The Swamp Cranks Story September, the year was 1960, William Bennett of Scottish descent, and his wife had just birthed a boy in Toronto, Canada. The young skin and bone baby Bennett was unaware that some 4000 miles away during the preceding month, a Welsh born travelling preacherman named Victor Donovan and his wife had birthed a child of similar ilk. The child, English born, was Dan Donovan. August 1983. The wandering Mr Bennett junior made home in Essex, England. It was in a field, a gathering, a festival, around 1986, where the two musicians Mr Bennett and Dan Donovan first met. Mr Bennett returned to his land of origin in 1988 but the two potential Swamp Cranksters would meet up and play their songs to each other on rare and special occasions. Dan continued to perform under his own name around the UK, Holland, Belgium, Sweden and Canada. Mr Bennett also continued to perform around Europe,Canada and the U.S.A. Summer 1994 found Mr Bennett and Dan Donovan sharing one of their rare moments together. In a small English town in the heart of the mysterious Fenlands, now home to Dan, the two characters sipped port, smoked tobacco and told each other stories of angels... strange things did happen. Only now after more than a decade of friendship, the musical bards decided it was time to record some of their mutual musings. This session cost twenty pounds and yielded what was to become "Swamp Cranks", the first ever recordings. Performances followed sporadically. They would meet on occasion in London or Amsterdam. The gnarly troubadours received encouragement and applause for their dark humour, song and eccentricity. Mr Bennett returned to make home in England. Once again the Swamp Cranks shared the same island. Now that the two men were geographically united they decided to release the first Swamp Cranks CD. A 15 date tour of Holland, Belgium and the UK happened at the end of May 97 to coincide with the album release. Swamp Cranks live involves songs, spoken word, poetry and theatricals, pulling dark humour and passion together. Dan and Mr Bennett share common influences enjoying recorded moments from Tom Waites to Ivor Cutler the Scottish poet. Swamp Cranks happen on occasion when the climate suits and when certain planet positions match up... it seems.
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