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Baker's Dozen

Friends Of Mine: Rachel Aggs' Favourite Music
Stephanie Phillips , February 24th, 2021 10:14

Rachel Aggs takes Stephanie Phillips through the albums that made her the musician she is today, from Smokey Robinson to Robyn, Mahotella Queens to Sleater-Kinney. Portrait photo by Stephanie Gibson


Eliza Carthy – Rough Music
Eliza Carthy is the daughter of folk singer Martin Carthy. They're a very famous English folk family. Her parents are amazing but I think they produced someone who is one of the best violin players that I've ever heard, has a brilliant singing voice, and is really good at arranging old English songs.

I wanted to include this record because I also grew up with a folky dad. I grew up playing the fiddle, and I'm nowhere near as good as she is, but when I was a kid, she was definitely one of my heroes. I used to go to folk clubs and see her and her family play and thought she was really cool. There was definitely something about seeing a cool, young woman playing with so much passion and pride. I hadn't been to many gigs when I was that age so it left a big impression on me.

I don't get to talk about folk music very often when I do interviews about Shopping or Trash Kit or Sacred Paws because it's pretty far away sonically speaking, but it's definitely important in my musical roots and development.

Unfortunately, English folk gets a bit of a bad rep because it can get co–opted by a Brexiter type BNP nastiness and people also associate it with boring, sleepy old men Morris dancing. That's because the songs are played in a boring way, but with Eliza Carthy the way she arranges songs it just sounds so rich and exciting.