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BECKY DELLOW - Take Her Out And Air Her 

BECKY DELLOW - Take Her Out And Air Her 
Private Label 

An intriguing, distinctive debut from Gloucestershire fiddle player, Becky Dellow. Becky is often double-tracked on fiddles in harmony parts, with sparing accompaniment, mostly guitar and/or bowed double bass (both by Lucas Drinkwater); it’s perhaps on the unassuming side as fiddle albums go, but has its own appeal.

The tempos are relaxed, the arrangements understated – there’s a fair proportion of just fiddle – and the occasional hint of slightly dark-hued chamber music arises. It’s one of those albums that will grow on you, rather than knock you out on first hearing. I’ve played it a lot, and it reveals new aspects every time. There are nine tracks all together, including two songs (both traditional) sung by Becky’s daughter, Milly, who also contributes the pleasing artwork. Most of the tunes, the majority in sets of two, are also traditional, with just two exceptions, one composed by Sam Sweeney and one by Becky herself. There are some interesting approaches to arrangement, e.g., a couple of tracks where the second tune is the more lightly scored of the two.

Becky comes from a long line of fiddlers on her father’s side and has researched tunes (mostly English I think) to MA and PhD level, but there is a clear Irish leaning to her repertoire; she has studied with Martin Hayes, which will give many of you a clue to her orientation.

This is an album that will give a great deal of pleasure over time, and it will have a particular appeal for anyone wanting to investigate two violins playing in harmony, as the recording has much to contribute on that score. I look forward to a second album!

Paul Mansfield


This review appeared in Issue 142 of The Living Tradition magazine