Andrew Cronshaw - Artist Page
Andrew Cronshaw
Similar Music

Andrew Cronshaw is known for both his music and his writing. His writing appears frequently in British publication FRoots and other magazines. And he is also the author of the chapters devoted to Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, The Faroes, Iceland, the Baltic States and Portugal in the most recent version of the Rough Guide to World Music.

Musically, Andrew's voyage began as a child with a piano and a tin whistle. His primary instrument is now the zither, which lives at the heart of a collection of instruments that have come into his life through his travels, research and enormous musical curiosity. These include: a fujara, which Andrew describes as "a five-foot long Slovakian shepherd's flute that yields shivering breathy harmonics;" aba-wu from China's Yunan province, which is his "seductive-toned" brass-reed instrument, and many other string and percussion instruments.

In the early 1990s, Andrew chose to tour most often as a solo performer. With his instruments and a small PA, he played more than 100 performances in ancient English village churches. Solo, in his case, meant he would book the concert, meet the audience at the door, perform, pack up and move on. Although a U.K. native, over the past twelve years more and more of his time has been spent in Finland. He is fascinated by and increasingly involved in new Finnish music rooted in its folk traditions. Andrew says he is drawn also by the sense of community, especially in Kaustinen, a music centre and home to one of the world's finest music festivals. It was at the Kaustinen Festival he initiated Hauenleuka: a large performance project that involved the floating of a giant seven-meter, five-string kantele down the river Perho accompanied by four hundred local musicians and dancers.

He has recorded seven albums. His album On The Shoulders Of The Great Bear, is based on a dozen traditional tunes from Finland, one from Siberia, and three from the Scottish Gaelic-speaking tradition.

Andrew's approach to music includes the belief that instruments "find a particular tune they like."


A is for Andrew, Z is for Zither (Transatlantic XTRA 1139, 1974)

Earthed in Cloud Valley (Trailer LER 2104, 1977)

Wade in the Flood (Transatlantic The Leader Tradition LTRA 508, 1978)

The Great Dark Water (Waterfront WF 009, 1982), reissued in 2010

Till the Beasts' Returning (Topic 12TS 447, 1988)

The Andrew Cronshaw CD (Topic TSCD 447, 1989) contains pieces from Till the Beasts' Returning

The Language of Snakes (Topic Special Delivery in UK/Lyricon in Spain, 1993)

On the Shoulders of the Great Bear (Cloud Valley CV 2007, 2000)

Ochre (Cloud Valley CV 2008, 2004)

The Unbroken Surface of Snow (Cloud Valley CV2009, 2011)

Similar Music:
English folk, World Music