The Cuckoo

A traditional English/American piece for Bert Jansch

Recorded in Tavistock
April 2022

Gareth says: “I chose ‘The Cuckoo’ because I wanted to show how important American music was to Bert. When Bert sang a blues, it might have a British feel while an English or Scottish folk song might have a transatlantic twang. The Cuckoo’ is a song that began life in England in Elizabethan times, then crossed the Atlantic and became Americanised – then travelled back and forth again and again. I picked up this version from Tennessee banjo player Clarence Ashley when I was his road manager in 1966. Bert recorded an English version of the song on the Pentangle LP Sweet Child.”

Gareth adds: “I feel the Bert Jansch Foundation, and especially this project, helps newcomers to learn about his pivotal influence on the acoustic guitar and will inspire them to create and perform their own music.”

Gareth Hedges performs Delta and ragtime blues, vintage classics, Celtic and original songs and instrumentals. He has made 10 CDs, his latest entitled Transition.