Sunderland-formed prog-folk outfit LONGDANCER will always be associated with at least one claim to fame: it was the stamping ground for a young Dave Stewart, who’d go on to have success in two pop groups, The TOURISTS and EURYTHMICS (both with lead singer and future wife, ANNIE LENNOX).
Alongside fellow guitarist Brian Harrison, London-based folk duo Ball Of Yarn was born, although only one sole rarity was issued in 1971: an EP credited to Stewart & Harrison (featuring four tracks). Performing around northern clubs, the pair decided to enlist the help of vocalists/guitarists Steve Sproxton and Kai Olsson, while the change of name to LONGDANCER seemed appropriate enough next to the already established LINDISFARNE.
One of the many outside artists to ink a deal with ELTON JOHN’s Rocket imprint, the first fruits of their labour came out as IF IT WAS SO SIMPLE (1973) {*5}, an endearing second-division folk-rock set that didn’t quite make the grade. With Matt Irving (keyboards) and Charlie Smith (drums) replacing Olsson for a fuller rock band sound, TRAILER FOR A GOOD LIFE (1974) {*4} again failed to live up to their initial promise. The band split into many fractions, and apart from the obvious and the aforementioned, the folk connection continued when Harrison and Smith both joined The DRANSFIELDS.
© MC Strong 2010/GFD // rev-up MCS Dec2016

Share this Project

Leave a Comment