You Never Were Much Of A Dancer by Gwenifer Raymond On Tompkins Square

Gwenifer Raymond – You Never Were Much Of A Dancer


  • £13.99

Hailing from Cardiff and now residing in Brighton, multi-instrumentalist Gwenifer Raymond began playing guitar at the age of eight. Her debut album, You Never Were Much Of A Dancer, has garnered her much critical acclaim. She plays American Primitive Guitar and bluegrass with a genuine authenticity and passion that is informed by her involvement in DIY punk music.

"When I was about eight years old a pretty formative thing happened to me ... my mum bought me a cassette tape of Nirvana’s Nevermind. Being so young I'd had no real interest in music prior to that, but I did have a ‘My First Sony’ cassette player that I used to listen to audiobooks. Anyway, I put the tape in, pressed play, and what I heard blew my little 8 year old mind. I don't know what it was about that wall of sound that so captured me, but I spent many hours hyperactively running around the house with headphones on, volume at full blast, and Nevermind on repeat. It was either for Christmas or my birthday that year, that I asked for a guitar.

"I spent all my teenage years playing either guitar or drums in various punk and rock outfits around the Welsh valleys, but around that time I was also getting seriously into older stuff, Dylan, The Velvet Underground and the like. Through those cheap compilation CDs you could get then, I found that a common influence amongst these guys was pre-war delta and country blues, as well as Appalachian music. Eventually I stumbled upon Mississippi John Hurt, Skip James and Roscoe Holcomb, and they became the holy trinity of musicians I so wanted to able to play like. Eventually, I tracked down a blues man in Cardiff who could teach me and it was in studying these guys that I was introduced to John Fahey and the whole American Primitive thing.

"I’ve always loved being in bands and the sonic chemistry it produces, but at the same time it’s always a bit of a compromise that those sounds in my head have to pass through and be translated by someone else’s. Sometimes it can be for the better, but sometimes not so much. American Primitive was the first time it had occurred to me that you didn’t really need anything more than one solo instrument to fully express yourself, especially when those feelings and moods refuse to be articulated in words, sometimes it's a mystery to yourself what it is you’re expressing. I still play in hard rock and punk bands and love to wail and hit my guitar with a complete lack of any subtlety or nuance, but in the end I think that all these things are really part of a circle, feeding back into itself. It’s all just a lineup of strange mutations." - Gwenifer Raymond


  1. Off To See The Hangman, Part I
  2. Sometimes There's Blood
  3. Idumea
  4. Off To See The Hangman, Part II
  5. Face Down Strut
  6. Laika's Song
  7. Oh, Command Me Lord!
  8. Sweep It Up
  9. Requiem For John Fahey
  10. Dance Of THe Everlasting Faint
  11. Bleeding Finger Blues
  12. Sack 'Em Up, Parts I and II
  13. It Was All Sackcloth And Ashes



Gwenifer Raymond’s 2018 debut album has garnered her critical acclaim in the press and led to months of touring European festivals. Her music is released through San Francisco's Tompkins Square label, which is also home to artists such as William Tyler, Ryley Walker and Michael Chapman, as well as reissuing of folk, old-timey, gospel and American Primitive Guitar.


also available:
Gwenifer Raymond - Deep Sea Diver b/w Bleeding Finger Blues   7"
Gwenifer Raymond - Strange Lights Over Garth Mountain   LP | CD

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