Rainy Day Moments [demo]

Copyright David Harley 1972

This is a song for another stranger
A ship that moaned in the night
That I spent a lifetime with one long weekend
Then lost with no trace of a fight

What a party that was, what a bitter-sweet dream
What a raft in an ocean of blues
A theme for a song or a stag-party joke
A memory I never quite lose

What made her want me, that rainy day moment
Is something I can’t understand
I’m grateful she did and I really don’t know
Why I let it all slip through my hands

My ego was flattered, I liked her a lot
Yet deep down I couldn’t respond
I tried once to pick up the pieces by mail
But I knew that the chance was gone

As I bled later on from a deeper wound
I heard from a friend of a friend
That she’d just got married and anyway
I’d no reason to see her again

My life is a patchwork of rainy day moments
And she was just one of the bits
A tiny regret and a faint irritation
And wondering just where she fits

Whistle While You Walk [demo]

Whistle While You Walk (Harley)
Copyright April 2017

Sometimes – you look into her eyes
And all you want to do is talk
Sometimes you have to see her
Other times you just have to walk

Just walk away
Walk away
A shrug, a sigh
And whistle as you walk away

Sometimes you’re the heartbreak
Sometimes you’re just broke
And all your songs are lost
In the space between the notes

Just walk away
Walk away
A shrug, a sigh
And whistle as you walk away

Sometimes you know you love her
Sometimes you feel so cold
Sometimes your heart is empty
And you turn back to the road

Just walk away
Walk away
A shrug, a sigh
And whistle as you walk away

Sometimes – you look into her eyes
And all you want to do is talk
Sometimes you have to see her
Other times you just have to walk

Just walk away
Walk away
A shrug, a sigh
And whistle as you walk away


CD Review: Keith James, ‘Tenderness Claws’

One of my reviews for folking.com:

KEITH JAMES – Tenderness Claws (Hurdy Gurdy HGA2926)

Settings of poems by Lorca, Kerouac, William Blake, Allen Ginsburg, Dylan Thomas, and Keith James himself. Plus a nice cover of White Room (the words for which were written by the beat poet Pete Brown, so on topic…)

Folking.com has already reviewed his ‘Always…’ CD from 2015, but I got a copy along with ‘Tenderness Claws’, so I may review it for this site.

David Harley

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Mind you, now I’ve had the idea, maybe I will. Watch this space. But you have plenty of time to blink.

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Brain Damage [demo]

Roger Waters’ song for Pink Floyd probably isn’t the most obvious candidate for an old-timey treatment (and frankly, this isn’t very old-timey at all), but I thought it would be interesting to do it with some mandolin and banjo behind the acoustic guitar, and just a little electric guitar. Unusually for me, that really is a banjo, not a guitar pretending to be a banjo. I do intend to come back to it, and the instrumentation might well be different.

Alternate take (but still very much a demo): without the mandolin, banjo and electric guitar, but added some slide (resonator, not electric). Definitely not old-timey. Oh well.

David Harley

New Ends and Sad Beginnings [demo]

I’m actually reasonably happy with this version, but as it was recorded to try out a different recording/mixing configuration, it’s tagged as a demo for now.

One of my earliest songs, written in the late 60s (though it’s been through a few changes since then: haven’t we all?)

David Harley

CD Review: Emma and the Professor’s ‘Old Black Crow’

[CD review by Keith Whiddon (of The Flying Toads and Bouzatina): thanks, Keith! A Shropshire connection rather than a Cornwall connection,  so also posted at Sabrinaflu, but it sounds like an interesting album (which I hope to be able to review myself in the near future).]


Old Black Crow – (OWN LABEL) http://www.emmaandtheprofessor.co.uk

Old Black Crow is the latest high-energy musical offering from Shropshire couple Emma Heath (guitar and vocals) and Mark Davies (bodhrán and Cajon). The duo is joined by an impressive array of guest musicians including Benji Kirkpatrick (banjo and bouzouki); Ben Walsh (fiddle); Jack Rowe (fiddle) and Marion Fleetwood (fiddle and string arrangements).

Many of the songs are self-penned and inspired by the ancient history and beauty of the couple’s native Shropshire. Emma has a rich and powerful voice and driving guitar style while Mark’s no-nonsense bodhrán playing roots the music and sets its direction. The end result is an uplifting and exciting listening experience.

Right from the opening title track it is clear that this is an album of full-throttle songs! ‘Old Black Crow’ is a rockin’ bluesy romp, driven along nicely by Benji Kirkpatrick guesting on banjo.

Mark’s ‘Battle Of The Marches’ features Kirkpatrick on bouzouki and tells tales of the mysticism that lies in the hills of the duo’s native Shropshire. This is no wimpy fairy story, more a full-on battle of Middle-earth epic proportions!

The beautifully sensitive ‘Servant Slave’ is of marked contrast. With its Middle-Eastern overtones reinforced by Kirkpatrick’s bouzouki, here Emma’s voice is showcased to good effect.

The traditional American murder ballad ‘Rain And Snow’ is given a makeover, with impressive fiddle provided by Jack Rowe. The concluding ‘Rivers’ is like an Indian Raga, Emma harmonising with herself across Mark’s driving rhythm section.

Old Black Crow radiates with the energy that lies within the ancient lands of the Welsh Marches. Here are tales of sorrow, loss, hope and love all delivered with deep passion and soul.

Keith Whiddon