The original genesis of the Roaring Trowmen was a result of two men, Jim and Bryn (who had never met) responding to a post on a forum about shanties. They decided that it would be a great idea to meet up in a pub and shout a few of the sings they had been discussing. There followed a few fun evenings getting extremely funny looks and unexpected laughs singing shanties in the Lansdown Pub in Clifton, Bristol.
In the following months they kept these evenings going, inviting friends along and occasionally dragging strangers into their world of music. And so there formed the Bristol Shanty Collective, a collection of like minded people with one goal in mind; to have a good time singing.
But there was a small core of us who wanted to take things a little further. We wanted to actually start performing, writing our own songs and taking the rich history of this music seriously. So six of us separated and formed The Roaring Trowmen. The name comes from the trowmen who used to pilot the flat bottomed barges that carried cargo up the Severn sometimes as far as Shrewsbury! They were known as a fairly rambunctious lot. Hard drinking, fighting, singing, and extreme skill in piloting and sailing were their hallmarks, so we decided it would be a decent fit for us! You should see some of the names we rejected….
Originally six, now a four voice group, they continue to sing in festivals, halls and pubs, delighting crowds with their raw power, melting harmonies and comedic story telling.
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- Bristol 1 #59
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