Still here

It's been a while, hasn't it? Life getting in the way of music...when they should really be the same thing. Anyway, if anyone's still listening - yes, we are still here; although 'here' is a different place now, since two of us have moved northwards. When the dust settles on my new Sheffield home, I will set to work on FINALLY getting our poor album out; it has been languishing almost-finished for so long that it has sunk into a deep despair and doesn't believe it will ever be released. But it will, honest - and then we'll just need to co-ordinate a launch gig - and associated rehearsals - with all four band members living in four different places. Well, no-one ever said it would be easy! (But we've come this far...) Love, Polly.

Marathon encore...

Last year, our Andy ran his first ever marathon and raised almost £3,000 for Shelter. Well, he's only gone and got himself a London Marathon place again this year! He has chosen three different charities to raise money for this time around: Legal Centre Lesbos, which provides legal support and advice to the thousands of refugees currently interned in camps on Lesbos; Phone Credits for Refugees, who use public donations to buy pay as you go credits for refugees all over Europe so that they can keep in touch with their families and support agencies and stay safe; and ColaLife, a small charity with huge impact, which has pioneered an innovative and highly effective means of cutting infant mortality from diarrhoea in Zambia by getting vital basic medicines to even the remotest communities. Please consider sponsoring Andy and helping these very worthwhile causes! Details below:

The sponsorship page for the two refugee charities is here:

And the sponsorship page for ColaLife is here:

Still more Shirley Collins!

The Shirley Inspired Shirley Collins tribute album goes from strength to strength! It's now available on triple CD as well as the (more expensive but beautifully put together) vinyl triple album: buy your copy direct from Earth Recordings. Some of the reviews have mentioned our track, 'Proud Maisrie':

"Slate Islands blend voice and birdsong on 'Proud Maisrie' to warmly unusual effect." The Vinyl District

"Other high points come with...the weird, whispery, twittery bird and nature sounds created vocally by Hebridean singer Polly MacLean on London-based Slate Islands' Proud Maisrie." Folk Radio UK

"['Shepherds Arise'...Crying Lion grace the song with traditional vocal harmonies]. Beautifully erudite London-based Slate Islands' reading of 'Proud Maisrie' is in a similar vein, the classic full-voiced treatment sounding something like Sandy Denny or Norma Waterson." Tasty

"Kudos also to Polly MacLean and her Slate Islands cohorts for another marvellous a cappella track, 'Proud Maisrie'. Very eerie (with nasty cawing crows in the background, no doubt an excited Islander)." Soundblab

"The fact is what makes British folk music so appealing is the link the music has with the landscape of the country and the sea that bounds it. Take for example Slate Islands 'Proud Maisrie': it's a haunting rendition of the song that uses voice to bring to life the myriad bird calls and drone sounds one hears in the background." Blurt


Sponsor our Andy to run the London Marathon!

Setting aside his guitar, Andy has been training hard for some time now and will be running the 2017 London Marathon to raise money for Shelter, the homelessness charity. This is a very worthwhile cause, so please consider adding a donation - of whatever size you can manage - via Andy's fundraising page. We will also be playing a benefit gig to add to the fundraising effort - see the gigs page for more details.

The Ballad of Shirley Collins, part 2

Polly's solo track, recorded for a Shirley Collins tribute album (see previous article below for details) can now be heard here. Give it a listen and a 'like'! Incidentally, even though the kickstarter campaign has reached its target, the film-makers are still fund-raising towards their goal of making a documentary feature about the great Shirley Collins, so check out the project's website:, where you can still buy the album...