Folk singer Maddy Prior, 60, is best known for her work with Steeleye Span � who scored a smash hit with All Around My Hat. They are set to play at their namesake festival Spanfest this summer. Maddy also tours with The Carnival Band. For Info: www.maddyprior.co.uk
BELLOWHEAD: BURLESQUE (WESTPARK) This 11-piece band, who have a great frontman, are the bright new hope of the folk movement. Their music has a great energy � and they have drawn upon influences from all over the world to create a terrific album.
SHANIA TWAIN: UP! (MERCURY) I listen to this a lot when I�m exercising and it�s an incredibly positive record to work out to. It�s good for walking too. Shania is a fantastic singer, the songs are really well crafted and this is just a great pop album, packed with hits.
KARINE POLWART: FAULTLINES (NEON) A wonderful Scottish singer/songwriter who did very well in the folk awards a couple of year ago. She has a really unique style and possesses a very distinctive voice. Some of her songs are quite dark, which I like. A particular favourite is Waterlily � the epitome of a song about abandonment.
NIC JONES: PENGUIN EGGS (TOPIC) A traditional folk singer who was sadly in an accident and, as a result, doesn�t sing any more. However, he was an incredibly bright spark when he appeared on the scene in the Seventies and helped change the way a lot of people looked at traditional music.
CHRIS KNIGHT: A PRETTY GOOD GUY (DUALTONE) A beautiful album by a singer/ songwriter from America�s Deep South who I�d place up there with other great US folk-style singer/ songwriters such as Dylan and Randy Newman. Again, his songs are dark � in a way he�s the exact opposite of Shania but every bit as good.
THE POLICE: THE POLICE (POLYDOR) The archetypal British three-piece rock band. I can�t think of any other rock trio who have come up with so many great pop songs, be it Can�t Stand Losing You or Every Breath You Take. I just love their stuff.