The Wheel of the Year
CD. Produced in 2012.
Song lyrics by Rose Blakeley. Music by Garry Blakeley. Mastering and sound production by
Edd Blakeley. Recorded at Gaz-Edd studios.
The seasons have always been of great importance, not only to me, but also to our ancestors. Their very existence affected nature, man and agriculture, so from these sources many traditions have evolved over time and are still very much alive today. After writing an album focused purely on May, it therefore seemed natural to commemorate the whole annual cycle in music and song - so The Wheel of the Year was set in motion.
To see The Last Post on YouTube from The Wheel of the Year click here -
The Wheel of the Year is performed as a live show with The Garry Blakeley Band.
Its members are:
Garry Blakeley - Fiddle/Vocals
Edd Blakeley - Bass Guitar/Vocals/Sound
Jim Board - Guitars
Russell Field - Drums/Percussion/Vocals
Rose Blakeley - Writer
Jane Downes - Story Teller, Singer and Narrator
Photos of the live show were taken by Sammie Deacon.
The audience left some lovely comments after The Wheel of the Year shows. Here are some of them -
"Thank you all for the MARVELLOUS show at the Stables theatre, Hastings last night. The songs and story telling were a perfect mix. Thank you, Jane, for taking us on the journey of poems and songs - mixed with the weather reports where we heard of weather 'of biblical proportions' that had been visited on parts of the UK (some of which we remembered from our lifetimes). Most of all, thank you for the music. Bass (accompanied by Edd's smile which lit up the theatre), guitar and drums were excellent - and Rose Blakeley's lyrics were perfect. The music was moving in every sense - I danced in my seat. Most of all, thank you, Garry, your fiddle playing was amazing, formidable, unforgettable. Thank God you had CDs for sale - it's playing as I write this. Paul and I thank you all from the bottom of our hearts."
"Thanks for a great evening yesterday. We really enjoyed the show"
"Fantastic evening - great atmosphere and superb music! Thank you!!"
"Brilliant evening guys - congratulations on a job well done - CD is great as well - Thanks for a great night"
For further information and event details find The Garry Blakeley Band on
The Wheel of the Year takes you from the dark, cold nights of January with its wassailing and the echo of distant ploughboys, to the green of May, through golden summer sunshine and harvest cheer, to ruddy autumn leaves, which blow into the magic of solstice snow before the blazing fires of Christmas.
This recording weaves a vivid tapestry of history, folklore and mysticism. The spirit of my lyrics has been animated by Garry’s powerful and atmospheric music - a collage of compositions, which are a beautiful combination of folk-rock arrangements, slow airs and driving traditional tunes.
And finally, I have to say, this album was a sheer joy to write, as there are endless aspects of the year to set the imagination racing, so to lose myself in some of them was a pleasure. I decided to write them in the order of the months, and as I completed each one, I presented them to Garry so the ‘magician’ could do his work! Each time it was, and always is, a very special moment for me, when my words re-appeared, were sang and decorated with beautiful music, its chief instrument being the fiddle. I find this an incredible thing as a writer, for music breathes new life into the lyric, and to eventually see it performed live with such a reputable band, is a privilege.
3. This year I am a special tree,
In the orchard best I boast,
For chosen am I to represent all,
So then to me they toast.
And now we sleep till spring’s new dawn,
Good fortune we do share,
We’ll leaf and flower before the sun
And plentiful fruit we’ll bare.
4. With open arms below the sky,
I embraced the winter’s night,
And I heard a sound of such great cheer
From the flickers of lantern light
Oh how my heart it filled with joy,
As came the Wassail King,
For came did he to bless our roots
And cheerfully to us sing.
From The Wheel of the Year
Here we go round the apple tree
The apple tree
The apple tree… x4
1. With open arms below the sky,
I embrace the winter’s night,
Then I hear a sound of such great cheer
From the flickers of lantern light.
Oh how my heart it fills will joy,
As comes the Wassail King,
For come does he to bless our roots
And cheerfully to us sing.
2. He leads the way of many more,
Holds high the wooden bowl,
Streaming with ribbons and evergreens,
Around our trees they stroll.
Around they stroll, then dance do they
Serenade us in the cold,
Upon a fork some cider in cake
Up to my branches they hold.
”Garry Blakeley and his close friends and family are masters of their ever growing and highly successful ‘Cottage Industry’!! not to mention a great family man with his son Edd firmly rooted in this successful set up as the hugely talented bass and keyboard player, who Garry affectionately calls the musical director. Then of course there is the brilliant Rose Blakeley writing excellent well-crafted and clever lyrics and a book!! This really is a recipe for success as the recent tour of Garry’s latest album ‘The Wheel Of The Year’ has proved with ticket sales rocketing and venues selling out!” Paul Johnson (folking.com)
For further information or to buy a copy of The Wheel of the Year click here -
This will take you directly to Garry's website.