchbearers of a new found land - a mythical island in the North Sea, where musicians from Scandinavia and Britain meet to play and swap stories.

FatDog: New Found Land

FatDog was born one night on the Swedish Koster Islands in the summer of 2011. Jazz trio Fattigfolket and folk trio Doggerland were playing at the same festival and decided to end the evening by performing together. The result was surprising, exciting - and oddly beautiful.

With members from Sweden, Norway and England, and based on both sides of the Swedish-Norwegian border, FatDog cross boundaries every time they meet, both literally and musically. Three are established folk musicians anchored in the musical traditions of Scandinavia and Britain. Three are accomplished jazz musicians with an ear both for the local and the cosmopolitan, the traditional and the experimental.

FatDog's instrument line-up usually raises a few eyebrows: concertina, trumpet, cittern, clarinet, hurdy-gurdy, saxophone and double bass. Having no percussionist, the rhythm section is provided by the buzz of the hurdy-gurdy, the chug of the concertina and, on occasion, the thrash of a cittern. The resulting rhythmic drive is unobtrusive but irresistible. Not least, Anders's hurdy-gurdy, combining drones, melody and rhythmic 'trompette', is a powerhouse at the centre of the band. Patrik's bubbling clarinet, Hallvard's sonorous sax and Gunnar's inventive trumpet each provide both improvisation and chords, playing off the melody and each other in constant movement. Underlying it all is Putte's double bass, solid and playful at the same time.

FatDog's repertoire always has at least one foot in folk music, either taking a traditional song or tune as their point of departure or composing new ones in the folk idiom. The rhythms of Scandinavian dance are well represented here, while influences from Macedonia to Morris dance turn up without seeming out of place.

About half of the material on New Found Land consists of songs featuring Richard's rich baritone. Whether singing in Norwegian, French or his native English, his style, honed over 40 years of singing traditional material, is honest and direct. Two of the tracks featured are six-voice a cappella songs - providing a change of musical scenery and giving the lie to the common conception that jazz musicians can't sing!

Track Information

01 Jonas Sl&;aumlngpolska
(Jonas &;Aringkerlund, arr Patrik Wing&;aringrd)
Asl&;aumlngpolska is a swirling variant of the Swedish 3/4polska dance. We learned this one from the Swedish fiddler Jonas &;Aringkerlund.

02 Ring The Changes
(Richard Burgess, arr Patrik Wing&;aringrd)
A Welsh Morris dance tune leads the way in Richard's tribute to village England.

03 Halling Etter Sjur Eldegard
(trad, arr FatDog)
Ahalling is a 2/4 dance found in Norway and Sweden, traditionally danced by men to show off their agility.

04 Se Solens Skj&;oslashnne Lys Og Prakt
(trad, arr FatDog)
'See the sun's beautiful light and glory'. The words of this Norwegian hymn concern sunsets and faith, and were written by Birgitte Kaas Huitfeldt in 1734. Richard, who lives close to her estate, has added his own respectfully agnostic verse at the end.

05 Sexling
(trad, arr FatDog)
A dance from Svarteborg in Bohusl&;aumln, Patrik, Anders and Putte's home county.

06 Hog-Eye
(trad, arr FatDog)
A sea-shanty considered so obscene by collectors that the lyrics were apparently 'camouflaged'.

07 Polon&;aumls Fr&;aringn Sexdrega
(trad, arr FatDog)
A Swedish processional

08 Sandansko Oro
(trad, arr FatDog)
A classic Macedonian dance tune in 22/16 time

09 Terre Neuve/Isdalen
Terre Neuve (trad, arr FatDog)/Isdalen (Anders &;Aringdin, arr FatDog)
This French sailor's song, learned from Emmanuel Pariselle, deals with the deprivations of sailing off the Banks of Newfoundland, not least missing Mum's cabbage soup. Anders wrote Isdalen when living in Bergen, Norway.

10 Emigrantskipet
(trad, arr Richard Burgess)
In 1904 the steamer 'Norge' sailed from Copenhagen with emigrants on board. Tragedy struck in the Atlantic when the ship got too close to the island of Rockall. 635 lives were lost. The ballad was written shortly after the event

11 Bay Of Biscay
(trad, arr FatDog)
Richard learned this song from the great singer and flute-player Cathal McConnell from Fermanagh on one of his many trips to Norway.

12 Gubbvalsen
(Anders &;Aringdin, arr FatDog)
Anders's 'old man's waltz' - which, if you try to dance, is not a waltz at all&;hellip