Duo lead May Day celebrations

na mara

na mara - Credit: Archant

Local duo na-mara will celebrate May Day by launching their new CD when they join other local performers in a concert at the Maltings Arts Theatre in St Albans tomorrow night.

na-mara performs traditional songs and music from across the British Isles alongside their own songs and tunes, traditional songs from France and Quebec which they translate into English, and a wide variety of tunes from Asturias, Galicia, Brittany and northern France.

Rob Garcia, who plays mandolin, mandola, bandurria and classical guitar, was born in London of Spanish parents who arrived in the UK in 1937 as child refugees from the Spanish Civil War. Paul McNamara, who plays guitar and sings, was born in Middlesbrough where he played in local folk clubs in his teens,

Their third album, Navajos & Pirates, to be launched tomorrow, draws not only on French and Spanish traditions but presents more of na-mara’s self-penned songs, exploring themes of history, justice, and love lost.

Joining them during the evening will be Bob Wakeling and Ellie Hill who have been playing together for around four years, building a repertoire of largely traditional songs arranged around their two voices, fiddle, guitar and banjo.

Completing the line-up is Sue Farthing who has been playing and singing in the local area since the late sixties, first as a member of The Banshee Band and then as a solo artist.

The Folk at the Maltings concert starts at 8pm and tickets are £10 with students £8 and under-16s £6, on the door or in advance from www.ticketsource.co.uk/ovo, by phone on 0333 666 3366 or in person at St Albans Tourist & Information Centre, Town Hall, Market Place.