Pauline Lewis and Richard Sharpey
A somewhat ‘late developer’ as a singer, Pauline began her life in music, not as a singer, but as an instrumentalist, studying clarinet and later saxophone, from age 11. Therefore, although she enjoyed singing informally, singing and playing was not an option! Her only singing performances were in her early years of teaching , in the late 70s as Nancy in Oliver and Mrs Noah in Noyes Fludde in school productions.
From the 80s to the present day she has been part of the Ceilidh band Fox Amongst the Chickens playing clarinet and saxophone. This led to the opportunity to join the Shanty Crew Flash Jack in 2011, where she was encouraged to sing as well as play in the group both in chorus and as a solo vocalist and gradually increase her repertoire, recording a couple of tracks on their CD.
Since her marriage Pauline had always been a regular folk festival goer with her husband and two sons and, having found her confidence to sing more in public, in 2015, to her great surprise, won The Shantyman at Bromyard and had good feedback: her personal introductions which always said ‘I am not really a singer” no longer held water.
Six years ago, she had also been able to renew links with her cousin Richard Sharpey, a pianist, who had a rich background in the music industry. During a visit, he encouraged her to sing, with him accompanying, and record a couple of favourite songs: Over The Lancashire Hills and My Flower, My Companion and Me.
Spurred on by this, in 2018, Richard arranged, accompanied and recorded the tracks for their debut album Chez Rouyaux in The Dordogne in France. The album is an eclectic mix of ballads, traditional and contemporary from land and sea. They hope to release this in the middle of the year to launch at Bromyard FF 2019.
Pauline is a retired teacher with two grown up sons and lives with her husband in Cornwall.
From a classical upbringing in Oxford, Richard worked in many ‘pop’ groups through the 60’s. Following the likes of Keith Emerson he moved towards prog and classical rock in the early 70’s. After a brief stint at teaching piano, he was introduced to David Gordon, elder brother of Yusuf/Cat Stevens. He worked with David and Yusuf on David’s double album Alpha Omega, arranging and playing sessions in many studios in London, Europe and the USA throughout the 70’s. He accompanied Yusuf on his Year of the Child concert in 1979 at Wembley. In 1980 he produced a classical re-orchestration of Alpha Omega in Coventry Cathedral, and again at the Holywell Music Rooms Oxford in 2005. Latterly he has played in concerts for Peace Child International in Ely Cathedral and as MD at the UN in Geneva. He is married and lives in Ross on Wye Herefordshire.