Lee, Sam


Sam Lee is a British folk singer and traditional music specialist. His debut album, Ground of its Own was shortlisted for the 2012 Mercury Music Award. Lee performs as part of an ensemble, Sam Lee and Friends.

Lee became known as a traditional music specialist dedicated to collecting, restoring and sharing ancient music from Britain and Ireland; in particular from the Romany Gypsy and Irish traveller communities. Lee has spent much time song-collecting from these communities. The debut album has been described as "the result of six years of complete immersion in traditional British folk music." His music involves re-working and instrumental arrangements of songs from the tradition. Lee is the creator and manager of the folk-music promotional network, The Nest Collective, which hosts various folk music events in London and beyond. Lee regularly works with the English Folk Dance and Song Society to archive and curate traditional music as well as educate through writings and classes.

Simmons, Francesca


Francesca is a violinist based in London and Bristol.

Francesca is a dynamic, versatile and exciting musician. She plays violin, musical saw, viola, double bass and ukulele. She has also played for recordings with voice, recorder, soprano sax and keys.

Francesca is a regular collaborator with TONAL and is featured on many recordings and live performance. She is the principle musician for Sarah’s new score for The Scarlet Pimpernel, a drama for radio 4 which will broadcast in the Autumn. Other projects include A Tale of Two Cities Tonal’s 10 year birthday album ’10’.  She was a vital member of the ensemble for Yasmine, a Musical, and  War And Peace @ the Circus with Giffords Circus.

Francesca plays extensively across UK and internationally. She works regularly for The Paper Cinema and her own music has been performed on Radio 6 Music, Radio 3 Late Junction, Radio Cymru and BBC Radio Wales.

She has performed in many venues throughout the UK and Europe – from streets, art galleries, concert halls, clubs, festivals, to big tops.

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Sam Lee vocals, samples, Jew's harp, shruti box
James Keay piano, violin
Francesca Simmons violin, viola, musical saw

Featuring recorded interviews with Renie Smith and Ken Knox

The Mercury Prize nominated Sam Lee, driving force behind the eclectic, award-winning folk club The Nest Collective, explores the rich history of vernacular folk song & story in Hull City and District, singing a collection of songs from in and around the city. Through recorded testimonials that capture the current and historical oral traditions extant amongst the residents, Sam Lee creates a sonic triptych combining choral and arranged accompaniment to portrait the city and its ever-changing character.


Sam Lee said

Hull City and its many local voices will soon be playground of sounds and stories to forage in and for that I can’t wait. What a treat it will be to dig into the rich seam of music so richly folded into this historic place”


This piece is part of New Music Biennial 2017. For more information about the project and to download the New Music Biennial album, please visit our project page:


Hullucination is commissioned by The Nest Collective.


Produced with the support of partners and funders:

NMB funders


The performance of Hullucination was recorded live by the BBC at Holy Trinity Church, Hull on 2 July 2017 and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on 6 July 2017.

Catalogue number:
NMC DL201707
Release Date:
20 April 2018