LITTLE JOHNNY ENGLAND
Little Johnny England first got together in mid 1999, and soon became one of the
most talked about new bands on the folk rock scene, garnering glowing and
enthusiastic reports of their live performances from far and wide.
The band members are all highly respected long-time members of the UK folk or rock
music scene, and took their name from band member P.J. Wright's composition,
P.J. ,(guitar/vocals), is a superb rock slide guitarists and the mainstay of the Steve
Gibbons Band. He was drawn into playing traditional music as a member of the
Dylan Project with Dave Pegg and Simon Nicol of Fairport Convention. Gareth
Turner, (melodeon), has played with the Albion Band, and the Phil Beer Band, Matt
Davies (5-string bass) and Edd Frost, (drums), are the rhythm section from the much
respected folk rock band Clarion, and The Vikki Clayton Band, whilst Guy Fletcher
(fiddle), was previously with Dansaul and Tickled Pink.
The band are as varied in their approach as they are to the material they perform,
combining subtlety with musical pyrotechnics, all of which is performed with a smile
on its face. Despite playing predominantly English music based on a rock foundation,
LJE draws on genres from around the world incorporating Cajun, Celtic and Eastern
European influences into their songs and instrumentals, this coupled with the unusual
blend of slide guitar, fiddle and melodeon makes for the exciting and individual sound
that is LJE.
The release of their self titled first studio album in 2000 caused various roots music
critics to comment on the fact that the genre known as folk rock was indeed alive and
well in its newest incarnation, which was reinforced with the release last year.of their
second album 'Mercs and Cherokees'. They have also released a live album on their
Reviewing the first album, "Dirty Linen" opined 'Little Johnny England should be a
contender for folk-rock album of the year." Later, the April 2002 editon of "Q"
magazine gave 'Mercs and Cherokees' a four star review, stating 'If 70's folk-rock
still counts, it's because of Little Johnny England' whilst the May 2002 editon of
fRoots raved "Uncommonly essential, they have made one of the 'must own' folk rock
albums of the year. No doubt!'