Tyne Folk

tynefolk Singers
at Ye Olde Cross, Ryton, NE40 3QP

Ye Olde Cross

First and Third (and Fifth) Wednesdays.

(Zoom Second and Fourth Wednesdays)

See full diary here

  • Ye Olde Cross Inn is community owned.
  • Superb facilities with a good choice of real ales.
  • Available is a lift to the upstairs room, and a toilet for the disabled

Next Guest: Johnny Handle & Chris Hendry

Wednesday, June 7th 2023

Johnny Handle and Chris Hendry

Chris and Johnny have appeared together regularly over many years, in Tyneside and Northumberland, and have performed at numerous festivals, both at home and abroad.

Their exciting blend of Scottish and North East music and song appeals to all audiences, presenting a display of our rich heritage.

Cullercoats Watch House and Life Brigade

Cullercoats Watch House and Life Brigade

The Grade 2 Listed Cullercoats Watch House was built in 1879 for the use of the Cullercoats Volunteer Life Brigade which had been formed on Dec. 8th 1864, three days after the Formation of the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade. Read more...

The Geordie Revival

Wot Cheor Geordie

'Wot Cheor Geordie' occurred before the Folk Revival. Pete Wood makes the case.


Sea Shanties - Black Origins

A look into the origins of these wonderful songs is long overdue.


Nick Caffrey, Ed McGurk, Robin Madge

Wednesday, May 17th 2023

Caffrey McGurk Madge

The trio got off to a splendid start by singing a great traditional hunting the hare chorus song to gladden our hearts ( especially as they happened to mentioned that no hares were harmed ) and warm up our voices, then segued effortlessly into an instrumental piece.

Their repertoire of course included songs about Lancashire which were equally as enjoyable. We were transported from Whitby to Greenland in songs and ballads and soothed by a maritime lullaby.

Their mixture of lively and and contemplative pieces, introduced by a knowledgeable and entertaining explanation of their origins made the evening a memorable one. A fine blend of voices and playing guitar and concertina make the trio one to look out for in the future.

Ron and Sue Bright

Brian Peters at Tynefolk

Wednesday, April 5th 2023


I'm not quite sure how he manages it, but Brian is equally at ease with his melodion, his concertina, his banjo and his guitar - or, for that matter, singing unaccompanied. His repertoire stretches from the dim-and-distant past to all points forward, from the deadly serious to the comic, and his knowledge of his sources is encyclopaedic. He's also entirely at ease with his audience & wears all of that skill and knowledge so lightly that, for all he upbraids himself for giving 'lectures' as he introduces his songs, what he really does is take you on an easy-going journey when he delves into his sources.

That all makes for the kind of night folk clubs in general and Tynefolk in particular are there for. Songs of the Appalachian backwoods rubbed shoulders with Lancastrian music hall, Child ballads with jigs, rousing chorus songs (plenty of these to suit an audience of singers) with songs of sorrow. A night to live long in the memory, to send you off to dig out the songs to learn yourself & to look forward to hearing from the man himself again in the not- too-distant future.

Peter Armstrong

Anne Alderson at Tynefolk

Wednesday, March 1st 2023


There is something very special about a singer who has a tremendous involvement with and commitment to the songs that he or she performs. For singers like this, it is not just a matter of memorisation and re-performance but goes much deeper, it is about internalisation, acquiring and living with the material. The song, the person and their life history become inextricably linked. Anne Alderson's performance at Tynefolk demonstrated this to a high degree, not in an overt way but through sheer integrity and honesty.

Anne's singing has been described in ways that emphasise its clarity and sweetness, which is true, but there is much more going on here than that sort of description suggests. Anne's voice is very tuneful but it has an underlying strength and her singing makes use of subtle decoration which greatly enhance her songs without getting in the way. At Tynefolk she performed an interesting and varied programme of British and Irish songs which centred on the melodic and lyrical but also demonstrated an ability to cope with more rhythmic and extrovert material.

To me, there is something very appealing about the modesty and understated nature of Anne's presentation. The high quality of what was performed was attested to by the attention and involvement of the audience. It was excellent to hear someone, who previously I had only heard sing one or two songs in a session, do a sustained programme. It was a memorable and very satisfying evening.

Vic Gammon

Tony Wilson at Tynefolk

Tony Wilson

TONY WILSON - was our guest at Tynefolk in Ryton on 19th October, and he delivered a splendid night. He is such an accomplished musician on concertina, guitar and mandola, and comes armed with a wealth of traditional and contemporary songs.

Tony sang 'The Servant Girl' - a poem found by Eileen Richardson in a magazine ... to which she composed a tune. The song's theme is of a dismissive attitude towards servants ... 'she's only a servant girl'. This leads us to ask ourselves, 'Is this still happening today in 2022' ??

He also sang a very powerful song about the transportation of severn striking miners in 1834, who were never to see Jarrow again, or their loved ones. Written by Tom Kelly and entitled, 'Seven lads of Jarrow'

Tony finished the night with a song of his own, entitled, 'The Singer and the Song' ... about how folk covers so many genres and so many styles.

Ann Howdon commented, 'It was so refreshing to hear new songs. Tony performed with enthusiasm and enjoyment'

Everyone responded to Tony's enthusiasm by singing a superb range of songs. A great night all round.

George Welch & Christine Jeans at Tynefolk

George Welch & Christine Jeans

The first time I encountered George Welch was in 1996. It was on the occasion of the Gateshead Garden Festival and after having had enough of viewing flowers I decided to find somewhere to take a break.

The Entertainments tent beckoned.

The tent was empty. That is to say it was devoid of people. Dozens and dozens of chairs but no punters. However their absence made what came next all the more special.

Onto the stage came George who proceeded to perform a wealth of songs both local and traditional as if he were playing to a packed City Hall.

Fast forward twenty five years and here is the same George Welch. Larger than life but with the same mellow baritone voice.

Accompanied on banjo by the fabulous Christine Jeans they regaled the Tynefolk audience with a range of songs and tunes, peppered with "George Welch isms". The list is too large to expand but Man of the Earth, Creole Girl, Working Man etc etc. were all gratefully received.
Lindsey Thornton

Rachel Hamer at Tynefolk

Rachel Hamer

A breath of fresh air circulated around Tyne Folk, on Wednesday evening, in the form of the delightful guest, Rachel Hamer.

Although her undoubted talent has been honed on the Folk Degree Course, her real musical education has been in the company of good club and festival singers, starting with Dad Ken, himself a talented performer.

The passion she feels for her material is evident in her delivery. Her voice has both sweetness and power - from the wistful "Pitman's Courtship", to the poignant "Bonny Susie Clelland". She is able to deliver a song such as "Alice White" in her own style, without destroying the integrity of the song.

I have watched Rachel progress throughout her life with both pride and interest. She offered us all beautiful singing, friendly enthusiasm and most importantly hope for our beloved genre of music for the future.
Catherine I'Anson-Clough

Benny Graham at Tynefolk

Benny was in full flow last Wednesday night.

Songs come easily to his lips, as do words.

Entertaining introductions of anecdotes that lead into songs of passion, of humour or tragedy.


With the applause, just enough time to gulp a few breaths to gather himself for the next.

His warmth and love of singing, sharing with friends invited to join in with the choruses.

A joyous experience for us all.

Thank you Benny for a memorable evening. Look out for Benny singing the Pitmen Poets!

Wilsons Concert at Tynefolk

Tynefolk are back in action Post-Pandemic and now meet for "live" sessions on a fortnightly 1st & 3rd Wednesdays of the month basis at Ye Olde Cross, Ryton (zoom sessions are retained on 2nd & 4th).

And, to get this plan off to a roaring success who better than The Wilsons?

The Wilsons

This amazing family of brothers gave the audience an example of their fantastic sound with songs covering all aspects of life and death, joy and sorrow. The mixture was especially poignant as the funeral of Doreen Elliot had been attended earlier in the day by many of those present, including the Wilsons themselves.

Emotions were roused on all fronts from beginning to end, as they started off with a Si Khan plea for peace dedicated to the people of Ukraine and followed up with a classic example of their heady mix of strong singing and family anecdotes and banter which could be said to be "always the same and always different " as in quality of singing and family tales. You can depend on the Wilsons. The craic is as good to listen to as is the singing itself. This was an evening never to be forgotten.
Joyce Dickinson