It might well be that the recent ‘folk’ music boom has peaked, so it’s fortunate for all concerned that Edinburgh-based duo The Jellyman’s Daughter, despite being an acoustic-based, cello-guitar combo, are pretty far-removed from that genre. Of course, we could pigeonhole them further, drawing ‘Americana” or even ‘blues’ from the pot of rather cliched descriptions.
Or, given that their fine lyricism and ear for a tune could easy slot into any musical style, we could simply let the band speak for themselves…


We are: Emily Kelly – vocals/guitar, Graham Coe – vocals/cello. Pleased to meet you!


We started playing music together around late 2011 (usually in the wee hours of the morning), and decided to call ourselves a band from about early/mid 2012. We wrote and recorded EP that year – Graham handily studies sound engineering so we produced it entirely ourselves. We cut our teeth on weekly 3-hour pub gigs playing covers, before moving on to various support gigs, until we started working on our album, which we are finally releasing this September – it’s been long enough!

The Jellyman's Daughter


Emily is from Aberdeen, and Graham is from Peebles, in the Borders, but we met in Edinburgh, and that’s where we live just now. However it’s great to see that there’s an awesome music scene in both of our hometowns. We both grew up with a lot of music floating around our homes too. Emily actually started on the oboe, and played it right through school, but soon found guitar to be a bit more versatile, as well as obviously being way cooler. But who knows, maybe you’ll hear an oboe solo on the next album…


If we were going to try for a five-worder, let’s see… ‘Cello, guitar, juicy harmonies aplenty’? Or, ‘Two people, 10 strings, whoooaahh!’. I’m glad the wonders of technology afford us more than that… We usually pigeon-hole ourselves into either alternative-acoustic or Americana, but neither are too useful because alternative-acoustic is infuriatingly vague, and while we will admit to a good number of our influences being American, we have plenty influences that don’t come from across the Atlantic. If we were to name a few, we’d say – Chris Thile/Nickel Creek/Punch Brothers, Radiohead, Crooked Still, Turin Brakes, The Civil Wars, The Beatles, Elliott Smith, The Lone Bellow… and more.

One of the things that sets us apart is the percussive ‘chopping’ style that Graham uses, allowing the cello in some cases to be the sole provider of rhythm, harmony and groove. It’s mainly a bluegrass thing, more commonly seen on fiddle, and is also now prevalent in a lot of Scottish folk, although Graham effectively taught himself – his Major Project at uni was actually an instructional book on chopping. There are also one or two great resources out there for people wanting to learn – keen string players: just ask! Anyway, our album is out on the 22nd, and we’re doing a wee tour to support it, details can easily be found on our website or our Facebook page. On our Aberdeen (24th) and Edinburgh (26th) shows in September we’ll be joined on stage by a few awesome musical mateys for some songs; a sound that more resembles what happens on the CD. Ticket link for our Edinburgh show is on our website 🙂


We’re making music because because we think we have something different to bring to this crowded world of music; it is no longer enough to simply be a guy or girl with a guitar and a decent voice. We also make music together because in some ways we’re quite different in the way that we approach music making; Emily is very song-driven and knows a great melody when she hears one, whereas Graham is focused on the sound, the lines in the harmony and the technical bits and bobs. This stems from Emily’s bluegrass, pop and rock upbringing, and Graham’s classical, metal and post-rock influences. We feel that we complete each other musically, by creating a middleground which takes the best of both approaches, preventing each other from spiralling off into either simplicity or complexity. Also it’s awesome fun 🙂

The duo’s self-titled album is out now, available at
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