Julie Murphy

'The major new UK folk voice of recent years' Folk Roots

'My favourite singer in the world' Eliza Carthy

'One of the great voices of these islands' Mike Harding BBC Radio 2

Things have been happening for Julie since the release of her acclaimed solo debut, Black Mountains Revisited. She has toured in support of Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant, and worked with John Cale on a film called 'Beautiful Mistakes' by director Marc Evans. Julie sang 'The Farmer' from Black Mountains, accompanied by John Cale on piano. The film also features Cale collaborating with bands like Catatonia, Super Furry Animals and The Manic Street Preachers. Julie has toured Vietnam for the British Council, appeared as featured artist on the Radio 3 programme Mixing It in April, and was in conversation with Verity Sharp in BBC Music magazine in the same month. Also in April Julie collaborated with Kenyan musician Ayub Ogada at an event in London's Dome.

Fernhill's lead singer is Essex-born and grew up listening to Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder - 'normal teenage stuff' before graduating to an art-school punk band. Julie later moved to a Welsh-speaking village in the Teifi valley and was drawn into a lively Welsh music scene - also discovering her voice. In 1994 ex-Blowzabella mainstay Nigel Eaton asked Julie to partner him in a remarkable hurdy-gurdy and voice duo, Whirling Pope Joan (named after an old card game). The resulting album, Spin, was widely admired. Julie toured for the British Council in Pakistan and the Sudan, in partnership with Nigel Eaton and later with Andy Cutting. In 1996 Julie helped to create a new acoustic fourpiece - Fernhill - which quickly became known for its a highly original fusion of Welsh, English, Breton and other influences. Fernhill's three critically acclaimed albums Ca Nos, Llatai and Whilia followed, and in 1999 Julie released her first solo album Black Mountains Revisited (a Mojo magazine Folk Album of the Year). An extended interview with Julie appeared in the June 1999 issue of Folk Roots magazine, which also featured her as cover artist. Partnered by guitarist Dylan Fowler and fiddler Kate Ronconi-Woollard, Julie Murphy is now touring under her own name as well as with Fernhill.Did you know that...
  • Julie has a remarkable facility for languages, singing as readily in Breton as in English or Welsh. She has also handled mediaeval Latin; in 1996 Julie worked with the early music group Sinfonye on the songs of composer Hildegard of Bingen.
  • Julie's wide-ranging musical tastes include current chart music. In 1999 she was invited to sing on the debut album of NME-acclaimed Welsh hip-hop band Tystion.

Visit Julie Murphy at www.juliemurphymusic.com

Photo: Martin Roberts

Albums on the Beautiful Jo label

Black Mountains Revisited

Lilac Tree

Copyright © 1996/2003 Beautiful Jo Records