Review ENGLAND GREEN & ENGLAND GREY by Tamsin Rosewell Radio Warwickshire

The first review of England Green & England Grey and it’s a beauty:

“This collection of songs is beautiful; fascinatingly lovely and utterly captivating.

….music that explodes into a thousand pretty flowers to seduce you, and then pricks you all over with tiny thorns to remind you that where there is beauty there is also pain.

This album is an important one; for his careful political expression alone, we should hold this artist in high esteem. 

…. this is social philosophy as it should be: politics expressed with love and emotion

……the lyrics are so well chosen that, even when you’ve listened a dozen times and begin to think that you know this song now, they continue to unfurl themselves, petal by petal, to reveal nuances of narrative and depths of colour that keep on surprising you. The storytelling is superb……

It has a pastoral quality too; ( but for me it) [that] evokes the jewel-coloured, shadowy and torn landscapes of William Blake and Samuel Palmer, full of religious dread and political turbulence.”

FULL REVIEW by Tamsin Rosewell:


Reg Meuross gig at Sidmouth Parish Church was magical

Sidmouth Herald review by Paul Strange

This impromptu gig – arranged by singer-songwriter Reg Meuross and Sidmouth parish church – had a marvellous spirit to it, and offered a few surprises.

Not an official Sidmouth FolkWeek performance, the fringe event was a fundraiser for St Giles and St Nicholas.

Held in the splendid medieval church (rebuilt in Victorian times), the musicians gathered on a makeshift stage across the transept. The gig’s unique, intimate setting and the building’s natural ambience added greatly to the performance, quickly enthralling the packed house.

Church warden Gerry Shattock introduced the show, explaining that the “stellar line-up” had been pulled together at short notice by Reg, a respected stalwart of the acoustic scene since the late 1980s. There was also a loose theme to the show. My Jerusalem was a programme of original songs about England and the English people.

Occasionally solo, often accompanied by Beth Porter on cello, Reg took us through a number of his favourite self-penned compositions, old and new. His songs are carefully constructed, often short stories set to music, and his lengthy introductions helped to explain the pieces

Highpoints included the delicate and brooding opener A One-Way Ticket To Louise, the memorable My Name Is London Town and the delicate The Band Played Sweet Marie, inspired by the violin played by Wallace Hartley, the band leader of the Titanic, as the great liner sank.

Then came the first of the surprises. Multi-instrumentalist Phil Beer – one half of roots duo Show Of Hands – gave us a short and rewarding set. One of his more unusual choices was Graham Gouldman’s Bus Stop. The Hollies had a big hit with it in 1966, but shorn of its light pop arrangement, the song took on a plaintive direction, driven on by Phil’s insistent strumming.

The second big surprise came with the arrival of folk singer and fiddle player Jackie Oates. She also performed a short set – including an intricate Flower Of Northumberland – and was clearly enjoying the occasion, becoming more confident as the show progressed.

When all four musicians joined forces – including a splendid rendition of The Drovers Road – the sound was magical, but for me, the most memorable moment was in the second half. Jackie’s a capella version of The Nightingale was achingly beautiful, her pure, soaring voice perfectly suited to the occasion. Stunning stuff indeed.


Noel Cowley Reviews the My Name Is London Town Gig at St James’ Piccadilly 28 Sept 2013

Reg Meuross – My Name Is London Town

Saturday 28th September 2013

No finer setting could there have been. Reg Meuross launched his new single My Name Is London Town in St James’ Church, Piccadilly this evening. Tucked away inconspicuously only yards from the neon and bustle of London’s famous thoroughfare, this 17th century Christopher Wren church was the venue for a flawless, seamless concert by a master of storytelling in song. As did the craftsmen of old carve ornate designs into the oak pews from which his audience listened, so did tonight’s performer weave beautiful and varied melodies through each of his songs.

In his rich tenor voice Meuross sang songs from his 20 year solo career accompanied initially by just his stylish acoustic finger picking.
Later Emma Hooper and Bethany Porter added gorgeous colour, shade and rhythm on viola and cello respectively for the second half of of the concert. Jess Vincent, who earlier had played a fine support set of songs from her new album Seesaw Dreams, made the trio a quartet for the encore, augmenting the layers of music further with her vocals and baritone ukelele.
My Name Is London Town continues a tradition in English folk that every couple of decades comes up with a song capturing the ever changing nature of this city at a given moment in time. So to Ralph McTell’s 1960s Streets Of London and Richard Thompson’s Sights And Sounds Of London Town from the 90s we can now add this definitive portrait of life in London in the 21st century.
Like each song of London before it, this one provides an update on themes that remain constant through the generations. Multiculturalism is as much the heartbeat of London now as it’s always been: “I’m the Union Flag, I’m the red, green and gold… I’m the dome of St Paul’s and the Regent’s Park mosque.” Now, as ever, the financially rich and poor are thrown together daily: “I’m the sharp suited broker who steals like a fox, to the stock exchange floor to sell coffee and corn… I’m the bundle of rags in the Oxford Street doorway”. New as it is this song already has the feel of a classic to it and sits very comfortably alongside its great predecessors.
Reg Meuross is known for writing songs that trace the social history of England, both modern and olde. Dick Turpin, one of history’s favourite outlaws, had his reputation as a dashing hero shredded tonight in the revisionist tale Lizzie Loved A Highwayman, in which the infamous Essex man was revealed to be a brute and a murderer. The story was told through the eyes of the woman who loved him, who he let down and left behind, and in this song we heard the essence of why Meuross is so admired as a songwriter. What stays with you  is not so much what happens in the stories as how his characters are affected.
My own highlight tonight was the new, as yet unrecorded, Sweet Marie. This incredibly tender and poignant song based on the story behind a violin recovered from the wreckage of the Titanic is rooted in historical fact but again this is merely a means by which Meuross puts the listener in touch with the universal emotions of love, grief, joy and sorrow.
My Name Is London Town is taken from the album Leaves and Feathers



Maverick Magazine – Leaves & Feathers Review by Alan Cackett Sept/Oct 2013

An exquisite album that features the words and voice of Reg Meuross, a skilled guitarist and fine singer-songwriter

Vastly underrated as a singer, songwriter and guitarist because he is too ‘nice and pleasant’ in his vocal delivery, Reg Meuross is without doubt one of the UK’s finest ‘unknown and under-appreciated’ singer-songwriters. Those who get him are growing in number, but after more than 20 years of traversing these Isles, playing low- key gigs, he has more than paid his dues and fully deserves wider public recognition. This is his eighth album and was recorded at the famed Abbey Studios in London. Despite the use of such a prestige location, nothing is over-done here. There’s no pompous attempt to play up to the surroundings, instead gentle acoustic guitars, dulcimer, banjo, harmonica and cello flourishes lend just the right layers to the superbly-written songs.

The songs could best be termed short stories set to music. But unlike most story-telling songwriters, Reg clothes his stories in memorable melodies, coming up with tunes that infiltrate the mind as the lyrics affect the heart. It’s a compelling combination that only a very few singer- songwriters achieve time after time. As this album plays through it becomes more and more difficult to pick one song out at the expense of any of the others. I will say that If You Wanna Be Mine has a powerful and poignant poetic tone that illuminates more about the nature of love and relationships in a few minutes than several books on the subject ever could. The sad tale of Weary Jane is concealed by the melodic arrangement that makes the story even more poignant. My Name Is London Town is a clever and very intelligently written song, yet still has much heart and soul within those lyrics that will embrace you with pride tinged with sadness and regret for what we have lost in the march of progress.

A genuine triple threat as singer, songwriter and guitarist, Reg Meuross has produced a minor masterpiece. The combination of the introspective lyrics and rich musical textures should please those looking for something that is mellow without being insignificant or dull. Above all else, this is an intimate album that should be widely embraced by all and sundry.

Alan Cackett

1 Comment

Leaves & Feathers Review by Mike Davies NetRhythms Feb 2013

Responding to demands from his fans, the Somerset singer-songwriter decided to have his new album reflect the intimacy of his live shows where he either performs solo or accompanied by Bethany Porter on cello. And, although he also enlisted Lili Meuross and Jess Vincent to provide backing vocals, that was the stripped back format he adopted for these recordings, with Reg playing guitar, dulcimer, banjo and harmonica.

As such, in tandem with those ash and honey vocals, the album glows with a soothing homespun warmth, wrapping the listener in its cloak of stories. Variously steeped in reverie or melancholy, they are, to one extent or another, love songs. Some, like the wistful thoughts of home road song Ticket To Louise, the distances apart All I Really Want Is You and the broken relationship I Need You are straightforward, others less so.

Loss and longing weighs heavy on many. Emily’s Pages (where he sounds a lot like Don McLean) imagines the poet Emily Dickinson’s unhappy in unrequited love, though the identity of the ‘Master’ (Benjamin Newton, Leonard Humphrey or one of the other older men she referred to as such) remains respectfully unknown.

The minstrel styled Weary Jane with its beautiful backing vocals, seems to be sung in the spirit of a sailor looking on at the woman from he’s now divided by death while Come Back To Me is a portrait of a widow sadly reflecting on the day her husband died in a car accident.

One Cold April Morning may even be the same person, some years on, missing her children and a family split by death and divorce, her new weekend lover unwilling to make the commitment she desperately needs.

Accompanied by rippling guitar arpeggios, I Saw A Woman is a strange lyric, the singer observing the subject lying in a field, laughing and crying, only to see another man watching too, later encountering her in a bank and noting the dirt under her fingernails.

Putting a different spin on romance, the resigned and achingly sad If You Wanna Be Mine might be described as a masochist’s love song as, the accustomed to hurt narrator sings ‘if you want to take my heart you’ve got to take your time, you’ve got to break my heart if you wanna be mine’.

The remaining three numbers are love songs of a different nature, to place rather than person and veined with political comment. Addressing both the bank scandals behind the economic collapse and unjust and unnecessary wars, My Jerusalem’s a lament for the ‘broken promised land’ of Albion, its fields stripped and hapless soldiers sacrificed by those in ‘pretty suits of blue’ and, sung in the first person.

Having evoked William Blake, his spirit also informs My Name Is London Town, a haunting bittersweet love letter that embraces both ‘the bundle of rags in the Oxford Street doorway’ and ‘the cry of the Smithfield fishmonger at dawn’, the dome of St Paul’s and the Regent’s Park mosque. But if London is ‘your vision going up…your nightmare coming down… the Westminster fool…the Pentonville clown’.

Meuross also applies the metaphor to I Am The House, a hymn of solace and comfort for lives wounded, lonely and lost that may imply religious imagery (are those angel wings he’s wearing on the sleeve, illuminated against the cosmos?) as he sings ‘I am the light that doesn’t end with the sun’ or interpret the bosom of home and hearth as the weary traveller’s rest, the ‘safe harbour’ from our fears. Either way, it fills your soul with peace, the sort of song you might want to hear on your deathbed.

I confess that, while musically love at first listen, it took longer than usual to get into the songs themselves; after several plays they are now as much a part of me as breathing.

Mike Davies February 2013




Review of Leaves & Feathers from Pennyblack Music. April 2013

Reg Meuross: Leaves and Feathers For Pennyblack Magazine April 2013

Reviewed By: Malcolm Carter
Label: Hatsongs Records
Format: CD

Over the course of his seven solo albums (eight if you include 1991’s Flamingos backed ‘Arrested’) Somerset-based Reg Meuross has built up a strong and loyal following. Most of our favourite singer/songwriters come up with a real stinker of an album every so often – Dylan, Young, Leven even, have all released under-par albums along the way. One of this country’s best has even taken to singing in an American accent on his latest album, abandoning the very thing that attracted us to his music in the first place. This alone sets Meuross apart from his contemporaries. Over the course of his long musical career Meuross has never delivered an uninspired song let alone a whole album that isn’t up to the standard we have come to expect from him.

The second thing that sets Meuross apart is that people who would usually run as fast as they can to avoid yet another acoustic–playing sensitive singer/songwriter can be heard to yell “play that again” when Meuross’s latest collection of songs, ‘Leaves and Feathers’, reaches its end. Little has changed in Meuross’s world, it seems, over the course of his eight albums. Those gentle, warm vocals still sound the same, his way with beguiling melodies is still evident on each and every of the twelve new songs here and Meuross is still cramming his little stories into appealing three minute songs. Calling Meuross a singer-songwriter really doesn’t do the man justice. Meuross doesn’t write lines of lyrics. He writes short stories then sets them to some of the most captivating melodies you’ll ever hear.

That may sound like Meuross hasn’t progressed at all over the years; he’s not really doing anything radically different from say 1996’s ‘The Goodbye Hat’, but why ruin a good thing? With a voice that is easy to like, he is far from the acquired taste needed for the Dylans and Youngs of this world, and writes lyrics that place the listener firmly in the setting of his songs. It is hard not to be captivated as his stories unfold, especially as many of them are based on real events. On ‘Leaves and Feathers’ Meuross really strips his sound back though, more so than he has on previous albums, which lends an intimate atmosphere to the whole album.

For those unable to catch Meuross live, it is the next best thing. The album was sympathetically produced by Meuross and Roy Dodds at Abbey Road Studios and the effect is stunning, while Meuross always had the ability to draw you into his songs this latest set will have you standing in the fields and places he sings about. He is that close. Accompanied only by Beth Porter on cello and with Lily Meuross and Jess Vincent providing back-up vocals, this is Meuross telling his stories just for you.

For all the mellowness in his vocals Meuross, at times, creates some of the most chilling stories you’ll ever hear set to music. This is something Meuross has done on all his albums and continues to do so on ‘Leaves and Feathers’.

‘Jenny’s War’ from 2011’s ‘The Dreamed and the Drowned’ still chills after numerous plays, being the harrowing tale of a Falkland Island couple touching all who hear it. ‘Until I Hold You Once Again’ from 2008’s ‘Dragonfly’ finds a mother watching her daughter getting ready to earn her living one evening on the streets and hotels of a city; another of Meuross’s true stories, the girl was eventually found murdered.

On ‘Leaves and Feathers’, the most chilling moment comes during the song ‘I Saw a Woman’. Describing seeing a woman lying in a field “moving in a most unusual way”, it captures the attention especially when framed in one of Meuross’s prettiest melodies. While watching hidden by trees, Meuross then notices “halfway from her to me, another man was watching too” before Porter’s cello chills you to the bone. As with all good songs the way you interpret it is probably different to the way the composer initially intended, but as the story unfolds lines like “everybody needs to be alone/ everybody needs to touch the ground” maybe offers some clue.

‘My Jerusalem’ is a track that’s going to attract a lot of attention. “They come in pretty suits of blue/Their sweet smiles hide their poison tongues/ They talk of dreams and pastures new/But power’s dark breath corrupts their lungs” and “with broken promises they went, to the broken promised land” are just a few of the cutting and thought-provoking lines scattered throughout this obvious nod to Blake’s “green and pleasant land”. No wonder that Mike Harding has already aired the song describing it as “stunning”.

Although it is Meuross’s way with words that make his songs stand out and the melodies that he writes make sure that the songs stay fresh even after dozens of plays, little is ever written about his obvious talents on the guitar, or any instrument he picks up to play it appears. Meuross proves again on this collection that he is a remarkable guitarist.

There are a number of love songs on ‘Leaves and Feathers’ that are among the best Meuross has ever recorded. The opening song, ‘One Way Ticket to Louise’, will find you sitting on the same bus as Meuross as he travels to his lover. His description of what he sees, of those around him as he gets ever nearer to his destination is fascinating to say the least. Seldom has a bus journey sounded so interesting. ‘All I Really Want’ and ‘If You Wanna Be Mine’ follow in the same vein, while ‘I Need You’ is a touching tale of a love lost with stunning, haunting backing vocals from either Lily Meuross or Jess Vincent that will have grown men weeping.

‘My Name Is London Town’ successfully drags ‘Streets of London’ into 2013. Again the imagery Meuross paints as the song takes you through those streets is striking. Despite lines such as “I’m the bomb in Victoria, the fire at Kings Cross” and “I’m the nine o’clock dole queue and the ten o’clock train”, it made this listener feel more home sick that he has done in many years.

‘Leaves and Feathers’ is arguably the best album Meuross has produced so far. The stripped-back sound brings Meuross’s tales to life perfectly. It shows that songs as strong and powerful as those Meuross writes need few embellishments but most of all it confirms what we knew all along; that Meuross is one of the most talented storytellers of our generation.


1 Comment

Leaves & Feathers Review: Folk N Roots March 2013

Some half-a-dozen albums in, Somerset-based singer-songwriter Reg is still something of a best-kept secret, for all that his talents have been heartily endorsed by Mike Harding. His relatively low profile is all the more surprising when you consider the accessibility of his musical invention, the incisive and engaging nature of his lyrics, and the melodious and pleasing qualities of his singing. His latest album of new songs is another glorious collection, whose special selling-point for his fans is that it responds to their demands for a disc that reflects the intimacy of his live gigs, which either take the form of solo shows or are performed with Beth Porter accompanying him on cello. Notwithstanding that central premise, it’s a set whose very special qualities of warmth and intimacy complement the top-drawer songwriting in such a way that it should prove irresistible to a wider audience. The stripped-down ambience bestows an immediacy that suits the reflective, yearning qualities of the writing, ideally conjured by the gentle colours of guitar and cello and further lovingly, sensitively embellished very occasionally by backing vocals from Jess Vincent, Lily Meuross and Bethany Porter. The majority of the dozen songs concern themselves directly and simply with matters of loss and longing, expressed straightforwardly and clear-sightedly manner. Reg may seem to be stating the obvious in love songs such as All I Really Want and I Need You, but his is a special skill indeed in overcoming any hint of tired cliché with his timeless observations and making such an impression on the listener from first hearing. In these respects, Reg’s wistful meditations can be compared with the best of Ralph McTell, with shades of Allan Taylor, Gerry Rafferty and Don McLean too perhaps if I’m forced to make direct comparisons. The gentle lyricism of Emily’s Pages, which both concerns and invokes the spirit of poet Emily Dickinson, quite strongly (though never derivatively) recalls McTell in particular, whereas the supremely evocative, bittersweet homage My Name Is London Town will I’m sure in time come to rival McTell’s celebrated Streets Of London. Another song recalling McTell in terms of metre and contour is One Cold April Morning, which tellingly voices a lady’s reflection of irredeemable sadness at the love and affection she lacks and so much needs, while If You Wanna Be Mine expresses, almost unbearably tenderly and plaintively, one of true love’s biggest contradictions. On Come Back To me, the loss of a loved one is conveyed through the importance of small objects associated with that person, while the sweet lilt of Weary Jane has the feel of a traditional ballad sung by a courtly minstrel. The somewhat enigmatic I Saw A Woman may recall the writing of Paul Metsers, and contrasts with the more political commentary of My Jerusalem, which mirrors the outstanding My Name Is London Town in its portrayal of the omnipresent dichotomy of innocence and experience. Summing up, Reg has the gift for creating well-crafted songs with seriously beautiful melodies, songs that are uniquely memorable and seem uncannily familiar, and Leaves And Feathers is further proof of the timelessness of his invention; I really can’t term it anything but songwriting genius.

David Kidman

New Songs from the Shed session posted today.

Follow this link to see 3 songs Reg has performed for the excellent Songs from the Shed series of live sessions.

Video of Reg singing Fool’s Gold at The Ram Club 29/07/11​=fwPLLUJ8BM0

New Video on Youtube of Worry No More with The Stringbean Quartet

Filmed in Crewkerne Church, July 11

Brand new review of Reg’s CD The Dreamed and the drowned on Folk Radio site

Brand new review on the Folk Radio site of Reg’s new CD The Dreamed and the Drowned.
“one of the best singer/songwriters of our time…. The man is an exceptional teller of tales, a true voice of the people!”

Valentine (from the album Dragonfly) by Reg Meuross

I wrote ‘Valentine’ after reading about the killing of friendly fire of Lance-Corporal Matty Hull in Iraq by American pilots in March 2003. I became aware of the story on February 14th, 2007 when I saw online that The Sun were boasting of a link to a graphic video of the incident. I thought it was a disgusting invasion of the privacy of Matty’s family to use such a tragic event in this way. And the circumstances seemed particularly poignant on Valentine’s day when a young widow might feel the loss of her loved one even more acutely.

The album Dragonfly has been re-issued (2019) and is now available HERE.


Some articles & interviews by Reg for Acoustic Magazine

Texas House Concerts 2008

From Crewkerne to California. Feb 08

Interview with the Blonde on Blonde photographer Jerry Schatzbertg, March 09

Interview with the guitarist Sam Carter October 09

The influence of Bob Dylan, March 09

Folk Radio excellent new review of All this Longing

Online Folk-Radio have just posted up a new 5 star review of All this Longing. It’s a fantastic Roots & Acoustic station and well worth checking out. Read the review here:

New CD Review in Maverick Magazine Jan 2011

Reg Meuross


Hatsongs Records HAT002

**** (and 1/2)

take a listen to singer-songwriter Reg Meuross and his latest folkcountry CD

In many respects a throwback to the 1970s singer-songwriter movement, Reg Meuross expertly weaves his talents throughout this, his sixth album with polished style and grace. His style can best be described as Clifford T Ward meets Allan Taylor. His musicianship is superior and his lyrics are very true to life. He explores the human psyche through compelling yarns, many informed by real events and people. A master storyteller, he marries richly vivid lyrics with memorable melodies as on the marvellous Looking For Johnnie Ray, a sad-tinged ballad about a lonely woman and a chance late-night meeting with a man with a sympathetic ear. Much darker is The Bitter Wind, the grim story of the 19th century Peter Tavy double murder on Dartmoor—this is a lengthy tale, but with an insistent rhythm and his clear soulful vocal your attention never wavers until the dying moments of this classic folk yarn. A song that should be passed down through the ages. Basically an acoustic, guitar-driven set, Reg takes his well-crafted songs and turns them into warm and inviting pieces with his cast of talented  musicians. He plays acoustic, tenor and high strung guitars, harmonica, Appalachian dulcimer and keyboards, all pinned down by the solid rhythm section of Simon Edwards (bass) and Roy Dodds (drums, percussion) with additional colouring courtesy of Jackie Oates (viola and string  arrangements), Paul Sartin (oboe, violin), Bethany Porter (cello) and Andy Cutting (accordion). Throughout his voice is sincere while his narratives have heartfelt values. A collection of stunning songs that has appeal to both the discerning country music listener, folk fans and the more rootsy Americana lovers. AC

New Videos of Album Launch on Youtube 5/12/10

Barry has posted some videos from the album launch in Bridport with the full band and The Holywell Rooms with me & Beth.


Sail away no more. Reg & Beth, The Holywell Rooms, Oxford.

The Man in Edward Hopper’s Bar:

Reg with Jackie Oates, The Dreamed and the Drowned Bridport:

Reg Solo – Fool’s Gold

Review for new album in this month’s Acoustic Magazine

And Jesus wept

Lizzie loved a highwayman


You left me crying

Click to play / stop.

Worry no more

Click to play / stop.

She fell down the stairs

Click to play / stop.

Pretty blue eyes

Click to play / stop.

Good with his hands

Reg Meuross Singer Songwriter Storyteller