Richard Grainger and Chris Parkinson
Richard first performed in Teesside Folk Clubs in the 70’s and was a member of several local partnerships, including folk bands Pennyhedge, The Teesside Fettlers and briefly as part of a trio with Ron & Rita Angel. Since 1993 he is often accompanied by multi-instrumentalist Chris Parkinson. However, it’s as a solo performer he’s best known, touring throughout the UK, Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Born in Teesside, with his family background in the North York Moors, it followed that he was hugely inspired by his roots to become a prolific writer and songwriter.
Richard met Chris Parkinson in the early 90’s when they did their first work together, touring in Holland and Belgium, UK and doing a lot of folk clubs, festivals and radio work. The result of that partnership was the album, Thunderwood.
The duo joined forces again a few years later, for more tours in Europe; performing in festivals in Sicily, Germany, Holland, New Zealand. After this, Chris provided instrumentation on the album ‘Hard Road to Prospect Hill’.
Since recording his first album in 1984, Richard has produced 13 albums of original songs, many of which are connected to the region’s maritime heritage and its recent industrial past.
Among a large and varied repertoire are songs of Ironstone Miners (his great grandad was one), Whitby’s Whaling and Fishing days, Teesside’s steel industry, and local life, through good times and bad.
Richard’s songs are performed and recorded by many, including Flossie, Kimbers Men, The Teesside Fettlers, The Wilson Family and Monkeys Fist and have been broadcast widely over the radio at home and abroad. Recently played on BBC Radio3, he has also featured on Robson Green’s ‘Coastal Lives’ (ITV).
His latest production is a compilation album, ‘Blood of the Land’, released in 2021 and in the same year has re-released the CD of his folk -opera ‘Eye of the Wind’, produced in 2003 with David Attenborough.
With a new studio album on the way, Richard is most definitely still rolling on.