Joan Armatrading’s Singer-Songwriters

BBC Radio 2

In this two-part series, Joan Armatrading turns talent scout to discover a new generation of singer songwriters from across the land.

Joan, whose own career spans 40 years, is passionate about the art and the business of songwriting.  She wants to offer her musical wisdom and an opportunity to young talents who are the future of music in Britain:  ‘Anyone can cover a standard song – be it pop or folk or blues. But WRITE a really original song and sing it , that’s a talent.’  So her concert tour of Britain in autumn 2012 has an unprecedented new element. Joan is offering a platform to 56 singer songwriters to each perform with her on the bill in cities where she performs around the country.  It’s an act of faith that will give a leg up to some of Britain’s most promising young songwriters, many of them on the brink of stardom.

Joan tells the stories of these songwriters, their background, their struggle to make it in the music business and the build up to their appearances with her on stage. Along the way we’ll learn something from her about the art of songwriting – what it takes to write a really distinctive piece – as well as hearing some of the lessons she’s learned after a life in the music business.


Produced by Susan Marling

Broadcast on 11th February 2013