Chris Ricketts – ‘Songs In The Key of Sea’, released on Acoustic Fusion Records 8/8/20

Chris Ricketts

Chris Ricketts - Folk Music album review

Chris Ricketts – Songs In The Key of Sea

I have been waiting for this new album by Chris Ricketts with huge anticipation.
Based on his previous releases, I must admit that I was looking forward to hearing how he has developed. It’s been around seven years since his last album. In that time he has packed a load of new experiences into his life and blossomed as a performer.

A quick look at his website reveals that he has spent at lot of time at sea…entertaining on cruise ships. It must have served him well, as he’s found a new confidence, wider repertoire whilst retaining a distinctive voice and vocal style.

Anyway, about the album – Songs In The Key Of Sea.

The opening track, the title song of the album is a fine example of Chris’ fine skills as a songwriter. The track gets the album off to a lively start and is followed by his version of the tradition song ‘Shenandoah’. As you would expect, Chris puts his own spin on the old song.

The track also introduces some fine fiddle playing by long time conspirator, Garry Blakeley. If fact the assembled selection of musicians and backing vocalists really add to the quality of the album.

By the time the third track ‘One More Day’ kicks in, you realise that Chris Ricketts has come up with the goods yet again.

Listening to the whole album confirms Chris’ reputation as a shanty singer who applies his own personality, style and arrangements.

As almost as a final thought, I’d like to add an observation of my own. I have listened his development since the release of his first album some years ago which I featured on Folkrise shows. Based on his considerable skills as a songwriter I would love his next album to be totally original songs.

The album – Songs In The Key of Sea by Chris Ricketts is a enjoyable romp through a pleasing mixture of traditional new material.

Alan Morley