Few figures have been as influential in the development of the acoustic guitar as British folk revival hero Bert Jansch. His 1965 self-titled debut brought him instant renown among other guitarists, including Jimmy Page, Neil Young, Paul Simon and more. He continued on as one-fifth of Pentangle and released a litany of stunning albums, both solo and with the likes of John Renbourn. But when the boundary-pushing guitarist recorded his 1979 album Avocet, he was creating something decidedly different from any other album he’d made up to that point. Initially only released in Denmark, Avocet is Jansch’s purely instrumental, uniquely personal ode to British birds. In its six tracks, Jansch makes magic with bassist Danny Thompson (also ex-Pentangle) and Martin Jenkins as he explores musical themes new and old. The result is a uniquely atmospheric album that’s equal parts relaxed and intense. No wonder it’s considered one of Jansch’s greatest albums.
To mark the 40th anniversary of Avocet, Earth Recordings will release a special, expanded version of the album on white vinyl on November 29. The vinyl will include the album’s six tracks remastered from the original tapes, while a download card boasts three previously unreleased live tracks recorded in Italy in 1977: “Bittern,” “Kinfisher,” and “Avocet.” Fans will also get to hear recollections from Danny Thompson, as recorded by Mojo Magazine’s Dave Thompson. The set is rounded out with sleeve notes by Bert Jansch expert Colin Harper (author of Dazzling Stranger: Bert Jansch and the British Folk and Blues Revival).
The new white vinyl edition of Avocet is strictly limited to 500 copies worldwide, so you’ll want to get those pre-orders in soon! Amazon has pre-orders up and running, and Earth Recordings has an allotment available for customers outside of the United States. Light in the Attic’s allotment for U.S. customers appears to be sold out.
Bert Jansch, Avocet (40th Anniversary Edition) (originally released as Exlibris LP EXL-30.005, 1978, worldwide issue on Charisma LP CLASS6, 1979 — reissued Earth Recordings, 2019) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada / Light In The Attic [US] / Earth Online Store [ex-US])
Bonus tracks (download card) – recorded live in Italy, 1977: