Roy Harper

Back Story

  • ORIGIN: Rusholme, Manchester, UK
  • KEY COLLABORATORS: Bert Jansch, Jimmy Page, Pink Floyd, Ronnie Lane, Keith Moon, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Kate Bush, Ian Anderson, Pete Townshend, David Gilmour, Bill Bruford, Chris Spedding, Dave Cochran
  • GENRES: Folk
  • YEARS ACTIVE: 1964-present

The man who famously lent his voice to Pink Floyd’s Have A Cigar and inspired Led Zeppelin’s Hats Off (To Roy Harper) has carved out one of the most singular careers in modern music, influencing the likes of Ian Anderson, Kate Bush, Johnny Marr, Fleet Foxes and Joanna Newsom along the way.

His ambition to fuse folk, blues, jazz, classical music and the poetry of the Beats into his own unique musical style has led to a complex body of work which spans over 20 studio albums and in excess of 10 live albums. Harper’s mellifluous guitar style was initially influenced by his travels across North Africa, Europe and Scandinavia, and came into its own during his time as the compere at legendary ’60s Soho folk club, Les Cousins. An unflinching lyricist, he has no fear of tackling the big issues, be they global or deeply personal. (continues below)




Harper’s 2013 studio album, Man & Myth, was produced by Californian musician Jonathan Wilson (himself an avowed Harper devotee). A critical and creative success, the album’s impact was brought to a sudden juddering halt when Harper was dragged into a lengthy court case, facing charges of which he was subsequently acquitted (see entry on the album).

“My myth happens to bigger than most.”


Having turned 75 on June 12, 2016, the ever-defiant Harper will now return to the stage for four exclusive birthday shows – Birmingham Symphony Hall (September 7), Manchester Bridgewater Hall (9), London Royal Festival Hall (12) and Usher Hall in Edinburgh (17). In addition to playing live, Harper is set to reissue three core albums – Flat Baroque And Bezerk, Stormcock and Lifemask – on vinyl on his own long-running Science Friction label in September.

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