(l-r): The Travelling Band and Friends: Chris Spencer (bass/vocals); Seasick Steve; John Paul Jones; Phil Dudderidge; Adam Gorman (vocals/guitar/keys/mandolin); Jo Dudderidge (vocals/guitar/keys/mandolin), Nick Vaal (drums).
Banbury, UK (August 22, 2011)–It was a meeting of minds, generations and worlds backstage at the annual Fairport Cropredy Festival for Focusrite’s Phil Dudderidge this year.
The Travelling Band, led by Jo Dudderidge, youngest son of Focusrite boss Phil, played the festival on Friday 12th August to an audience approaching 20,000. The group performs a blend of folk, rock and occasional lapses into psychedelia from its recent release, Battlescars.
Backstage afterwards, the band met up with Seasick Steve, a 70-year-old American blues singer from the Mississippi Delta who has finally gained recognition in the UK after 50 odd years of obscurity. Seasick Steve, who was headlining on Friday, was accompanied by John Paul Jones (of Led Zeppelin fame) on bass and mandolin. That, in turn, was a bit of a throwback for the elder Dudderidge, as he toured with Jones in 1970 as an FOH engineer.
Phil Dudderidge commented, “It was great to see the Travelling Band at Cropredy. I’ve been lobbying for this for years, and once I stopped, they booked them! Simon Nichol (sole original Fairport band-member) was incredibly impressed and very surprised by the band, their performance, songs and arrangements. I think it was he or possibly Dave Pegg who wrote on the Cropredy website the following day that they were like opening an oyster and finding a pearl. It was good to meet John Paul and Seasick Steve backstage as well as some of my old Fairport friends, Simon, and Judy Dyble (the first female singer). Simon always reminisces about the old Commer 15 cwt. van I used to drive them in, back in 1967. Those were the days!”