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New kid on the block is a tag that could have been thrown at young singer-songwriter, Harry Harris a short time ago. But now with both his debut album Harry Harris recorded (in Polly Paulusma's shed in London) when he was but 17, Harris now signed to Polly Paulusma’s Wild Sound Recordings has a follow up in Songs About Other People out.
Recorded in 2013, the Welsh-born act, brother of fellow recording act Jack Harris has raised the bar and underlined what a find he is. Harris' superb songwriting, beautiful and thoughtful lyrics show great skill and vision. His songs are both believable and things of rare beauty. You don’t need to take my word for it, for Texas-based singer-songwriter Eric Taylor has this to say this man can write and build songs and stories. Which I endorse, fully as Harris’ gift on delivering one quality piece after another remains pretty much unbroken, on an album as varied as it is good regards subject matter. Who would have thought an English folk album of modern times would be covering with such aplomb stories about Wild Bill (Hickox) and FA Cup heroes (“The Ballad Of Ronnie Radford”) a fantasy song about Elvis Presley (and more) compacted onto a ten track album. From opening track “Stag”; a song describing his first sighting of one in the wild on through “No Ball Games” (from his youth), “The Ballad Of Ronnie Radford” who’s goal for Hereford dumped Newcastle United out of the cup in 1970 and worked as a roofer like with the a cappella piece “Jenny Lind”. The latter is a beautiful song about the 19th century Swedish opera singer, and of whom fairy tale writer Hans Christian Anderson loved dearly. Few songs are other than excellent. Harris is an artist I thoroughly recommend, an act able to hold your attention with both lyric and voice.
Other than Harris’ acoustic guitar and mandolin, brother Jack adds additional guitar to go with Sam Beer (piano) and John Parker’s double-bass plus Neil Copeland (electric guitar on “Kitty’s Daddy”) and backing vocals on two tracks from Nina Hunjon and Anna McIvor on “I Was There”.
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