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Roy Harris of Taplas

reviews Dusty Diamonds by Martin & Shan Graebe

WEST Country duo Martin and Shan Graebe say they have ‘mined the collections of Sabine Baring Gould and Cecil Sharp for these little gems’. Their mining has been fruitful, unearthing several gems of traditional song. Vocally they do a fine job on ballads such as Henry Martin, in a version I guarantee you’ve never heard before, and My Coffin Shall be Black, a grim but beautiful prayer song with a superb tune collected in Northumberland.

Keith Kendrick’s concertina adds to this and other songs, as do Nick Wyke and Becky Driscoll on fiddles. Sylvia Needham weighs in with excellent backing vocals on an album that will further the reputation of Martin, Shan and Wild Goose Records.