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Monday, 26th June 2017
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Maddy Prior Talks to North West Folk

Stepping Stones"Can you ring me back in five minutes."

Although it wasn't known at the time, those words from Maddy Prior were highly significant. This was due to numb-nuts, your intrepid reporter, having plugged the microphone jack into the wrong socket on his voice recorder.  Had the interview taken place at the originally appointed time, then it would have been a somewhat lop sided encounter, with questions but no answers.

A visit to the bank and some sandal shopping later, and Steeleye's front lady is ready to talk about one of her other projects, the Stepping Stones Festival which takes place at Kirklinton Hall in Cumbria in June.

"It's an old house that's fallen into dis-repair, but they've put a roof on it and it's just great, it's like a ruin really, but they're building it back up again,"  she explains cheerily.

Stepping Stones is something of a happy accident, having arisen from the teaching workshops that have been run by Prior and associates at Stones Barn, also in Cumbria.

"It was just to say that we've had ten years and we're celebrating sort of thing.  It sort of carried on like these things do. It just seemed to be what people wanted.  Everybody had such a good time.  So we'll go again and then again.  This is our fourth isn't it?"

So it's just a bog standard folk festival then? Not necessarily.  Efforts are made to recruit from beyond the genre.

"You can get stuck in your own little world if you're not careful.   I go online.  I see what people are doing, what there is, what's interesting and out there.  There's a lot of good music out there.

"We have some classical people we have had red priest, we've got the Oxbridge singers that are going to be there this year.  And we've got Mountain firework company that are more Americana based and we've got some belly dancing and some clog dancing.  It's a variety, it's not meant for one thing.  I work on the principle that I want everything to be very good.  I want all the acts to be top quality standard."

The Stepping Stones Festival takes place at Kirklinton Hall in Cumbria on 12th and 13th June 2015.  Further details and tickets from the link below.


Stepping Stones Festival

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