6 English Folk Music Facts You Need to Know

Did you know that England has a rich history of folk music? Here are six facts about English folk music that you need to know!

What is English Folk Music?

Folk music is the traditional music of the people of a particular country or region. It is usually passed down from generation to generation, and often has a strong connection to the history and culture of the place where it comes from.

English folk music is no different. With a rich and varied history, English folk music has been shaped by many different influences over the years. From early Celtic and Anglo-Saxon traditions, to more modern influences from America and continental Europe, English folk music is a truly unique and diverse genre.

Here are 6 facts about English folk music that you need to know:

1. Folk music has been around for centuries
Folk music has been part of English culture for centuries. Some of the earliest known examples date back to the medieval period, when songs and dances were popular amongst peasants and workers. Over time, the tradition evolved and grew, leading to the development of distinct regional styles across England.

2. It was once seen as ‘unrefined’ music
In the past, folk music was often seen as unsophisticated and unrefined, compared to other genres such as classical or opera. This changed in the early 20th century however, when many composers began to take an interest in folk music and incorporated it into their own works.

3. There are many different regional styles
Despite often being lumped together under one umbrella term, English folk music actually encompasses a wide range of different regional styles. These include traditional Irish and Scottish tunes, as well as more modern forms such as contemporary folk and jazz-influenced folk.

4. It’s been influenced by many different genres over the years
One of the things that makes English folk music so special is the fact that it has been influenced by so many different genres over the years. From early Celtic traditions to more modern forms such as blues and rock ‘n’ roll, English folk has absorbed elements from all sorts of different styles throughout its history.

5. famous performers have helped to popularise it
Folk music has enjoyed something of a renaissance in recent years, thanks in large part to some famous performers who have helped to popularise it with wider audiences . These include Ed Sheeran, Mumford & Sons, The Star Folk Club and The Unthanks .
6 .you can still hear it being performed todayIf you want to experience English folk music for yourself , then you’ll be pleased to know that it is still being performed widely today . There are plenty of clubs and festivals up and down the country where you can enjoy live performances , so why not go along and see for yourself what all the fuss is about?

The Origins of English Folk Music

English folk music is a traditional music genre that developed in England. It is often characterized by the use of acoustic instruments and traditional songs.

The origins of English folk music can be traced back to the medieval period. During this time, minstrels would perform songs at fairs and festivals. These songs were often about love, loss, and other aspects of daily life.

As the years went on, English folk music began to evolve. New instruments were introduced, and new styles developed. For example, Traditional English Morris dancing is a type of folk dance that was developed in the early 1800s.

Today, English folk music is still performed by many different artists. Some modern-day examples include Eliza Carthy, The Decemberists, and Bob Dylan.

The Instruments Used in English Folk Music

Most English folk bands consist of a mix of instruments including the violin, viola, cello, double bass, guitars, mandolins, concertinas, accordions, melodeons, pianos, bagpipes, drums and sometimes even saxophones.

The type of music played by English folk bands often includes Celtic influences such as Irish and Scottish music as well as other traditional dance music from around Europe.

A lot of English folk music is also inspired by the landscape and history of England itself with many songs telling stories of famous battles or country life in general.

The Styles of English Folk Music

Traditional English folk music has been around for centuries and has happily survived into the 21st century. If you’re a fan of this genre, or just want to know a little more about it, here are six fascinating facts.

1) There are two main types of English folk music: social and ritual. Social folk music was originally sung in homes, taverns and at other gatherings, while ritual folk music was associated with specific occasions such as seasonal events, weddings and funerals.

2) The most common instruments used in English folk music are the fiddle, accordion, concertina, melodeon (a type of accordion), guitar, mandolin, bouzouki (a type of string instrument) and whistle.

3) Some of the earliest examples of English folk music date back to the 13th century. One of the best-known pieces from this period is “Sumer Is Icumen In” which was written down in the early 13th century but is thought to be much older.

4) Traditional English folk songs often tell stories about real events and people. For example, “The unluckiest lad in all England” tells the story of Joseph Haywood who was hanged for stealing a sheep even though he claimed he was only trying to help a friend who was hungry.

5) Since the 1960s, there has been a revival of interest in traditional English folk music. This has been led by artists such as Joan Baez, Bob Dylan and Paul Simon who have all included traditional English Folk songs on their albums.

6) In recent years, there has been a resurgence of interest in English Folk music with young people rediscovering the joys of this traditional genre. Bands such as Mumford & Sons and The Staves are helping to keep alive the sounds of traditional English Folk music for a new generation.

The Popularity of English Folk Music

Although English folk music has been around for centuries, it only began to gain widespread popularity in the early 20th century. This was in part due to the work of two influential figures in the English folk music scene: Cecil Sharp and Ralph Vaughan Williams.

Sharp was an English musicologist who became interested in folk music after hearing some folk songs being sung by a group of people in Somerset. He went on to collect over 3,000 folk songs from all over England, many of which were later published. Vaughan Williams, meanwhile, was a composer who became interested in English folk music after hearing some of Sharp’s recordings. He arranged a number of folk songs for orchestra, helping to popularize the genre.

Since then, English folk music has continued to enjoy popularity both in England and abroad. In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the genre, with a number of young people taking up traditional instruments and bands reviving old sounds.

So why is English folk music so popular? Here are six reasons:

1) It’s steeped in history and tradition.

English folk music has its roots in the country’s rich history and culture. Many of the songs date back centuries, and are steeped in tradition. This makes them fascinating to listen to and learn about.

2) It’s easy to sing along to.

A lot of English folk songs are very catchy and easy to sing along to. This makes them perfect for sing-a-longs at parties or gatherings!

3) It’s great for dancing.

Folk music is often upbeat and lively, making it ideal for dancing. If you’re looking for a workout, then give English folk dancing a try! There are many different types of dances associated with the genre, so you’re sure to find one that suits you.
4) It tells stories.

A lot of English folk songs are story songs, or ballads. These tell old stories or legends, often involving love, murder or other dark themes! These songs are usually very emotive and moving, and can be quite gripping to listen to.
5) It evokes feelings of nostalgia.

For many people, listening to English folk music brings back memories of happy times spent with family or friends. The genre often conjures up feelings of warmth and nostalgia, making it perfect for cosy evenings by the fire or long summer days spent outdoors

The Future of English Folk Music

The English Folk scene is thriving with new music, new venues and a new generation of fans. Here are six things you need to know about the future of English Folk music.

1. New Music
There is a wealth of new music being created in the English Folk scene. Bands like Gandalf’s Fist and The Young’uns are writing and performing original songs that are inspired by the traditional folk sound.

2. New Venues
There are also plenty of new venues popping up across the country that are dedicated to folk music. The London Folk Festival, for example, is a three-day event that showcases the best of British Folk.

3. New Fans
The great thing about the future of English Folk music is that it has something for everyone. Whether you’re a fan of traditional folk songs or you’re looking for something new and exciting, there’s something out there for you.

4. More Collaboration
One trend that we’re seeing in the future of English Folk music is more collaboration between artists. This could be anything from two folk singers teaming up for an album to a folk band working with an orchestra on a new piece of music.

5. More Festivals
Another trend we’re seeing is an increase in the number of festivals dedicated to English Folk music. This is a great way for fans to see multiple bands and artists in one place and it’s also a great way for smallerfolk bands to get exposure to a larger audience.

6. A Bright Future
The future of English Folk music looks bright! With new music, new venues, and more collaboration between artists, there’s plenty to be excited about.

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