Phil Hare -> Troubadour -> Releases

Phil Hare Releases and Discography

2018 A Stranger I Came - 2015 The Twilight Tone - 2010 Everyone's A Hard Man Now - 2005 Tears From The Tracks - 2003 Broken Timing - 1997 Phil Hare and Penni McLaren Walker - 1994 Common Ground - 1990 Living on Credit - 1988 Maidenhead Revisited - 1986 The Din of Inequity

2018 A Stranger I Came (March Hare MHPCD01) CD.


Order by Paypal - £10.00 inc postage and packing to UK
or cheque (payable to 'P Hare') etc to 11 Regent Avenue, March PE15 8LW.


1) One Step Away From The Blues (3.10)
2a) Blarney Pilgrim
2b) Nigel Farage Swimming The Channel (3.12)
3) Water Wide (4.23)
4a) The Water Is Wide
4b) Sure As The River Flows (7.58)
5) I’ve Got My Country Back (3.14)
6) Can’t Quote Shakespeare (2.20)
7) Text 0898 (2.03)
8) Will You Marry Me? (4.14)
9) Broken Society (3.20)
10a) Rosie Anderson
10b) Paul Campbell’s Reel (2.51)
11) Wayward (5.09)
12) Time After Time (2.46)
13) You Never Really Went (5.55)

Phil Hare – Guitar, voice, banjo & dobro.
Phil Hare plays a Gary Nava ‘Signature’ guitar in standard tuning throughout except track 2 (CGDGAD), track 5 (DGDGBD), tracks 8 & 12 (CGCGBC) and tracks 10 & 11 (EG#BF#BD#).

This album is largely a ‘live in the studio’ collection of (mainly) first takes, although some liberty was taken in overdubbing a smidgen of banjo and dobro on two tracks!

All titles written by Phil Hare except ‘One Step Away From The Blues’ (Kevin Buxton), ‘Wayward’ (Nick Mitchell) and ‘Time After Time’ (Cyndi Lauper/Rob Hyman).

Tracks 2a, 4a and 10a are all Trad Arr. Phil Hare.

All titles arranged by Phil Hare © 2018 MCPS.

Recorded & engineered by Jon Harvison at Quarry Cottage, Keighley, W. Yorkshire 18th November 2017. Produced by Jon Harvison & Phil Hare. Mastered by Tony Bonner.

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Phil Hare, A Stranger I Came. ****

A stranger to some maybe but not to aficionados of the U.K. folk/blues scene, Phil Hare is a gifted guitarist whose reputation on the live circuit is second to none. A Stranger I Came is Phil's seventh 'official' album and a veritable gem that captures his deft fingerstyle of playing to perfection and showcases his expressive vocals and the broad palette from which he draws inspiration. Like all good records, it reveals more with each spin.

It's difficult to highlight specific tracks as they all deserve mention but to grab a sample of what Phil has to offer, check out the wistful medley of track four. This opens with the instrumental 'The Water Is Wide', a traditional tune beautifully arranged by Phil and featuring sublime guitar work that segues into his original song, 'Sure As The River Flows', which features more understated guitar and a superbly judged vocal from Phil. It's exquisite stuff.

If your record collection includes albums by Martin Simpson, John Renbourn or Davy Graham then A Stranger I Came would make a fitting addition to such select company.

Colin Hall

RnR Magazine

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Phil Hare, A Stranger I Came. Album Review. Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

Life is such that the sound of an unfamiliar outsider makes their presence known, we can often be forgiven for recoiling at the outlandish oddity of their voice, the startle in which the mind refuses to comprehend, the feeling of disconcertment when their phrases shake your beliefs and the shutters and the walls start to begin to appear between you and them.

We are often on the receiving end of such moments, as well as perhaps being the instigator of such troubled civil alarm, and yet, it feels perhaps more in keeping believing we are the ones to whom the world should be astonished by our forthright views, the honesty in our thoughts, and when you look at the company you find, the thought of A Stranger I Came to you is perhaps the sincerest of them all.

The visionary finds such moments illuminating, and in the exceptional observational virtuosity of Phil Hare, the enlightenment comes with the praise of education, of remembering that we are born with the sense of compassion built into our D.N.A., it is our job to remind people every day to seek out it out, to offer it with no thought of reward; the stranger in our midst is not out to overturn our lives or destroy our belief, but to offer perhaps a different solution in which we can feel the love we deny ourselves.

Phil Hare's album is a Folk album that restores that faith, even when the biting lip digs down too deep and blood is drawn, for in the softness of rage, lays an even greater sense of reason, the power to change people's minds. In songs such as Blarney Pilgrim, Nigel Farage Swimming the Channel, the humble but beautifully sarcastic I've Got My Country Back, Can't Quote Shakespeare, Text 0898, the strength of time's intelligence in Will You Marry Me, Broken Society, the passion and melancholy of the instrumental of covering Cyndi Lauper's Time After Time and the finale of You Never Really Went, Phil Hare is the singing medic to whom our at times soul deprived patient longs for.

A stunningly beautiful album, A Stranger I Came perhaps but in the end a friend for life.

Ian D. Hall

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PHIL HARE A Stranger I Came March Hare Productions MHPCD002

Singer-songwriter-guitarist is a classification that does not do justice to Phil Hare's artistry. Nor can he easily be pigeonholed in terms of style and repertoire. Hare is an extraordinarily skilled finger-picking guitarist with a mellow voice that is at times reminiscent of Paul Downes or Dave Burland. He credits Davy Graham and Martin Simpson as influences - and that shows to a degree in his approach. The CD includes a highly eclectic mix of sources in addition to his own writing - from blues to traditional airs. This is Phil's seventh 'official' recording and will hopefully spread his reputation to a wider audience.

His songs - a sometimes not-so-subtle commentary on personal and contemporary politics - are all accompanied just by guitar, and the guitar playing shines. There are no additional musicians although both banjo (on I've Got My Country Back) and dobro (on Wayward) each make one-track over-dubbed appearances. All the song arrangements place as much, if not more, emphasis on the guitar than on the words. In this, and only in this, the style is classic singer/songwriter. At times the very heavy emphasis on the guitar's bass strings becomes over-dominant in the mix but otherwise the mastering is, indeed, masterful.

Every track on A Stranger I Came will sit happily among the random tracks on my computer and the album as a whole provides a superb souvenir from any of Phil's gigs.

Recommended.

Tom Brown

Living Tradition issue 125 August 2018

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PHIL HARE - A Stranger I Came (March Hare Productions MHPCD002) *** Intriguing subject matter

Given that the subject has already seeped into other genres, it was only a matter of time until we had our first Brexit inspired country album, and it comes by the guitar of Phil Hare. Hare opens up on the subject aplenty on this album, with songs such as 'I've Got My Country Back' and 'Nigel Farage Swimming the Channel', with it becoming clear that the subject matter is something close to Hare. In terms of the album, Hare approached the studio with a 'one take' mentality, and it's testament to him as a musician that the recordings have come out very well-though it would be ideal if they were louder, so we could appreciate his craftmanship a bit more. It'll be interesting to see where Hare goes next with his musical career, and the type of subjects he sings about, but for the short-term, this is a good album, and one that he can be very proud of.

TONY WESTWOOD

Maverick magazine

www.phil-hare-guitarist.co.uk

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PHIL HARE - A Stranger I Came (March Hare Productions MHPCD002) www.phil-hare-guitarist.co.uk

I reviewed singer/songwriter/guitarist Phil Hare's previous album, The Twilight Tone, in Stirrings 167 and most of those comments apply equally to this 13-track CD. The majority of the tracks are still first takes, although on the ironic I've Got My Country Back-you can guess what that's about- he over-dubs some tasty banjo, and there's added dobro on NIck Mitchell's Wayward-the mix is indecisive as to whether this or the guitar should dominate the fills and breaks.

Phil still writes a good song-vocally at his most McTellish on Water Wide and the closer, You Never Really Went (eulogy for a dead parent?)-and plays ace guitar. I particularly enjoyed the doo wah diddy feel on the self-contradictory Can't Quote Shakespeare, the Davy Graham (Angie) influenced Text 0898, and his instrumental treatment of Cyndi Lauper's Time After Time. Well worth a listen or three.

IAN SPAFFORD

STIRRINGS

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PHIL HARE - A Stranger I Came (March Hare Productions MHPCD002)

Recorded in Keighley and co-produced by Phil and Jon Harvison, this is an album that is at once comforting and disquieting. Featuring Phil's delightfully deft guitar work and a voice that has all the sensuous pleasure of laying back on warm velvet, its songs bristle with a barbed wryness and unsettling perception. Try I've got my country back for starters. Alongside these irony-dense observations on modern Britain are perfectly selected covers (check out what he does with Time after Time, a cover that outplays even Show of Hands' re-imaginings) and richly emotional, sometimes deeply personal song. Try Sure as the River Flows, a deep senuous song that folds you into itself and is as rich and plangent as anything on the greatest Scott Walker albums

That's one of three original compositions that are recorded as medleys wherein they are preceded by dazzling interpretations of traditional tunes. These punctuate and connect the CD - Waterwide is followed by The Water Is Wide which leads to Sure as the River. The sequence has a rewarding logic to it that goes beyond neat title matching.

Other standouts include the instrumentals Broken Society and Text 0898 (a clever non-verbal joke), the positively aching You Never Really Went and the allusion packed You Can't Quote Shakespeare. There's also Will You Marry Me whose subject matter is both unexpected and unnerving, turning a thoughtlessly used modern cliche on its head.

It's a rewarding album of substantial depth.

However, it's to track 2 that I returned more than the rest. An instrumental played with the masterful warmth and precision that is constant throughout. First is Blarney Pilgrim and then a quasi-original called Nigel Farage Swimming The Channel. Is this not a CD you need if only to smile at that title every time you see it?

Tykes News

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PHIL HARE - A Stranger I Came (March Hare Productions MHPCD002)

Don't ask me how many albums Phil Hare has made but it's a lot and 'A Stranger I Came' is his latest. It's simply recorded off the floor with a couple of minimal overdubs of banjo and Dobro and is big on Phil's fingerpicked guitar. The songs and tunes are mostly Phil's own plus three covers and some traditional pieces and are largely concerned with the current political and social situation. There isn't much scope for humour but he does his best and not always in expected places.

The opener is one of the covers, Kevin Buxton's 'One Step Away From The Blues' and rather sets the whole "what a mess we're in" scene. That's followed by the traditional 'Blarney Pilgrim' paired with 'Nigel Farage Swimming The Channel'. I had hoped that the latter would be scurrilous and unrepeatable but it is also an instrumental. He let me down, there, but more than redeems himself with 'Water Wide', a song with very modern lyrics about refugees and a powerful message styled like a traditional ballad. The aquatic theme continues with the instrumental 'The Water Is Wide' paired with a song, 'Sure As The River Flows'.

'I've Got My Country Back' says what many people are thinking and saying and injects a note of gallows humour while 'Can't Quote Shakespeare' is out-and-out comedy where I was expecting a comment on our education system. 'Will You Marry Me?' is a poignant song about two gays in Dublin who waited twenty years for the change in the law which allowed them to marry. It's very cleverly constructed so that you're never totally sure where it's going until it arrives. 'Broken Society' returns to the tough side of life with the tale of a disabled soldier facing benefit cuts.

Four tracks are purely instrumental, including a gorgeous cover of Cindy Lauper's 'Time After Time', and they lighten what could be a rather bleak album given the majority of the subject matter. Even the romantic sounding closer, 'You Never Really Went', has an air of melancholy mixed with nostalgia and a measure of optimism. Like much of the record, it's delicately layered.

Dai Jeffries

Folking.com

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Album: A Stranger I Came

Label: March Hare

Tracks: 13

Known to many of you/us as one of the top fingerpicking guitarists in the folk and blues scene, Phil Hare may have passed under that radar for many others. Hence album number seven arrives with little fanfare yet those same fingers crossed that it may be the one to widen the appeal and enhance the reputation he's earned as a live performer.

Following a similarly diverse template to 2015's 'Twilight Tone' - proof of the claim that "you can't put Phil Hare in a box." Made up of solo guitar recorded pretty much in single takes, Phil's taken the radical step of overdubbing banjo and dobro on a couple of tracks which adds something to the general palette. Lyrically, there's a focus, as there tends to be these days and as there has been in the history of folk music, on topical issues; although the sixties was more about cruise missiles and war rather than Brexit, disability and single sex marriage. However, as Led Zep almost put it once, the passion remains the same. A craft honed to perfection with plenty of ammunition and practice during the Thatcher years.

So the sort of complex chord arrangements not often found in folk and the blues feel guides the way, yet there's plenty of contemporary nods; not quite getting down with the kids, but hip-hop and pop influences are promised alongside fretboard tapping and jazzy cadences. Just one man and (mainly) his guitar, the songs come cased in a generally laid back groove, one that you'd associate with one of the elements of the John Martyn approach, which sadly runs the risk of sapping attention. A sudden burst of the much maligned banjo actually comes as a relief in 'I've Got My Country Back' - either that or I simply need to play the album louder. Perhaps it's the combination of the general pessimistic nature of the lyrics reflected in their low key musical accompaniment that while being the key theme of the album, is one that struggles to shift into a higher gear. Shame as the ingredients are all there but sometimes, you just need that magic touch.

Mike Ainscoe

FATEA

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I have to confess that I didn't know much about Phil Hare until comparatively recently. I guess that the comparative lack of appropriate venues means that I've not had much chance to discover him live, locally. Of course, I knew he was a fine guitar player - a modern-day guitar hero - mainly because Leo keeps telling me! And - OK I'm shallow - when Phil followed me recently on Soundcloud I decided to follow back!

On Soundcloud Phil has posted a series of out-takes and cuts that didn't quite make it onto albums. But the crafty old so and so had put up one track from the new album and it was a cracker. Before I knew it the PayPal button had been pushed and the new album 'A Stranger I Came' was dropping through the doormat.

This is a lovely album which just grows and grows on me. In the main it is pretty stripped back, many vocal and guitars with some very subtle over dubbing of dobro and banjo. In case you are at all worried the banjo multi tracking is so subtle I haven't noticed it!

The overall vibe of the album is slightly melancholic but there is a great variety here. The original songs are varied in musical style but they all deal with contemporary subjects in a very original way. 'I've Got My Country Back' deals with that subject which none of us really want to talk about - begins with a B. 'Water Wide' is a simply gorgeous tune in a traditional style but deals with aftermath of war and the desperate life of the returning soldier (I think). 'Broken Country' is reminiscent of Ian Dury - a rap-ish commentary on the life of benefit and DLA claimants (again including wounded soldiers). 'You Never Really Went' is a lovely reminiscence of poignant past friendships forged, again, against a backdrop of the flight from conflict. 'Wayward' is a very original song of love and affection. And then there's that track that was on Soundcloud, 'Will You Marry Me' a fabulous song that is a very human celebration of Ireland's decision to embrace same sex marriage. Lyrically the songs are in the fascinating rather than the 'top clever by half' category. I suspect Phil sees himself as a guitar player first and a singer second but his voice is rich and expressive and he uses his voice extraordinarily well to illustrate those lyrics.

If the subject matter seems heavy the songs are anything from heavy - this is very accessible. While the songs all fit the vibe of the album there is a lot of variety here and musical influences. The Country blues is here for sure but there's also songs and picking which remind me of Ralph Mctell and Bert Jansch and maybe also Clive Gregson at the height of his powers. And there might be even a touch of Nick Drake in there as well.

Scattered through this collection of songs are a series of fine instrumentals, both originals and traditional tunes. 'The Blarney Pilgrim' and 'Nigel Farage Swimming the Channel' set the feet tapping and bring a smile to the face. 'Rosie Anderson' and 'Paul Campbell's Reel' are as good as any celtic picking you will find anywhere. Phil's guitar rings out clear and true with the most clean and expressive of techniques. That guitar of Gary Nava sounds absolutely superb in the hands of such a master.

I guess you can tell by now that I really enjoy this album, indeed, it is one of those that continues to grow on you. For me the ultimate tribute is that I've had to stop working on some new songs and tunes myself for fear that they are all beginning to sound like rip-off's of Phil. The last person who did that to me was Steve Tilston.

A fine, fine, album from a player at the top of his form. Don't hesitate to go buy a copy.

www.soundcloud.com/ndyowell

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2015 The Twilight Tone (March Hare MHPCD02) CD.

Order by Paypal - £6.99 inc postage and packing to UK
or cheque (payable to 'P Hare') etc to 11 Regent Avenue, March PE15 8LW.


1) The Pound Man (2.50)
2) The Twilight Tone/Red-Headed Boy (3.06)
3) Catherine Conway (4.41)
4) Planxty Byrne (2.34)
5) Lady London (3.39)
6) The Preacher (1.58)
7) Lines In The Sand (3.55)
8) Si Bheg Si Mhor/Planxty Davis (4.45)
9) Friends I Left Behind (2.36)
10) The Alchemist (3.55)
11) The Day Thatcher Passed Away (5.01)
12) A Corporate Shanty (3.57)
13) Benefit Street (2.09)
14) South Wind/Somewhere Only We Know (5.27)
15) Funeral Blues (Stop All The Clocks) (3.12)
16) She Moved Through The Fair (3.46)

Tracks from the album have been played on:

BBC Radio Shropshire, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, BBC Radio Nan Gaidheal, BBC Radio Suffolk, Argyll FM, Acoustic Cafe Radio, Mike Harding Folk Show, Ken & Phil's Folkcast, Durham Community Radio, Folk Radio UK, Chris Arscott's Folk & Roots Show and Tulip Radio. It is expected over the coming months that many more stations will play tracks.

TT has also featured in two 'best of '15' listings including one in stormcock.com (thanks to the webmeister!)

The new Phil Hare CD album was released on Monday 28th September 2015 and is called 'The Twilight Tone'. It is purely my voice and guitar, it features a handful of new, original songs - plus seven 'folk guitar' instrumentals - and was recorded and produced in Steeton, West Yorkshire by Jon Harvison in June 2015.

Contractual obligation - in addition to competition from streaming and downloading - means that the album will retail for £4.99 (£6.99 inc. postage and packing) and will (save for some specialist outlets) be exclusively available from us at either gigs, or through the website and via the PAYPAL facility.

In addition, we have registered with Tunecore so Twilight Tone will soon be available for streaming/downloading piecemeal from ITunes, Amazon Music, Tidal and beyond.

'A Brilliant Album It Is' (Tony Warren, Somerset Arts)

'Phil Hare - The Ultimate, Guitar-Totin' Troubadour' (Llantrisant Folk Club)

'Simply lovely playing and singing' (Ken Nicol, Guitarist - Steeleye Span, Albion Band, Easy Street and beyond)

'Clever marriages between old and new - all shot through with unparalleled emotional honesty' (Mike Harding - MHFS, renowned broadcaster, comedian and musician)

'Benefit Street' should be broadcast hourly on all channels' (Folking.com)

'Phil is a fine guitarist with a mastery of all styles' (Dai Jeffries - Independent)

Customer Reviews:

'Like a well-crafted beer'. Clive Petry (Cambridge)

'Phil on great form with great tunes'. Jools Nicholls (St Ives)

'Exquisite guitar tunes and songs that engage in many different ways'. Dave Garrity (Chester)

'Outstanding guitar, as always, with a contemporary mix of original tracks and well-interpreted takes on the traditional'. Richard Fry (Chepstow)

'Protest and love, instrumental and song, trad and contemporary, all on one CD. Lovely'. Leo Roberts (Manchester)

'A fantastic collection of acoustic guitar music'. Stu & Vania Tong (North Wales)

'The best thing I've heard in a long time'. John Kearney (Nuneaton)

'There is definitely more than one person playing guitar on 'The Preacher!' Jim Mclean (London)

'One of the finest singer-songwriters I have heard' Ashley Kitson (Rushden)

More Reviews for The Twilight Tone:

2010 Everyone's A Hard Man Now (101 Records 101RECCD24) CD.

Order from Paypal (stephanie@madasafish.com)
or cheque (payable to 'P Hare') etc to 11 Regent Avenue, March PE15 8LW.

1. Music For A Found Harmonium (Simon Jeffes)
2. They Found Harmony
3. Thoughts Of Home
4. This World Of Mine
5. Creepin'
6. The Hedgefund Shuffle
7. When The Tide Comes In
8. The Police Didn't Come
9. Movie Man
10. Eveyone's A Hard Man Now
11. The Shrinking World
12. On A Saturday
13. Hospitality Blues
14. You Never Win The War
15. Steffi's Waltz

All songs by Phil Hare except where stated.
Guitars and vocals – Phil Hare
Drums and percussion – Mike Johnson
Bass guitar and mandolin – Chris Lee
Saxophones – Dave Gilbertson
Violin and cello – Claire ‘Fluff’ Smith
Fiddle – Gina Le Faux (on ‘Steffi’s Waltz’)
Harmony vocals – Caitlin Hare
Cubase programming – John Banting (on ‘The Shrinking World’)

"I'd rate it amongst my acoustic favourites for the year alongside the second CD of Richard Thompson's Dream Attic and The Owl Service' The View From A Hill". Phil (webmaster)

"If, like me, you know Phil Hare through the 'contemporary folk' scene, the jazzier side of his playing opens up a whole new box of delights, particularly on those tracks where he spars with Dave Gilbertson's sax. He's a versatile player at the top of his game". Oz Hardwick - R2 Rock N' Reel February 2011

'A real gem of talent here. Contemporary views on some of the taboos of modern life along with a beautifully rendered version of 'Music For A Found Harmonium'. Bring on more please!' Liz Franklin - Durham Community Radio Music 2011

'This album contains some of the best songs Phil has written, whilst the intricate instrumentals are a delight' Dave Kidman - Living Tradition

'A fabulous album with some really imaginative interplay between guitar and sax' Steve Tilston

2005 Tears From The Tracks (101 Records 101RECCD18) CD.

Order from Paypal (stephanie@madasafish.com)
or cheque (payable to 'P Hare') etc to 11 Regent Avenue, March PE15 8LW.

1. The Grim Reaper Two Step
2. Johnny Sands (trad arr Hare)
3. Poisoned Lover (trad arr Hare)
4. Treat Me With Reason
5. Godfrey's Cordial
6. The King Of Emneth
7. Merrily Kissed The Quaker / The Blackthorn Stick (trad arr Hare)
8. Time For A Story
9. Pictures With Surround Sound (Sandy Doyle)
10. Dear Sandy
11. Come Back Baby (John Estes)
12. Tears From The Tracks
13. The Streams Of Lovely Nancy (trad arr Hare)
14. Blackpool Landlady
15. Potato Man
16. Ashokan Farewell (Jay Ungar)
17. Thousands Or More (trad arr Hare)
18. Coming Home

All songs by Phil Hare except where stated.
Guitar and vocals – Phil Hare

'The sound of someone trying too hard to be clever on the guitar whilst making noises with their mouth. The music has no pulse. The diametric opposite of the likes of Nic Jones' FRoots 2005

'Some really nice songs with excellent guitar accompaniments!'. Nic Jones 2005

'Versatile and stylish guitar work underpinning that bluesy/husky delivery, gives this album that unmistakeable 'Phil Hare' quality' Folktalk 2005

'Raw and honest.......his best album yet! Dave Kidman 2005

'Echoes of all the acoustic greats within a sprawling piece of work that you may prefer to dip into rather than listen to in one go' Tykes News 2005

'Great support from the excellent Mr Phil Hare...check out the CD'......Phil Beer 2007

2003 Broken Timing (101 Records 101RECCD15) CD.

Order from Paypal (stephanie@madasafish.com)
or cheque (payable to 'P Hare') etc to 11 Regent Avenue, March PE15 8LW.

1. Broken Timing (Hare / McLaren-Walker)
2. No One Remembers Me
3. Gone Fishing
4. O'Flanagans
5. Toys In The Attic (Hare / Clements)
6. Kenny Spiers' Farewell to Innerleithen
7. Wait A Minute Mister
8. Drunk And Dreaming
9. This Is The Edge
10. Long Way From Home
11. Treat Me With Reason
12. Three Four
13. Blind Mary (O'Carolan)
14. Last Chance Bar

All songs by Phil Hare except where stated.
Guitars and vocals - Phil Hare
Piano - Jonathan Levy
Drums - Mike Johnson
Sax - Dave Gilbertson
Bass and mandolin – Chris Lee
Accordion – Russ Mabbutt
Whistle and flute – Terry Coyne
Harmony vocals – Irene Arhutich

Almost as overdue as an England World Cup Final victory, the aptly titled ‘Broken Timing’ is the third official album release by acclaimed British guitar virtuoso and songwriter Phil Hare.

Although Phil has worked extensively as a solo artist within the world of acoustic folk/roots music and continues to draw inspiration from these sources, the songs on this album eschew the familiar verse/chorus-modal melody structure of what we regard as ‘folk-song’, and stand alone as songs of a classic nature equally at home in a popular music market place. Perhaps only Richard Thompson or Elvis Costello could also lay claim to such a breadth of diversity whilst still retaining the crucial respect for what has gone before.

Previously regarded by some as a ‘political’ songwriter – a skill much in evidence on Phil’s first release on Fellside Records: ‘Living on Credit’ (FE77 1990) – this body of work sees Phil adopting a more mature and reflective lyrical style to deal with issues that resonate through us all: love, life, death, loss and……..drinking! ‘Yes, I’ve heard it all before’, I hear you say. Maybe you have, maybe you will again but on occasions the raw beauty of Phil’s perennially thought-provoking lyrics sets a benchmark that many will emulate for years to come.

Phil’s multi-faceted guitar skills still drive the whole thing but, in a musical departure from previous offerings, aspects of this album are characterised by the sound of Jonathan Levy’s jazzy counterpoint piano instead of the more traditional axis of fiddle/accordion and whistle. Allied to Mike Johnson’s empathetic crisp production, the result is a ground breaking record that draws from influences across the acoustic spectrum but never strays too far from the emotional honesty that threads through Phil’s performances.

Believed by many to be one of these island’s most distinctive and versatile acoustic guitarists, Phil Hare can now be content that with ‘Broken Timing’ he has well and truly arrived as a class songwriter.

Jo Cameron ( The Independent)

1997 Phil Hare and Penni McLaren Walker (101 Records TC 105).


Cassette EP. Not available at present.

Side One
1. Don't Leave (Walker)
2. Second Time Around (Walker / Hare)
3. Bloody Well Dead (Hare)

Side Two
1. Rollin' and Flowing (Bustin)
2. Incantations (Walker)

Phil: Vocals and fingerstyle guitar.
Penni: Vocals and rhythm guitar.

1994 Common Ground (101 Records) CD.

Not available at present

1. King for a Day
2. The Galtee Hunt
3. Welcome to the Museum
4. You Could Say
5. A Modern Working Man
6. Count the Cost
7. Diary of a Merseysider
8. Love of a Different Kind
9. Song of Delusion
10. Cast Iron
11. Lady of the West
12. The Judas Man

All songs written by Phil Hare except for 2 which is trad arr Hare.
Guitars, banjo, vocals - Phil Hare
Fiddle - Joe Broughton
Bass - Chris Lee
Percussion - Mike Johnson
Mandolin - Paul Bonnet
Harmony vocals - Irene Arhutich
Harmony vocals - Fiona Simpson
Accordion - Alun Rhys Jones

‘it is a refreshing listen, his lyrics are thought-provoking and certainly not as boring as works of this genre tend to be’ – The Observer

‘Despite the overall melancholy pervading this recording, it is not a downbeat affair, and although optimism isn’t Phil Hare’s strong point, he has good cause to be optimistic about his future’ – Folk On Tap

‘This is an excellent album. Phil doesn’t thrust is virtuoso guitar playing in your face but uses it to underpin and enhance his lyrical and intelligent songs.’ – Buzz

‘It all sounds hard listening, but the inventive chordal construction of the songs and some memorable tunes lift these songs to greatness. Add some more personal songs, such as the haunting ‘Cast Iron’, about keeping calm during the melodramatics of a relationship crisis, and you’ve got a well balanced and rewarding collection’ – City Life

1990 Living on Credit (Fellside FE077) vinyl LP.


Not available at present.

Side One
1. Closed for Business
2. All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go
3. Living on Credit
4. Fanny Power / Planxty Johnson (O'Carolan / trad)
5. Ill Wind
6. Community Charge Song

Side Two
1. They've Come to Take Our Town Away
2. Johnny Don't Go
3. All Things are Quite Silent (Trad adpt Hare)
4.a) Strong in the Sun (O'Kelly)
b) Commoners' Ballad
c) Lest We Forget (Jones)
5. The West Wind (trad)

Guitars and vocals – Phil Hare
Piano accordion, tin whistle and harmony vocals – Alun Rhys Jones
Fretless bass and percussion – Chris Lee
Fiddle – Dave Russell
Percussion – Paul Adams
Harmony vocals – Bram Taylor

1988 Maidenhead Revisited (MILN 1).


Private release, cassette only.Not available at present.

Side One
1. Maidenhead Revisited
2. Sorry the Day I Was Married / I Wish I Was Single Again (Trad. arr Hare)
3. The Spiv Song
4. Living on Credit
5. Superstition (S.Wonder)

Side Two
1. Looking for My True Love
2. Going Down the Random Road
3. The Rose of Allendale (Trad. arr Hare)
4. Morgan Magan (T. O'Carolan)
5. The Desert of Divis

Guitar and vocals – Phil Hare
Drums and percussion – Mike Johnson

1986 The Din of Inequity (RTS 1215).


Private release, cassette only. Not available at present.

Side One

  • 1. They've Come to Take Our Town Away
  • 2. Due Consideration (P.Woolnough)
  • 3. The Pricketty Bush (Trad. arr Hare / Farrell)
  • 4. Planxty Hewlett / Fairies Hornpipe (Trad. arr Hare)
  • 5. Commoners' Ballad

    Side Two

  • 1. Looking For My True Love
  • 2. A Heart Needs a Home (R.Thompson)
  • 3. Don't Worry About It
  • 4. The Bitter Withy (Trad. arr Hare)
  • 5. I Still Don't Know (Hare / G.Hughes)

    Guitar and vocals – Phil Hare

    Phil Hare can also be heard on:

  • 'Taylor Made'- Bram Taylor (Fellside FE75)
  • 'Hughie's Ditty Bag'- Hughie Jones (Fellside FE81)
  • 'Further Horizons'- Bram Taylor (Fellside FE92)
  • 'Lonely as the Moon'- Jon Harvison (Drive-On DOCD01)
  • 'Continuing Adventures of Ben & Joe Broughton' (101 Rec CD5)
  • 'Pick Of the Grinner'- Bram Taylor (Fellside FE120)
  • 'Banklands'- Various Artists (Fellside FE100)
  • 'The Bare Branch'- Vicki & Trefor Williams (101 Rec CD 6)
  • 'Cheshire Born'- Roy Clinging (101 Rec CD8)
  • 'High Diving'- Jon Harvison (Drive-On DOCD02)
  • 'Gwerrin'- Various (101 Rec CD10)
  • 'Russell Mabbutt & Friends' (101 Rec CD9)
  • 'The Skipper's Daughter'- Penni McLaren Walker (101 Rec CD2)
  • 'Timeless Land'- Trefor & Vicki Williams (101 Rec CD14)
  • 'An Honest Working Man'- Roy Clinging (101 Rec CD12)
  • 'Banklands' - Fellside Sampler
  • 'Alibi Of Innocence' - Jon Harvison (Drive On DOCD003)
  • 'Changing Light' -Vicki & Trefor Williams (101RECCD17)
  • Three Point Turn (101 CD19 2005)
  • Malc Gurham & Gill Gilsenan (Nun 2014).
  • 'Here Comes The Day' - Heather Innes (Kickstarter1 2017).