Belford fiddler back from Germany for gig

Broom Bezzums and Katie Doherty.
Broom Bezzums and Katie Doherty.
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One of Belford’s prodigal sons will return next week loaded with songs and tales of his travels.

Andrew Cadie is one half of folk duo Broom Bezzums, who have spent the last nine years popularising British folk in Germany.

A native of Belford, Andrew’s earliest musical memories are Scottish ceilidhs at weddings and the Berwick Pipe Band marching through the village.

He was inspired enough by these childhood memories to take up music himself and now plays the fiddle and the Northumbrian pipes beside his bandmate, Mark Bloomer.

He also took piano lessons from the former Mayor of Berwick, Liz Breckons, although he ‘gave up on that a while ago’.

Andrew did, though, adopt the folk lifestyle early, busking around Europe as a young man. “I went all over, down to Barcelona and Granada, and then to Germany,” he said.

There his journey was halted in true romantic fashion, because he met his future wife and also his musical partner, Mark.

“It was great,” said Andrew. “We had both fallen in love with German women, but we didn’t know each other until we were both in the same Irish pub – of course – for a music night.

The partnership blossomed, and the pair have now recorded four albums for Steeplejack Records, as well as gigging extensively in Germany.

And that name? Andrew explained: “It actually comes from a song. Down in Newcastle there used to be a man called Blind Willie Purvis, back in the 18th century. He lived mainly in the poorhouse, but he’d perform songs in alehouses, and Broom Buzzems was his song about selling sweeping brushes. It just kind of stuck, and it seemed to suit us as well.

He went on: “I’m really looking forward to coming back to Belford. I left when I was about nine, and the last time I saw it was from a train taking me to Edinburgh airport! Hopefully I’ll see some familiar faces and maybe some people I went to school with will come along and see what I’m doing now.”

Broom Bezzums, joined by their sometime third member, Katie Doherty, play the Blue Bell in Belford on Wednesday, February 12, at 8pm. For tickets, call 01668 213543.