Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Croydon Connection

There are beautiful drawings of fairies that are very popular.   Once you see them, you can begin to recognize the same hand must have drawn them.  They were done by an artist named Cicely Mary Barker and she is from the same town where my husband was born, which is Croydon, England.

 There is another artist who is very popular in Europe but is almost unknown in the U.S.A. and he also is from Croydon.  (He was born in Kent, but spent most of his childhood in Croydon.)  He is a musical artist and his name is Ralph McTell.   I will try to have a song by him from YouTube here called "From Clare To Here".  It is a beautiful song which he wrote, but you sometimes can see it listed as "Irish Traditional", when he fact it was written by Ralph McTell.  One of his biggest hits has been "Streets of London" and our family very much enjoys a children's album which he did in the 80's called "Alphabet Zoo".   He is an excellent guitarist and songwriter and it is surprising that more people are not familar with him.  Strangely enough, he and his brother actually posed as children for Miss Barker for one of her fairy pictures. Ralph McTell has written two books.  "Angel Laughter" and "Summer Lightning".  The first one is about his childhood and the second one about his adult life and musical career.  I highly recommend both of these books, as I also recommend his music. 

Just listen for yourself... and also remember, the beautiful artwork of Cicely Mary Barker and please note how wonderfully she captured the images of all the flowers that she painted.  They are perfect.


  1. Beautiful artwork! Faeries (fairies) are hard to resist IMHO. :-) Thanks for sharing, dear! I need earphones so I can listen to the music. Don't want to disturb hubby right now. ;-)


  2. While I have never heard the name of the singer/songwriter before, I am quite familiar with Barker's artwork. When I was a kid, I (like probably most little girls) loved fairy stories and pictures, and once for my birthday I had a stationary set, writing paper, cards etc. with pictures of Barker's fairies on them. I only used it to write to my most precious friends!

  3. Librarian,
    Aren't the fairies beautiful? When I was in England, I bought a set of fairy cards and I only use them for special birthdays! I hope you like Ralph's music. It's a shame that such a great songwriter and musician is so unknown here...

  4. Hey Shirley!
    Go wake him up and tell him you have some good music for him to listen to! I like his taste in food so we probably have the same taste in music too! Thanks for commenting!

  5. Bringing back memories to me tonight of beautiful songs years ago. Great post Kay.
    Thanks for your kind comments on SIBOL Too!
    Hugs Suex

  6. Sue,
    THANK YOU for taking the time to comment when your fingers must be tired from all your lovely blanket work! I truly LOVE that last cupcake blanket, the colors, the way that the squares are just so perfectly arranged!!
    Hugs to you!