Spotlight 81: Saturday 10th November 2012 – The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow

Posted by in news, news and reviews, spotlight

in association with




This month Liverpool Acoustic is joining forces with Sefton Park Palm House, News From Nowhere, and Radical Liverpool to present Celebrating Subversion: The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow.

The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow is a collective of singers and songwriters Frankie Armstrong, Roy Bailey, Robb Johnson, Reem Kalani, Sandra Kerr, Grace Petrie, Leon Rosselson, Janet Russell, Peggy Seeger, Jim Woodland, plus one (there is only one!) socialist magician, Ian Saville. Each show features a selection of participants from among this collective.

According to chief mischief-maker Leon Rosselson, the Anti-Capitalist Roadshow was created “to raise spirits and give hope and cheer and a smile or two to those angry at the ideologically driven austerity programme imposed by this millionaire government on all but the elite, and in particular on the poor, the vulnerable and the disabled. We are part of the resistance to a capitalism that functions only on behalf of the wealthy, that aims to shrink the public sphere and privatise public services, including the NHS, and that is destructive to the planet. We are part of another way of looking at the world.”

The Roadshow has been enjoying sold out concerts across the country, and is coming to Liverpool for it’s only North West show.

It’s taking place on Saturday 10th November 2012 at  Sefton Park Palm House and features

  • Peggy Seeger
  • Frankie Armstrong
  • Robb Johnson
  • Grace Petrie
  • Janet Russell
  • Jim Woodland
  • and Ian Saville
Tickets are £10 (£6 unwaged) in advance from or on the door.
Tickets can also be bought in person from News From Nowhere (no booking fee).
Doors open at 7.00pm with music starting at 7.30pm. The night is due to finish at 10.30pm

Join the facebook event here.

Liverpool Acoustic Spotlight 81

To play click here Spotlight 81
or right click the link to download for free
    1. Peggy Seeger – Doggone, Occupation Is On
    2. Frankie Armstrong – Encouragement
    3. Robb Johnson – When Saturday Came
    4. Grace Petrie – Farewell To Welfare
    5. Janet Russell – St Peter’s Field
    6. Jim Woodland – The CriminalBONUS TRACK
    7. Leon Rosselson – Palaces of Gold 


Peggy Seeger

Peggy Seeger

Peggy Seeger

Born in 1935, Peggy’s family connections are well-known in folk and classical music circles. She is Pete Seeger’s half-sister, Ruth Crawford Seeger’s daughter; partner to Ewan MacColl, who wrote First Time Ever I Saw Your Face for her and to whom she bore three children. Her best-known compositions are Gonna Be An Engineer and The Ballad of Springhill (the latter rapidly becoming regarded as a traditional song).

The MacColl-Seeger work was prodigious in its scope. From 1959 onward, they encouraged and set standards for the burgeoning UK folk revival; they trolled the USA & UK field recordings and anthologies for little-known traditional songs; they trained other singers and involved them in political-musical documentary theatre; they instigated the revolutionary Radio Ballad form. Their work was halted by Ewan’s death in 1989.

Peggy has made 22 solo recordings and taken part in more than 100 more with other performers. A singer and multi-instrumentalist, she is considered to be one of North America’s finest female folksingers.

Frankie Armstrong

Frankie Armstrong

Frankie Armstrong
Frankie Armstrong has been singing professionally since 1964. In 1975 she began her pioneering Voice Workshops based on ethnic styles of singing – where singing is as natural as speaking. She has sung and run workshops all over Europe, North America and Australia working with Community Groups, Theatre Companies, International Voice and Theatre Festivals and in every kind of setting from hospitals to the National Theatre Studio London.
She has made 10 solo albums, written her autobiography As Far As the Eye Can Sing and edited a collection of essays Well Tuned Women with Jenny Pearson. Her latest book is with Janet Rodgers, Acting and Singing with Archetypes. She has also contributed chapters to eleven other publications.
Frankie says:

“I’m so looking forward to bringing our Celebrating Subversion: The Anti Capitalist Roadshow to Liverpool.  All the concerts I’ve been part of so far this year have been a real lift for our spirits – and we all need it. What a privilege to turn our frustrations, anger and aspirations into songs that can be stirring, satirical, hilarious, moving and beautiful is a great way to ‘not let the bastards get us down’. To share them with you in Liverpool is an exciting prospect.”


Robb Johnson

Robb Johnson

Robb Johnson
Robb Johnson is now widely recognised as one of the finest songwriters working in the UK today. His songs feature in the repertoires of a wide variety of musicians, from folk legend Roy Bailey to acclaimed cabaret diva Barb Jungr, & he enjoys a similarly diverse spectrum of critical acclaim – “a modern-day Dostoyevsky” said the US’s Dirty Linen, Mojo made the double CD Gentle Men Folk Album Of The Month, while The Daily Telegraph made it their Folk Album Of 1998, & Tony Benn says Johnson’s “Winter Turns To Spring” is his favourite song.

He has played pubs, clubs, pavements, pickets & benefits, arts centres & festivals, local, national and international radio and TV, and in February 2006 appeared at the Barbican as part of the prestigious BBC “Folk Britannia” series, where “for the encore, Robb Johnson leads all the artists (and the audience) in the World War I song (‘Hanging On The Old Barbed Wire’)” (BBC Folk Britannia website) in a concert that was screened on BBC4.

Robb also plays extensively in Belgium, Holland & Germany, & he has toured Britain supporting Chumbawamba, & the US with David Rovics & again with Leon Rosselson

His albums regularly receive widespread critical enthusiasm – The Guardian: “no-nonsense, bittersweet, finely observed”, fROOTS: “brilliantly rousing… intelligent & catchy sing-a-longs with attitude”,  while FATEA has made 2 of Robb’s songs – The Prince & Private Gentle, and When Tottenham Burned  their tracks of the year.

In 2011 he released a solo acoustic album Some Recent Protest Songs (IRR080) and a full electric band album Once Upon a Time (IRR082). This year Robb and his band The Irregulars appeared on the main stage of the Tolpuddle Festival, where Robb has also compered for the last 3 years, showcasing material from Happily Ever After (IRR083), their latest album.

Rob says:

“Personally I am really looking forward to being part of the Anti-Capitalist Roadshow gig in Liverpool, cos Liverpool has a proud radical history of political and cultural anti-capitalism, and I’ve always had really lovely gigs in Liverpool and made lots of good friends when i’ve played there.”


Grace Petrie

Grace Petrie

Grace Petrie

Grace Petrie comes from Leicester in the East Midlands. She writes indie folk rock songs (a couple with an acoustic punk twist), plays the guitar and sings with a voice that has been likened by listeners to Laura Marling and Kate Nash. From the humble beginnings of small gigs in her hometown in 2006 and a home-recorded debut album, Grace quickly acquired a reputation as one of the best artists on the flourishing Leicester music scene, and a following of dedicated listeners. In 2007 she supported Frank Turner and Mark Morriss (The Bluetones) and released a second CD, Feel Better, to critical acclaim. From there onwards she began to break onto the festival scene, playing Leicester’s acclaimed folk weekender, The Big Session Festival, and the more commercial Summer Sundae, as well as the main stage at Nottingham Gay Pride 2009, where she played to over 10,000 people.

In 2010 Grace’s music began to take a new, political direction. The heartbreaking results of the UK general election inspired in her such rage and despair that she picked up a guitar and wrote what has become one of the most celebrated anti-establishment anthems of recent times, Farewell to Welfare. When folk legend (and Grace’s personal hero) Billy Bragg heard her music and invited her to play at Glastonbury on the Leftfield stage, she went down a storm and, in Bragg’s own words, “stole the f@!#ing show, sister!”

In 2011, Grace Petrie exploded onto the national music scene. Alongside UK tours with Emmy the Great and Josie Long, she embarked on a string of festival appearances including End of the Road, Greenbelt and, of course, a triumphant return to Glastonbury. National airplay on BBC 6music from Josie Long, Tom Robinson and Steve Lamacq as well as interviews in The Guardian and Diva magazine have cemented Grace’s name in the public consciousness, and the release in December of Mark My Words, the politically charged follow-up to Tell Me A Story, was met with such excitement that the CD sold out within 48hours. With festival appearances already confirmed for the summer, 2012 looks set to be a big year for Grace Petrie.


Janet Russell

Janet Russell

Janet Russell first made a name for herself on the folk circuit in the ‘80’s as a young singer songwriter writing with hard-edged humour about issues affecting women.  Her “Secretary’s Song” was the most requested song on “Folk on 2” in 1987/8, and “Breastfeeding Baby in the Park” has been taken up by the pro-breastfeeding lobby nationally and internationally.  Whilst resident in London Janet worked with Leon Rosselson, Sandra Kerr, and Roy Bailey in the Political Song Network, helping to produce songbooks and organise regular concerts. Whilst bringing up her two sons, living in Yorkshire, Janet became an established voice workshop and community choir leader, and a member of the Natural Voice Practitioners Network, established through Frankie Armstrong’s work. This has led Janet to arrange some songs by favourite songwriters such as Leon Rosselson, Maggie Holland, Robb Johnson, and Sandra Kerr and partner Jim Woodland for performance by community choirs, as well as “borrowing” arrangements from Leon, Sandra, and other colleagues to enrich the community choir repertoire.
Janet’s last solo album “Love Songs and Fighting Talk” was more tradition based.  However, in the last couple of years Janet has been involved with concerts celebrating the great songwriters Leon Rosselson and Sandra Kerr, and enjoying performance collaborations with them and other favourite songwriters like Robb Johnson, and new songwriter Grace Petrie.
Current UK politics are stimulating many new ideas and songs.  Janet is proud to be involved with The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow, Celebrating Subversion, which is a rich and fruitful collaboration with the above mentioned songwriters and other favourite singer performers like Frankie Armstrong, Peggy Seeger, Roy Bailey and Jim Woodland.  This, along with her work with Sisters Unlimited (singing the wit and wisdom of womankind for more than 25 years) and JigJaw (singing for dancing, dancing for singing) produces a busy performance schedule alongside her regular work with community choirs.
Jim Woodland

Jim Woodland

Jim Woodland has published hundreds of songs – he started performing with a London punk band called Red Rinse in the 1970’s, a band who were well known on the London pub scene. He was one of the very first buskers in Covent Garden working as a Punch and Judy man, also working with other puppeteers in the company “Hit and Run”. Jim next worked with “The Fabulous Salami Brothers” in the 1980s and 90’s – they were well loved on the folk club and festival scene, and mixed Jim’s songs with street theatre, juggling, fire eating, and illusions of various kinds. Some people may remember Richie ‘three balls’ Taylor juggling “missiles” to Jim’s song “We are Safe”.
Jim wrote a popular and well respected musical play for and with Taffy Thomas (storyteller) called Take These Chains From My Heart about recovery from a stroke. He has worked with Mikron Theatre as their songwriter for many years. Mikron tour plays about English industrial history and current issues on the canals of the UK. They have a very substantial fan base all over the UK. Their material covers everything from the Clarion cycling clubs to women’s fight for the vote “A Woman’s Place” to the women who worked on the canals during WW2 “Imogen’s War” to the Luddites and the social conditions that led to them breaking machines “Threads of Revolution”.
Ian Saville

Ian Saville

Ian Saville

Whereas David Copperfield is content with little tricks like making the Statue of Liberty disappear, Ian Saville aims at the much more ambitious goal of making International Capitalism and exploitation disappear. True, he hasn’t quite succeeded, but he keeps on trying. This is a funny, magical, thought-provoking and topical celebration of Socialism.

Ian first developed his socialist magic act in 1979, and over the years has used magic and ventriloquism to present a socialist view of the world. He’s presented shows with Leon Rosselson, and has appeared numerous times on national TV. He doesn’t belong to any political party, although he is active in the peace movement, Friends of the Earth, Jews for Justice for Palestinians, Asylum Seekers Support, and many other left and progressive campaigns. As well as performing magic he also teacher part time on the Theatre Arts courses at Middlesex University.

Liverpool Acoustic Spotlight 81 Saturday 10th November 2012 The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow 
If you get the chance, please support your local artists by emailing them, joining their mailing lists, liking their facebook pages, following them on twitter, leaving them comments, going to their gigs, and buying their music direct from them where possible. The Liverpool Acoustic Spotlight is produced and presented by Graham Holland on behalf of the Liverpool Acoustic website, and is a proud member of the Association of Music Podcasting. The theme music is King of the Faeries by Andrew Ellis from his CD Midnight On The Water.
Saturday 10th November 2012 The Anti-Capitalist Roadshow liverpool
Graham Holland

About Graham Holland

Graham Holland is the owner and editor of the Liverpool Acoustic website, and runs Liverpool Acoustic’s award-winning live music events with local musician Stuart Todd. In real life he’s an Apple Professional Development Authorised Trainer, has been producing podcasts on a regular basis since July 2006, and runs a number of websites for other organisations. He lives in Wavertree with his partner and their cat Xiao Hei.