November 2019


There was a large audience of members and friends at the November 27 meeting to hear Huw Williams “the folk singer from the valleys”. Huw had been invited by Kay Bright, who had been in Brynmawr  senior school with Huw (a rather long time ago); Andy, another school friend now living in Essex had come along too. It proved to be a wonderful evening’s entertainment, provided by the  brilliant songwriter, clog dancer, adventurous guitarist and bizarre storyteller. During Huw’s childhood and early adulthood, the valleys of Wales, once thriving industrial communities, were depressed with serious unemployment. However, Brynmawr, apparently, had a thriving cultural life .... clogdancing classes on Tuesdays, choral singing on Wednesdays and amateur dramatics on Thursdays.  Huw began his musical career as an unemployed Brynmawr songwriter, who went on to conquer the folk clubs and concerts of Britain as half of a duo with Tony Williams..... much to his mum’s surprise. They became popular with the BBC and were soon earning substantial royalties from performing rights.
Many in the audience were surprised when he first entered the stage playing the bagpipes! Apparently they were Welsh small pipes, which are making a return after a long absence; they were popular centuries ago, during the time of the Welsh Princes. Clog dancing is very popular in Eisteddfodau and Huw, who has performed with Dawnswyr Nantgarw, gave a masterful, and humorous display. It was clear from listening to his songs why famous folk artists in Britain, the USA and Europe queue up to learn his compositions of well crafted and finely honed songs; they do not date and he continues to feed the folk world with new material. Experts in the field have said “that songwriters could take lessons from his brilliant chord progressions and his thoughtful and entertaining lyrics”. The audience were delighted with the excellent concert and showed their appreciation with rousing applause.
Members were sad to hear the unexpected news of the death of Yvonne Blackwood, a faithful member of the Society, and sad to hear that two past members, Richard Collopy and Jim Allen, had also died recently.

                            Kay Bright                                                         Huw Williams with the            

                                                                                                                 Welsh Bagpipes       

                                                      Huw with Guitar                             and                       Clog Dancing

Vice President Arthur Williams thanks Huw for a splendid evenings entertainment