Folk Music - Winner 2011
Sam is a singer, promoter, teacher, researcher and confessed die-hard enthusiast of the folk arts. Swapping his many careers to work in folk music, he has become one of the current leading lights of the folk revival taking traditional song into a new direction and onto new platforms. Sam performs solo or with his band ‘The Gillie Boys’ who create a radical yet melodic new passage for folk song for the contemporary audience. From 2006 to 2009 Sam was ‘adopted’ by the late Stanley Robertson, Aberdeen Traveller, ballad singer, storyteller and novelist, as his musical next of kin or “Keeper of the Lore”. He gained an unparalleled insight into traveller musical heritage and is now the sole carrier of a unique repertoire of Scotland’s NE ballands and lore which he draws from in his work. In 2009 Sam performed in the Wainwright, McGarrigle Concert at The Royal Albert Hall alongside Martha and Rufus Wainwright. An unrelenting folk promoter to boot his venue The Magpies Nest won Best Folk Club in the 2010 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards.