Here is a fine singer and story-teller. I urge everyone to go and listen to Stew Simpson sing the story of coalmining in the North East, a story that is, for him “Hyem.”
Stew Simpson is mostly known as the frontman and lead singer for contemporary folk duo Hadrian's Union. He has been performing as a singer and songwriter for over 20 years and is signed to Fellside Records.
He has released three albums and one EP. Stew also has a degree in fine art, his artwork has illustrated albums for:
Gilmore &Roberts, Hadrian's Union and Tom Adams & Heatpod.
His journey to Folk music was a trip of self discovery; starting with Punk from the 1970's to the Rock of the 1980's,playing in alternative rock bands and pop/punk cover bands in the 90's.After winning a battle of the bands competition (CFM Carlisle FM 2001) with a few acoustic songs he used the prize money to record his first album:
The Best Of ...Yet to Come. Since then Stew has recorded two albums with Hadrian's Union, these include 'Trapped in Time' and 'In Your Own Time'. He is currently working on his forth album.
A number of years after moving away from Newcastle, Stew went to Devon for a Folkschool style workshop with Wren Music, these workshops eventually brought Stew to sing in his own accent. This discovery brought Stew to explore the songs written by his musical predecessor's, such as Tommy Armstrong, Ed Pickford and Johnny Handle.
Stew says :
'I wasn't brought up with folk music, folk music found me and it made me fall in love with my roots in a way that may never have happened if I'd stayed in Newcastle. I'm proud to call myself a folk singer and I've really enjoyed the journey in discovering that to be the best person I can be, is by being honest and open with my audience. '
Stew has played all over the UK at folk Festivals, Clubs and on Radio Stations. Highlights have included, Broadstairs Folk Week, Towersey Festival, Music On The Marr, Brampton Live, The BBC, supporting artists such as Tom McConville, Chris Wood, Benjamin Zephania, Roy Bailey, Boo Hewerdine and Dick Gaughan.