Port’s folk icon Alan back with latest album

Alan Bell (centre) with members of his band - the veteran Fleetwood muscian has released a new album.
Alan Bell (centre) with members of his band - the veteran Fleetwood muscian has released a new album.
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Fleetwood’s veteran folk singer and songwriter Alan Bell has released his first new album in more then a decade.

Alan is probably best known in Fleetwood as the founder and director of the former Fylde Folk Festival, which ran in the town for 42 years before Alan retired in 2014.

But he is also a respected songwriter whose compositions have been recorded by artists from across the world, including top Irish singer Mary Black.

New album The Cocklers takes its name from the title song, a poignant ballad in tribute to the Chinese cockle pickers who drowned in a tragedy in Morecambe Bay in 2004.

The release is a varied collections of songs which he has recorded with his regular combo, The Alan Bell Band.

Although the album is being officially released in February, Alan is giving a special launch performance in a concert at the North Euston Hotel, Fleetwood, on Sunday, January 29 at 2.30pm. The concert will also feature Scolds Bridle, and The Orchestra in Folkus. Entry on the door costs £8 and £6 for concessions.

Alan, 82, of The Strand, Fleetwood, who now organises folk events through an organisation called Folkus, said: “The album is a collection which I thought would go together well on an album and to celebrate the launch I thought I would give a special concert here in Fleetwood. It’s a thank you to Fleetwood and Fylde people who have supported my concerts and shows over the years.”

The album, in CD format, is released worldwide by Greentrax Records of Edinburgh.