Anyone who has heard Rosie sing at festivals will know what to expect from the vocal lines on this CD – strong, tuneful and uncompromising – but they might not be prepared for the complex and innovative accompaniments that enhance the songs. I was pleased to find that Rosie has recruited a stellar cast of friends: Pete MacGregor on guitar, Verity Sharp on fiddle and cello, Andrew Bazeley on guitar, Stash Huchrak on double bass and singers Bryony McGinty and Lindsey Huchrak to appear on this, her first recording venture at WildGoose studios for the Village Pump label. The theme of the CD is women’s empowerment. Every song has a message and the whole album is, in Rosie’s words, ‘dedicated to those women who have been wronged, faced discrimination and made their voices heard’. I would recommend these songs to any woman singer who is looking to increase her repertoire.

The title track, sung unaccompanied, is a good example of how to make a traditional song your own. The rhythmical changes which Rosie employs point out the essential message and make the song memorable. Additionally one has to celebrate the survival of such songs, especially when told that Rosie learnt it from a Methodist minister in a pub in Derbyshire: how unlikely is that? Two tracks are blues-inspired – ‘St. James Infirmary’ and ‘Deep and Careless Love’. Rosie’s powerful delivery fits these songs wonderfully.

Rosie is a fourth-generation singer whose ancestors hail from Warwickshire. Two songs on this album: ‘The Golden Glove’ and ‘The Seeds of Love’, come from Rosie’s own family, photographs of whom are reproduced in the excellent song notes. We have been waiting a long time for this album Rosie. Well done for making it such a good listen!

Mary Humphries
English Dance & Song magazine, www.efdss.org
Spring 2015  volume 77 no.1