The Railway Inn, Boundary Road, Portslade BN41 1GA
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Railway Roots

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Get your diaries out!

As a result of our switching from Friday nights to Thursday nights, our performances are on the Thursday before the first Friday of every month. This means that most of the time it really is the first Thursday of the month, but sometimes it is the last Thursday of the preceding month. Sorry to be difficult!

  • Thursday 1st June: Maggie Holland, supported by John Forrester
  • Thursday 6th July: Dan Walsh, supported by Anouska Marshall
  • Thursday 3rd August: Closed for holidays
  • Thursday 7th September: Roy Bailey, supported by Marc Block
  • Thursday 5th October: Joe Solo


MAGGIE HOLLAND: Thursday 1st June 2017


Two of singer/songwriter Maggie Holland's songs - "A Proper Sort of Gardener" and "A Place Called England" - have assured her a place in the folk pantheon. There is so much more than just those two, though!

She made her first forays into folk music in the late '60s before finally turning pro as half of the folk-blues duo Hot Vultures, where she played bass and sang. Maggie started performing solo in 1980, accompanying herself on guitar and banjo. Later she formed the band Maggie's Farm before taking up bass duties with Robb Johnson. In the early 1990s she moved to Scotland, and we are fortunate to have the chance to hear her down on the south coast.

"A Place Called England" won a folk award as best original song, and her material has been recorded by a number of well-known artists, from Martin Carthy to June Tabor.

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John Forrester sings songs of travel, adventure, lust, discovery, friendship, love & weather. A fine performer with an easy relaxed delivery, a warm openhearted voice, an unshowy guitar style and an infectious personality. When not performing solo, he plays bass and double bass with Robb Johnson He’s been with him since 2005 and has appeared on many of Johnson’s albums.

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Maggie Holland

"The proof that outstanding contemporary songs are still being written" - Colin Irwin, fRoots

DAN WALSH: Thursday 6th July 2017


Dan Walsh was nominated for best musician at this year's BBC Folk Awards and touted as one of the finest banjo players in the UK as well as being a superb singer, songwriter and guitarist. As well as many tours of the UK, he also has recent successful trips to USA, Canada, Germany, India, Norway and New Zealand to his credit. Having made his name with duo Walsh and Pound, and now a member of the award winning Urban Folk Quartet, as well as guest appearances with Joss Stone, the Levellers and Seth Lakeman, this unique and eclectic musician has stunned audiences across the world.

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Dan Walsh

"The real deal, a demon picker" - Uncut

"Absolutely terrific" - Mark Radcliffe, BBC Radio 2

"Eclectically inspired and consistently brilliant" - Froots

ROY BAILEY: Thursday 7th September 2017


For over fifty years, Roy Bailey has been one of the UK Folk & Acoustic scene’s most loved and admired performers. From his early days performing skiffle in student union bars, to his love of traditional songs and the stories they tell, onto developing a unique repertoire of songs of dissent and hope, he has performed on stages, TV and radio all over the world. Now Roy is as compelling, entertaining, thought provoking and moving as ever before.


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Supported by MARC BLOCK


Nottingham-based Marc Block is gaining a reputation as a fine songwriter and interpreter of traditional songs, and often works with Roy Bailey. His albums "The Hawthorn Spring" and " Bright and Breezy" have both received critical acclaim.

"One of the most exciting singers I have heard in a long time" – Mike Harding

"Swiftly becoming one of the key figures for songs of social justice, diversity, emotional connection and superb vocal technique on the British folk music scene today" – Nancy Kerr


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Roy Bailey

"As powerful as anything I’d heard by The Clash – it was Roy’s voice, the strength of it and the compassion in it" - Billy Bragg

"Roy represents the very soul of folk’s working class ideals… a triumphal homage to the grass roots folk scene as a radical alternative to the mainstream music industry" - Mojo

"The greatest socialist folksinger of his generation" - Tony Benn


JOE SOLO: Thursday 5th October 2017


Joe Solo is an award-winning musician, writer, poet, activist, broadcaster and washing machine engineer from Scarborough. His musical odyssey began in 1987 fronting a bash-em-out band at school, and has seen him play seven countries either as lynchpin of pop-punk upstarts Lithium Joe or hammering out his unique brand of Folk, Punk and Blues in his own right.

In October 2016 he was awarded the "Outstanding Songwriting" prize at Yorkshire Gig Guide Grassroots Music Awards for his work on the album "Never Be Defeated" telling the stories of the men and women of Hatfield during the 1984-85 Miner’s Strike.

Live, Solo has a growing reputation as both a performer and raconteur, being both thought-provoking, comical and punch-the-air political often in the same breath. He is not an artist you forget in a hurry.

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Joe Solo

"….constantly sets a new bar for passion in performance." – The Morning Star

"The perfect protest singer." – R2 Magazine

"I heard this noise coming off the stage, I went WOW, whoever that is I've got to go and check him out and there was just this one man on the stage blowing up a storm with an acoustic guitar!" – Tom Robinson, BBC 6Music