Duck Soup is a happy accident!
Once upon a time, Dan Quinn (Flowers & Frolics, Gas Mark 5) started thinking about recording a solo album, and reckoned it would be fun to get Ian Kearey (Oysterband, Shirley Collins) and Adam Bushell (Stocai, The Tacet Ensemble) to join him for a couple of numbers. He was right! So much so, that they recorded a whole album together and Duck Soup was released in 2005.
Our sound is based around Dan’s melodeon and vocals, which keep us firmly rooted in English tradition even when we’re playing tunes from Canada, Barbados or beyond.
Whether playing bass, dobro, mandolin or anything else, Ian provides solid groove – he’s a man that can find the rock’n’roll heart of any traditional ballad (and vice versa).
Traditional in approach, even if not in sound, Adam brings an array of odd instruments ranging from marimba to phonofiddle to the mix. It’s never what you expect, but it always manages to complement the piece perfectly.
The result is a glorious cross between an English tune session in your favourite pub, and a collision in an instrument shop.
Our debut album was very well received (‘Oh Yes!’ – Rod Stradling, Musical Traditions) and since then we’ve been playing to audiences around the South East – including performances at Sidmouth, Towersey, Tenterden and Crawley Folk Festivals and the East Anglian Traditional Music Day. On top of that, we have been the featured guest at the Copper Family’s annual folk club night (our Royal Command Performance!)
An acclaimed second album followed in due course – Open On Sundays (Robin Denselow gave us 4 out of 5 stars in the Guardian). This album has repertoire ranging from border ballads to lopsided marches, and also highlights our love of the late great Quebecois melodeon player Alfred Montmarquette (hoorah!).
And if you’re interested in the third album – well, watch this space!
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, we’re not named after Duck Soup the Marx Brothers film from 1933. We’re named after Duck Soup the Laurel & Hardy film from 1927. Both films were directed by Leo McCarey, and we’re just sorry he’s not around to direct our videos.