Premiere – Song Of The Day on Folk Radio UK

“The Bara Bara Band return with a bold new album The Seeds Inside (The Grapes Upon The Vine), out on 15th September 2017 via Singaround Records. Each track has an underlying story behind the band’s intricate musicianship and Ruth Jacob and Rupert Browne’s colloquial, warm lead vocals.  Plimsoll, our Song of the Day, is no exception, an original arrangement of a broadside about the politician Plimsoll who, in the 1800s, canvassed for better safety on cargo ships where owners were sending sailors off to their deaths to cash in on insurance.”

UK Artist of The Week – The Vinyl District

“Having garnered a loyal fan-base over the last few years, the band are now set to release their new album next month. Taken from the album, latest single “Plimsoll” is inspired by a true story of the politician of the same name who, in the 1800s, canvassed for better safety on cargo ships where owners were sending sailors off to their deaths to cash in on insurance.  

A rich musical arrangement filled with layers of sweeping strings and delicate vocal harmonies, it’s a truly uplifting folk ditty that perfectly fuses together traditional lyrical storytelling with the band’s fresh take on instrumentation.

With the distinctive vocals of Ruth Jacob and Rupert Browne flowing together perfectly in sync, alongside lilting, uptempo melodies, it’s impossible not to fall in love at first listen with The Bara Bara Band’s whimsical charm and innovative sound.”

Premiere – The Mists of Time, PRS M Magazine

“…Drawing on the echoes of pastoral English folk for their own sepia-tinged sounds… Finding as much inspiration in the weather-beaten shanties of our sea-faring isles as the political climate they find themselves living in, their music sways loosely between the archaic and the current.”

Album Reviews – The Seeds Inside (2017)

Folk Radio UK:
“..Not afraid to take the traditional and experiment with their own fresh, often innovative, instrumentation and vocal patterns… Heavily influenced by British folk, including folk rock, nuances of old-time Appalachian and bluegrass, together with a modern twist on the traditional…”

Bright Young Folk:
“With the focus on the organic, the raw and the stripped back… The combination of traditional songs and Jacob / Browne originals merges so effectively within The Bara Bara Band framework, that you’d be pushed to spot the join…”
“Listening to this music is an exciting experience. Clear and obvious roots of tradition feed its creation, with freshness of innovation and the influences of freedom blending folk with Appalachian tinges to the tunes, and folk rock elements. The Bara Bara Band provide with ‘The Seeds Inside (The Grapes Upon The Vine)’ a heady mix that moves from ethereal through accusative to darkly observational. “
“The band’s distinctly warm and naturalistic English-inflected singing contrasts with (and is complemented by) a generous range of musical influences, including folk rock and Americana. The album is brimming with humour, compassion and energy. With a fine crop of strong songs to sing along with, it’s easy to imagine this band taking a deserved place as regular festival favourites.”

FATEA Magazine:
“…A richly inventive alt-folk outfit embracing both contemporary and traditional sensibilities..”
“…This album by The Bara Bara Band, like all good traditional music, touches the air we breathe and greases the axles of our lives… [it] rhymes with the very best of new and old English folk music”


You are introducing a ‘modern twist on tradition’ with your new album The Seeds Inside (The Grapes Upon The Vine) – what exactly does that mean?

We are heavily influenced by traditional folk, so our own songs reflect that, but also we create new arrangements of traditional songs and tunes, so for example the track ‘What Put The Blood’ is set to a more modern sounding folk rock arrangement. We also write songs that are inspired by traditional songs and music, but take on more contemporary subject matter such as All Look The Same in its reference to the camps at Calais; More and More in its reflections on the life of a capitalist fat cat; and Telling Me I Should Know, which echoes of the bombardment of information and misinformation in an age where there are so many forms of communication that it comes at you from all directions and you just want to close your eyes and ears and lie in a field.”  See more here:

“For those who may be new to your music, how best would you describe your sound?

Folk with bits of folk rock in a nutshell! To elaborate, the album is heavily influenced by British traditional folk and you will also hear the influence of old time Appalachian banjo in Ruth’s playing. But we put a modern twist on traditional songs, adding in bass guitar and drums for example. ”  See more here:

Album Reviews – Escape From Clinch Mountain (2015)

Album Review from Fatea Magazine:
“”Escape From Clinch Mountain” represents their first full length album and upon hearing it you realise that it’s something that you hadn’t realised that you had been missing, it’s an album that immediately makes its self at home, pulls a chair up to the kitchen table, pours two fingers of whiskey and starts to regale you with fascinating tales… Actually there’s something of the pioneer/adventurer about the album, it does have a wild feel to it, a real sense of freedom and whilst it draws on folk traditions it uses them to inspire and create a sound that is The Bara Bara Band.”

Album review from FolkWords:
“‘Escape from Clinch Mountain’ does nothing by halves, no insipid middle-road here, this is trademark Bara Bara Band music. Taking its diversity totally under control, it ranges comfortably between innovative old-time Americana to slightly psychedelia-tinged British folk.”

Album review from American Roots UK:
This is a truly astonishing album! It contains music of the highest quality and originality and yet never strays far from Folk music, albeit predominately British, some recognizably from America and even strains from other parts of the world all wrapped up somehow in their own individual styles that flow beautifully through this idiosyncratic bands debut full length album. They are a London based band who should be destined for great things if they keep producing albums of this quality, with their own excellent originals blended with traditional songs and instrumentals, lovely vocals from Ruth Jacob who maintains her English accent as well as playing banjo, guitar, harmonica and tin whistle with husband Rupert Browne adding an excellent vocal contrast as well as playing guitar. Will Dobson plays cajon and percussion and Boris Ming on fiddle, keyboards and vocals complete the lineup on this album that gets better with each listening session.


Surrey Hills Radio – Bob’s Folk Show
BBC Radio Shropshire – Genevieve Tudor’s Sunday Folk
Radio Wey – Bob’s Folk Show
Folk Radio UK – 1 hour live special
Resonance FM – Hello Goodbye Show

‘Not the Last Act’ The Bara Bara Band – unexpected and passionate

(May 29, 2013)

On their EP ‘Not The Last Act’ The Bara Bara Band deliver an eclectic mix, meandering through the convoluted paths of alternative folk, some of the less well-trodden routes of unorthodox country music, taking in the dark alleyways of psychedelia along the way.

Roaming through a collection of influences, all subsumed into their own particular and distinctive style, the intensity begins with ‘Come Ye Forth’ and immediately Ruth Jacob’s vocals stamp their authority on its crescendo-rich, echoing violin-trimmed effervescence. Next you’re into the title track ‘Not The Last Act’ a bass and percussion-led vibrancy with folky-narrative overtones and punchy vocals. Step change to a pastoral wistfulness with darker folk tendencies and ‘What Do You Believe In’ offers another facet of this experience, while the closer ‘Medusa’ puts a folk-country edge to an unconventional view on the mythological Gorgon.

This EP conveys the impression of a passionate, interlaced heart that periodically flails into a tenuously-held swirl of thoughts and images. Not easy to hold down but well worth the chase. So when does the album follow?

On ‘Not The Last Act’ The Bara Bara Band are Ruth Jacob (songwriter, vocals, guitar, harmonica, banjo) Rupert Browne (bass guitar, backing vocals) Will Dobson (drums, glockenspiel) Boris Ming (fiddle, keyboard, backing vocals) and Claudia Ruane (melodica, backing vocals).

Reviewer: Tim Carroll

Fatea Magazine:

“The Bara Bara Band provides something refreshingly different”

The London-based Bara Bara Band describe themselves as “an alt-folk quartet drawing promiscuously on old-time Americana, country and 60s psych as well as soaking up influences of traditional English folk music”; whoa there! But to my mind that’s not really the image their music conjures up – certainly the lead track of this EP, Come Ye Forth, sounds more like a feisty yet playful child conceived in a cosmic circus caravan, maybe a fiercely independent cross between the Incredible String Band, the Banshees and the B52s; check out that cheesy Woolworths organ, which also crops up on the stomping title cut. What Do You Believe In?, with its gorgeous yearning vocals and twitchy fiddle motifs, is altogether gentler in expression and tone, but retains a bewitchingly sinister tone and is steeped in fairy lore and twinkling glockenspielery.

The EP closer, Medusa, presents the mythical gorgoness in the unusual and ingenious context of a snake-hips line-dancing hoedown with pulsating cajun fiddles and rousing harmonica. All four songs are composed by band member Ruth Jacob, who I understand was formerly one half of legendary female folk duo The Lorcas. Ruth also provides the gorgeous lead vocals throughout; the lineup’s completed by Rupert Browne (bass), Boris Ming (fiddle, keyboards) and Will Dobson (drums, cymbals, glockenspiel), all of whose input cannot be underestimated.notwithstanding Ruth’s charismatic presence.

The Bara Bara Band provides something refreshingly different, not merely quirky-for-the-sake-of-it, and the brevity of this EP leaves me wanting much more (and we’re told that this is only the band’s second release).

David Kidman

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