Chantelle Smith

While singing has been an ever present element of Chantelle’s life, she is a relative newcomer to the folk world.  Her main area of interest is folk ballads; the telling of a story through the medium of song and it is these that feature strongly in her repertoire.  Chantelle sings unaccompanied, and with her shruti box, guitar, harp or percussion (not all at the same time, though).  When it comes to ballads, Chantelle focuses on carrying the story across to the audience with instrumentation used to add emphasis and texture.

© T. Jeffers, 2016

As well as singing solo, Chantelle is also involved with other acts.  She has performed with singer-songwriter Talis Kimberley since 2010 and has been a part of the storytelling and music group Fire Springs since 2014, mostly performing with storyteller Kevan Manwaring as a sub-group called Brighid’s Flame.

Currently, Chantelle is mostly performing with the Wiltshire-based group The Bellflowers, joining Jessie Thompson and Claire Amor to make the duo a trio in Summer 2021.

Chantelle has released two solo EPs; the first, The Gates of Elfinland, contains songs featuring mythical and unnatural beings and is available in both CD and download format; the second, Bonefire, was released in 2020 in digital only format and contains unaccompanied songs of a spooky nature.

Chantelle has also added her vocals to other projects: Queen of Spindles, Track 3 “Gathering Summer In” (artist: Talis Kimberley.  Marchwood Media, 2012) and Spirit, choral backing vocals on Tracks 1, 3 and 5 (band: LEGEND, Ravenheart Music 2013).

In addition to her music, Chantelle was also a contributor to The History Press’s 2017 anthology Ballad Tales, providing a prose retelling of the British folk ballad The Grey Selkie. Copies of Ballad Tales can be purchased directly from Chantelle at gigs or by e-mail, or from The History Press.

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Main image © Rafe Culpin, 2016