Lost Love Found

by Jim Causley

WGS348CD
Not Available

This, Jim's second solo cd is the eagerly awaited, dark followed-up to his acclaimed debut album 'Fruits of the Earth" (WildGoose) Causley explores songs and ballads of heartbreak, woe and the varying interpretations of love itself.

On 'Lost Love Found' we find Causley's vocals the most experimental to date ranging from a warm, soft whisper to the gravelly, bluesy tones of Tom Waits. Accompanied by his dextrous accordion playing, Causley builds on his collaborative work with multi-instrumentalist James Dumbelton and on several tracks they are joined by guest musicians James Delarre of Mawkin, Sandra Kerr and George Papavgeris. The general feel of the album is rich and mature with a selection of Causley's strongest material to date.



1 Polly Vaughn 
Words trad., music Shirley Collins, arr Causley/Dumbelton 

I first discovered this gorgeous version of the song on Shirley Collin's album 'The Sweet Primeroses'. The words were collected in the Appalachians by Cecil Sharp and the enchanting melody was written by Shirley herself. Anyone familiar with the English versions of this song (such as Harry Cox's epic version) will notice it's a trifle shorter as it doesn't feature the whole Jimmy's trial and Polly's ghost bit. But I don't mind that as it gets to the point a lot quicker! I’d like to dedicate this song to ‘Old Bean’ Roger Edwards who has given me great encouragement throughout my career and makes me sing this song annually at the English Country Music Weekend. 

2 Cupid the Ploughboy 
Words trad/Causley, tune Causley, arr Causley/Dumbelton 

I fell for Cupid the Ploughboy kinda by accident when I was looking up another song and he happened to be living on the opposite page. I was most disappointed that in the end the narrator of the song and cupid end up getting married; humans marrying gods is just not the done thing and aside from that it made for a really boring ending so I decided to restore him to the mirage he so obviously is. Which goes for the vast majority of young men who declare their undying love! 

3 Wild Rover 
trad/arr Causley/Kerr 

This more reflective, melancholic version of the somewhat tired old rover was collected from a sailor in Plymouth by the late, great Cyril Tawny. I do love finding interesting versions of songs that have a groan-factor when you so much as mention their names. If only to remind folks that the reason they’ve been done-to-death is simply because they’re fantastic songs. 

4 Loving Hannah 
trad/arr Causley/Dumbelton 

Janet Russell is the lady in question for teaching me this. She learnt it from the wonderful Davie Steele in Edinburgh back in the 80's. It’s most likely to be American in origin and Janet and I both agreed that we like the gender ambiguity regarding the narrator and Hannah whoever he/she may be. I could have ironed it out but that’s just dull. 

5 Shulé Rune 
trad/arr Causley/Dumbelton 

Here's another American version of a British song. It is reported to be Irish in origin although the accent on the E of Shulé suggests a French flavor and the spelling of Rune also hints at a Nordic connection! 

6 Lady All Skin & Bone 
trad/arr Causley/Dumbelton 

This is a version of a song my Mum used to sing to my sister and I when we were children. Her favorite time to sing it to us would be when driving home through winding lanes at night just after she had pretended the car had broken down… I think that explains why I grew up to be somewhat unbalanced! James can take all the wrap for the choice of chords, somehow this arrangement really makes me think of the music to the computer game; ‘Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge’. Anyone who has ever owned an Amiga will know exactly what I mean! 

7 Traitor’s Love 
George Papavgeris. arr Causley/Dumbelton 

I collected this song in Chesham, Buckinghamshire from an old singer of Greek origin named George Papavgeris. Well actually he emailed it to me along with a few other of his songs asking if I’d like to sing any of them. I was understandably thrilled and honoured and quickly learnt this one. I first performed it, fittingly, at the Herga Folk Club, Pinner, Middlesex where George is a resident and he informed me that he wrote it as a conversation between two characters. After that there was no question as to what to do with the song. I find George alarmingly convincing as the baddie! 

8 Oxford City 
trad/arr Causley 

I learnt this song from the singing of Freda Palmer from Leafield, near Whitney in Oxfordshire. More commonly known as 'Worcester City' or the plot-giveaway title 'Poison in a Glass of Wine'. This song is an early precursor to warning posters in nightclubs for drink-spiking. I think if I’d chosen the title I would have gone for 'Don't Go Out With a Psycho'! 

9 Autumn Days 
Estelle White. arr Causley/Dumbelton 

Everyone between the ages of 35 and 20 will know and love this song. Simply because we were all forced to sing it at primary school with all the other life-affirming songs in the 'Come and Praise' books. Unlike a lot of the other songs in that book, James and I genuinely do love this song, it brings back happy memories and it goes to show you can celebrate life and spirituality without ramming religion down people's throats! 

10 Rolling of the Stones 
trad/arr Dumbelton 

James taught me this haunting song. It had been floating around in his head for some while so he decided I might as well sing it for him! It crops up in the Child collection and is a not too distant cousin of ‘The Two Brothers’. James and I are aware it is “supposed” to be the ‘the tossing of the ball’ but this is the folk-process and we are stubbornly sticking with our miss-interpreted lyrics coz we like them. 
1
Polly Vaughn
music Shirley Collins
2
Cupid the Ploughboy
tune Causley
Sample not available
3
Wild Rover
This more reflective
Sample not available
4
Loving Hannah
Janet Russell is the lady in question for teaching me this. She learnt it from the wonderful Davie Steele in Edinburgh back in the 80's. It’s most likely to be American in origin and Janet and I both agreed that we like the gender ambiguity regarding the narrator and Hannah whoever he/she may be. I could have ironed it out but that’s just dull.
Sample not available
5
Shulé Rune
Here's another American version of a British song. It is reported to be Irish in origin although the accent on the E of Shulé suggests a French flavor and the spelling of Rune also hints at a Nordic connection!
Sample not available
6
Lady All Skin & Bone
This is a version of a song my Mum used to sing to my sister and I when we were children. Her favorite time to sing it to us would be when driving home through winding lanes at night just after she had pretended the car had broken down… I think that explains why I grew up to be somewhat unbalanced! James can take all the wrap for the choice of chords
Sample not available
7
Traitor’s Love
I collected this song in Chesham
8
Oxford City
I learnt this song from the singing of Freda Palmer from Leafield
Sample not available
9
Autumn Days
Everyone between the ages of 35 and 20 will know and love this song. Simply because we were all forced to sing it at primary school with all the other life affirming songs in the 'Come and Praise' books. Unlike a lot of the other songs in that book
Sample not available
10
Rolling of the Stones
James taught me this haunting song. It had been floating around in his head for some while so he decided I might as well sing it for him! It crops up in the Child collection and is a not too distant cousin of ‘The Two Brothers’. James and I are aware it is “supposed” to be the ‘the tossing of the ball’ but this is the folk-process and we are stubbornly sticking with our miss-interpreted lyrics coz we like them.
Sample not available

fRoots

Colin Irwin

Well, he doesn't let the grass grow under his feet. Fast on the heels of albums/ gigs with The Devil's Interval and Waterson:Carthy and tours with Mawkin, here's a second solo record from one of the singers leading the march of the new generation. With sparing but significant contributions from James Dumbleton, James Delarre, Sandra Kerr and George Papavgeris, Causley continues where he left off on Fruits Of The Earth, avoiding the penchant for elaborate arrangements and high velocity delivery, with a measured performance that invests unconditional trust in the strength of the mostly traditional songs he's assembled for the occasion.

In this sense he's a singer of old-fashioned virtues and you can but admire the relaxed assurance that gives him a direct link to the early revivalists - fellow West Countryman Tony Rose for one, Roy Harris for another. His versions of Loving Hannah, Polly Vaughan and the unaccompanied Oxford City are particularly convincing, while he makes an interesting and valiant attempt to rehabilitate Wild Rover. There are some nice duets, too, notably with the author on the excellent George Papavgeris song Traitor's Love and with the sublime Sandra Kerr on Lady All Skin & Bone. That said, it feels disappointingly lightweight in places and there's still a lot more to come from Causley. He's an accomplished singer with plenty of ideas and he has it in him to deliver a major album, probably of big ballads. This isn't it - not with twee throwaways like the old primary school hit Autumn Days - but all the ingredients are there.

Taplas

Roy Harris

Jim Causley arrived in folk music via his family and the folk scene of his home pitch in Devon. After a stint

studying jazz and popular music he took the traditional music course at Newcastle University and is now one of the well-praised young lions of the revival. I enjoyed his set at the recent 'Remembering Cyril' day, so when this arrived for review I was interested to see if his live qualities transferred to record.

They do. His mellow voice brings us some beautifully relaxed interpretations of a group of traditional songs

including Polly Vaughan, Oxford City (the Freda Palmer version) and the not often heard Rolling of the Stones. The version of Wild Rover he does is a gentle one, from the collecting of Cyril Tawney, and a welcome change from the usual chest-beater. His head is not entirely in the past as is shown by the inclusion of George Papavgeris' Traitors Love, one of the highlights of the album.

A trio of accomplished musicians plus his own accordion playing frame the songs well, the whole thing being another step on Jim Causley's upward journey.

The Living Tradition

Mike Wilson

Causley's rich and commanding voice proves to be an incontrovertible draw, right from the first notes of Polly Vaughn, a song collected by Cecil Sharp in the Appalachians and married to a delightful Shirley Collins melody. The depth and resonance that Causley possesses lends drama and authenticity throughout this delightful collection of predominantly traditional material.

Causley provides an interesting interpretation of Shule Rune with a groovy mandolin arrangement, picking out an infectiously brisk rhythm around which Causley weaves his vocal intensity. Traitor's Love, an enjoyable George Papavgeris composition, offers another lively moment with an energetic accordion arrangement, performed as a duet with Papavgeris himself. An a cappella Oxford City has a stark beauty, affording precious opportunity to enjoy Causley's remarkable voice in fine, unadorned majesty.

Instrumental accompaniment is relatively sparse throughout, with Causley's accordion complemented primarily by James Dumbleton's guitar, mandolin and percussion. James Delarre's fiddle brings a different flavour to a few tracks and Sandra Kerr's Appalachian Dulcimer adds an interesting other-worldly feel to Causley's melancholy interpretation of Wild Rover.

Love Lost Found, Causley's second solo offering, is a thoughtfully assembled recording with many facets that impress and beguile.

EDS

Miriam Craig

Having heard Jim Causley sing in person twice and loved his first album, Fruits of the Earth, I felt very chuffed indeed to be given the task of reviewing his second album, and I'm pleased to report that it has only made me more of a fan.

It seems unsurprising that the Devonborn Causley, who studied jazz and popular music at Exeter College before progressing to the traditional music course at the University of Newcastle, was nominated for best newcomer at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in 2006. The most immediately arresting thing about his music is his amazing bass voice that simply makes your insides quiver. I have to admit there are occasional moments when he doesn't quite sing in tune, but they just don't seem to matter when overall he knocks one's socks off so thoroughly.

Like Fruits of the Earth, this album is very much a collaboration between Causley and fellow musician James Dumbelton, who provides backing vocals as well as playing the guitar, mandolin, and crowdy craven (a type of drum, as far as I can work out). The two obviously work well as a team; the arrangements are wonderfully fresh and addictive. On many of the tracks Causley and Dumbelton take rather bare tunes and transform them into something with a beguiling simple-but-complex quality. 'Cupid the Ploughboy' is such a one, and to this, Causley has also added a beautiful new ending that has Cupid, the god with whom the narrator has fallen in love, turn into a mirage that is nothing more than 'perfume in the air'.

I feel sure that, before long, Jim Causley will become an institution as entrenched in the folk establishment as, say, Waterson:Carthy (with whom he has already toured for four years in a row). If you haven't listened to his stuff then I advise you to do so quickly, before you start to appear perilously behind the times,

Song Lines

Julien May

Four Stars

Tweaked and edited, remade and remodelled

Hot on the heels of Bella Hardys CD of songs of love found and lost comes Jim Causleys Lost Love Found. Must be the times were living in. Causleys album even begins with Polly Vaughn, a version of which Hardy delivers unaccompanied on her album. This is a ballad about a young man, Jimmy, who, mistaking his lover for a swan, shoots her dead. Bella Hardys Molly Vaughan; is journalistic, reporting on the trial. Causley cuts that out, making his version spare and archetypal.

Causley, and guitarist James Dumbelton  (whose contribution is crucial) edit and alter lyrics and re-model traditional songs in a way that might distress some, but it pays dividends. His version of that barroom belter Wild Rover, a paean to fecklessness, is transformed. That this wanderer has spent all his money on whisky and beer is a melancholy fact, not a boast. Hes going home to his parents, but theres a possibility that this prodigal son wont find forgiveness. To revivify that song in this way is a remarkable achievement.

Causley is from Devon, and theres something authentically West Country about his forthright singing  he has a lovely voice  and the swing of his accordion playing. I quibble with the choice of some of the material: you might have a soft spot for Autumn Days, from your primary school Come and Praise book, but  sorry Jim  its just trite. But that aside, Lost Love Found is a very good album indeed.

Rock n Reel

Dai Jeffries

Five Stars

Ive thought for some time that, of all the young singers on the circuit, Jim Causley would be the one to sustain. Theres something of the late Tony Rose in that warm, bass voice and hes genuinely engaging on stage with the understanding that an audience with an average age approximately twice his does know something about the music.

The first thing you notice about Lost Love Found is the cover, a cheeky homage to Jim Moray that puts you in a good humour from the start, a feeling reinforced by the first track, Shirley Collinss setting of Polly Vaughn. Not that Jim doesnt take risks. Hes accompanied on Wild Rover by Sandra Kerrs Appalachian Dulcimer, a version not too far removed from the familiar folk-club standard and in changing reclaims the song for serious singers. The first of two modern songs is George Papavgeriss Traitors Love, a song about patriotism and identity as much as love. The second is Autumn Days, still a primary school standard and if Jim didnt sound so genuine it would be a risible choice in the context of this record.

Jims voice and accordion are supplemented by James Dumbeltons guitar, mandolin, voice and percussion, and by James Delarres fiddle, and the recording and balance are exemplary. This is an excellent album  a little short perhaps but that just sent me back to the beginning as soon as it had finished.

Fish Records

Over the past couple of years, Jim Causleys star has been on the rise  a nomination for the BBC Horizon Award, a well received debut album, plus acclaim for The Devils Interval (of which he makes up one third), as well as a couple of winter tours with Waterson:Carthy.

Very much attached to the English tradition, his material reflects his roots but brings in some interesting elements, there are a couple of American versions of British songs, plus Sandra Kerr provides some wonderful Appalachian dulcimer accompaniment; other than this it feels like a English disc in instrumentation with accordion, guitar, mandolin and fiddle throughout.

Its obvious that Causley is steeped in the tradition and loves the material, but this is far from an old-fashioned collection as its a good balance of uptempo melody led songs and more atmospheric English ballads.

Causleys vocals are warm and versatile, for a relatively young man he has an astonishing voice that goes from a whisper to a gravely Waits style with ease. Lost Love Found is a fascinating album, and one that is bound to feature in the best of folk lists come the end of 2007, and Jim Causley is undoubtedly one of the new wave of artists who will carry English folk to a new generation.

Netrythms

David Kidman

Jim's come a long way since his original Best Newcomer nomination in the 2006 Radio 2 Folk Awards, with a further award nomination this year for the CD (Blood And Honey) by the trio he sings with, The Devil's Interval. Jim's also appeared with Waterson: Carthy, and as part of a duo with Waulk Elektrik's James Dumbelton (who plays guitar and mandolin on this, Jim's second solo CD), and now he's gone on to form the ensemble Mawkin: Causley with vibrant young foursome Mawkin (whose fiddle player James Delarre appears on three of the tracks here).

Lost Love Found enjoys a self-evident thematic continuity through varying interpretations of songs and ballads of heartbreak and lament, and indeed of the wider concept of love itself. This brief enables Jim to tackle a similarly wide stylistic range of material across and outside that emanating from the expected traditional folk sources.

Jim's blessed with a rich warm baritone voice which (and this is less often encountered in a singer than you might think) is equally impressive on deeply sensitive and lighter or more comic material. He combines a companionable presence with a technique that's both accommodating and accessible, while his accordion playing is dextrous and sympathetically moulded too, with evident compassion but also commendable restraint alongside the desire to fill out the sound and underpin his singing voice.

Jim chooses to open the CD with a refreshingly straightforward variant of Polly Vaughn which typifies his measured and respectful approach to a text while leaving room for expressive contouring as appropriate. There's more than a hint of Tony Rose about the quality of relaxed vocal assurance that Jim brings to any song he tackles, notwithstanding any textual or interpretational innovations he introduces. Jim's unaccompanied treatment of Oxford City and his chilling duet with Sandra Kerr (actually James Dumbelton singing very high  note from Doug Bailey) on Lady All Skin And Bone are both outstanding, as in a different way is his take on Wild Rover, which borrows from the wistful approach of the "southern variant" originally collected by Cyril Tawney and further adopted by Brian Peters & Gordon Tyrrall, and Sandra Kerr's Appalachian dulcimer is a brilliant choice for accompanying instrument. A couple of the selections in the latter half of the disc will surprise the traditionalists: Autumn Days is that old primary-school chestnut (well that's what Jim calls it), given a strummy, chummy Formby-uke-style setting that's either utterly charming or infuriatingly twee depending on your view of the song I suppose (I actually rather like it). Traitor's Love, on the other hand, is a contemporary composition by George Papavgeris, whose (singing) voice is the first you hear on the track (the song takes the form of a dialogue); this song needs a few plays, for its meaning is slower to reveal itself than its swift pace and lively, busy setting might at first appear to allow. But elsewhere I'm still unsure about Jim's decision to leave intact the wilful narratorial gender ambiguities of Loving Hannah, even though his choice and style of accompaniment (fiddle, mandolin and accordion) are first-rate. At the end of the tenth song, Rolling Of The Stones, however, the album just stops dead in its tracks (so to speak), and I really was left wondering whether I'd got a faulty pressing until I checked the list of songs on the back cover which confirmed it was no fault, that really is the end of the disc. It's a disconcertingly short album, and thus not only poor value for money at a mere 36 minutes but - more importantly - it definitely leaves me with a feeling of having been shortchanged artistically (good though this is, Jim's capable of delivering more, I believe) and, crucially, a niggling residual sense of insubstantiality about the album as a whole (which is very probably unfair and) which doesn't wholly surface until after the disc has exited the player before its anticipated time. And I was also mildly surprised that the otherwise attractive booklet, most unusually for WildGoose, appears to have been less than usually carefully proofread. But basically, what the disc contains is fine - it's just that there's not enough of it.

Spiral Earth

David Kushar

Jim Causley's fascination with traditional song started early in his life and a steady momentum has been sustained ever since. During periods of study at both Exeter College and The University of Newcastle Upon Tyne he took an interest in the folk clubs and performing. Then 2005 saw the arrival of his well received debut 'Fruits Of The Earth' and further critical acclaim as part of the trio 'The Devil's Interval'.

Now via collaborations with Essex four piece Mawkin, fiddle maestro John McCusker and multiple BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominations we arrive at his 'Lost Love Found' his second solo offering.

Like others before him Jim has taken full advantage of the beautifully bucolic setting of the Wild Goose Studios in Hampshire. The CD's booklet depicts him strolling outside the whitewashed cottage. The whole scene shouts Englishness and Tradition.

His own waggish yet illuminating sleeve notes reveal the man's enthusiasm for the folk form. The disc opens with a truncated version of 'Polly Vaughn'. To say that such a tragic tale is warm and comforting may seem harsh but the delivery envelopes us in velvety tones that soften the misfortune.

We do get what some may consider to be the cliched 'Wild Rover' but as Jim explains 'I do like finding interesting songs with a groan factor when you mention their names. If only to remind folks that the reason they've been done-to-death is simply because they're fantastic songs'. Coincidentally it has a trans-Atlantic flavour here as Sandra Kerr provides backing on an Appalachian Dulcimer. Other guests are James Delarre on fiddle and George Papavgeris who brings his lusty voice to bear on his own 'Traitor's Love'. In the main though it's James Dumbelton Jim's trusty multi-instrumentalist/collaborator and co-arranger who's helped shape the sound.

Once the scene has been set it's Jim's voice that's the star of this show. Uncommonly bountiful and unhurried each number gets the Causley hocus-pocus. Mostly notably the lingering 'Rolling Of The Stones.'

Steeped in tradition but not necessarily beholden to it 'Lost Love Found' should shine more light on Jim Causley's considerable talents. By the time he's finished he'll be leaving an indelible mark on the music scene in this country.

Shreds & Patches

Chris (Yorkie) Bartram

If. you've ever seen Jim Causley either solo or wth The Devil's Interval you will know that he has a deliciously warm, textural voice; a simple and effective accompaniment style and an infectious love of traditional songs that is honest without being imitative. I He obviously enjoys the ambiguity and occasional contradictions that you get in the old songs and appreciates the way they lead you to reflect on the mysteries of life without being preachy. So, as you may expect, I think he is absolutely terrific - and so will you if you listen to this, his second, solo CD. Mind you, it's not really 'solo' as he is very ably accompanied on several tracks by James Dumbelton and joined on some tracks by Sandra Kerr, George Papavgeris and James Delarre.

Here's the tracklist - Polly Vaughan, Cupid the Ploughboy, Wild Rover (with a different tune from the one you all know); Loving Hannah, Shule Rune, Lady All Skin and gone (different from the version by THE DEVIL'S INTERVAL); Traitors Love (written by George Papavgeris); Oxford Girt Autumn Days (written by Estelle White) and Rolling of' the Stones. If you know these songs you will see that there is a fairly high body-count and a lot of false lovers and yet, in Jim's hands, it's not depressing at all - the overall texture of the CD is joyful and even, in a sense, reassuring.

I have a large shelf-unit for CDs which are carefully (though, my wife complains, idiosyncratically) stored. A few CDs are played so often that they stay in a small pile at the side of my desk. This CD is one of those and it is not likely to move onto the shelf for several months.

Rythms Australia

Tony Hillier

Lost Love Found, the second solo offering from Jim Causley, the male element in The Devil's Interval, also features some toe-curling harmony, though the album rightly puts the emphasis on his lead vocals, which are as rich and fruity as the 'scrumpy' (real cider) of his native West Country. For someone so young, this multiple BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nominee is an impressive Interpreter. While Causley and collaborator/ multi instrumentalist James Dumbelton's renditions of such as 'Loving Hannah'. 'Shule Rune' and 'Rolling Of The Stones' are particularly Impressive, some might find their reading of 'Wild Rover' a tad stodgy.