English folk singer-songwriter Michael Chapman has died aged 80, Brendan Greaves, co-founder of Chapman’s label Paradise of Bachelors, told Pitchfork. The news was first revealed on Chapman’s Instagram. The cause of death has not been announced, but Chapman has been declared to have died at his home. Find a note from Greaves and Paradise of Bachelors below.
Michael Chapman was born in Leeds, England, in 1941. Although he started out teaching art and photography, his guitar playing quickly grew from a passion to a profession. Without access to instructional materials on how to play the guitar, Chapman often listened to albums by other artists to learn the instrument himself. “You have to learn the language before you can start saying what you want to say,” he said. The bluegrass situation in 2017. He studied records by jazz guitarists like Django Reinhardt and Wes Montgomery and began performing in a similar vein on the Cornish folk circuit.
Chapman’s debut album Rainmaker arrived in 1969 and was the first of four albums released in quick succession: 1970’s Fully Qualified Survivor and Window, as well as the years 1971 Castaway again. When Chapman signed to Decca and released his fifth studio album, 1973’s Grinding wheel grain, he shifted gears and played electric guitar, but even that sound didn’t define his forward momentum. He continued to explore roots music, particularly blues and folk, through acoustic and electric – and instrumental and sung – projects that showed his dexterity.
Chapman has released over 40 albums during his career, including two recent albums he released via Paradise of Bachelors: The 2016 collaboration with Steve Gunn 50 and 2019 The True North.