Ale and folk music have always gone down well together but Bellowhead – Britain’s biggest traditional folk band both in terms of sales and due to the fact that they have 11 members – have upped the ante by teaming up with Harvey’s to brew a brand new golden ale, named ‘Revival’ after the title of their latest album. Currently touring the country on their 10th Anniversary tour, the band will also be playing after-show sessions at local pubs that have Revival on tap. This will be the first Harvey’s beer to be distributed nationally; in its 224-year history, the brewery has traditionally restricted its distribution to pubs within an 80-mile radius of the brewery.
followed suit – including Elbow (‘Charge’ with Marston’s at Burton-on Trent), Madness (‘Gladness’ with the Growler Brewery) and Iron Maiden (‘Trooper’ with Robinsons) – but Bellowhead and Harveys are doing things on a much bigger scale. The LME were present at Revival’s launch event in Harvey’s yard together with a good crowd of well-wishers and ale drinkers who consumed the new beer with enthusiasm. Music was provided by the band’s two founder members John Boden and John Spiers on fiddle and accordion. To everyone’s delight they were joined by John, Jill & Jon of the Copper family for several numbers. Brendan Kelly, the band’s Brighton-based sax player did sterling work at the pumps of Harvey’s mobile hop bar. At the event’s end, the three Bellowheads along with their trumpet player Andy Mellon, jumped aboard Harvey’s marvellous horse-drawn dray for a musical journey round town delivering the new ale. Perfect.