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Robin Williamson

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Biography

Between 1966 and 1974, Robin Williamson was one half of the Incredible String Band, but his career did not founder after ISB's demise, although it might be said to have taken a few quirky turns, including a collaboration on a spy novel and the publication of a bizarre semi-autobiography. Away from these literary avocations, Williamson formed the Far Cry Ceilidh Band with Stan Schnier and Mark Simos, but never made it to the recording studio. In 1976, Williamson met with harpist Sylvia Woods, and together with Chris Caswell and Jerry McMillan, they formed Robin Williamson & His Merry Band. Between 1977 and 1979, they released three albums: the highly traditional Journey's Edge in 1977, American Stonehenge in 1978, and A Glint at the Kindling in 1979, which featured the epic historical cycle "Five Denials on Merlin's Grave." After the breakup of the Merry Band, Williamson started to tour solo, offering highly ambient sets dominated by traditional stories set to song. Releases of this period include Songs of Love and Parting and the dedicated folklorist's Legacy of the Scottish Harpers. Williamson's concern with the British bardic tradition also manifested itself in several books and tapes containing spoken renditions of traditional tales. Subsequent projects saw the prolific Williamson recording tapes and discs of music for children and pouring his energies into environmental projects for the Scottish Wildlife Trust. Iron Stone was released on the ECM label in 2006. Though Williamson continued to tour the United Kingdom and in Europe, he didn't issue another recording until the vinyl-only Love Will Remain in 2012. A live offering, it was a beautifully packaged set that also included his writing and reproductions of his paintings. Various reissues by the Incredible String Band, and his solo albums continued to appear from a variety of labels. Williamson's next offering of new material was 2014's Trust in the Rising Light from ECM in November of 2014, his first recording for the label in eight years. ~ Leon Jackson

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Born:

24 November 1943 in Edinburgh, Scotland

Genre
Years Active:

'60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Influenced by this Artist

Contemporaries