We’re seeing more stories of hardship and distress surrounding zero hour contracts and Universal Credit. Therefore, contemporary folk singer Ange Hardy continued the tradition of documenting and protesting in song.
She wrote What May You Do For The JAM after hearing political and societal debates about the ‘Just About Managing’ demographic. With heartrending examples, she outlined just how tough it can be for those living pay check to pay check. For instance, “the fridge isn’t empty but Christmas, Oh God, just the thought/the turkey alone would be more than our savings.” She also included the plight of “the should be retirees born the wrong year.”
Bring it all back
The song made it to Hardy’s 2017 record Bring Back Home just in time. The album combined modern interpretations of traditional folk songs with originals that updated the same imagery, themes and impulses to the present day. Explore the album and you’ll find murderous sisters, enchanted forest and absent Johnnys. That’s because every rogue and absent lover was called Johnny back in the day, it seems!
Then, she turned her hand to production on Songs From the Bell Man. She worked with Watchet’s town crier, David Milton, to document local songs, stories and dialects. Hardy’s long-time collaborator Lukas Drinkwater joined her to provide instrumentation for the album. Also featured were members of False Lights, and shanty vocals from The Old Gaffers.
Unfortunately, Ange Hardy has hung up her harp, guitar and whistle for the foreseeable future. We’ll miss that angelic voice. Nonetheless, she leaves behind a respected discography, an online store with music and gorgeous necklaces, and an admirable story of persevering and thriving in the wake of tragedy and adversity. Having faced the darkest depths of trauma publicly, we’ll never see a braver performance than at London Folk Festival 2018. For all this, we thank you.
Ange’s latest creative venture is Sonder Digital so if you’re looking for website or social media assistance, she’s there to help.
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