Bella Hardy, acclaimed songwriter and traditional music luminary, released Hey Sammy in November 2017, a record that bears the stamps of extensive musical expeditions far from home.
This autumn, Bella takes to the road with only her two fiddles and harmonium for company, stripping back the instrumentation from her latest record to return the songs to their newly written forms, and performing solo with the ‘Hey Sammy’ Acoustic Tour.
Bella Hardy, BBC Folk Singer of the Year 2014, found her first home in folk music through a childhood love for ballad books. A self-taught “fiddle singer”, she began performing at Cambridge and Sidmouth festivals from the age of 13. Her debut album Night Visiting, released ten years ago, established her reputation as a songwriter when her first original composition Three Black Feathers earned a BBC Folk Award nomination.
Bella has since become a regular on radio and television, notably singing solo in a sold-out Albert Hall at the Proms. She’s written and recorded with everyone from Beautiful South founder David Rotheray to folk luminary Eliza Carthy, and performed with the great Mary Chapin Carpenter on her UK tours. Her seven-week residency in the Chinese city of Kunming was arranged by the British Council and the PRS For Music Foundation and resulted in the 2017 recording and release of Eternal Spring - an album of songs and poetry made in collaboration with Chinese singers and musicians.
It seems entirely fitting that Bella Hardy should mark a decade of remarkable recordings with the exceptional step forward that is Hey Sammy.
“The Peak District troubadour springs another surprise… her eye for a bittersweet lyric hasn’t deserted her” - The Sunday Times
“Inspired by feminism, racism, and international travels, this is an accessible proposition, reaching out, standing tall” - The Guardian
“She relocated to Nashville, dividing her time between songwriting and working as a ranch hand; and the city of Kunming, in Yunnan Province, on assignment for the British Council. Her new album, Hey Sammy, bears the marks of both of those foreign stints.” - The Financial Times
“There are many levels on which to admire Bella Hardy. That voice, of course – so vulnerable, exposed and unadorned... but, as we first discovered with Three Black Feathers, she’s also one of the best songwriters of her generation” - fRoots
"A voice that can by turns soar, seduce, sigh and sparkle, Hardy's performances can't be faulted” - R2 Magazine