Legends on Tour

ABM is privileged to work with some national treasures – quite literally – who have contributed immeasurably to the folk scene in the UK and Ireland.

Martin Carthy MBE is one such. Still endlessly curious at 82 years of age, Martin Carthy is one of folk music’s greatest innovators, one of its best loved, most enthusiastic and, at times, most quietly controversial of figures. His skill, stage presence and natural charm have won him many admirers, not only from within the folk scene, but also far beyond it.

Martin is available for solo gigs (and some duo dates with daughter Eliza Carthy in 2023.)
Andy Irvine is one of the great Irish singers, his voice one of a handful of truly great ones that gets to the very soul of Ireland. He has been hailed as “a tradition in himself”. Musician, singer, songwriter, and Lifetime Achievement Award winner at the inaugural RTÉ Folk Awards, Andy was at the helm of legendary bands like Sweeney’s Men in the mid 60s, Planxty in the 70s, and then Patrick Street, Mozaik, LAPD and more recently Usher’s Island. To quote the Irish Times, “Often copied, never equalled”, his solo repertoire consists of Irish traditional songs, dexterous Balkan dance tunes and a compelling cannon of his own self-penned songs.

Andy tours solo in the UK this October.

The man that Shirley Collins has called “English music’s mighty heart of oak, John Kirkpatrick is one of the most prolific figures on the English folk scene with a buoyant, engaging stage presence, a robust singing voice and a justified status as an instrumental virtuoso (melodeon, Anglo concertina and button accordion): a leading interpreter of English folk music, song and dance. John now appears solo, with his concerts brimful of good-humour and outstanding musicianship.

He is generally available and offers some special seasonally-themed shows including Carolling & Crumpets – an uplifting celebration of Christmas and Midwinter – touring every December.

Festive Wishes

ABM would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year! It’s been great to work with so many wonderful artists, promoters, venues and festivals over the last 12 months. See you again in 2023 for some more live music! Best wishes, James, Sarah, Tash, Elie, Sarah and John xx

ABM welcomes Adam Beattie

ABM is excited to be working with Scottish singer/songwriter and guitarist Adam Beattie. Adam is a celebrated artist of the London scene and has toured widely in the UK and throughout Europe. Having roots in Scottish folk music, and a lifelong interest in old time jazz and blues, Adam’s music is defined by his distinctive lyrical voice, narrative lyrics and fingerstyle guitar. His current (5th) solo album Somewhere Round The Bend has received widespread critical acclaim with Mojo Magazine referring to his “uplifting reveries of love and loss through romantic balladry” and Loud And Quiet Magazine describing it as “mesmeric”.

Adam is currently working on his next solo album for release in 2024, with a planned single release (and tour) in autumn 2023. The songs will be a continuation of his timeless Scottish folk trademark sound, with incisive melodies and rooted narratives on the theme of home and our relationship to where we are from.

Booking now from mid-Sept to mid-Nov 2023, and summer festivals. Flexible line-up from solo to full band.


Mikey Kenney Joins ABM

ABM is delighted to announce a new working partnership with traditional fiddler/singer/songwriter/composer from England’s North-West and Ireland Mikey Kenney.

Mikey is an original. A passionate and well-respected advocate for traditional music – a brilliant Liverpool-style fiddler drawing primarily on his native North West English and Irish heritage  – but grounded in a present-day, urban reality. He is a musician with wide-open horizons and insatiable curiosity for new possibilities. As evidenced on his latest album, The Reverie Road (Penny Fiddle Records), Kenney’s songwriting is both adventurous and earth-bound, with his high lonesome voice exploring sun-drenched Italian vistas, dream worlds and sounds of the city.

Mikey is currently working on a new album due for release next autumn. Mikey performs unaccompanied as well as being a prolific collaborator.

“This is magical, medicinal music that defies labels and borders” Liverpool Echo

Taking bookings now for a November 2023 album tour, plus summer festivals. Flexible line-up from solo to full band.

Calling all Festivals!

ABM are looking forward to some exciting festival line-ups in 2023 and we have some amazing artists to bring your stages to life!
Choose from a great range of acts including the powerhouse 30th celebrations of Eliza Carthy & The Restitution; the uniquely captivating harmonies of Lady Maisery; the uplifting pipe-driven trio Brighde Chaimbeul, Ross Ainslie, Steven Byrnes (see video below); Heal & Harrow’s ground-breaking duo show; the inimitable solo intimacy of the Martin Simpson amongst many others. The Spooky Men’s Chorale are even making a cheeky one week return at the end of August.
2023 heralds lots of new releases and tours from ABM artists including the golden instrumental sounds of Owen Spafford & Louis Campbell; the show-stopping Scottish fiddler Ryan Young; dark and brooding sounds from The Furrow Collective; sparse and evocative trad. songs from the mighty Alasdair Roberts; Devon’s creamiest singer Jim Causley celebrating old traditions and creates new ones; the bittersweet and beguiling new duo Emily Portman & Rob Harbron and more.
The ABM roster represents a great one-stop shop for festival bookers offering barnstorming headliners to boundary pushers to iconic tradition bearers like Martin Carthy and John Kirkpatrick.

Owen Spafford and Louis Campbell

ABM are delighted to be working with extraordinary new duo, Owen Spafford and Louis Campbell whose progressive musical vision and mastery already mark them out as a stand-out pairing.

First meeting as members of the first cohort of the National Youth Folk Ensemble, the duo sees Owen (Cosmo Sheldrake) and Louis (Sam Sweeney) distilling their love of traditional and experimental music into powerful, intricate and intimate new sounds.  Their shared musical ‘true north’ enables them to make two instruments (fiddle and guitar) seemingly sound as one. Experiencing the duo live is both profound and moving: their improvisation, humour and musicality making each live performance unique.

They release their critically acclaimed debut album You, Golden in November 2022, managing to orbit many different sound-worlds while staying within acoustic English folk music; seamlessly blending traditional tunes with their own material.

Touring mid-September 2023 and available for festival bookings.

“Rising stars of the folk scene” – Katie Derham, BBC Radio 3

“Beautiful, swirling, modern English folk music” – Mark Radcliffe, BBC Radio 2

ABM at English Folk EXPO

The ABM team are excited to be heading to EfEx in Manchester this week, to make and renew connections with friends and delegates and to share future plans for the many wonderful artists on the roster. We look forward to lots of gig and festival bookings!
We are thrilled that two ABM acts will be appearing at Manchester Folk Festival. Be sure to see them play!
Lady Maisery
Thurs Oct 13th 7.30pm Home T1
The Magpie Arc
Thurs Oct 13th 8.55pm Home T1
Come to meet new ABM boss James Garrett and lead agent Sarah Coxson at the Trade Fair at Stand 12, Bridgewater Hall on Sat Oct 15th 10am – 1.30pm. 
And look out for ABM’s Tash Daly in her role as Artistic Director of Sidmouth Folk Festival.
Alan Bearman has now officially retired. The whole ABM would like to offer up our heartfelt thanks to him for all his brilliant work and amazing support. He has built a great team at ABM and we look forward to honouring his legacy as we move forward into the future.

The Brothers Gillespie

ABM are pleased to be working with the talented Northumbrian sibling duo Brothers Gillespie on their Spring 2023 album tour of latest release The Merciful Road. With a captivating sound centred around guitar and fiddle with the brothers’ voices singing in ‘the glorious tones of their blood harmony’ (Sam Lee), their intimate live shows are winning over audiences throughout the land, including recent appearances at Mosely Folk Festival and The Pianodrome, at Edinburgh Fringe.
Described by Folk Radio UK as ‘weaving an especially compelling magic’, and ‘showing off British acoustic music in its best possible light’, brothers James and Sam Gillespie sing songs of great lyrical power, animated by the sound of soaring sibling harmony, inspired guitar playing and a rich array of acoustic instruments. Their songs and performances have a rare, intimate energy that is both earthy and ethereal, romantic and radical. 

“Anyone who has seen the brothers live will surely attest that it is an experience that will stay with you. There is a feeling of warmth that exudes from them and affects everyone in the room.” Folk London

Touring 21 April – 7 May 2023 
Available for festivals + autumn 2023.


Spring 2023 Tours – Update

Lots of solid options for some great Spring 2023 bookings available on the ABM roster, including solo dates with Rachel Newton’s outstanding acoustic harp shows in March from 6 –8, 12, 13, 14, 16 ­–19 and from Sam Sweeney with some intimate and powerful solo fiddle performances in February in arts centres, and further weekend gigs in May in beautiful, acoustic spaces. 

Both grand masters, Martin Carthy and John Kirkpatrick have solo availability in Spring 2023.

The irrepressible Martin Simpson and Chris Wood both have a few solo dates left in March 2023.
Exquisite Scottish fiddle quartet RANT have several Spring dates available throughout the UK on 9, 11, 12 Mar and 16 – 19 Mar.
New album tours abound with an Alasdair Roberts’ Painted Rooms album out on Drag City in early 2023. Final dates for this Scottish alt-folk legend’s tour include 23 – 27 Mar and 6 and 7 April.
Emily Portman & Rob Harbron’s new album tour has the last few dates for Spring available on 21 Feb, 1 and 5 Mar
Devon’s finest, Jim Causley, takes material from his new album The Georgic on the road for Spring 2023 – from mid-April throughout May.
We are very excited to hear the new album on its way from stunning Scottish fiddler Ryan Young, touring throughout the first half of 2023.
And fine West Yorkshire-singer Jack Rutter’s new EP of covers will be aired next Spring with bookings available in May and October.

ABM Welcomes Tarren

ABM have just started working with the wonderful Bristol folk trio Tarren.
Sid Goldsmith (Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith, Awake Arise), Alex Garden (The Drystones, Harriet Riley & Alex Garden) and Danny Pedler (Pedler // Russell). They combine cittern and concertina, fiddle, and accordion to create new, dynamic folk music. The trio are producing rich, joyous music that draws the listener in, weaving intricate themes throughout tunes and songs that have the pulse of traditional dance at its heart.
Their debut album REVEL was released to critical acclaim on 29 August 2022.
Having toured major cities in the summer via the Nest Collective and receiving standing ovations at Shrewsbury, Sidmouth and Broadstairs Folk Festivals we’re now booking their spring tour in for April 2023.
“Just the kind of band we need on the folk circuit today. Brilliant!” 
Folk Radio UK

Touring 13-16, 20-23 & 27-30 April 2023 
Available for festivals 2023. 


Stowmarket Traditional Music Day – 9 & 10 September

Alan has recently been acting as Voluntary Artistic Director for the Stowmarket Traditional Music Day. The event which up until September 2017, took place for over 10 years in the extensive and beautiful grounds of the Museum of East Anglian Life (now The Food Museum) is now expanding across many venues in the town of Stowmarket.

For 2022, they will be bringing East Anglian Traditional Music Day to you from the heart of the town of Stowmarket. Expect Concerts, Workshops, Sessions, Talks, Exhibitions, Storytelling, Puppet shows, Music related stalls and Dance including Stepdancing and Morris Dancing around the town.

For more info including full line-up and tickets please visit: eatmt.org.uk/east-anglian-traditional-music-day/