(Pontardawe's) VALLEY FOLK CLUB
(Pontardawe's)VALLEY FOLK CLUB 



Andy Cutting is a rarity. A musician's musician: a soulful and technically outstanding melodeon practitioner with an ear for a fine tune. Many of his tunes have been purloined along the way: some considered contemporary classics on the folk scene. But then, Andy is also a warm and emotive perfomer, modestly engaging his audiences with his self-deprecating wit and then flooring them with downright staggering musicianship. There are few melodeon players who put so much feeling into their playing, whether it be a set of dance tunes, or accompaniment to a slow English ballad.

Andy has been consistent musical force since he came swiftly to prominence with the innovative Blowzabella. As well as a thorough grounding in the English tradition, Andy's influences extend way beyond these isles, particularly to the music of Central France and to the storming Quebecois tradition. These influences will be well-known to all those familiar with Andy's duo with English fiddle player, guitarist and singer, Chris Wood. Wood & Cutting became one of the most influential, and enduring duos on the scene; paving the way for the explosion of many of today's thrusting young newcomers.

Andy's commitment to, and sense of pride in traditional music, as well as his sensitivity and understanding of the form, has made him one of the folk scene's most wanted, playing with Kate Rusby, John McCusker and Under One Sky to name but a few. There is also a growing demand for him to play outside this genre. He has recorded with Sting, John Illsley (Dire Straits), and was asked to join The Who for an acoustic concert in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust. As well as his ongoing work with Chris, Andy is currently working with Martin Simpson, June Tabor and Blowzabella. He is also a member of Leveret and Topette

In my musical life I've been lucky to work with a few musicians that I would call a genius, Andy Cutting without a doubt is one of these people. He is not only a true master of his instrument but a very inspiring musician to play with and be around. I've learned loads just by listening & watching Andy play. To top it all off, you couldn't meet a nicer fella. John McCusker

Hearing Andy Cutting play is like going through the wardrobe and finding Narnia. His music is glorious, joyful, moving, subtle, emotionally charged, a totally spell-binding experience that is never long enough. June Tabor

Andy is the consummate accompanist, harmonically, rhythmically and melodically and an exquisite soloist. There is no one I'd rather work with. Martin Simpson

Andy is a top drawer player who speaks with his hands. I had no idea how lucky I was to work with him until long after we had gone our separate ways. Chris Wood

© Andy Cutting 2010  (To be updated soon)


Cutting has won the Folk Musician of the Year award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards three times: 2008, 2011 and 2016


GRAHAM LARKBEY & DAVE ILLINGWORTH A return visit after a long gap from two old friends of the club going back to the 70s and 80s, both solo and with Pigfoot and Aunt Fortescue's Bluesrockers.  They'll be doing some on their own and some together;  expect an unpredictable and entertaining mixture of country, blues, originals.....and maybe even the odd folk song and uproarious AFB number thrown in for old times' sake.


Barry has a clear, distinctive voice singing mainly traditional-sounding songs with sensitive and inventive accompaniments on concertina and guitar. Expect to be surprised by songs that make you think, laugh and sometimes cry (in a good way), presented with wit and dry humour.  Enjoy!'


Fresh reinterpretations of Celtic music, woven together with stories and dance drawn from the rich heritage of the Celtic Nations. The Meadows have twice played sets at Glasgow’s Celtic Connections, the International Music Eisteddfod in Llangollen, the Fishguard Folk Festival, How the Light Gets In, The Little Big Gig, Cardiff’s WMC and many other festivals and events. 

They get regular airplay on both national and international radio and T.V. networks.  Their new album ‘Force of the Tide’ has achieved great aclaim following its release in 2019.


“Wonderfully talented music family.” :- Jamie Owen, BBC Wales


“Glorious voices.” Paul Jackson, Fatea Magazine


“You guys are very special, talented and magical."  Festival of the Celts



John now lives in Spain and is making a welcome return to the club while he is over on a visit.

As well as performing solo, he will be joined during the evening by a few friends he used to play with regularly.

ANDREW McKAY & CAROLE ETHERTON - "New songs of old times"


Andrew and Carole live on the Gower Peninsula outside Swansea, South Wales. Both are accomplished singers and instrumentalists, Andrew having played the obscure Crane Duet concertina for more years than he cares to, or possibly can, remember.  Carole, who plays a range of early woodwind instruments, was also a resident singer at several folk clubs in her native Sussex.  Before joining forces, they performed solo and with different shanty groups at folk clubs and festivals in Britain, Continental Europe and the United States.


Now as a duo, they have continued to take their interpretation of the songs they enjoy to a wide audience, having added Ireland, Australia and New Zealand to the list.  They have a growing reputation not only as performers but also as writers of songs which are often assumed to be traditional, and which are being taken up and recorded by other singers, not just in the UK but around the world.  Their song-writing has been described as ‘reminiscent of Rudyard Kipling and C Fox Smith’ with the added bonus that they ‘do all the tunes themselves’.  Most of their songs have choruses, and they do like it when people join in.

Read more here -



Funny stories, serious songs, great singing and inventive guitar playing.


Individually they have worked with the likes of The Righteous Brothers, Mary Hopkin, The Strawbs and Nanci Griffith. Now, they are front of stage singing and playing their own brand of acoustic guitar based material. They will have you tapping your feet, joining in with choruses, enjoying their stories and being in awe of Cathryn's great singing and Brian's inventive guitar playing.


"A wonderful weave of songs and stories wrapped in subtle colours of musical genious and delivered with an effortless stagecraft drawn from long roads travelled" - Column Sands


Aidan Sheehan (accordion, harmonica, penny whistle, mandolin, vocals), Dave Wood (fiddle, vocals), and me (guitar and vocals).

The trio delivers a wide range of “Americana” - Cajun, Zydeco, Bluegrass, Piedmont / Louisiana Blues, “Good” Country, retro Roots Rock ‘n’ Roll and American Folk / Jazz all performed with raw enthusiasm and a dash of musical hot sauce.

They have heartfelt, almost whiskey-soaked vocal harmonies, singing and playing like
they really mean it, sometimes in Cajun French. Wherever they play, Arts centres, theatres,
festivals, live music venues both large and small, they always connect with their audience.


50/50 night November 29th NEIL & LOUISE THOMAS plus another guest to be confirmed.


Lou and Neil kicked off their musical folk act in the early 70’s. Neil was dragged to Bridgend Folk Club by a friend, saw Louise singing in the folk group Folklore, turned to his friend and said “I’m going to marry her”.

They went on to perform together...musically, appearing in many folk clubs in the South Wales area, also folk festivals such as Pontardawe, Bromyard,  Laycock & Chipenham, Folk Around the Wrekin etc.

Two fractured vertebrae in Neil’s spine stopped all that and they did not perform publicly for around 30 years.

They are back now (almost) still performing those songs which people request, sometimes remembering all the words but not necessarily in the right order. Enjoy!


Carolling & Crumpets - Solo Christmas Show


John Kirkpatrick was born in Chiswick, West London in 1947. A deep love of music was instilled from birth, and family gatherings always included a hearty sing-song. School choirs, the Church choir, playing recorder and piano ensues, until he joined the Hammersmith Morris Men, in their second week, in 1959.

Whilst with the team he took up the melodeon, then the button accordion, then the anglo concertina, and got hooked on the traditional songs that were accompanied with a post-dancing pint.

John has gone on to become one of the most prolific figures on the English folk scene, performing solo, in duos, acoustic groups and electric bands, and has established an enviable reputation as an instrumental virtuoso and session musician, as well as a leading interpreter of English folk music. He has been a member of the Albion Country Band, Magic Lantern, The Richard Thompson Band, Umps and Dumps, Steeleye Span, Brass Monkey, Trans-Europe Diatonique, and Band of Hope, as well as numerous ceilidh bands.

He rejoined The Albion Band for The National Theatre productions of "Lark Rise" and "Candleford", and from 1980 has regularly worked on shows at The Victoria Theatre (later The New Victoria Theatre) in North Staffordshire, The Orchard Theatre Touring Company based in Devon, and elsewhere. As songwriter, composer, choreographer, and musical director, he has contributed to over sixty plays in the theatre and on radio. And as featured artiste, band member, or session player, his music can be heard on over 200 different commercial recordings.

John has lived in Shropshire since 1973, where he had four sons by his first marriage. Now happily re-married, he still dances, with all four sons (on a good day), with the Morris team he founded in 1975, The Shropshire Bedlams.



We are located at:

Glais Rugby Football Club

609, Birchgrove Rd.

Glais, nr Clydach

Swansea SA7 9EN

Contact us

Huw & Heather Pudner 01792 862062

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