Alistair Anderson Biography

18 March 1948, Wallsend, Tyne and Wear, England. Anderson is regarded by many as England’s finest squeezebox player. He also plays concertina and Northumbrian pipes, and is a fine interpreter of traditional dance tunes of England, Ireland and Scotland. He has produced a number of strong albums with many critics rating 1982’s Steel Skies as his finest recording. He has appeared on other records, most notably with the High Level Ranters, of whom he was a member during the 60s and 70s alongside Johnny Handle, Tommy Gilfellon and Colin Ross. It was with the High Level Ranters that Anderson visited the USA in 1971. He also toured America in 1974, appearing at both the Philadelphia and Fox Hollow folk festivals. In addition to organizing concertina workshops, and performing in a solo capacity, Anderson formed Syncopace, releasing a self-titled debut in 1991. In addition to Anderson, the line-up featured Penny Callow (cello), Ian Carr (guitar), Martin Dunn (flute, whistle, piccolo) and Chuck Fleming (fiddle, mandolin).

In the new millennium, Andersen began a collaboration with trombonist Annie Whitehead under the name of Northern Lights. They released Airplay in 2002. The music was originally commissioned for the Bath International Music Festival in 2001. Apart from songwriting and performing, Anderson is artistic director of Folkworks an organization that promotes music for young people and includes running summer schools, teacher training and arranging tours with artists from around the world.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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