Gillie Nicholls

(Vocals, Guitar, Bouzouki)

Jamie Parkes

(Vocals, Violin, Percussion)

Gary Hurlstone

(Vocals, Guitar, Effects)

For the last 20 years singer, guitarist, and songwriter Gillie Nicholls has been performing and recording her own songs. She released her first solo album, Spirit Talk, prior to joining the The Albion Band. Whilst with the Albion Band Gillie wrote songs with Ashley Hutchings and recorded two albums:  Before Us Stands Yesterday and Happy accident.











After leaving the Albion Band to pursue a solo career along came her second album, Vital Signs, which encompassed a collection of sessions recorded with Neil Simpson, Steve Rodford, Andrew Cleyendert, and John Etheridge. The song, 'Free' from this album, was taken up and used by the Body Shop. On top of this, on a personal level, the track, 'Song for Sonia' written for Sonia Gandhi in memory of her husband Rajiv Gandhi, opened up a link with India that remains with her to this day.


Gillie's third album 'True Train' is a collaboration with Tim Harries featuring performances by Charlie Beresford and Joel Harries. They decamped in Charlie's studio in late 2009 to embark on a process that saw Gillie explore new ways of working with Tim's musical force and Charlie's studio production nudging her songs onto a new and powerful platform.


Alongside her recording career Gillie is a professional vocal coach and potter who paints and writes poetry.

"Maybe it’s the uniquely sensual voice - completely identifiable as Gillie's, maybe the heartbreakingly lovely tune, or maybe the glorious spare poetry that touches the heart of the matter; - most likely all of these together have moved you so.”
Ashley Hutchings

Jamie Parkes is an accomplished musician who lives somewhere near Stafford. He plays the violin like he is trying to exorcise a demon, a stubborn one! Having trained classically, Jamie has been recording and performing in the north west/ Midlands for around 20 years, playing in a wide range of styles, fine tuning his technique and developing his songwriting skills. 


His collaborations include work with Darren Poyzer, George Borowski, The Lancashire Hotpots, Andy Meachem, Dan Walsh (UFQ),  and many others.


Jamie's playing sits somewhere in the stratosphere between folk, jazz, classical and beyond. His style can be expressive and lyrical when required to cut out a haunting melody, but also dexterous  and agile when notes have to fly from the fingerboard.













'Particularly liked the violin...'


Judith Morse: Conductor (Edison Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey USA)

Judy has conducted to standing ovations at Carnegie Hall, New York and in Moscow

"completely transcends the
personal into another realm; - brilliant.”
John Etheridge

Is a singer/songwriter and guitar player who enjoys working with musicians from different backgrounds and cultures. He has performed at many venues across China, his home until 2015 in cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Wuhan and Lhasa.

His collaborations include a television appearance with Cai Yayi (Cai Yayi won the first prize in the Folk Song Solo Category in the Llangollen Internationa Musical Eisteddfod 2010), and appearances with Song Yuzhe (Dawanngang), Li Daiguo, Wang Xiao, FM3 and the talented Mongolian musician, Hugejiletu (Ajinai). In addition he has worked with tribal musicians in Mindanao, Philippines.









Gary has held publishing contracts with the Gem Toby Organisation [GTO] in London and his songs have been recorded by other artists and appear on several albums. His first solo album, The Zen Kick  (2012), was recorded in Hong Kong and mastered in New York. His band, Smiling Knives  toured this album in 2012 where he additionally performed at the Heibei (Grasslands Inmusic Festival). In 2014 he made an appearance at the MIDI Music Festival (The Glastonbury of China) did a guest spot at the WOMAD Festival and started 2015 by performing at the sell out, 10,000 capacity, Zhuhai Beach Music Festival. He is currently (2018) writing songs for a Chinese publishing company.


In a varied and colourful career Gary has also busked on the Chinese underground, been banned from playing festivals by the PRC Communist Party, sang at the opening of a Kitchen Appliance Shop and appeared second on the bill to a singing dog.






Novelist Jack Kerouac once famously said that the only people for him were the ones who never said a commonplace thing. Gary Hurlstone, is Jack Kerouac’s kind of guy.
Kevin McGeary review Nanfang

"Pretty awesome stuff. It’s beautiful world music. Seriously, I love this."


(Beijing Daze Review)


© 2015  The IdiOms alt folk