Ash Mandrake – back at Dart Music Festival

Ash Mandrake – a story of industrious energy, inner torment, and determination…

With a mother who knew how to enjoy singing and a Polish playwright and composer for a grandmother, as a child Ash experienced many musical influences, acquiring his first guitar at fourteen and soaking up Hendrix, Pink Floyd and Shostakovich at eighteen.

He’d discovered his voice and started writing songs, experimenting with unusual instruments and playing in bands.

However, for more than a decade, he lived with the uneasy tension between a true passion for creative expression and a powerful drive to achieve academically, but eventually – luckily for us! – something had to give and Ash gave in to just being himself and making music.

With newer influences and discoveries like Bjork, Tim Buckley, Moby, and John Martin, Ash started to take covers out to open mics, customising instruments again and experimenting with sound scapes and vocal layering.

These days, he performs solo. Driven by the slightly reckless edge of the maverick, he has managed to unleash the gypsy in his soul.

Says Ash: “Touring is proving to be the healthiest job I’ve ever done, and that‘s probably because it’s exactly what I should be doing”.

His audiences are drawn by the mix of emotion and mischief in the live act and delighted by the hats and costumes, the stories and the comedy. This act shouldn’t  really work in pubs, but it does. And that is testament to the seductive power of true innovation, quality and passion.

(Phillipa Toop: 2010)

Find out more about Ash here:

15th, 16th & 17th May 2015