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Jim McLean
Jim McLean @ Orpington Folk Club 'White Hart' 2001

Back after stint in Holland and Denmark's vibrant music scene, which allowed Jim to meet and play with the best in Celtic and American music.  An unabashed worshipper of Bob Dylan, Jim's songwriting covers the whole genre from hard-hitting social comment to the tenderest of love songs.  This, together with his ability to re-interpret and transform traditional songs to breathe new life into them, has brought him a reputation as a true performer.

Mixture of Scottish, Irish Folk and Old-Timey and Country Music. a blend of Celtic and American styles with the addition of banjo-techniques based on the banjo playing of Derroll Adams and Appalachian Mountain music.

His passion and love for the music shines through every performance and audiences leave knowing they have witnessed something unique.

Singers & Musicians Night
On singer’s nights we extend a warm welcome to all, whether as performers or just to relax and enjoy the music. 
Jeremy Taylor
Jeremy Taylor

A rare visit from this original and highly acclaimed singer/songwriter.
Not to be missed.

An Oxford graduate, Eton schoolmaster, humorist/singer­songwriter/satirist, storyteller, and longtime partner to Spike Milligan, Jeremy Taylor is a household name in South Africa and he has the unique dual distinction of being both banned for ten years by that country’s apartheid government and simultaneously blacklisted by United Nations for having worked there!

So Jeremy Taylor has no shortage of colourful experiences to draw upon when creating the wonderfully entertaining material that has kept audiences roaring with laughter around the world for the best part of 30 years (“..even the journalists were guffawing in their seats” wrote the Melbourne Herald’s reviewer after Taylor’s last Australian tour).

Growing up with the very British comedy of The Goons and Flanders and Swann, but belonging more to the new generation that saw the dawning of contemporary satirical comedy in Britain with talents like Barry Humphries, Peter Cook and Dudley Moore (a student friend at Oxford) and American comedy and music influences ranging from Tom Lehrer to Tom Paxton, Taylor’s career actually started with a teaching post in South Africa.

But the evenings found him in Johannesburg folk clubs singing blues until a friend, who could sense his great powers of observation and humour, suggested that he tried writing songs.  The result, almost instantly, was a collection of incisive comedy songs.  One in particular, a gentle dig at the English spoken by South Africans called “Ag Pleez Deddy”, achieved gold sales status three times over and has become a permanent part of South African folklore.

Taylor was one of the creators of the notorious South African musical revue “Wait A Minim!” and in 1963 he travelled back to England with the show for a two-year run at London’s Fortune Theatre.  Turning his attention to comedy songs and satires on England’s strange but pleasant land (‘Jobsworth’, ‘Red Velvet Steering-wheel Cover Driver’, ‘Prawns in the Game’, ‘All Along The South Coast’....) from 1966 he was in constant demand on the British folk scene, making records, appearing on television and radio, and enjoying a two-year partnership with Spike Milligan in a theatrical experience which was described on the album cover as an “intimate communication between two lunatics and a rag doll”.

He made many concert appearances with Donald Swann and Sydney Carter, wrote the score for Joan Littlewood’s West End farce ‘Mrs. Wilson’s Diary’, co-authored with Cat Stevens on ‘Catch Bull At Four’, entertained the British troops in Germany,  Cyprus and Sardinia, performed annually in cabaret at Nairobi’s New Stanley Grill, toured Australia in 1979 (and again in ‘83 and ‘86), and presented a one­man show at London’s Boulevard Theatre (‘Back In Town’) before taking the show to South Africa following the lifting of the ban which had exiled him for a decade.

He settled outside Johannesburg on a bushveld farm from which he launched a series of highly successful one-man shows around the capitals of South Africa.

In the mid-eighties he turned to straight acting for both theatre and television, as well as for radio, and contributed articles to magazines.   Some of them were later to feature in his one-man show “Broederstroom Diaries” which shone a light on country life in South Africa’s slow lane and was the pick of the Grahamstown Festival in 1992.  In the same year he published a book of songs and reflections entitled simply “Ag Pleez Deddy!”.

In 1994 he returned to Britain to lecture on South Africa and decided to stay.  As well as lecturing, he is also presenting a one-man kaleidoscope of life in South Africa entitled “Transvaal Tinta”.

He has taken up pen once again in his cherished homeland and is currently chronicling aspects of Britain - both strange and pleasant Jeremy lives with his wife in Montgomeryshire.

Singers & Musicians Night
Orpington Folk Club
Orpington Folk Music & Song