Lowp are a 4 piece band specialising in the songs and music of Tyneside and North East England, but also venturing into the wider musical territory of Scotland, Ireland and beyond.
Ben Hudson: vocals, guitar, bouzouki
Steve Pratt: flute & whistles
Pete Brown: fiddle
Iain Gelston: border & small pipes, bouzouki & mandolin
Lowp formed in late 2009 from the ashes of Northumbrian folk-rock band Death at the Leek Show, when drummer Jimmy Bullock and bassist Phil Docherty fled the nest for pastures new. With the addition of Iain on bouzouki and mandolin the band transformed into a wholly acoustic outfit with a gentler sound. Unfortunately, Iain then went and bought a set of Border Pipes, thereby ruining the effect completely. Consequently, the raucous sound of Lowp (v. to jump or leap) was born, with an eclectic mix of dance tunes and rousing songs from across the North East.
The band’s material is a mix of native and imported tradition, so alongside the sounds of 18thC border and smallpipe tunes you might hear the whistle and flute of the Tyneside Irish tradition, or the Scottish songs that have become firmly established on the banks of the river, or the songs of the 19thC Music Hall tradition. Pete’s fiddle adds more of the Border/Northumbrian sound. In addition, the band write their own tunes and songs, and also present their take on more contemporary, tradition-based material by the likes of local songsmith Ed Pickford and Sunderland based luthier Tony Black. Add to this the occasional foray over the water to Brittany and France to raid the odd tune set, resulting in a wide and varied sound pallette, but with all given the distinctive Tyneside/Lowp stamp.