Lucky Thirteen brings us back to the beginning of me collection for a second pass. And we arrive at Alianza! by Alianza – well I think that that is correct.
According to an early Show of Hands website, “Alianza was a unique Anglo-Chilean collaboration between three English musicians, Steve Knightley, Phil Beer, and Dave Townsend, and three exiled Chilean musicians, Sergio Avila, Mauricio Venegas and Vladimir Vega. The group sought out the common rhythms, themes and melodies to produce a blend of songs in English, songs in Spanish and songs in both languages ,and dance music from both sides of the Atlantic. The group produced one album Alianza in 1992, which included a number of songs that later became part of the repertoire of Show of Hands, the acoustic roots duo formed by Steve Knightley and Phil Beer.”
The current website of Show of Hands describes the venture this way, “During 1992 Steve and Phil were invited to join an inter-cultural music project which involved working with three exiled Chilean musicians. Out of this the band Alianza was formed and an album made. Alianza toured throughout 1992 and 1993 and influenced Steve and Phil greatly. They were introduced to a new range of rhythms and instruments and Steve was inspired to write songs that are now favorites with Show Of Hands fans including ‘Santiago’, ‘Armadas’ and ‘Columbus Didn’t Find America’. Some of these found their way onto the first Show Of Hands studio album ‘Beat About The Bush’ which was released in 1994.”
Show of Hands are an English folk phenomenon. They tour widely, release albums regularly and engage their fans at every level. If you want to catch them this summer, their summer dates can be found here.
The track I am posting is the fans’ favourite – Santiago.