Memorial concert for folk legend Keith Marsden

Keith Marsden
Keith Marsden

TICKETS go on sale this week for a concert in memory of a Morley folk singer whose songs are sung around the world.

The Keith Marsden Memorial Concert has been organised by Morley Folk Club to mark the 20th anniversary of his death.

Held at Morley Working Men’s Club on September 10, it will also raise money for the British Heart Foundation.

Keith Marsden was born in Morley in 1939 and when folk music became his overriding love, Morley provided the inspiration.

From Victorian pit disasters and the mills to the simple pleasures of picking sooty blackberries along Nepshaw Lane or tackling a serious pub crawl, his songs and those of his band Cockersdale, encompass it all.

Keith Brown, the founder of Morley Folk Club, said: “A lot of his songs were about Morley and the characters around the area.

“He was a very prolific writer and there are a lot of people, especially in West Yorkshire who are very keen on his stuff but his songs are sung the length and breadth of the country as well as in America and Australia.

“I found that as I put this concert together there is still a tremendous sense of loss among the artists, he was very well thought of.”

Mr Brown met Keith Marsden in Grimsby, first at the Midland Bank where the latter worked and then at the folk club.

Later they met again at the old Morley Folk Club at The Angel pub and shared a mutual respect.

So when the 20th anniversary of his death by a massive heart attack came up, Mr Brown decided to put together a charity concert and was pleased by the response from a wide range of different singers and musicians.

The line up now includes Carol Southwell, Carol Timlin, Alma Wright, John Conolly, Jim Saville, Graham Pirt, David Kidman and Jeff Wright and Keith Brown himself.

They will be performing songs either written by Keith Marsden or written as tributes to him.

Mr Brown said; “There are no really big names on the line up but he was a local lad and he wouldn’t have wanted that, he would have wanted his friend to be there, people who believed in his stuff, so that is what we are doing.

“It will be nice to get a lot of people in because this concert won’t be repeated, it’s a one off. But the room only seats 100 so people do need to get tickets.”

Tickets cost £6 and can be bought from the British Heart Foundation shop or Althams Travel, both on Queen Street, Morley.