Dick emigrated to California from his native Sittingbourne, Kent, in the south of England, with his parents and two brothers. It didn't take long before he fell in love with American country music. He spent hours trying to perfect an American accent with some limited success. He performed old timey music with "Mother Lode And Her Four Diamond Studs" for a few years, but even in those days, he interspersed an occasional British ballad.
As news of the British folk music revival slipped through to expatriated Dick, he started to sing more and more of the songs from his roots. As a solo performer, he developed a reputation as a shanty singer at sea festivals up and down the West coast of the US. and Canada. Dick and Allan met at the 1976 Santa Rosa Folk Festival where they were both doing solo gigs. From that point on, they have developed a lasting friendship and lasting musical partnership.
Dick continues to work on his collection of British broadside ballads and enjoys performing California Sea Songs with his wife, Carol.Allan MacLeod
Allan came to the United states from Armadale, West Lothian, Scotland. He brought with him some wonderful experiences from the early days of the British folk song revival including singing under the critical eye of Ewan MacColl and Bert Loyd in London. He was also closely associated with Scotland's singing Fisher family. He performed with Arnold Wesker's "Center 42" Traveling Festival of the Arts and founded the Nottingham Folk Song Workshop.
In California, he founded the popular Singers' Circle in Berkeley and performed in several music groups including "Black Waterside," and "The Wild Geese." He also performs solo, appearing at the Berkeley, Newport and the Mariposa folk Festivals. Alan performs his Scottish songs alone, with Scottish fiddler Peter Kasin, or with Dick Holdstock. He also performs at folk clubs in Britain where he goes every year to see his mum, gather more current Scottish jokes and polish up his brogue.
As a true Scot Allan plays golf with a low handicap, Tells incredible stories of his fishing exploits, and is a great judge of single malt whisky.Carol Holdstock
Carol Holdstock is well known today as an exciting performer of traditional music. Her extensive repertoire of songs about women and the sea, as well as her songs of social significance, are always bound to please her audiences. Whether accompanying herself with her autoharp, singing acapella, or singing with others, Carol delights her audiences with images of bygone times and words of hope for a more compassionate future.
A native of San Francisco, Carol began singing as a child in children's theater. She went on to perform in New York as an actress. With Alan Arkin and Brooks Jones, she recorded an album called "Jeremy's Friends" on Warwrick Records. More recently, Carol has appeared in festivals and concerts in California, Oregon, Washington, Connecticut, Maine, Canada, England, and Germany. With her husband, Dick Holdstock, Carol recorded "Shanties and Sea Songs from Way Out West."Tom Murphey
A fine singer and multi-instrumentalist, Tom originally hales from Augusta, Georgia. He has performed from coast-to-coast with a wide range of folk groups, including the Kingston Trio. He is a favorite shanty singer at the San Francisco Maritime Museum. and performs in a variety of venues throughout the Bay Area. Most recently he has teamed with Dick and Carol Holdstock to produce a lively CD of traditional California sea songs. When not playing his music, Tom is employed as a computer programmer extraordinaire, developing software and unusual web sites.