The Long Version
We formed in 2009 as three students at secondary school with no better way to spend our lunchtimes than scrape a tune or two. Gradually the band became less about avoiding socialising with our peers and more about actually playing music, and so Granny’s Attic premiered in 2010 at the prestigious Claines Church Fete.
2011 saw us release our debut EP Mind the Gap featuring a mix of traditional and original tunes. Around this time, we took our first forays into regular live performing, with early highlights including the first of many appearances at the Worcester Music Festival and a support spot for the legendary John Kirkpatrick at Worcester’s Huntingdon Hall.
We continued in 2012 with such impressive performances as a school assembly, a local pub and George’s sister’s birthday party.
In 2013 we set our sights a little bit higher, and after playing at the Worcester Cathedral Teddy Bears’ Picnic, we began work on our first full length album (eventually released in spring of 2014 with the title Better Weather) featuring a mixture of traditional tunes and songs as well as some self-penned tunes.
George and Lewis got tired of Worcester and went off to study music at uni in Autumn 2013 (finally giving Cohen a bit of peace) in Leeds and Southampton respectively. We weren’t missing each other too much but had to make the trek to meet up a few times to get our first album, Better Weather, onto the shelves (of Cohen’s bedroom) and to take part in the 2014 BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award. Somehow, we got a nomination and ended up alongside some great acts at the Albert Hall in February 2014. It was a cracking night and made us realise we might want to start taking things a bit more seriously. Only a little bit though.
In the next few months we were filmed for a BBC Introducing session in Ledbury with BBC Hereford and Worcester and then recorded a few more live tracks in The Falcon Mews in Bromyard, both of which were a bit of a change from the usual grainy mobile phone footage of us dancing around in pubs (sometimes with instruments in hand). We’ve been told you can watch the BBC Introducing video in high definition but we wouldn’t recommend it. Especially not the close ups. 2014 was also our first summer of performing at major folk festivals in the UK (now a regular occupation for us), with appearances including Bromyard, Broadstairs and Bromsgrove.
Cohen got so fed up of spending time with the other two in the summer that he decided to escape off to uni to study music. He got as far as Leeds, and started on the same course as George. We had another busy summer in 2015, with festival highlights including Shrewsbury, Bristol, The Gate to Southwell and a very damp Warwick. Cohen’s tent is still drying out from that one. Special mention to Broadstairs Folk Week – they had us back and arranged for some glorious sunshine too.
After eventually realising we better listen to our fan’s (that apostrophe placement is deliberate) requests for a new album we started to get some new songs and tunes together, which we aired over the summer. George’s mum was delighted.
We had some more club gigs – some of our favourite gigs to do – including the Grove in Leeds, ReadiFolk, Horsham and Banbury.
In the winter (2015-2016) we went to WildGoose Studios in Wherwell, Hampshire, to do some recording under the expert hands – and ears – of Doug Bailey.
With a solid mix of traditional songs, tunes and a number of Lewis’s own tunes, ‘Off The Land’ was released in August 2016.
It’s been great so far, so we’ll keep making our noise and hopefully someone will keep listening!
In Granny’s Attic, Cohen plays melodeon, concertina and provides vocals. Cohen has been involved in folk and traditional music for over a decade and is well regarded as both a musician and a singer. In 2014, Cohen had the fortune of winning Bromyard Folk Festivals Future of Young Folk Award for young folk singers. Outside of Granny’s Attic Cohen performs as a soloist with a repertoire of traditional English songs and tunes, as well as performing in various other line-ups. Further details about Cohen can be found at cohenbk.com.
George sings and plays guitar in Granny’s Attic. Folk music combines a good few of his interests – singing, history, people and pubs. He wrote his dissertation on folk clubs (so that he didn’t have to do anything different with his time). George also plays euphonium and occasionally dips his toes into the murky waters of the brass banding world, as well as with the Leeds-based hardcore brass-pop oompah band The Brasswursts. Get in touch at georgesansome.co.uk.
Lewis plays violin and mandolin for Granny’s Attic, and is also the band’s principal tunewriter. He has been playing folk music for most of his life, with most of his efforts in recent years concentrated on playing for dance. His duo with Helen Gentile focuses on tunes from all over Europe, both played as concert material and for dancing. In 2015, he performed alongside renowned Galician Gaita player Carlos Nunez. Lewis is also a composer; this has been the primary focus of his Music degree at the University of Southampton, which he started in 2013. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.