Off the Track
The growing reputation of Foolproof is based on their choice of excellent songs, delivered by a combination of dynamic lead and harmony vocals with driving guitar and sparkling breaks on mandolin. The duo's performance draws heavily on their shared understanding and experience of roots music on both sides of the Atlantic. The resulting sound is a compelling mix of country and folk, with overtones of blues and gospel. "Powerful and expressive with a truthfulness that connects closely with their audience' - Profile 'Off The Track' is Foolproof's first album. It offers a set of rarely heard songs from the finest American and UK songwriters, alongside three Foolproof originals. The quality of the songs is central to Foolproof's offering. The album was recorded live at Rafting Dog Studio, Canterbury by Oysterband musician and arranger Alan Prosser, with final mastering by Testa Rossa, Manchester. The vocals are placed confidently to the fore in the mix, to connect closely with the listener and draw them into the humanity of the song. Arrangements are deliberately sparse, to allow space for each element to be clearly heard. Four tracks feature additional contributions from harmonica virtuoso Eddie Armer (frontman with The Lonnigans, who has recorded with Pete Seeger, Odetta and Ralph McTell amongst others). "...bright mandolin dancing playfully about on the water... beautifully sensitive vocals... Americana with a bit of frontier risk from two confident performers." - Folk In Kent "...this CD draws on the duo's considerable vocal, instrumental and songwriting talents." - British Mandolin and Guitar Federation The musical paths of Sue Hudson and Cliff Baylis have crossed frequently over the years and their shared enthusiasm for American music led to them forming the duo Foolproof, which has appeared in festivals, concerts, folk clubs and pubs across the South of England. Sue Hudson has been researching and performing acoustic music for over 20 years. Formerly with nationally-known folk duo Tundra, she has recorded albums and toured extensively in Europe, and in the USA. An outstanding singer and experienced musician, she has also contributed to several radio, theatre and community opera productions. During a tour of the USA in the 1980s Sue discovered the living music traditions which inspire Foolproof. In 1988, she formed Americana 6-piece band Small Town Romance, which achieved some success on the London circuit before disbanding in the mid-nineties. Along with Cliff, Sue now plays with Americana collective The Country Counts and continues to front her own hoedown bands. Cliff has a long-standing reputation as a skilled and inventive musician, having played mandolin and guitar for many years in his own duos and bands. He currently runs two hoedown / ceilidh bands and is much in demand as a live session player for folk, blues and country artistes. As well as teaching mandolin and guitar, Cliff has appeared as a mandolin demonstrator at major instrument festivals in the UK and Europe.