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The Hedgehog's Skin bring a wealth of energy and enthusiasm to their performances, as well as deep knowledge and years of experience of playing for people to dance. They play lively, traditional dance music, lots of it from Northumberland, with some from Scotland, Ireland and North America thrown in.

Based in Hexham, the band has been playing for ceilidhs and barn dances, and at festivals, weddings and parties since the mid 1980s.

The band is led by David Oliver (piano accordion), who has been an active force in traditional music and dance since the late 1960s.  He has led The Hedgehog's Skin since its beginnings.

Guitarist Chip Chamberlain has been a familiar figure on the Northumberland folk scene since the 1970s, and has at one time or another played with many other ceilidh bands in the North East. He was for many years a member of Hexham favourites The Marras.

Sophie Lynch, a very talented young fiddler, is a member of the Sage Gateshead's premier young folk ensemble Folkestra and Kathryn Tickell's new young band Superfolkus, and previously played with The Northumbrian Ranters and Down in the Attic. She also playes guitar and mandolin and has her own band Reely Ceol.

Caller and whistle-player Joey Oliver (David's son) is a member of the 1999 BBC Radio Two Young Folk Award winning band 422. He is a highly experienced ceilidh dance caller, with a friendly and relaxed style that puts dancers at ease, and explains dances clearly and simply.

The flexible nature of traditional music means that the band are often joined by other musicians, and work with other callers. Recent regular Hedgehogs Heather Gessey, Beth Chamberlain, Catriona Innes and Cameron Lynch still occasionally play with the band, as do concertina player and caller Alex Wade, and melodeon player Richard Adamson.

The Hedgehog’s Skin




Compelling Northumbrian folk music, lively dances and a vibrant atmosphere – these are the hallmarks of ceilidh led by The Hedgehog’s Skin, for over 25 years one of North-East England’s most active and popular traditional bands. People love dancing to their music.