Ceri Shaw



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Category: Music

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‘In It Together Festival,’ the newest and biggest ever addition to Wales’ live music calendar, have announced the full list of 50 Welsh artists who will perform across the festival, with some of the best new talent across the country performing alongside a plethora of international superstars, shining a light on local talent like never before.

The 50 artists cover a huge range of genres spanning the entire musical spectrum, with 25 artists performing across the Paddock Stage, showcasing the very best in indie, rock, grime and hip hop, including Cardiff born singer-songwriter Gwenno and Swansea indie rockers Who’s Molly . The other 25 artists will take over the Escape Records Stage covering all things electronic, from rising Trance star Will Rees , to tech-house maestros This Culture .

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Photo: Gwenno

Both stages have been carefully curated alongside Focus Wales and BBC Horizons, providing an unrivalled platform that will truly establish them as Wales’ next generation of music stars. 

Says Bethan Elfyn, Project Manager for BBC Horizons; “We’re excited at Horizons to see a new festival on the Welsh map – we look forward to supporting the festival, curating some of the Welsh talent and working with the team to make the weekend one to remember. It’s so important after the last couple of years of restrictions on music events to see new events provide new opportunities and experiences for Welsh artists.”

As well as welcoming some of the best talent Wales has to offer, the festival will also host a range of local food vendors providing the very best in local cuisine, as well as working with local suppliers from across the country to create a truly Welsh experience, while the festival’s website will also be available in both English and Welsh. 

Says Escape Records Director Adam Gore; “Our company was born out of the Cardiff nightclub scene, starting out hosting parties in the smallest venues in the city, to filling 3000 capacity venues on Greyfriars Road. We’ve since gone on to launch festivals all over Wales, but this will undoubtedly be our biggest project to date. We are incredibly proud of our Welsh roots and felt it only right that we make our biggest ever festival a true celebration of Wales and Welsh culture.”

With tickets already flying, In It Together is well on track to sell out in its first year. Family, weekend, and day tickets are now available to buy so make sure you are part of history and grab yours here before they go: https://inittogetherfestival. com/

Fe welwn ni chi ar y fferm!

The 50 Welsh artists are as follows (In Alphabetical order)



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Wales’ leading talent development project, Forté Project, re-launches in 2022 with a full scale Wales-wide project for the first time, starting with ten new acts.

The newly chosen music acts from across the country, covering multiple musical genres, will gain crucial skills, industry knowledge and perform their music live at a series of unique events across the country.

Forté Project was established in 2015 and throughout its six year tenure it has developed over 70 young music creators aged 16-25 including Owina Felstead, Alex Stacey, Hana Lili, Eädyth, The Honest Poet, Otto, CHROMA and many more

Amongst these are artists, many have since gone on to become internationally acclaimed songwriters signed to national record labels, performed across the world, gained national radio exposure and won multiple awards.

Over the last two years, Forté project has adapted and overcome the challenges it faced as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Working online has enabled the project to establish and continue connections with the artists who desperately needed support and encouragement over a difficult period.

Now in 2022, Forté Project is ready to embark work on a brand new scale with artists selected from around Wales. Providing ten chosen new acts with professional mentoring, personal development, mental health support, skills workshops and unique live opportunities which will enable them to take their first steps in developing long-lasting and successful careers. 

The Forté 10 acts in 2022 are:

  • Artshawty - Dreamy bedroom-pop from Cardiff

  • Elin Grace - Classically trained folk-pop from Llandrindod Wells

  • Elis Derby - Jagged Welsh language indie-rock from Y Felinheli, North Wales

  • Fig. - Unique melancholic rap hailing from Caerphilly

  • Kitty - Sugary sweet pop from Cardiff (via Paris!)

  • Mali Hâf - Sultry bi-lingual neo-soul from Cardiff

  • Ogun - Politically charged rap from Newport

  • Only Rainyday Rainbow - Scuzzy art-school psychedelia from Swansea

  • Skylrk - Erratic Welsh language hiphop from Caernarfon

  • Sorry Stacy - Layered electronic-pop from Cardiff (via Estonia!)

Forté Project has been made possible by the support from the PRS Foundation and Arts Council of Wales.

forteproject.co.uk   facebook.com/forteproject10   twitter.com/forteproject10   instagram.com/forteproject10  

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Many of Americymru’s audience will recognise the name Gwenno Dafydd. For several years Gwenno has been Americymru’s ‘Global Saint David Day Ambassador’ in recognition of all the voluntary work she has done over the last fifteen years and more in developing and instigating new Saint David’s Day traditions in Wales and further afield.

Traditions such as an anthem for Saint David’s Day: Bilingual words: Gwenno Dafydd. Music: Heulwen Thomas - Which can be bought here: Tycerddshop three County Banners: Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Montgomeryshire, parades and school banners - the first of which is now firmly ensconced in San Ffagan - Wales’s National Museum of History. 

You may also have read on Americymu about the Celtic Cousin trilogy of songs and films promoting Scottish and Welsh Independence instigated, directed and co-written by Gwenno (Bilingual words: Gwenno Dafydd. Music: Katherine Cole) Further information here: Youtube

Gwenno is now launching a new record ‘label’ which will enable people to buy some of the tracks from the various projects she has been working on over the last few years. This record label is in fact only a label in name so that songs can be launched onto digital platforms such as Itunes. ‘I wanted to have a name that could be easily said by non-Welsh speakers and as ‘Coctel’ suggests a combination of ingredients which can be put together to create an exciting and intoxicating outcome, ‘Coctel’ seemed to the ideal name’ said Gwenno.

Katherine Cole and Gwenno have been collaborating for the last six years or so on several song-writing projects. One of these songs ‘Behind a tiny window and it’s Welsh version ‘Tu ol i ffenest fychan’ will be the first song to appear on ‘Coctel. These two songs were launched on the 13 th of December in time for Christmas.

During the ‘covid crisis’, that has impacted our lives over the last nearly two years, the ways that we now communicate with our nearest and dearest has been transformed. Most of us have had to learn how to communicate through the ‘tiny windows’ of our computers – either through Zoom, Skype or Facetime as opposed to the ‘tiny windows’ we would have peeped through in the past before entering our loved one’s homes. There is no time more important for families than Christmas and in this song we count our blessings that we have at least the ‘tiny windows’ of our computers to bring us closer to our loved ones and hope that ‘this too will pass’.

Both versions have been recorded by an exceptionally talented young singer, Jodi Bird. The former Ysgol Bro Morgannwg pupil w as named Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod’s ‘International Voice of Musical Theatre’ for 2019. She was also in the semi-final of ‘Britain’s got Talent’ and on the stage of Wales’s Millenium Centre.

Some of the other songs which will be released before long by ‘Coctel’ will be the Celtic Cousins trilogy, the Saint David’s Day Anthem, a song about the tragedy in Aberfan and a song about the second home crisis in Wales.

Both Katherine and Gwenno have separate creative projects – Gwenno has a one woman show about the French singer Edith Piaf (‘Passionate about Piaf’ which had a lot of success in the West End before the pandemic) and Katherine with musicals ‘I Merlin’ (Paget Rooms and Weston Studio, Wales’s Millenium Centre) & Rhiannon and these also will be available to be bought on the label.

All tracks will be available here: https://orcd.co/behindatinywindow

Or on itunes here:


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Libertino's final release for this year is the incredible collaboration between N'famady and Gruff Rhys. Miniyamba / Leaving the Town is a reworking of a traditional West African song with lyrics in Welsh and Malinké.

N'famady explains how the song was created:

"'Miniyamba / Leaving the Town', the reworking of the traditional West African song that Gruff Rhys sang on the Pang! Tour, is therefore a perfect choice for this collaboration. The song describes an ancient legend the snake that guards a village, forbids anyone from entering or leaving, until a woman who wants to get married tries to bargain with the snake until she gets "Leave the Town". The last release for Libertino this year is Miniyamba / Leaving the Town is a reworking of a traditional West African song with lyrics in Welsh and Malinké.

N'famady explains how the song came about:

“Miniyamba / Leave the Town is a reworking of a traditional West African song that enchanted Gruff Rhys on the Pang! tour, which made it the perfect choice for this collaboration. The song tells of the ancient legend of a serpent that protects a village by allowing one in or out, until a girl who wants to marry a great snake "Minyamba", and her hopes and fears when finally able to "Leave the Town" (leave the village).

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Rhyddhad olaf Libertino ar gyfer y flwyddyn hon yw'r cydweithrediad anhygoel rhwng N'famady a Gruff Rhys. Mae Miniyamba / Gadael y Dref yn ailweithrediad o gân traddodiadol o Orllewin Affrica gyda geiriau yng Nghymraeg a Malinké.

Eglura N'famady sut cafodd y gân ei greu:

"Mae 'Miniyamba / Gadael y Dref', yr ailweithrediad o'r gân traddodiadol o Orllewin Affrica a hudodd Gruff Rhys ar y daith Pang!, felly mae'n ddewis perffaith ar gyfer y cydweithrediad hwn. Mae'r gân yn disgrifio chwedl hynafol y neidr sydd yn gwarchod pentref, yn gwahardd unrhyw un rhag dod i mewn neu gadael, tan mae merch sydd eisiau priodi yn ceisio bargeinio gyda'r neidr tan ei bod yn cael "Gadael y Dref".

The last release for Libertino this year is the wonderfully inspired collaboration between N’famady and Gruff Rhys. Miniyamba / Gadael y Dref is a reworking of a tradition West African song with lyrics in Welsh and Malinké.

N’famady explains how the song came about:

“Miniyamba/Gadael y Dref is a reworking of a traditional West African song that enchanted Gruff Rhys on the Pang! tour, which made it the perfect choice for this collaboration. The song tells of an ancient legend of a serpent that protects a village by allowing no one in or out, until a girl who wants to marry tries to stike a deal with the great snake “Minyamba”, and her hopes and fears when finally able to “Gadael y Dref” (leave the village).”

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With just a few weeks to go until the end of 2021, the mighty  Pigeon Wigs  are closing it off in classic Pigeon Wigs style by releasing their monstrous B-side  The Way You Do.

The Way You D o was written hastily amidst the days-old wreckage of a break up, with lyrics heavily inspired by the self-criticism and the guilt that followed. 

Using this song as a confessional, an emotional outlet (like all good songs),  The Way You Do  speaks of a very visceral point in lead singer, Harry's, life. "It was cathartic to get out. I may look back at the situation all slightly differently now, but I would never change the lyrics because they were my feelings at that point in time" explains Harry.

The Way You   Do  is a rip-roaring release layered with that signature Pigeon Wigs vocal that people have already come to love, fuzzy guitar, huge choruses, and a hook that you just can't leave alone. 

So far, Pigeon Wigs have already gained support from the likes of Adam Walton and Bethan Elfyn of BBC Radio Wales, with Adam labelling their debut as "Sexual and somewhat primal". Pigeon Wigs also featured as 'This Is The Music's' band of the week. 

Pigeon Wigs are a 6-piece rock ’n’ roll band newly sprung from Cardiff’s fertile soil. Formed from the writing partnership of Harry Franklin-Williams & Louis Jugessur, their music ranges from the bombastic and unrelenting to the sombre and fragile, indulging whatever genre best suits their aims while maintaining a through line that one can only describe as Pigeon Wigs.


Want to see Pigeon Wigs live?

They're playing at Cardiff's Clwb Ifor Bach on December 18th for  Clwb Music's Festive Bake. 

All Clwb Music artists will be under one roof for one night only!

Featuring Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard, Alice Low, Panic Shack, Pigeon Wigs, and AhGeeBe.

Get Clwb Music's Festive Bake tickets here

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It's already been a whirlwind week since  AhGeeBe  released his debut single  Cocoona  on Clwb Music.

Cocoona  gained early support from the legendary  Huw Stephens at BBC 6 Music  and Adam Walton at BBC Radio Wales. It was then chosen again a week later for a spin on  BBC Introducing Wales with Adam Walton  as he compared AhGeeBe's songwriting and lyricism to that of the legendary George Harrison. 

AhGeeBe has enjoyed a chat with  BBC Radio Cymru's Georgia Ruth  and features across other BBC Radio Wales shows including spins from new music champion  Bethan Elfyn

Part recorded by Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard's lead singer, lyricist and guitarist Tom Rees and part self-recorded, Cocoona tells an uplifting story, encapsulating the overwhelming, soaring feeling of freedom felt by everyone as lockdown eased, the feeling that everyone was emerging from their cocoons flying around seeing the world again with fresh excitement and joy. 

"This first single  Cocoona  was written during lockdown number 1, when we weren’t allowed to leave the house apart from to exercise or go to B&Q for the 10th time that week. I got really into online shopping thanks to very well placed ad campaigns for waterproof coats and colourful guitar cables. Got quite heavily into YouTube review videos too. Some great content providers out there." explains AhGeeBe.

"This song was finished as we were allowed back out again, and it’s a sort of boogy-woogy celebration of being allowed to run around the streets again without a particular reason."

AhGeeBe honed his craft in the South Wales quarry village of Creigiau, spending his time chiselling and sculpting away at the piano and guitar from an early age.

Describing his sound as “somewhere between old-time country and 60’s cop show theme tunes", AhGeeBe is the shining result of years of work for musicians across the globe, demoing, recording, and songwriting.

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Sheffield bilingual psych/post-punk four-piece Sister Wives have teamed up with Carmarthenshire’s psych duo Tacsidermi for an exciting musical union. The Double A single 'O Fy Nghof' / 'A Oes Heddwch' will be released on limited edition lathe-cut vinyl on 17th December via Libertino Records, and is out now digitally.

Both bands wrote the musical backbone to a song each independently, which was then sent over and Tacsidermi and Sister Wives added lyrics and melody to the other's compositions, a truly collaborative project.

"O Fy Nghof" and "A Oes Heddwch" musically reflect the darker subject matter of depression and the quest for peace as life ebbs away. Listen to the swirling "A Oes Heddwch" and darker "O Fy Nghof" below...

 Both bands go into detail about the lyrics they provided for each song...

Tacsidermi on "A Oes Heddwch":

“The song is about facing an armageddon and the panic of not knowing what to do in your final hours. There's no use hiding from the inevitable. There's no use trying to find peace. You must deal with the consequences of your actions.”

Sister Wives on "O Fy Nghof":

“The song is about being in a deep depression and the helplessness which is felt in that moment. This does eventually come to an end - the heaviness lifts. However, this is often cyclical and happens again, over time. This leaves us stuck in a constant cycle, which can be hard to accept.”  

Tacsidermi are Gwenllian Anthony from the Welsh Music Prize winning band Adwaith and multi instrumentalist Matthew Kilgariff, who craft sublime, evocative Balearic pop-infused psych. Tacsidermi will be returning to the studio before the new year to finish work on their eagerly anticipated debut EP out in January 2021.

Sister Wives are a Sheffield-based female four-piece whose sound encompasses prog-flecked psychedelia and post-punk. They recently played at Green Man, Sensoria, and Sŵn Festivals, with more dates in Sheffield and Manchester this winter (dates below). New music is coming soon.

'O Fy Nghof / A Oes Heddwch' is out now digitally and on limited lathe-cut vinyl on 17th December. 

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Cardiff Singer/Songwriter Chris Kelly announces his latest single 'Your Day Begins Again'

Released independently the single will be streaming everywhere on Friday 26th November.

Former Front-man of 90's Cardiff Band 'The Scooters' Chris Kelly has made quite a name for himself across Wales as a tour de force on the live music circuit. Honing his craft as an accomplished Singer/Songwriter, Chris Kelly has played extensively across all of South Wales and impressing many an audience with his unique brand of Acoustic Americana Pop.

Chris is available for interviews and sessions.

His Brand new album 'The Songs I Wrote Last Year' is available now via this link.


Social Media Links


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Pigeon Wigs are band newly sprung from Cardiff’s most fertile soil. Formed from the writing partnership of Harry Franklin-Williams & Louis Jugessur, the band's music ranges from the bombastic and unrelenting, to the sombre and fragile. 

Indulging in whatever genre best suits their aim, they continue to maintain the soon to be unmistakable sound that one can only describe as Pigeon Wigs.

Released today (Wednesday 6th October),  Near The Knuckle  is a blindingly rambunctious debut single full of hearty guitar riffs, sleek vocals coupled with colossal drums and an instant sing-along chorus.

"Near the Knuckle embraces reckless abandon" explains Cardiff born lead singer and front-man Harry. "It's the urgent frustration of knowing you're with the wrong person and the desperate compulsion to not be alone dressed up in doozie rocker.". 

Pigeon Wigs recently announced that they've joined the Clwb Music family. They're already gearing up for their next release and if  Near The Knuckle  is anything to go by, there's just no stopping this relentless 6-piece.


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