UK’s leading folk and world music PR

JOHN CROSBY is one of the UK's leading independent folk, world and related acoustic music PR's. He works both nationally and locally with print, radio, online and TV media.

Established in 1990, and trading initially as john crosby press/promotions, John currently (as of late 2015-2016) works with Lau, Kris Drever (solo and with Éamonn Coyne), Martin Green (featuring The Unthanks singer Becky Unthank on ‘Crow’s Bones and upcoming ‘Flit’ album), Steve Tilston, Oysterband (either as the full band or with June Tabor, and currently as a trio Oysters3), John Jones, Twelfth Day, Fara, Louise BichanBlazin’ Fiddles, Ben(jamin) Pike, Afenginn (new album due early 2017), TRADattack! (new album due early 2017), Alice Marra, Michael MarraWinter-WilsonLondon Klezmer Quartet, Hannah Sanders & Ben Savage, Claudia AuroraChivo Funge, Refugees For RefugeesLee Maddison, Cosgrave & Banks, and Cocos Lovers.

He has also worked in recent years with Chris Wood, Lucy Ward, Patsy Matheson, Martha Tilston, Ayub OgadaJamie Smith’s MABONFabian Holland, Robb Johnson, Gentle Men project, Yasmin Levy, Fiona Rutherford, Naomi Bedford, Gavin Marwick, Camille, Treacherous Orchestra, Sarah HayesBoubacar Traoré, Dengue FeverLila Downs, ALAW, Malick Pathé Sow, Chris QuinnJim CausleyEmily Portman, The Outside Track, Rachel Hair TrioHazmat ModineVärttinäDan Walsh, Walsh & Pound, Blair Dunlop, Ashley Hutchings, The Shee, Wes FinchWill Varley, Brendan Power, Troy Faid, and many, many other fine musicians, singers and groups over the past three decades.

He handled PR on several key albums by the likes of Rachel Unthank & The Winterset, (then later as) The Unthanks (including the group’s Mercury Prize nomination), Portuguese Fado sensation Mariza (her first five albums, indie label and EMI) and The Imagined Village. In the 1990s, his PR with Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill on the duo's ‘The Lonesome Touch’ secured them an appearance on Later… With Jools on BBC 2 TV. Back in the early 1990s, he did PR for UK visits by the legendary Richard Berry (writer of the classic, much covered song 'Louie Louie') and The Fugs Ed Sanders. 

From 2017, John will be restricting himself to between only 8-10 PR campaigns each year. If you have a project that you think may be interesting and should be one of them, feel free to contact him by phone, text, email or Facebook private message (details below).


Tel:    (0)1424 713904

Mobile:  (0)7920 260824

Postal address:  For mail only; no personal callers without prior arrangement. 

Email me for details.


Follow John on Twitter #johncrosby1950

Press Release



“Vividly expressive and evocative . . . a wonderfully engaging, absorbing illumination of past lives and family ties” (Scotsman)

In 2013, Orkney fiddler and photographer Louise Bichan embarked on a unique musical and sentimental journey, between her native northern isles and coast-to-coast Canada, in the footsteps of her late paternal grandmother Margaret, née Tait (1925-2008). The result - originally premièred at Orkney Folk Festival in 2015, and now captured as an album - is Out of My Own Light, a suite of beautifully wrought, brilliantly captivating chamber-folk compositions, inspired by Bichan’s travels and wider family recollections, together with Margaret’s own diaries and correspondence.

When she stepped aboard the Ascania, bound for Montreal, in May 1950, Margaret was a woman truly torn between two lovers: a dashing local farmer – her family’s approved choice – and a young engineer she’d met when at college in Aberdeen. Margaret’s anguish over this dilemma, impelling her escape from a much-loved but remote and tight-knit home community, is palpable in the diary entry she wrote a few weeks earlier, from which Bichan has taken her title:

 “I’m so darned restless and unhappy these days just can’t make a decision one way or another. If only I could get right away for a while I’m sure it would help. I’ll never get out of my own light while I continue here.”

Like many Orcadian families, Margaret’s included emigrant relatives scattered across Canada, which enabled her to travel the country visiting them, and later provided Bichan, when she set out on her own trip – also aged 25 – with first-hand accounts of her grandmother’s adventures.

Taught by top Orkney fiddler Douglas Montgomery, Bichan has been playing since she was seven. While studying Visual Communications at Glasgow School of Art, she honed her musicianship amid that city’s world-famous session scene, performing with rising stars Rachel Sermanni and Fara, before winning a scholarship to Berklee College’s pioneering music programme in Boston.

A 2006 trip to Canada with her own family, during which Bichan met numerous transatlantic cousins, originally planted the seed for Out of My Own Light, while the rediscovery of Margaret’s diaries, after her death, gave the project its final shape. “Before she died, I had no idea about Granny’s trip – it just wasn’t talked about,” Bichan says. “The diary for the time she was away has been lost, so I decided I’d go where she’d gone, talk to the cousins she’d met who were still alive, and try to fill in the gaps, with the aim of writing music about the whole story.”

Much of that missing history was indeed retrieved, and the documentary/photographic elements in Out of My Own Light’s live version – which Bichan plans to tour in 2017 – merge potently with the music to conjure a fascinating portrait of the evidently remarkable Margaret, though the reasons for her ultimate choice of husband, after seven months away, remain intriguingly untold.

As in the live show, Bichan’s ultra-classy ensemble on the new recording – produced by Blazin’ Fiddles’ Angus Lyon - features Mike Vass (fiddle/guitar), Su-a Lee (cello), Duncan Lyall (double bass), Jennifer Austin (piano) and Signy Jacobsdottir (percussion). Its lovingly designed cover and liner notes – alongside a limited edition artist’s book, co-created with printer/photographer Lachlan Young – imbue Bichan’s heartfelt compositions with still deeper emotional resonance.

Out Of My Own Light

Swanbister / SWAN001CD


  © john crosby music publicity / PR 2017