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Biography

"One of the best of the New Wave of Folk Blokes. As a guitar player and arranger of traditional songs, Jon Wilks already deserves speaking of in the same breath as your Simpsons and your Morays.”

In late 2016, Jon Wilks set up a blog called 'Grizzly Folk', intending to explore traditional folk songs via their storylines (hence the tagline, 'Folk songs explored one story at a time'). His interest in traditional British folk music came via the discovery that his grandparents had met and courted at Cecil Sharp House.

Initially wary of trying to explain a genre he didn't fully understand, he decided to use his journalistic experience to interview a series of prominent folk singers, performers and scholars, hoping that by doing so he might be able to communicate their passion for the genre to his audience. Interviewees included Eliza Carthy, Jon Boden, Paul Sartin, Martin Simpson and many more.

By the end of 2017, he had interviewed and documented conversations with over 25 folk luminaries.

The project also saw Wilks explore some of the traditional songs that he discovered, nine of which ended up on an accompanying album, Songs From The Attic.

During the course of the project, Wilks also resurrected the Whitchurch Folk Club in the company of Paul Sartin. The club had been popular in the 1970s and 1980s, but had ultimately closed due to a lack of funding. The club relaunched on October 13th, 2017, with a performance by the British folk band, Faustus.

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