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Music Inspired by the Clay Country

This section includes music that has, in one form or another, been inspired by the rugged beauty and community spirit of the area known as the Clay Country. The musicians, the conductors and the composers, have a strong relationship to the district – perhaps by birth or residence, but certainly by affinity. Others though, perhaps from further afield, have experienced the distinct and unique ambience of the area with its villages, industrial heartland and white pyramids and have felt moved to name or mould their compositions to reflect the character of the area.

The section will continue to grow as we uncover people and music which are related to or are inspired by the clay country. To this end, we are inviting your help, both in providing information about the existing and in adding additional content.

“Forty Thieves” is an interesting example of a “jobbing tune” in John Old’s manuscripts. Here it is played as a jig for dancing, but it is related to a Cornish carol called “The First Good Joy That Mary Had” and also one of the tunes to which the rather more
From the manuscript of Michael Harris, St Stephen in Brannel, 1858
Michael Harris was a flutist who played in a chapel band at St Stephen in the 1850s. Kresen Kernow hold some of his music manuscripts, mostly hymn tunes arranged in four parts, but pinned in between these he has included the score for a reel called Stoney Steps.
Today St Picrous night is celebrated at the Kings Arms in Luxulyan. The story is retold at the beginning of the evening and leads naturally to a traditional Cornish “Shout” or singing session.
"Cornwall For Me" was written by Oscar Yelland and entered for the Kernow Pan Celtic competition in 1989
Clay Ports was written by Richard Gendall and recorded by Brenda Wootton with St Austell Band and Treverva Male Voice Choir for her Album "Seagull".
Folk singer Jim Causley teamed up with Cornish author and Clemo expert Luke Thompson to create a magical album of musical settings of Jack Clemo’s poems.
This tune emerged in my head around 2009 I think! I was cycling from Truro to St Dennis and cycling over Trelavour Downs. Richard Trethewey
This tune was written in 2007 to commemorate the year that my Granny Mona Trethewey (nee Whitford) was made a Bard of the Cornish Gorsedh.