Raised in Toronto, son of an Irish man and an English woman, Tony left school at 18 and struck out west. He took a job on the railway in Edmonton Alberta hopping freight to get about from Nova Scotia to Vancouver Island. In 1071 Tony went to London and loved it. He met Declan Sinnott and in 1973 both moved to Ireland and formed the band Gandydancer (a gandydancer is a man who works on the railroad). After a spell as a furniture maker, in 1988 Tony and Declan got back together as a duo. Three tours of Ireland later, Tony moved to Cork where he’s been ever since.
A piece by Tony Henderson for Bert Jansch
Tony says: “This is a song about working on the railroad. I discovered Bert through Pentangle as a teenager back in Toronto. His approach to acoustic guitar was a revelation and also introduced me to the world of English folk song. I’d already started trying to be a proper fingerstyle guitarist having heard Chet Atkins earlier. When I moved to London in the seventies, I went to see him a number of times at various London clubs. Always a joy and an inspiration.”
A master with wood; Tony owns five guitars, all of them made by himself, he rebuilt his house in Cork and even the chairs and lamps in the place are by his own hands.