Vashti Bunyan is an English folk singer who was publicised to be the next Marianne Faithfull and the female version of Bob Dylan back in the mid-60s. Several singles were released in the 1960s to some mild success and during a break from her trip at Christmas 1968, she met Joe Boyd through a friend and he offered to record an album of her travelling songs for his Witchseason Productions.
A year later Vashti returned to London and recorded her first LP with assistance from Simon Nicol and Dave Swarbrick of Fairport Convention, Robin Williamson of The Incredible String Band and string arranger Robert Kirby, today best known for his work on Nick Drake's first two albums. The album appeared on Philips Records
to warm reviews in December 1970, but struggled to find an audience.
Disappointed, she left the music industry and moved to The Incredible
String Band's Glen Row cottages, then Ireland. Much of the ensuing 30
years were spent raising her three children and tending animals. In this
time, entirely unknown to her, the original album slowly became one of
the most sought-after records of its time. It has sold on eBay for as much as $2000.
After guesting on Piano Magic’s album ‘Writers Without Homes’, she released her critically acclaimed second album, Lookaftering, 35 years after its predecessor. In 2006, she collaborated with Adem on his latest album. She collaborated with Animal Collective on the Prospect Hummer EP. Vashti also sang with Devendra Banhart on his album Rejoicing in the Hands.
Bunyan has been labelled "the Godmother of Freak Folk" for her role in inspiring the new generation of folk experimentalists including Devendra Banhart.
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