Adam Fenn

 

adam

Folk Musician Mandolin Player & Multi-Instrumentalist

 

Adam is a talented journeyman musician, a musicians musician and perfectionist. Not suprising given the years he has spent developing his craft, from Baroque music to Electric Folk.

He spent his youth in the depths of mid-Wales between the Black Mountains and Hergest Ridge. In those early days had a liking for Baroque music and by good fortune met up with Leslie Penning. Leslie was the featured artist on the Mike Oldfield singles, 'In Dulci Jubilo' and 'Portsmouth'. He gave Adam lessons in the basement of Buzz Music Record Shop in Hereford.

Eventually the lure of the city lights took hold and he moved north to Stoke-on-Trent a city nestling between Birmingham and Manchester. Here he bought his first Mandolin and some tin whistles and lost himself in the world of Planxty, The Bothy Band, Martin Carthy, Matt Malloy, Mary Bergin  and just about anybody who had played a mandolin, learning from others and developing his own unique style, as he once said, "I played with anyone who wanted me and a few who didn't".

He cut his teeth with folk band Cut-Throat Jake, spread his wings and paid his dues with the Green Velvet Ceili Band. It was at this time he met up with W. Terry Fox who persuaded him to go electric with his band Heymaker. Heymaker were a pioneering fiddle led electric folk band, that had a massive underground support around Europe (in particular Germany). They became a popular festival outfit with a great biker following. Their style gave birth to the legendary Levellers.

During this electric period he played in another W. Terry Fox band , the all acoustic Boneshaker. Like Heymaker this band gained an incredible reputation and cult status as a good time Irish Band, that also performed original songs and music such as 'The Jungles Of Vietnam' and 'Drummers All'. Adams played many instruments  for Boneshaker, but he is fondly remembered for his haunting Low Whistle tunes, his understated style reminisent of Finbar Furey.

Adams musical journey was evolving as he took on more challenges, burnig the candle at both ends. Looking back he recalls, " I raved with Surreal, chilled out with 3-Spirits, went off with the fairies in Full Circle and Greensword and returned to the glory days of the mandolin with Jack Lyn Frets Orchestra". At the same time he was moonlighting as a technician between gigs at the Synergy Studios, were he recalls making industrial quantities of tea for Pete Brown (lyricist for Cream and Eric Clapton) and the saxophonist from Colusseum and John Mayalls 'Barewires', Dick Hexstall-Smith.

His contact with W. Terry Fox continued on a new project in Gdansk, Poland in 1995. They set up-up the duo Set The Milkmaids Free to perform in the British Weeks Festival, at the invitation of the British Embassy & Council. The month long tour saw them perform English Broadsides folk musc at various venues, including live TV and Radio over a period of 30 days. Bootlegs of those performancies are still sought after by collectors to this day.

adam-heymaker

The sound mixing became an important part of his life and continues to this day . He set up mikes for the Sutherland Brothers and David Gray. Recorded Jeffrey's Velvet Jacket and other nameless indie bands. Upset the nation with Squidgy which sampled Princess Di. Stole beats with Parkes & Wilson, Mother and the Detroit DJ Terence Parker. Remixed Loleatta Holloways 'Dreamin', Simply Reds 'Ramblin', Darlene Lewis's 'Soul Free', Sylvesters 'You Make Me Feel Mighty Real' and the number one European hit 'Doop'. He says he probably did sleep during this period , but he dosn't remember it. He added, " I once hallucinated that Keith Chegwin turned up with half the street to record the theme from Neighbours for the Big Breakfast Show".

He is now more chilled out, but maintains his folk/acuostic roots, straying onto the the wicked path of sin with Bluegrass band Plucked, pays his rent with ceili band Moody Food, jams with Normandy fiddlers Marc Prevost and Anais Jolie and maintained his long time musical association with W. Terry Fox in Up To Scratch and StringFing until Terry's semi retirement.