June 1st marks the beginning of 30 Days Wild, an annual event sponsored by the UK's Wildlife Trusts. The idea is to do something out in nature each day no matter where you live -- country, city, town, or suburb. It's a good way of remembering to stay connected to the beautiful natural world -- especially now, when climate crisis is the most pressing issue of our time.
Today, in honor of 30 Days Wild, here is a collection of "wild songs" about the growing green world, woodlands dark and bright, coastal winds and forest magic....
Above: "Trees Hug Bees" by Jeanes -- a music collective founded by Russell Jeanes (a graphic designer, filmmaker and poet from Yorkshire) to create Sleeping Leaves, a "pastoral folk" EP containing songs, poems, and sounds of the natural world put together in a collective fashion.The vocalist on this tract is Léa Decan.
Belove: "The Arboretum" by singer/songwriter Bill Jones, based in north-east England. The song appears on her new album, A Wonderful Fairytale (2019).
Above: "Sisters Three" by singer/songwriter Ange Hardy, from Somerset. The song appears on her sixth studio album, Bring Back Home (2017).
Below: "A’ phiuthrag ’sa phiuthar (O sister, beloved sister)" performed by Julie Fowlis, from North Uist in the Outer Hebrides. It tells the story of a girl lured away in the woods by the sìthichean (the fairy-people), and her sister's long search to bring her home again. The song appears on Fowlis' latest album, Alterus (2018). The animation is by Eleonore Dambre and Dima Nowarah.
Above: "Woodcat" by Tunng, a "folktronica" band founded by Sam Genders and Mike Lindsay, based in London. This wonderfully odd little song (rooted in the folklore of shape-shifting hares) appeared on their album Comments of the Inner Chorus (2007).
Below: "Old Pine" by singer/songwriter Ben Howard, who grew up on the other side of Dartmoor. The song, celebrating the beauty of our West Country coastline, is from Ben's first album, Every Kingdom (2012).
Pictures: An old beech tree twined with ivy, photographed in spring and summer; wild strawberries and piskie flowers in the woods; and a vintage drawing of a bumblebee (artist unknown). The hare painting is "The Spirit Within" by Karen Davis; all rights reserved by the artist.