Monday, 28 November 2011

Tudor Lodge: 'a most desirable property'

Tudor Lodge were one of many hardworking folk bands whose name would have been well-known to gig-goers (and readers of Melody Maker's 'Folk Forum') in the early 70s. Here's a management ad from 1970:

On July 25th 1970  Melody Maker ran this rare feature about the trio:

Their sole album didn't appear for another full year. Here's its amazing fold-out sleeve:

The LP has become one of several expensive Vertigo obscurities that divide people. Some consider it a folk classic, while others find it insipid. Contemporary reviewers had the same problem. 'In order to strengthen the impact of their music, a surplus of orchestration has been added,' griped Melody Maker on August 21st 1971. 'More often than not this is superfluous. There is a lack of aggression and variation of mood within the basic framework of the music. If more of the album had relied on the guts of rock accompaniment, then it would have been improved.' Disc & Music Echo were somewhat keener on September 4th, writing that 'Tudor Lodge have put up a good show for their first album, and come over as completely unpretentious. The trio have had a lot of experience in folk clubs, and it's paid off for them... The entire album is well thought-out and presented.' Sounds, however, was less convinced. 'I'm afraid the recording just doesn't do justice to this fine trio,' it carped on October 23rd. 'The arrangements are exteremly pretty, but whilst I'm in favour of some albums being deliberately cooked slightly under, producer Terry Brown seems to have gone too far, and in doing so has detracted from the impact of the Tudors.'

The upshot was that barely anyone bought it, causing a perfect copy to sell on eBay in October 2010 for over £2000.


  1. The continued interest astounds me.
    John - founder member

  2. I adore this LP. A perfect period piece with a fantastic sleeve. It has some superb cuts, the beautiful singing in "Two steps back" and of course the acid folk classic "Willow Tree" being my favs. I'm a bit biased as a Vertigo vinyl completist I suppose, but it runs rings around many more famous folk ensembles of the era IMO. The price reflects the combination of rarity and quality and I will never part with my copy.