Jim Wearne is a Cornish-American singer-songwriter.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, United states, he was raised in the Chicago, Illinois area. Early interests in music and theatre led to a desire to become a performer. He learned to play the guitar in his teens, and performed mostly folk music at local venues. He studied theatre at Southern Illinois University, receiving a BS in Theatre in 1972. His working career included many occupations, including stagehand, salesman, meeting coordinator, retailer, and instructor, but his avocation has always been music.
His researches into folk music and family history led him to an interest in things Cornish, and Cornish music in particular. He has since written many songs on Cornish themes, and performs these songs and traditional Cornish material at festivals throughout the USA, and in Cornwall. His interest in Cornwall has led to a sympathy with the movement to establish national status for Cornwall. His song This Isn’t England includes the lyric “This isn’t England, you stupid twit!”
Wearne is notable as one of only two known exclusive proponents/performers of Cornish music in North America (the other being Marion Howard of Wisconsin.) Reviews of his work in publications such as Cornish World and Dirty Linen credit him with bringing the music, people and culture of Cornwall to America, where it is little known.
In spring 2002 at Castel Pendynas, Pendennis, Falmouth in Cornwall, Wearne was made a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedd for services to Cornish Music in America (in Cornish: Rag gonys dhe Ylow Kernewek yn Ameryky) with the bardic name Canor Gwanethtyr – Singer of the Prairie.
Jime Wearne is currently working on his 10th CD and has 32 songs published on soundcloud.
Some of Jim’s Songs about Cornwall:
Concrete and Steel
Cornwall Once Again
Nice Saffron Buns
The Looe Valley Line
This Isn’t England
Where’s Cousin Jack?
Why Did You Have to Die John Wearne?
You Should Have Had a Rich Man for a Father