THE STORY SO FAR

We formed The Moths in April 1970 whilst we were second year undergraduates at Hull University .     In this line-up we did about nine gigs over the next few months, including an open-air event in Hull East Park , supporting Wishbone Ash. After the summer vacation, we continued as a trio (the two guitarists and bass guitar) and did about six or seven more gigs in October/ November 1970.

The original five-piece line-up was unexpectedly offered some recording time in the studio at Hull University 's theatre building (the Gulbenkian Centre) and made a demo tape there on 23 June 1970 . We recorded two of John Ellis's songs, plus others by Bert Jansch, Bob Dylan, Tim Buckley, David Ackles and Clive Palmer (from the original Incredible String Band). The recording session was most memorable for our (very tall) bass guitarist, John Dunn, banging his head as he entered the studio, and doing the recording in a state of mild concussion!

The only one of us with any recording experience was Neil, who had played flute (pseudonymously) on a couple of early Ralph McTell tracks "Malcolm In The Garden" and "Factory Girl". John Beazer, our percussionist, sent the tape to Deroy Sound Service of Carnforth, Lancashire , which transferred it to vinyl LP (this was nearly 40 years ago, remember!). We had about two dozen copies pressed, and distributed them amongst friends and family.

We thought that was the end of the story – but no….

A CD version of the LP, called "Heron's Daughter", was spotted on a second-hand record website in 1995, and introduced John Dunn to the world of Kissing Spell records, and eventually to getting back in touch with John Ellis and Mike Jones.

The Kissing Spell label had got hold of one of the LP copies – we believe in a car boot sale! – from which it created KSCD 9470-f ‘Heron's Daughter', actually rather shoddily, as there is an uncorrected record-needle jump on the first track. The CD is dated 1994.

We later learnt that one of the original LP copies sold for a 3 figure sum in a rare record sale!

Prompted by the minor success of the ‘Heron's Daughter' CD (it's still listed on Amazon as temporarily unavailable!), John Ellis managed to contact each of us, and signed us all up for a reunion weekend in three remote cottages in the wilds of Cumbria, where we duly all arrived, with our partners, in November 2009.   Although the weather was foul, the reunion was able to take place – 7 days later, the severe flooding in the Lake District would have undoubtedly led to its cancellation!  

Much to the rest of the group's disappointment, John Beazer had decided to bring his drum kit, rather than the hand drum that had been such a key part of the original Moths sound.   He was feeling increasingly guilty about his error of judgement, when one of our partners spotted a pair of African style drums sitting in a recessed window sill at one end of the room.   So, the Moths' sound was back in full!

Having converted the cottage into a temporary recording studio, we spent the Saturday laying down 4 new tracks, excerpts of which you can sample here.    Since then another weekend together in June 2010 resulted in a further dozen songs being prepared - all but one written by a band member.

A weekend in a recording studio in York in April 2012 produced an album of new songs - all originals by band members.

THESE ARE NOW AVAILABLE ON 'The Return of The Heron's Daughter'.

In November 2016 the band played a gig together for the first time since supporting Wishbone Ash in East Park, Hull in 1970.

In addition, the original Heron's Daughter recordings are now available on vinyl - for the first time for 40 years.

And one of the Moths, Mike Jones, released his first solo album in June 2012. Learn more at http://mikejones.bandcamp.com/album/halfway-to-a-dream