The Grenaways could be said to be mining the rich veins of inspirational ore that course through their home turf, adding a sense of their own ties to the region and especially it’s Celtic heritage. But, they are a band set for far wider horizons than Cornwall with a massive and alternative sound.
They are rootsy storytellers, unique in the folk style, with songs that are rich in nautical undertones, influenced so much by the sea, the people and coastal living.
For The Grenaways, none of whom are true folkies, unlike so many of the talented musicians on the traditional and certainly more purist UK folk scene generally, it is as though they have inherited something of the spirit of the communities and traditions of coastal Cornwall. By being immersed in the sea physically, and its communities of farming, fishing, surfing, and the creative arts of Cornwall that are so evocative and elemental, the sound and spirituality that the band has and the subjects they choose to write on have simply come to reflect something that already exists.
Their most recent EP, ‘Skath Vyghan’ (which means Little Boat) has two tracks recorded in the Cornish language and even though none of the band are actually Cornish, they found that writing in the Celtic language gave them a good grounding in the ancient.
The EP was largely recorded live, using locations outside of a normal studio environment including a pub, a church and a barn. The band say: “We recorded the drums and guitars in Isabelle’s barn / art studio. Then we spent a few days in St Peter’s Church in Port Isaac working on the keys, vocals and trumpet. The song ‘Old Mast’, written about an old ships mast that overlooks the sea from a hill above Port Isaac, was recorded live in St Peter’s with Joe Lee jumping on an old beat up double bass we had to borrow, as his was still back in London, and Laura using the church mini-grand. The backing vocals in ‘Fisherman’, a song about the cycle of life within the struggling fishing industry, were recorded on a packed Friday night at the Cornish Arms in Pendoggett.”
See The Grenaways at Dart Music Festival 2017 – more info: