Rachel Newton releases an album ‘To The Awe’, on her own Shadowside Records.
Containing 10 tracks, the follow-up to last November’s ‘Everything I Know Without Knowing’ is available on CD or as a download.
Newton – a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award Musician of the Year winner – composed, recorded and mixed the album in the lockdown of April/May 2020.
Former Burns Unit member Mattie Foulds co-produced ‘To The Awe’ as well as providing drums, while other guest musicians included violinist/violist Lauren MacColl, horn player Mikey Owers and Sarah Hayes of Admiral Fallow on backing vocals.
The album draws on poems and ballads that are hundreds of years old, worked into the Glasgow singer and harpist’s contemporary compositional style.
Title track ‘To The Awe’ is based on the poem ‘The Rock of Cader Idris’ by Felicia
Hemans, which tells of the Welsh tradition that whoever survives a night spent at the rock will wake with new creative inspirations.
“It was a challenging album to make,” Newton says of her latest release, “but ultimately a welcome focus and a vital connection with others in such strange and uncertain times.
“When I listen to this album, I imagine us all in a room together. I am ever grateful for the intuition, trust and musicality from my bandmates.”
As as well as being shortlisted for the SAY (Scottish Album of the Year) Award for 2016’s ‘Here’s My Heart Come Take It’, Newton is also a founder member of The Shee, The Furrow Collective and The Lost Words: Spell Songs. She has also worked in theatre and storytelling, previously winning a Critics Award for Theatre in Scotland (CATS).
She is also co-founder of The Bit Collective, a group focusing on equality and diversity in folk and traditional music, and has organised various campaigns and events, including the Trad. Reclaimed: Women in Folk festival at Kings Place, London in 2019.
More at www.rachelnewtonmusic.com.