The title of this EP — "Walkin', Talkin', Singin'," might equally have been called "Teachin', Paintin', Drawin'," for JOSH MACRAE does all these things with equal skill and enthusiasm.
Born in Glasgow in 1935, Josh was educated there and eventually gained a Diploma of Art in 1956, graduating from the Glasgow School of Art. After his military service, Josh started teaching in Scotland, and is in fact still doing so!
Always interested in negro blues singing, after the War Josh started to accumulate a vast repertoire in this field.
Early in 1958, Josh joined folk-singers (Enoch) Kent, Anderson and Swankie to form the original Reivers folk song group, which televised every week on Scottish Television. At the end of the season the group played many one night stands around the country; then re-formed as a trio (Josh, Kent and Swankie) which played another winter with Scottish T.V. and several weeks at various towns (including a 6 weeks season-topping the bill at Glasgow's Pavilion Theatre).
At this stage Josh made his break with the group and went solo, cutting several records, one of which made the Top Twenty and stayed there for several weeks.
Many people hold the opinion that to sing the blues "authentically" you have to have dark skin and come from Louisiana. Josh Macrae comes from Scotland, and is so "authentic" that his tapes have been used in a BBC programme by such a great blues connoisseur as Alan Lomax.
"Walkin', Talkin', Singin'" features Josh in some of the folksongs with which he has had great success. They are songs on all aspects of life; travelling-hence the Walkin'; some he talks, and some he sings. Titles on this record are "Old Blue", "Talking Dust Bowl Blues", "Arkansas Rambler" and a Country and Western number — "Rocky Mountain Belle" — the only title on which he is accompanied by a backing.