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Gareth Bonello

Musician in Residence in Chengdu, China

Inspired by nearly forgotten traditional Welsh songs and the music of the 60s folk revival Gareth Bonello (aka The Gentle Good) creates intricate yet beautiful modern folk music tinted with psychedelic edges which enchants an audience with a spell of beautiful melodies and dark stories. Capable of performing as a solo guitar act or with a full band or string section; Gareth Bonello/The Gentle Good perform both traditional and original compositions in Welsh and English.

About his residency in Chengdu, Gareth told us, “I feel very privileged to be presented with this wonderful opportunity to explore the folk music and traditions of South-West China. I am particularly looking forward to collaborating with local writers and musicians to create new music inspired by both Welsh and Chinese culture.”

Gareth first came to the attention of the music industry with appearances at music industry conferences In the City and South by Southwest. Following these performances The Gentle Good signed to Gwymon Records, an independent record label based in Wales, and in 2007 released ‘Dawel Disgyn’ a 4 track EP that received excellent reviews and airplay on BBC Radio, including BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 2 on ‘whispering’ Bob Harris’ Saturday night show.

In the autumn of 2008 the debut album ‘While You Slept I Went Out Walking’ was released with The Gentle Good being favorably compared to such luminaries as Nick Drake, Martin Carthy, Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, John Martyn and Donovan by the likes of Mojo and the Guardian.

Gareth BonelloMarch 2011 saw the release of the second studio album ‘Tethered for the Storm’. The record has received critical acclaim with Mojo and Artrocker both giving it 4 star reviews. The new record has been picked up by a host of BBC Radio Stations and was record of the week on both Radio Cymru and Radio Wales. Tracks from the new album have also been played on Radio 2, Radio 3 and BBC 6 Music. With Regular appearances on Welsh language TV and Radio, The Gentle Good are well known on the Welsh scene with Gareth recently receiving the ‘composer of the year’ award in the BBC Radio Cymru Rock and Pop awards for 2011.

The Gentle Good are an established live act having delighted audiences at home and abroad at festivals such as Lorient Interceltique, Celtic Connections, The Green Man Festival, Latitude, End of the Road, SXSW and Glastonbury. In the summer of 2009 The Gentle Good were one of 12 bands selected from over 1500 entrants through the Glastonbury emerging talent competition to perform at the legendary festival. The panel of judges included Michael and Emily Eavis as well as other industry professionals. A day after performing at Glastonbury The Gentle Good were at the Kennedy Centre in Washington DC delivering the first of many performances as an artist invited to take part in the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.

Gareth was recently awarded the Composer of the Year Award 2011 by BBC Radio Cymru and Best Male 2010 from Welsh language music magazine ‘Y Selar’.

Praise for Tethered for the Storm:

“Folk Beauty” – Huw Stephens BBC Radio 1
“Perffaith” (Perfect) 10/10 – Y Selar
“Breathtaking” Mojo 4 stars ****
“Folk genius” 8.5/10 – The 405
“…to be savoured and cherished” Artrocker 4 stars ****
“A wonderful soundscape to be explored” Maverick Country 3.5 stars****
“One of the most beautiful albums I’ve heard in a long time” Folk Radio UK

Additional support for Gareth’s residency was provided by Wales Arts International.