Raised bilingually in Aberystwyth, West Wales, Georgia Ruth is a singer, songwriter and harpist whose haunting voice has drawn favourable comparisons with the melancholy folk sirens of the late-60s. Her harp playing was inspired more by the finger-picking style of guitarists such as Bert Jansch and Meic Stevens than by the classical method she was taught as a child. Yet Georgia’s own music is more than an amalgamation of those early influences. It is something quite different.
Having already performed at numerous festivals including Glastonbury and Wales’ own Swn Festival, Georgia graduated from Cambridge University in 2009 and moved to London. Working for some time in Leicester Square underground station, she continued to write. Finally, after a year living Brighton, she came home to Wales and is now based in Cardiff. In February 2012, she released the In Luna EP on limited 10” vinyl (via Gwymon). Playing songs on his Radio 1 show, Huw Stephens described the record as “exquisite”. Clash wrote that “there’s not really anyone comparable to her in today’s music scene’.”
In May 2013, she released her debut album – Week of Pines – on Gwymon Records. Recorded and produced by David Wrench over six days last August at Snowdonia’s Bryn Derwen studios, the record has received enthusiastic praise. From the motorik drive of the title track, to darker Eno-like arrangements, the stark joyfulness of a Welsh sea shanty accompanied by wheezing reed organ, or the more wistful folk ballads: this is a varied and intriguing collection of songs.
Lead single ‘Week of Pines’ garnered sterling support across the airwaves. Steve Lamacq named her as his “Favourite New Band” on BBC 6 Music, after she won his Rebel Playlist and invited her on the show as his guest. Jo Whiley picked the single as her “New Favourite Thing” in the same week on BBC Radio 2. To this date, the song has also been played by Gideon Coe, Dermot O’Leary, Janice Long, Huw Stephens and Terry Wogan amongst others.
Writing in the Independent, Andy Gill called her album “a dazzling debut, rich with sweet pain and joy” whilst Simon Price noted that it “could have been made in 1968. In the loveliest possible way.” Folk Roots magazine noted that “while Sandy Denny, Bert Jansch and Van Morrison all linger on the horizon, Georgia Ruth comes over as more of a true original than most of the young hopefuls roaming these isles,” before concluding that the record was a “true delight.” Robin Denselow praised Georgia’s “exquisite, gently powerful” version of Welsh sea shanty ‘Codi Angor’ in his Guardian review, and a few months later, in a live review for the same publication: “On this showing, she’s one of the British folk discoveries of the year.”