Going strong in 2024 and still occasionally to be discovered rousing British audiences, youthful octogenarian Bonnie Dobson still knows how to woo a crowd. For many years now she’s been playing for enjoyment when summoned out of unofficial retirement and is still keen to remind people of the political parallels between the 1960s and the present day.
Although it’s her clarion call, “Morning Dew” is far from being the lone success of Bonnie’s long and varied musical career. Although it’s been covered to such an extent that it quickly became an enduring standard in many a legendary artist’s repertoire (Robert Plant / Grateful Dead / Lee Hazelwood / Procol Harum and dozens more!) it just happened to be the first of many original and traditional songs she still readily performs.
Ater being hunted down for a one-off appearance at Jarvis Cocker's 2007 Meltdown Festival in a show entitled 'Lost Ladies of Folk' that Bonnie felt the lure of the stage again. When she was then approached by Hornbeam Recordings she found herself surrounded by a fabulous bunch of world class musicians enthusiastic to reinvigorate her talents. Before she knew it she and Her Boys (Jonny Bridgwood, BJ Cole, Felix Holt, Dave Morgan, Ben Paley, Ben Phillipson, Sean Read & Ruth Tidmarsh) were rehearsing.
Fifty years later Morning Dew is still the single most popular song associated with her. But it should not be allowed totally to overshadow the vast repertoire of original songs, covers and collaborations which make up Bonnie's vast body of work. In so many ways 'Walk Me Out In The Morning Dew', the Hornbeam comeback album named to remind us of where she came from, is the perfect bridge from the old to the new. Traditional songs, past favourites brought up to date with thoughtful arrangement by an equally talented backing band and some more recently written, highly emotional songs have been compiled in such a way that if you didn't know better you'd assume she'd never gone away.
Check out her wonderful story and amazing history at https://bonniedobson.net
Acoustic solo spot from Richard Olson, frontman of highly-acclaimed psych folk-rockers The Hanging Stars.