“Jim Wearne has produced a CD that captures a wonderful sense of Cornwall – he is melancholy, aggressive, witty and lyrical.

 This is a singer whose resonant voice expresses the complex perspective of the Cornish descendant – he is increasingly confident of his cultural references, and he has found a group of friends whose arrangements are an enigmatic blend of America, Cornwall and the Celtic tradition.

 It is exciting to see Jim slowly but surely gathering together the lone voices of the Cornish Diaspora into a musical community – There’s Heather Dale of Toronto flying a wild harmony on The Oggy man, and the best recording I’ve ever heard of Marion Howard duetting on Johnny Groat.

 Kowetha is an accomplished, confident collection.  It is a well-balanced set that explores Jim Wearne’s range.  Mushy Peas and This Isn’t England are well observed, witty and literate hits.

 Throughout, there is the deep, amused, passionate, resonant, and jolly, country, Cornish and accomplished voice of Jim Wearne.  It is a voice that takes up the Cornish cudgel, and which has joyously found its cultural roots.  The whole emotional experience of the émigré feels as if it’s woven into this voice, the sadness of the exile, the joy of the discoverer, and the confidence of a singer growing in stature and tone.

 I find this collection deeply moving, and an excellent evocation of the enigmatic and complicated thing that is modern Kernow.  I only wish that Jim would sing more of his own work – he is an imaginative, passionate and literate writer.”

Bert Biscoe – review of Kowetha, Cornish World #52, June/July 2007, p90




LIST OF TRACKS:  (Audio samples available through CDBaby - see below)

1. Lovely Nancy
      My version, based on fragments of several older versions, of a traditional Cornish song.

2. I'm A Stranger To This Country
I opened my set at Lowender Peran with this one, in case the accent hadn't clued them in.

3. This Isn't England
      This one may annoy some people for different reasons.   How dare I, a foreigner, speak to this   issue?  Because I care, I’m angry, and songs are the only tools I have with which to do something about it.

4. Johnny Groat (With Marion Howard)
A testament to the sensitivity and kindliness of Cornish fathers.

5. Mushy Peas
 My (long-suffering) friend Harry (Safari) Glasson took my brother Tom and me to a fish and chip shop  near Hayle one day, and, in my innocence, I ordered “Fish and Chips and Peas.”  The result is in the song. 

“…Jim Wearne gives a great helping of Mushy Peas, one of the most amusing songs I’ve ever heard…”
“Wat Trelawney” Cornish world review of “Music From a Cornish World Vol. 1” Cornish World #52, June/July 2007, p 92

6. The Oggy Man (With Heather Dale on Whistle) (by Cyril Tawney)
Mr. Tawney gave me leave to include a recording of this on a previous “Live” CD.  I’m making bold to do it again on this one, as a memorial to Mr. Tawney, with great respect and thanks

7. The Eddystone Light (With Alan and Lynda Jewell)
I felt obliged to record this old standard, and when I feel obliged to do something, mischief sometimes happens.

8. 9 Brave Boyz
I re-wrote some of the fragmentary lyrics that I found for a traditional version of this song, and wrote some more of my own.  As to the spelling of the title, I’m just trying to be cute

9. Jolly Tinner Boys
A bit of Cornish bluster.  A favorite of mine for a long time.

 10. Some Say The Devil's Dead (With Robert Rose and Mary Lou O'Brien)
A sprightly (and spritely) number, with versions to be found from Cornwall, Scotland and Ireland. I found them.

11. There's Something About a Pasty (By Brenda Wootton with a verse by me.)
I have been singing this one live for years, and people often ask me which of my CDs it’s on.  I haven’t included it on one until now, as it was mostly written by Brenda Wootton, and I was unsure of how to secure clearance to record it.   I finally decided that it’s easier to get forgiveness (please?) than permission, so I went ahead.

12. The Old Knight and the Lady
An aging folkie’s fantasy.

13. Farewell Shanty
    But not, I hope, goodbye.



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