Fairport Convention

What We Did In Our Holidays - Island 1969

Tracks: 1. Fotheringay / 2. Mr. Lacey / 3. Book Song / 4. Lord Is in This Place...How Dreadful Is This Place / 5. No Man's Land / 6. I'll Keep It With Mine / 7. Eastern Rain / 8. Nottamun Town / 9. Tale in Hard Time / 10. She Moves Through the Fair / 11. Meet on the Ledge / 12. End of a Holiday / 13. Throwaway Street Puzzle [*] / 14. You're Gonna Need My Help [*] / 15. Some Sweet Day [*]


"What We Did in Our Holidays" was the first album to feature Sandy Denny and in fact the last released with Ian Matthews as lead singer. As was the case with their 1968 debut album this album is a great mixture of various styles and inspirations.

The band would later become a legend in British folk-rock, and there are clear signs what direction the band might want to pursue on this album. Songs like "Nottamun Town" and "She Moves Through the Fair" would not have been totally out of place on their folk-rock classic "Liege and Lief". There is also a lot of folk-feeling in Denny's beautiful "Fotheringay".

Bob Dylan was obviously a great inspiration for the band, and they recorded several of his songs for their early albums. Here it is his obscure song "I'll Keep it With Mine" and you maybe you could also count in "Nottamun Town", which has the same melody as "Masters of War".

Richard Thompson wrote some really great songs for the album among which "Meet on the Ledge" has become a classic. At this point Thompson's songwriting was more pop/rock than folk. Bassist Ashley Hutchings wrote the rock'n roller "Mr Lacey" and the other guitarist Simon Nicol contributed the fine acoustic instrumental "End of a Holiday", which closed off the original album.

The three bonus tracks are interesting, but none of them would have fitted very well into the album. The B-side "Throwaway Street Puzzle" has been a collector's item for years, and a track that many fans have been eager to hear. It's a Thompson/Hutchings blues rocker written and played much in the same vein as Dylan's "Down in the Flood" or "Wathcing the River Flow".

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