Since 1994 TASC has been organising Events & Workshops to encourage the use and enjoyment of Folk Music in Mid Wales and the Borders
REGISTERED CHARITY 102144 Swn-y-Coed, Llandinam. SY17 5DJ tel:01686 688102 . . .

Did you Miss This?

Severn Suite:Ten Years On

GREAT TIME was had by all at Llandinam Village Hall in October. Image above shows John's tremendous galloping Severn Up

Other Stuff

TASC Membership

If you like what we do please give us your support.
Join at our On-Line Shop
Nov 1st to Oct 31st

Shrewsbury French & Breton Dance Day
The wonderful Kantref - workshops, supper and Bal.
Saturday Dec 3rd

Arvon Ales Christmas Folk Session
See our suggested tunes and carols list
Llandrindod Wells
Sunday Dec 11th

Severn Suite book & CD
Our re-visiting of this, and the article in EDS, has led to a flurry of sales. Get yours before we run out.
Buy at Our On-line shop

Dartmoor Stepping
Working with Lisa Sture & Dartmoor Folk Festival to carry out research and teaching on stepping, tunes and recollections.

We're working on the follow up to our Telling Tales. Meanwhile Amy's BLAST has started its new season in Bishop's Castle.

Arvon Ales and TASC

Arvon Ales are hosting a short series of free hour long workshops in partnership with TASC to provide a chance for learning and sharing tunes and songs before the main session and to encourage those who don't always feel ready to join in the regular sessions.

SUNDAY NOVEMBER 13th ARVON ALES, LLANDRINDOD WELLS 2.30pm - 4pm For the final one of these Sessions for the Hesitant we want you to be LESS hesitant! We want to know what you want to know. What are YOUR questions? We'll also devote this session to covering questions we've been asked, such as:
1 What's the difference between a melodeon, concertina and accordion? What's best for beginners? How much does one cost?
2 How can I find out what key am I singing in? If someone wants to accompany me what do I say?
3 What's the difference between a polka and a jig? Are English jigs different to Irish ones?

But we're happy to answer any questions about starting or improving your enjoyment of folk music, whether it be singing, dancing or playing. If you let Laura or Pete or Phil know in advance any questions, we can come prepared (a bit!) but you can still come and contribute your ideas, thoughts and questions on the day

We are organising workshops and a performance of our Severn Suite, a work of fifteen dances and tunes composed and devised by JOHN KIRKPATRICK & KAREN TWEED (pictured). For details of how to get involved either as a dancer or a musicians go to our TEN YEARS ON page, where you can also sign up for a dedicated newsletter to hear the latest developments share your ideas with others.

SEVERN SUITE BOOK (with all the tunes and all the dances) & CD AVAILABLE FOR £12.50 (inc p&p). Go to our On-line Shop

Next Rehearsal at Bedstone Village Hall SY7 0BE on Thursday 1st September at 8pm. Sign up for more details.


We're still developing our relationship with Dartmoor Folk Festival and helping them to research the step dance tradition. Visit the facebook page for more.


As we're very short of admin time our 'What's On' section will be a bit thinner in future. So PLEASE just treat it as a few things we are telling you about - it's not meant to be a comprehensive guide. The regular sessions (at Arvon Ales, Horse & Jockey, Bull & Heifer) won't always be mentioned, so check with the venues if in doubt.

Older News Items

DIPPER MALKIN May 2016 see more or less

    We're kicking off the celebrations of our Severn Suite 10th Anniversary with the return of John Dipper who was very much involved all those years ago. He'll be returning with Dave Malkin at a concert in Montgomery on Friday May 6th with a workshop the following morning. Tickets from our on-line shop or on the door.

    You can find out more about the fabulous Dipper Malkin duo on their website.

TASC AGM - Monday April 11th 2016 see more or less

    The 21st Annual General Meeting of TASC will take place at 7.30pm in the Library, Llandinam Village Hall, School Lane, Llandinam on Monday 11th. April for the purpose of transacting the following business.

    1. Accepting the minutes of the 2015 AGM
    2. Receiving the Annual Report & Accounts
    3. Electing trustees for 2016-17
    4. Considering Member resolutions (if any)
    5. Any Other Business

    Nomination forms for those wishing to put themselves forward for election as trustees can be downloaded below:

KAREN TWEED - Out and About see more or less

    For those of you who don't get Karen Tweed's newsletters here's the link to the website where you can sign up for the latest on her kaleidoscope of interests and passions.
    Accordion Water Manifestos

    Image shows Karen with fellow accordionist Jim McLoughlin.

TASC On-line see more or less

    Towards the end of 2015 we extensively re-designed the website: with new pages, a YouTube Channel to go alongside our facebook updates, and generally getting a little more media savvy.

    One idea that went on the back burner was creation of new videos, as there didn't seem any great appetite for them. But we are considering a video podcast of some kind instead. Let us know your thoughts.

    We are trying as far as possible to spread our work into different locations: for details see Projects for 2016

THE ARTS COUNCIL OF WALES writes: see more or less

    we've received this e-mail, and TASC trustees will discuss whether we'll take part, but it may be more about cultural politics than support for folk arts.

    1-3 April 2016 A weekend to try something, make something - Get Creative! On 1-3 April 2016 BBC Cymru Wales, Arts Council of Wales and What Next? are teaming up for a bumper weekend to celebrate the nation's creativity - and we're inviting you to join in.

    We're shining a light on Wales as a place where we take part in arts and culture and love to get creative. We're asking arts organisations, community groups and societies or all shapes and sizes to invite others take part in a creative experience . It could involve making music, dance, film or photography. Creating with words, paint or digitally. Maybe just generally getting crafty! Whether it's your usual activity or something specially planned, let us know what you're up to. Want to try a new creative experience? Want to find out how you can take part? Our interactive site will go live soon where you can see all the events that are happening near you across the weekend.

REAMS about Quires see more or less

    In the first TASC newsletter of 2016 we got ourselves in a bit of a tangle. Following the great reception of Sue Harris's seasonal workshop at Montgomery we wanted to let everyone know about the workshop Sue was running in Bishop's Castle in the West Gallery tradition.

    Broadly speaking that is recreating the music of our churches and chapels before the organs came and spoiled it. Probably the most famous exponents are the Mellstock Band. Not only did I confuse them, unpardonably, but I used a famous painting of the Village Choir by Thomas Webster to illustrate the Shropshire workshop, forgetting it had been used by the Village Quite on the cover of one of their albums, no doubt adding to the confusion.

    However, I'd also recently seen the Village Quire at New Radnor, who also perform West Gallery Music, and I inadvertently used their name. The Bishop's Castle workshop is with the Shropshire Harmony Quire (see below), and you can find out more about the Village Quire on their website or facebook.

    Dave Newell writes: The Village Quire were formed in 2008 by Dave Newell and Cheryl Christopher and are based at Glasbury-on-Wye. The Village Quire sing west gallery, shape note, folk harmony and early music and Dave's original compositions inspired by these genres.

    Dave Bissitt writes: " Come and join the cheerful quire" or, to put it another way, how would you like to spend an afternoon singing in the style of the village church choirs of days gone by, the rumbustious style that prevailed until the dark veil of Hymns Ancient and Modern descended and choked the life from the choirs? The good news is that that way of singing didn't disappear entirely. In a few parts of the country it survived - mostly in the pubs where it is still sung to this day. And it survived in the notebooks of the many singers and musicians for whom it was a vital part of everyday life. In the last 20 years or so, thanks to a handful of dedicated researchers and enthusiasts, it has seen a significant revival and quires have established themselves up and down the country. Shropshire has two and the one based in Bishop,s Castle, known as Shropshire Harmony, is having a taster session when you can come along and find out for yourself, and without commitment, just why it is that people enjoy singing in this way. You don't have to be a great singer or have a trained voice. This was the music of the people and they sang with gusto and enthusiasm. And to help the thing along the village band would play with the quire and that is how it is still done - an instrument to each part, to keep you somewhere near the right notes.

    Interested? Would you like to find out how enjoyable it is to be part of joyful noise making either as a singer or as a musician? This then is for you. Simply come along to the open session from 2 to 5 pm on Sunday the 24th of January in the Methodist Hall (no connection!) in Bishop's Castle. You will be welcome indeed. Oh, and there will be refreshments . . . and cake. We always have cake.

    If you would like to know a little more, or indeed check anything out with us, contact Dave on 01938 570446 or by email to

AND the World see more or less

    Exciting opportunities in far-flung places and different disciplines for those of you who want to stretch yourselves.

    January Newsletter from World Cultures Connect

    Distributed by Visiting Arts, Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall, London, SW1Y 5AH

TIME FOR Finding Your Dancing Shoes see more or less

    We've now produced a short booklet of tunes and dances that might be of some use if you're working with a group to introduce them to country dancing.

    It follows on from a project at Montgomery Church in Wales school where the dances were taught to the after school club by TASC, using live music to dance to.

    The booklet was produced for those who attended the after school club and want a reminder of how the dances go, but there's tunes and instruction enough for anyone starting from scratch.

    Copies of the booklet will be made available from Montgomery library but also available as a download .