As the Hinge of the Year Swings Around…

December 19, 2014

10462375_10204591520243904_3723509724967575678_n 10850140_10204591520563912_1607546158848619600_n 1560712_10204591520083900_3870441870342200455_nPreview 1sThanks to everyone who braved the dark nights and made our last tour of the year into a magic one.  We’ve enjoyed trying out new songs on you and will be heading t0 the studio straight after New Year to sing off the Christmas pudding and make a new record! Here’s a sneak preview of our album photoshoot, created by the supremely talented Elly Lucas and Karen Le Roy Harris. It involved lying on a forest floor in midwinter but we hope you’ll agree it was worth it!

It’s been a year of firsts: My first ever solo voyage to Finland, the launch of The Furrow Collective, curating Outlandish Nights with Ali Roberts at The Kings Place,  a lovely Women Folk Tour, a trio trip to Ireland and a Norwegian festival adventure with The Furrow Collective, singing with Eliza Carthy’s Arms Wide Orchestra…Not to mention learning how to write songs with a two year old in toe! In-keeping with my resolution to be brave and do solo gigs this year, my final concert of 2014 will be supporting Paul Smith (Maximo Park) & Peter Brewis (Field Music) at The Sage Gateshead on 20th December. The Furrow Collective will be starting 2015 with a tour of Germany and rehearsals for our next album. But first, here’s to a Merry Yuletide!

Thank you all for your support in 2014, it’s massively appreciated…Wassail!!

Emily x

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November Tour

November 10, 2014

14_10_14 EP Nov Tour A3 poster for printThe Emily Portman Trio are shortly to be (over)loading the boot with harp, fiddles, banjo, musical saw, concertina and our warmest woolies for our final tour of the year – we hope you can join us! We’ll be bringing you sparkling NEW music, alongside our favourites from Hatchling and The Glamoury – and we welcome requests. In January we’ll be making a new album, to be released next summer, so here’s the first and last chance to get a sneak preview before the launch tour next June! Wishing you warmth in the darkness and a winter full of song, Emily x

16th Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry, W-MIDLANDS

17th Nettlebed Folk Club, Nettlebed, OXFORDSHIRE

18th The Forge at The Anvil, Basingstoke, HAMPSHIRE

19th Riverhouse Barn, Walton on Thames, SURREY

21st The Music Institute Folk Club, Guildford, SURREY

22nd Rhos Y Gilwen concert Hall, Cilgerran, PEMBROKESHIRE

26th Biddulph Up In Arms, Biddulph, STAFFORDSHIRE

27th Brewery Arts Centre, Kendal, CUMBRIA

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Emily to Present BBC Radio Merseyside’s ‘Folkscene’

April 6, 2014

Emily will present BBC Radio Merseyside’s long-running folk show on Sundays at 4pm.

Emily’s first radio show will be airing from 4-5pm on Sunday 6th and will introduce some current and all time favourites from her collection.
Emily is to take the reins from Geoff Speed, who has retired after 47 years of co-presenting Folkscene with Stan Ambrose. Stan and Emily will now present on alternate weeks, playing music from a range of local, national and international artists, with interviews and local folk news.

Musicians, promoters and listeners can suggest local listings, songs and artists to
Or write to :Emily Portman, BBC Radio Merseyside, 31 College Lane, Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 3DS.

Folkscene will be available on iplayer for a week following the show.

Emily’s next show airs on Easter Sunday and will play music with spring themes.

March 12, 2014

I’m excited to announce that OUTLANDISH NIGHTS  is drawing nigh! A mini series, co-curated by myself and Alasdair Roberts that runs at Kings Place from 27th-29th March. I am performing on 28th with The Furrow Collective and 29th with Mary Hampton and storyteller Debs Newbold.

Friday, 28 March 2014 – 7:30pm / Hall One

UNEARTHED – SONGS FROM THE ARCHIVES & NETHERWORLDS – This London debut by the much-anticipated Furrow Collective will see the talented quartet delve into an obscure world of balladry at its darkest and quirkiest. Special guest of the night will be Marry Waterson.

Saturday, 29 March 2014 – 7:30pm / Hall One

HER CONJURING VOICE – Emily Portman, current holder of BBC Radio Two Folk Award for best original songwriting, is joined by special guests writer-singer Mary Hampton and storyteller Debs Newbold.

The Furrow Collective Launch Tour

December 30, 2013

At Our Next Meeting Front CoverThe Furrow Collective is a brand new venture with Alasdair Roberts, Rachel Newton and Lucy Farrell and we are all excited to be touring our new album of trad songs in February! Our shiny website is now live! Here are the forthcoming dates:

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December 29, 2013

-1 I’m pleased to announce I’ll be performing in a triple bill alongside Emma Sweeney and Lucy Ward in a tour of the North in January and February. We’ll all be performing solo sets, so I’ll be dusting off the banjo and concertina and bringing out some new songs and arrangements, alongside some collaborative pieces. Hope you can make it!

30th January – Manchester, Band On The Wall 

31st January – Clitheroe, Lancs., Clitheroe Grand

1st February – Stockton on Tees, ARC

2nd February –  The Liverpool Philharmonic




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February 1, 2013

HatchlingI am very excited to announce that I’ve won ‘Best Original Song‘ at the BBC Folk Awards! The song in question is ‘Hatchlings’, inspired by the myth of Leda and the Swan, a lullaby from Leda to her two sets of twins, hatched from eggs. it was a brilliant night and a highlight was when my 7 month old daughter shook the hand of Alex Salmond! I’d particularly like to thank the musicians who played with me on ‘Hatchlings: Lucy Farrell, Rachel Newton and Lucy Deakin..And also thanks to everyone who comes to my gigs, supports my music and has given me encouragement over the years – it’s all very much appreciated!!
Emily x

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Mossy Coat, Marina Warner and Grimm Thoughts

December 22, 2012

I’m very happy to say that Mossy Coat from The Glamoury is featured in Marina Warner‘s Grimm Thoughts on BBC Radio 4. Marina Warner is one of my idols, so this has made my Christmas. You can hear the programme here (until 2PM Tue, 25 Dec 2012): Grimm Thoughts: Episode 2.

When the Grimm brothers first published their Children’s and Household Tales in 1812, in a scholarly effort to collate a national identity of the people, it was the beginning of an obsessive project of two intricately interwoven lifetimes.

To mark the bicentenary of the first edition, writer and mythographer Marina Warner explores the many compelling and often controversial aspects of the tales in a 10-part series, revealing new insights into the stories we think we know so well, and introducing us to the charms and challenges of those that we don’t.

Alongside beautifully narrated extracts from the tales themselves, renowned academics and artists who work closely with the Grimm’s rich heritage add to our understanding of these deceptively complex stories…

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Folk Awards Nomination

December 16, 2012


I’m pleased to announce that I’ve been nominated for a BBC FOLK AWARD for BEST ORIGINAL SONG for ‘Hatchlings’, the title track of my latest album Hatchling. `Hatchlings’ is inspired by the myth of Leda and her egg-hatched twins, which I first came across depicted on the frescos of Pompeii. Banjo and
bells accompany interweaving strings and harmonies from Rachel Newton, Lucy Farrell and Lucy Deakin. The winner will be announced at the BBC folk award ceremony on 30th January ’13, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed!
Hatchling was nominated for BEST ALBUM in the prestigious FROOTS CRITICS POLL of 2013 and came in at number five, with the marvelous Sam Lee winning with his mercury nominated album.
Meanwhile I’m busy preparing for a concert of lesser-known ballads which I will be performing alongside Martin Simpson and Jim Moray on 26th January at Cecil Sharp House, followed by a trio concert at the same venue on 27th and then the Be Good Tanyas Tour. But first…
Merry Solstice and a Happy New Year!

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fRoots Critics Poll Albums of 2012 Nomination

November 11, 2012

I’m really excited to announce that Hatchling has been nominated one of the fRoots Critics Poll Albums of 2012! Here’s a little info on the awards from the magazine:

Every year since 1986 (when the first winner was Paul Simon’s Graceland), fRoots magazine has polled experts in the UK and abroad to decide the Album Of The Year in folk, roots & world music. With over 300 writers, broadcasters and activists worldwide invited to vote, it is the most extensively researched and prestigious annual poll of its kind, the de facto flagship industry awards.

It’s “The best researched guide to the key world roots albums of the year” (BBC Radio 3).

All the winners to date can be found at
Below are the alphabetical listings of the nominees for the New Album Of 2012 and Best Reissue Or Compilation Of 2012.

This year’s winners will be revealed exclusively by BBC Radio 3 in a special edition of World On 3 broadcast from 11 pm on Friday 7th December, hosted by Lopa Kothari. Full in-depth details, also including the Best Packaged Album winner, will appear on the fRoots web site from 8th December, and in the Jan/Feb 2013 double issue of fRoots published in mid-December.

fRoots Critics Poll: NEW ALBUM OF 2012: NOMINEES
Listings alphabetical

Bellowhead: Broadside (Navigator)
Fay Hield & The Hurricane Party: Orfeo (Topic)
Lau: Race The Loser (Reveal)
Sam Lee: Ground Of Its Own (Nest Collective)
Mokoomba: Rising Tide (Igloo)
Jim Moray: Skulk (NIAG)
Ondatrópica: Ondatrópica (Soundway)
Karine Polwart: Traces (Hegri)
Emily Portman: Hatchling (Furrow)
Staff Benda Bilili: Bouger Le Monde (Crammed)

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