|LP||UK||1981||Airship AP 213|
|S1||T1||Step It Out Mary||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S1||T2||Adieu Sweet Lovely Nancy||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S1||T3||Blow The Candle Out||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S1||T4||A Trip To Durrow / The High Reel||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S1||T5||The Cuckoo||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S2||T1||The Month Of January||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S2||T2||The Broadside Man||John Connolly, Bill Meek|
|S2||T3||A Soul Cake||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S2||T4||Chief O´Neil´s Favourite / Newcastle Hornpipe||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S2||T5||Green Bushes||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|S2||T6||Oats And Beans And Barley Grow||Trad. Arr. Bachelor´s Gate|
|The Music for Blow The Candle Out, The Cuckoo and Green Bushes was written by Steve Ball|
|Steve Ball||Vocals, Guitars and Cittern|
|Ann Ball||Vocals, Flute, Penny Whistles, Bodhran (irish Drum), Bones|
|Lee Tupper||Vocals, Mandolin, Tenor-Banjo, Bozouki and Octave Mandola|
|Studio||Airship Recordings of Richard Sharples, Jim Brooks and Engineer Sam Small in Bognor Regis|
|Cover||Tony Lamborn and Sue Adams|
The name of the group is derived from an old legend dating back to the 1500’s. It is said that the Nuns from Easebourne Priory (near Midhurst, West Sussex, England) used to go out in the dead of night and surreptitiously meet with their men friends at a place that eventually became known as Bachelors Gate. There is now a house called Bachelors Gate on the site.
The group originally got together in 1974 at their local Grammar School in Midhurst. Their main musical influences were groups like Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span and Silly Wizard. Also such artistes as Martin Carthy, Maddy Prior, June Tabor, Martin Simpson, Richard & Linda Thomson and Dave Swarbrick - all of whom they have performed alongside at one time or another over the years.
Like most folk groups in the UK at the time, Bachelors Gate spent their time performing at folk clubs and festivals, most of their gigs were in the south of England. In addition, they were residents at the famous Amberley Folk Club (Black Horse pub) in West Sussex for many years.
Bachelors Gate continued to play folk concerts all over the UK into the early 1980's. They made their great folk album in 1981 at Airship Studios in Bognor Regis, which was a privately owned 8 track recording studio. The guys at Airship, namely Richard Sharples, Jim Brooks and engineer Sam Small were a great help in creating the album. The album cover was designed by friends of the band, Tony Lamborn and Sue Adams.
Recording was completed over eight sessions, mostly very late at night and into the early hours. Almost all of the recording was done in single takes. There was one notable exception, a recorder part which took Annie 14 takes, the recorder was an old instrument and difficult to get into concert pitch tuning.
In all, 300 copies of the Bachelors Gate album were pressed, and it has since become a very rare collector’s item. The album was a lot of fun to make, and the group is still very proud of it 25+ years later.
In February 2007 Bachelors Gate reformed to play a reunion gig at Amberely Folk Club. This was the first time the band had played together for over 20 Years, and it was a great success. So much so, that they plan to do some more. In the pictures you can see the original line-up (from left to right: Lee, Ann, Steve) with additional guest, Steve’s brother, Warren (far right) on Bass guitar.
And what happened to the band?
Well, Steve started out his working life in Telecommunications and Computing, but gave that up to become a professional musician.
Annie gave up gigging (in 1983) to be a full-time Mum, and is now a Teaching Assistant at a local school.
Lee still plays the Mandolin brilliantly, and works for the UK Government.
And yes, they all still live happily ever after in West Sussex.
Steve Ball in February 2007
If you like folkrecords like Cobblers Last, Silver Birch, Green Man, Swordedge and others, you will love the great Bachelors Gate record too.
Kai Willems in March 2007
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