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Seasons They Change: The story of acid and pyschedelic folk (Genuine Jawbone Books) Paperback – January 1, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jeanette Leech is a writer, researcher, DJ and music historian. She writes regularly for Shindig! magazine, and as part of the B-Music collective she has DJed throughout the UK, including at the female acid folk events known as 'Bearded Ladies' and the Green Man Festival. She writes extensively in the health and social care fields. Seasons They Change is her first book about music.

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Product Details

  • Series: Genuine Jawbone Books
  • Paperback: 366 pages
  • Publisher: Jawbone Press (January 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906002320
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906002329
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,061,696 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By J. R. P. Wigman on December 28, 2010
Format: Paperback
Jeanette Leech's "Seasons they change" is an excellent and enjoyable book about acid (or psychedelic) folk, and you may be surprised to find how many artists can be tagged "acid folk". She handles the subject in a sympathetic and gentle way and if her style is somewhat terse, this is quite likely due to space limitations - considering the 350+ pages (though personally I wouldn't object to a considerabe expansion).

It's obviously well-researched and apparently she's spoken to quite a few of the artists she writes about. And there are a lot of them. I rummaged through my collection and practically all of them feature in this book (which made me realise how much of an acid folkie I am!). From the pivotal Incredible String Band to Pearls Before Swine, from COB to Circulus, from Vashti Bunyan to Holderlins Traum, from Mr Fox to Stone Breath, they're all here (except for, puzzlingly, Faun Fables).

Leech sticks to the facts and embellishes these with quotes from those involved, and thus avoids unnecessary and unwanted notions. When she does ventilate opinions (for a large part in her assessment of who's important and who's less so) I generally agree with her. She bravely undertakes to bring a narrative thread to the multitude of facts, persons and times she brings up, and this is perhaps the area where she's least successful - but no blame there as far as I'm concerned. Additional editing should eliminate a few typos like "Quicksilver Message Service".

The physical aspect of the book is fine as well, excepting its binding - it takes some effort to keep it open.

A warning is due: this book is dangerous. It makes you want to look into artists you weren't aware of, which will certainly drain more money from your pocket. Otherwise, it's highly recommended, nay, quite obligatory for all who take interest in folk that's not solely "trad.arr".
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Androuid on January 19, 2011
Format: Paperback
I wrote this blog post Friday, January 12, 2007:

Electric Folk Before the Birth of the Freak Folks

There has been a popular folk music movement brewing for several years known as "Freak Folk", consisting of people such as Devendra Banhart, Vetiver, Faun Fables, Joanna Newsom, Espers, Josephine Foster, Six Organs of Admittance, Animal Collective, Akron/Family, and others. Freak Folk will more than likely be the subject of a future blog. Why then bring it up now?

Because FF simply could not exist without the creative fusion of styles that occurred in the UK in the 1960's and 1970's, described in mouth-watering detail by ethnomusicologist Britta Sweers in her Electric Folk: The Changing Face of English Traditional Music. I would strongly recommend this wonderful book to anyone interested in folk, folk rock, or the music of the British Isles, and for those curious about the lesser-known, more traditional musical/cultural revolution of the 60's that was (among other things) a reaction against the pop music of the day. Sweers wrestles with the problematic definitions and history, paints a vivid sociocultural portrait of the scene, discusses the main players therein, elaborates on the many ongoing musical revivals, and speculates about future fusions of traditional and "new".

Who were/are the electric folkies? The most popular groups include Fairport Convention, Pentangle, Steeleye Span, The Oysterband, and Incredible String Band. Many solo careers originated with these groups, or exist(ed) alongside them, i.e., Sandy Denny, Richard Thompson, Ashley Hutchings, Shirley and Dolly Collins, Davy Graham, Martin Carthy, Dave Swarbrick, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, and Roy Harper.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By N. Daly on December 22, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been waiting for this book for a while.

It seems like I'd heard about this book a while back, and it seems like there must have been a release date delay. Having finished Rob Young's excellent (if overlong) ELECTRIC EDEN, I was eager to read this book. I've been a "peripheral" fan of some acid folk/psych rock etc., but not really knowledgeable about it. I hoped this book would at least give me a lot of ideas of stuff to seek out to really try and get into the genre. The book did much more than that.

The book isn't short, but it is excellently written and incredibly easy to read. It balances the more "dry" information and facts about the artists and groups with some interesting information gleaned from interviews. It makes you really want to listen to the music; more than once I actually had to stop reading immediately to quickly hop online and find the music being described. I got through this book incredibly quickly; I expected it'd be something I'd read on for a while in between reading some fiction or while on holiday trips or whatnot. The author - who also writes for Shindig! magazine and is clearly knowledgeable and incredibly passionate about this music, which shows in the writing and adds that extra dimension to the proceedings - tied together the godfathers of the genre(s) like The Incredible String Band with the newer stuff that is considered to be in the same lineage, like Joanna Newsom and Animal Collective (which I might not have necessarily tied together in my head, but the author certainly does so very effectively).

I hesitate to give a book 5 stars; however, for what this book set out to achieve, it did so amazingly well. Just the finding of new music was worth the price of admission for me.
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