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IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

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IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

Brighton duo Frankie Stew and Harvey Gunn are making moves. Their brand of reflective, pensive hip-hop is a refreshing departure from the anodyne sound that currently dominates the airwaves and streaming charts on both sides of the Atlantic.

Sat amongst the beats are sonic and lyrical references to golden-era hip-hop, subtle nods to UK bass culture and commentary on the city that they call home. If this sounds like it could be confusing, it’s isn’t. Everything is delivered with open-eyed clarity and awareness; there’s planning, thought and patience behind the lucid lyrics and tight production. It all seems to be the culmination of a plan that has been many years in the making.

Their music is undeniably of Brighton, mentioning landmarks, talking about growing up within the city’s limits, seeing and documenting its changes. With this in mind, and with the release of a their new single, Love One Another, we thought it time to catch up with the guys to discuss their origins, driving Mustangs in Ibiza and what the future has in store.

 


 

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

“It’s exciting,” says Frankie with a broad smile across his face. “It’s the first time we’ve been played on Radio 1 ever. It’s cool, but I try and not get distracted and gassed, we need it to be played again.” He speaks like someone who knows only too well how fickle the music industry can be. “Once is cool, but you quickly get forgotten about. Not to be all negative about it, I just don’t want to get carried away, I want to be on Radio 1 all the time, that’s the goal.”

The tune they’re talking about is Coconuts, a single that has become something of a breakthrough for them. The Radio 1 play was the culmination of years of hard work and came directly on the heels of another milestone. “The first play for Coconuts was by DJ Target on 1Xtra,” explains Frankie. “He plays a lot of unsigned acts in a section of his show and he selects what he wants to play which is cool. It’s better than being thrown in a mini mix because he introduced us. It was nice, a good feeling.”

What about the accompanying video, filmed in Ibiza? “Yeah that was fun, a good couple of days. Driving around in an old convertible Mustang. I can’t even drive but I had a go at it. Doing donuts around the guy filming was a lot of fun. I was scared about crashing it! We got a couple of friends who live in Ibiza who had connects with old sports cars and his dad had a couple of Mustangs so we just rented one for the day.”

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

For Harvey, the man behind the beats, his journey into music production began at a Hove youth club at the age of 14. “I went there and learnt to DJ and really got into electronic music. It started with things like drum ‘n’ bass, dubstep and grime, all that kind of quite heavy stuff. From that I started making that kind of music but a couple of years later I met Frankie and started making hip-hop with him. For the past six years me and Franks have been working together. It’s taken ages man, it’s such a slow burner but it has had a nice progression to it.”

You can tell he has a steely determination when it comes to honing his craft. Even songs from years back have a clean, contemporary feel, taking time honoured traditions such as sampling but pushing the envelope sonically. “I’m totally not a purist when it comes to sampling, I will use anything,” he says. “I will use stuff from YouTube. But at the moment a lot of our latest music has been a lot less sample heavy, partly because it usually raises copyright issues!

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

“I’ve never been like a real crate digger; I’ve always taken anything from anywhere,” he readily admits. “I use a lot of sample packs for electronic music and techno, but then apply that to hip-hop and just try and have fun with it and be creative with it.”

With this simple division of labour – Frankie on lyrics and Harvey on production – we ask Frankie if it can sometimes be hard to get along creatively. “We’re friends so making music has been quite easy,” he says. “It’s never been that awkward because we’re such great mates. If he makes something that I don’t like I’m not afraid to call it shit. And vice versa. We don’t take offence to it. I think that’s why it works because we are 100% straight up with each other and that’s why it has always been easy. I trust him with all the production and he trusts me with the writing. He doesn’t try and make me say something or point me in a direction. It’s a nice little 50/50 balance and it works quite well.”

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

Things can move fast in music. You can be plugging away for years with no recognition and then something changes. Your listens on Spotify go through the roof, you start getting asked to support big acts, potential managers emerge from the woodwork and want to talk business.

“It’s really exciting at the moment,” says Harvey. “Coconuts, the first single we have put out this year, has gone down really well, we’re really happy with the feedback. Now we’re just taking the time to strategise correctly and have a good team behind us to put things in place correctly.

“There’s lots of music we are sitting on,” he adds. “We’re shooting a video for our next single, but the main thing for us is the tour we have in October and tickets are on sale for that now. We’re going to Nottingham, Birmingham, Manchester, Bristol, Leeds, London and Brighton with potentially more dates to come.”

“It’s bigger than the last one,” adds Frankie. “We went on tour not so long ago but this one is bigger. We could upscale it, but we want to keep some sort of demand there for the spring tour. It’s easy to get carried away and try and cash in.”

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

So what format does a Frankie Stew and Harvey Gunn live show take? What should punters expect on their upcoming tour? “Harv triggers it all live with a launch pad so it is a bit more interesting than just listening to a DJ,” explains Frankie. “It does take a bit of rehearsing but it’s good fun, I love it, man. It’s completely different to performing in the studio, totally opposite. The studio seems like it is fun but it’s not like that all the time. It’s hours and hours of me trying to write lyrics or listening to Harv. Whereas performing, as nerve wracking as it is sometimes, once you get it going there is nothing better than that.”

We ask him about dealing with nerves and whether or not he likes being the focal point in the performance. “I like it. When I first started it was long, but now I’m used to it and it’s great.” He happily admits that he’s “always nervous for the first tune,” but after that “it becomes easier” to enjoy it. “It is always a weird sense of relief when you finish a show though. It’s stress, with so many lyrics it’s long having to remember them all. An hour’s worth of straight bars is hard!”

IN CONVERSATION WITH FRANKIE STEW AND HARVEY GUNN

 

Frankie wears:

YMC – Suedehead Crew

Our Legacy – Puron Vest

visvim – FBT Suede

Harvey wears:

Folk – Signal Jacket

Sunspel – Crew Tee

Common Projects – Achilles Low

A.P.C. – T-Shirt Yukata

YMC – Dean Shirt

Nudie – Lean Dean

 

A huge thanks to Frankie and Harvey for taking the time. You can see them on their upcoming tour this October.

Photography: James Hole

ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL

ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL

ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL

Inspired by Neil Young’s iconic 1974 album of the same name, we present On The Beach, our SS18 Editorial. Featuring some key pieces from the latest collections by visvim, Barena, Our Legacy, Stone Island Shadow Project, Engineered Garments, Danton and Stan Ray, the selection has been chosen to reflect the long, lazy summer days that lie ahead.

Checks, stripes, tribal prints and floral patterns feature heavily but have been paired with more subdued pieces such as military jackets, shop jackets and linen blazers to offer versatility throughout the summer months. These are outfits put together with the beach and the town in mind, perfect for holidays where you don’t want to be laden with carrying layers around with you. Effortless and relaxed, just the way summer should be…

You can shop all of our the items in this Editorial by heading in store or over to our website now.

ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIALON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL ON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIALON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIALON THE BEACH: OUR SS18 EDITORIAL

Photography: James Hole and Charlie Haywood.

Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor

FOLK X PEGGS PARTY AT MEATLIQUOR

Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor

We’d been trying to find an excuse to have another party at MEATliquor Brighton ever since we’d recovered from the Edwin celebration a few years back. Then it suddenly dawned on us that this year will mark a decade of stocking British label Folk at the store and a plan was swiftly formed. To celebrate the occasion we also teamed up with three of our favourite local artists, Mark Vessey, ILOVEDUST and Ryan Gillett, to create a limited selection of tees with all profit going to local charity Amaze.

Below are some photos of the night and a huge thanks to everyone who turned up,  there were some sore heads this on the shop floor the following morning. A massive thank you to all the guys at MEATliquor for making it such a great night!

If you were there then post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #FolkXPeggs, we’d love to see them.

Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor Folk X Peggs party at MEATliquor

OUR FIRST VIDEO EDITORIAL

OUR FIRST VIDEO EDITORIAL AT THE ARTIST RESIDENCE

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Welcome to the first of our video editorials focusing on some of the highlights from our rails this season. We headed to the Artist Residence in Brighton for a closer look at the latest arrivals from visvim, A.P.C., Red Wing, Norse Projects and more.

You can shop the AW17 collections in full either in store or over on the website now…


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Many thanks to Artist Residence. Model: Muhala Weeze Mtonga. Video: Jamie O’Mara.

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AW17 EDITORIAL: STYLE IS THE ANSWER TO EVERYTHING

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For our AW17 editorial, we take a closer look at the tonal layers, subtle textures and autumnal colours that have filled out rails over the past few months.

For us, winter is always our favourite season, allowing us to crack out the big coats, chunky knitwear and layer up for the onset of the cold weather. This season we have added a selection of new labels to the store, including French label Danton whose focus on sharp silhouettes has seen them create the perfect down filled gilet. We also welcome Country Of Origin, the South London based label who are doing a great job of crafting contemporary knitwear with a bold, eye-catching edge.

But store favourites, those such as Engineered Garments and Maharishi, also make a much welcome return. The Engineered Garments Duffel Coat is a particular highlight and the M-21 Sweatshirts from Good Measure also remind us that although the skies may be grey and dull, you can still inject some colour into a winter outfit…

You can shop all the clothing featured in our editorial by clicking here

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Shop all the clothing featured in this editorial by clicking here

 

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WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON

WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON

As the nights draw in and the temperature drops, our focus inevitably shifts from shirts and sweats to that most winter of garments, knitwear. From luxurious merino to brushed lambswool, this season we have a huge selection of knits in store from brands such as YMC, Norse Projects, MHL by Margaret Howell, S.N.S. Herning, Folk and many more.

Injecting some much needed colour and pattern into the grey days that lie ahead is Folk’s Interference Crew. The British label have carved out a reputation for themselves for creating unique clothing with a contemporary twist and the Interference crew, using geometric layered weave, is a prime example of this.

For something a little subtler, we have the Sigfred Lambswool from Danish label Norse Projects. Creating products perfectly suited for Scandinavian winters, the Sigfred is their minimal take on a simple winter knit and has been constructed using 100% lambswool that features a soft, brushed handle. But it is the glacier blue colourway that really wins it for us.

French brand Armor Lux know a thing or two about creating hardwearing warm clothing having supplied Brittany’s sailors with knitwear since 1938. Our pick is their winter take on the classic Breton stripe, the Pull Martin Heritage Knit that has been cut from dense lambswool. Complimenting the navy, white and red colourway are four Armor Lux branded buttons and finishing things off are a regular fit, heavy crew neck collar and small Armor Lux patch logo located near the hem.

Shop our selection of winter knits in full over on our website now.

WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON WINTER KNITS: OUR TOP PICKS THIS SEASON

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

Americana has always held a special place in streetwear and menswear communities. Iconic cartoon characters such as Popeye and Betty Boop have found themselves sitting next to Supreme logos, vintage military pieces and varsity jackets are as relevant as ever and the American influence on Japanese brands such as Neighborhood and orSlow is evident season after season.

Here in the UK we have embraced American culture more than most and one brand that truly embodies the independent spirit of the States is London based TSPTR. Hugely influenced by both ‘60s and ‘70s pop and counter culture, TSPTR combine well known icons, those such as Taxi Driver’s psychotic Travis Bickle, with military and collegiate influences. The result is clothing that pays respect to the past yet retains a contemporary twist.

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

While TSPTR draw inspiration from a variety of different sources, one thing that has had a huge influence on the brand are the characters from Charles M. Schulz’s Peanuts. While it may be easy for some to dismiss the comic strip as merely a cartoon, Schulz’s creation has long had a significant cultural impact ever since its publication in 1950. TSPTR’s admiration goes far beyond a simple homage to a beloved American classic, they use Schulz’s shrewd social commentary as the basis for many of their recent collections.

“Schultz is hugely relevant in the sense that his work subtly, and at times explicitly, engaged with many serious national issues,” explains TSPTR founder Russ Gator. “The 1960s were a turbulent decade for the United States, the assassination of JFK in 1963 signaled the beginning of a period of massive social upheaval and Schulz’s work began to channel the anxieties of many average Americans.  The Peanuts characters came to embody Americans’ serious concerns about the real world, allowing readers to consider and debate these issues through an unlikely medium.”

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

During the ‘60s Peanuts grew into mainstream success and became the most read comic strip in America. This gave Schulz a national platform for his social and political commentary that turned the likes of Charlie Brown and Snoopy into unassuming activists for social change. However, the counter culture potential of Peanuts was not fully realised until 1967 when Schulz’s growing resentment of the Vietnam War became more overt.

It was 1967 when Schulz introduced the Flying Ace narrative that saw Snoopy regularly daydreaming about being a fighter pilot in World War I, chasing an enemy named the Red Baron. Although this narrative was set in the early 20th century, it cleverly mirrored the events of the war in South East Asia and acted as a subtle satirical commentary.

“The Flying Ace narrative began to focus on the soldiers who had been drafted and the tragedy of combat itself, offering mainstream endorsement to the thousands who had burned their draft cards and protested the unjustifiable war,” explains Russ. “Years later he laid his personal feelings out on the page with Snoopy participating in a protest and riot against the Vietnam War.”

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

Schulz’s criticism of the war made it over to the American troops in Vietnam and the Peanuts characters became unofficial mascots of the soldiers growing discontent and resentment. As an act of rebellion towards a war they no longer believed in, they painted the characters on military gear, including their planes and uniforms.

“They appeared on many unofficial unit insignia such as patches, helmet art and Zippo lighters, often exclaiming their disapproval of being shipped halfway around the world to fight someone else’s war,” explains Russ. “Snoopy in particular served on the helmets of assault helicopter pilots and on the noses of combat aircrafts alongside such anti war statements as rainbows, peace signs and slogans such as ‘Draft LBJ’.”

This civil act of defiance is a huge source of inspiration for TSPTR, so much so that the brand regularly pay tribute to it throughout their collections: “This period is really at the core of the brand’s ethos, so much social and political change happened between the mid ‘60s and mid ‘70s, it’s a fascinating time to focus on.”

INTERVIEW: RUSS GATOR FROM TSPTR

When it came time to choose the graphics for the exclusive Peggs & son collaboration with TSPTR the choice was clear. The Peanuts characters are a classic motif with a strong message behind them that is still relevant today. Couple this with Brighton’s thriving skateboarding scene and love of all things vintage, and the result perfectly sums up the city.

You can shop the Brighton capsule collection, our homage to one of the most influential contributors to American popular and counter culture, in store and online now.

 

Words and images: George Metcalf

SUMMER SUNGLASSES

SUMMER SUNGLASSES

Summer sunglasses

Is there a more quintessential summer item than sunglasses? With the double benefit of making you look cool and protecting your eyes, every man needs a great pair. Fortunately here in store we have a wide selection to choose from.

Below we run through some of our favourite styles both classic and contemporary. First up we have Swedish label Sun Buddies (pink background) who are know for their quality acetate frames that reference iconic styles that they pair with unusual and bold colourways. Next is Le Specs, a label that despite their name hail from Australia (green/blue background). From classic aviators to riffs on wayfarers, their selection is perfect for those who value individuality.

A new brand to us here at Peggs & son is Ace & Tate (grey background). Based out of the Netherlands, they craft lightweight, highly wearable eyewear. The styles we have in store are updates on classics and we especially like the Monty with its pearly white frames. Last but not least we have YMC’s seasonal offerings (top image). Once again they have teamed up with Shoreditch based opticians Bridges & Brows to create refined offering. If you like classic, easy wearing shapes then be sure to take a look at their frames.

Summer sunglasses Summer sunglasses Summer sunglasses
Shop our full selection of sunglasses either in store or online now…

SUMMER CITY STYLE WITH JAKE STORY FROM OVERDILUTED

SUMMER CITY STYLE WITH JAKE STORY FROM OVERDILUTED

JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT

Once again we have teamed up with local Brighton menswear and lifestyle blogger Jake Story of Overdiluted to get his take on this season’s arrivals. Now that the sun is out, we took to the streets of our hometown to test some city summer looks. See more below…

There’s a distinct difference between summer style at home and what you might wear on holiday, which I feel is important to think about when it comes to buying for the current season. You don’t want a Club Tropicana style wardrobe going on when it’s 17 degrees and a bit overcast outside. Generally, we’re blessed with pretty good weather here in Brighton, but there’s always that sea breeze to contend with, which makes the straight up shorts and t-shirt look worth thinking twice about.

My rule of thumb for the summer is that when you wear shorts, opt for an extra layer or at least a long sleeve on your top half. Likewise, go for trousers that offer breathability and wear them with shorter sleeves. Sometimes, it’s even worth sizing up for t-shirts to get that extra bit of breathability along with a relaxed style… when the weather’s great, it’s all about feeling nice and comfortable.”

JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOTJAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT

The Battenwear Coach Jacket is a real standout piece that’ll get wear all year round, it’s just so workable and easily layered. The CMMN Arthur Sweat I styled it with offers a nice pop of colour while the relaxed style ensures it never feels close or restricting on warmer days. I like this outfit because you could imagine it with an extra layer and some dark denim and boots for autumn/winter. That kind of longevity is always good, even YMC Sunglasses come in handy on those bright, winter days, so it’s worth trying to consider how things might work in colder climes.”

 


 

JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOTJAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT

“Pairing the light and bright YMC Malick Shirt with the Stan Ray Painter Pant offers a nice way of keeping the colours interesting while still fairly subtle, which I think is helped by the simplicity of the Aquascutum Cullen Plain Tee underneath. I’m usually pretty muted with colour, but while summer’s here, you may as well make the most of it and use it as an opportunity to experiment a little.”

 


 

JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT JAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOTJAKE STORY SUMMER SHOOT

Of course, it’d be criminal not to talk about Brighton and summer without mentioning the beach. My final look is perfect for a lazy day down making the most of living right on the South Coast. Nothing crazy, just straight up gear that works well for laid back summer days, wherever they might be spent. I’m a big Armor Lux fan for the quality and price they offer and the summer variant of their Sailor Shirt is the perfect lightweight tee you’ll get loads of wear out of. The showstopper is the Porter – Yoshida Helmet Bag. It’s got that statement vibe you’d expect from Porter but still simple enough for the practicality of a day at the beach. Carrying your suncream and frisbee never looked so good.”

 

Many thanks to Jake for taking the time to put this shoot together. If you haven’t already, be sure to take a look at his Overdiluted blog. You can shop all the clothing and accessories featured in this look either in store or over on the website now.

INTERVIEW WITH CATHAL MCATEER OF FOLK

INTERVIEW WITH CATHAL MCATEER OF FOLK

INTERVIEW WITH CATHAL MCATEER OF FOLK

For 15 years British label Folk have been staging a quiet revolution in the world of menswear. Taking the principles of good design, they have made a name for themselves through crafting clothing with intricate detailing and sumptuous materials. This, combined with their use of unusual patterns and bold colours, has garnered them many fans over the years whilst at the same time spawning countless imitators.

Founder and designer Cathal McAteer has been a long time friend of the store ever since we began stocking his label over 10 years ago. As his brand celebrate an important milestone, we thought it high time to sit down with the man to discuss the history of Folk, where he finds his inspiration and what the future has in store…

 

Folk was founded some 15 years ago; can you tell us a bit about the origins of the label?

Cathal: The origins are simply my desire to make my own clothes and all the notes I had squirrelled away on how I would do it if I could. I’ve been lucky to have gotten around a bit and all my life experiences have also assisted what we do here at Folk.

You’ve had a long history with menswear, starting in Glasgow I believe?

It started with a Saturday job I had in the shop Ichi Ni San. I was 16 and we sold many many magic brands: Dries Van Noten, Joe Casely Hayford, Costume National, Helmut Lang, Vivienne Westwood. From that moment I was involved. Knee deep. At 21 I moved to London to continue learning.

Without a pot to piss in I had to bide my time and save my pennies, learn and wait for the right opportunities to fall.

You’ve become known for your detail driven design aesthetic, so much so that is has turned into somewhat of a signature. Can you explain your obsession with the minutiae?

When I first started Folk the numbers were tiny.  This meant we did not reach minimums for fabrics and had to buy everything from stock houses. With these slim pickings it was of course not the most exciting range so we had to add the spark, the something else that would get us noticed.

Using colour and detail we shaped our aesthetic. This has evolved throughout the 15 years and has become something we now do very well. That extra, the discovery after purchase.

Your ambitions to design and create extend beyond just creating clothing, you have also made furniture in the past. What is it about furniture design that fascinates you?

I love all forms of design and furniture raised its head young for me. I was completely incompetent at school so going to Art/Design School was not option. I have never really wondered what it is about furniture design that I love, I just happen to draw a lot of furniture pieces. Hopefully one day I can get more of them made.

In the past you’ve also talked about Folk becoming a design house. Do you feel you have more to say beyond the confines of clothing design?  

For sure, but that is ambitious – which I am. But my first responsibility is to insure my fashion business is working. We have so much more to give in this area.

There seems to be a conscious effort to have a cohesive voice for Folk, how much importance do you put on things like shop fits, visual merchandising and social media all fitting with the ‘Folk’ way of doing things?

From the get go we have just gotten on with making product and opening stores, but in recent years we have been careful to bring it all together. This is a constant process and as it’s not my field we enrolled someone to assist us with a singular voice. The result is that we got more fucking focused and I am hoping everyone will benefit from this. I on the other hand get a bit twitchy…

What do we have to look forward to in AW17?

A reversible, metallic hooded, wadded jacket. A magic sheepskin, some great sweats. We also have a collaborative project involving Nick & Phil Goss two very lovely and talented artists.

What does the future hold for Folk?

More and more great product. Independence. Protesting with my family. Having fun… lots and lots of fun…

 

Many thanks to Cathal for taking the time to do this interview. You can see our latest Folk selection in store and online now.