Guest Spot – Helen Sheppard: Love Will Guide Us

Hi Everyone

Here is a lovely song from the wonderful Helen Sheppard.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did the first time I heard it a few weeks ago.

Over to Ian to tell you a bit more…

Hi Folks


When you listen to your favourite CD’s it is not always the named artiste that stirs your thoughts, and fills your ears, the “overall” sound being taken for granted. Yet, the finished product is far from that simple. There may be several “takes”, instrumental additions, multi-tracking, and all the other mysterious and ingenious effects available to engineers and producers. But that is not all, alongside that instrumentation and double tracking there is very often a host of backing and session musicians, and singers.

This next song pays homage to one such singer, and without her contribution, several albums released by Open House Studio would not have received the acclaim they richly deserved. The lady in question is Wirral singer and musician, Helen Sheppard, who came to the area from the Potteries. She has, for the last 30 years, been the “go to” harmony singer for Open House Studio and is now given the chance to showcase her own vocal talents.

Among the many albums that Helen has worked on, over the years, are, “Over the Moors” (Ian Chesterman), “The Voice of Wales” (Ian Chesterman), “Together Alone” (Jack Owen) ,”Resonances” (Jack Owen, “Before The Dawn” (Jeff Hurst), “Today” (Eddie Morris), “Sands of Time” (Steel Trax), “Together At Last” (Albion Folk Club), and “Friday Round at Rogers” (Roger Parker), in addition to a multitude of studio “one-off “recordings by various artistes.

Music has always featured large in Helen’s life as she has run Moreton Methodist Church Choir and, in addition to playing piano and cello, has appeared on stage with the  Tom Topping Big Band at Chester Folk Festival, The Jones Family Band and Roger Parker. I, personally, have my own reasons to thank Helen, as she was on my solo album (see above), features on many of my “Open House” recordings, and has shared the stage, as a valued member of The Ian Chesterman Band.

The song, “Love Will Guide Us”, is the anthemic Sally Rogers 1970’s/80’s hymn to Peace and, despite the choral effect you hear, every voice belongs to Helen, courtesy of some great mixing by Brian Jones. It is the title track from her solo album of the same name, recorded in the late 1980’s, the only time this unassuming  and talented lady was persuaded to emerge from the “session singing” shadows to sing in her own right.

Enjoy listening to the many voices of one of our truly “unsung” local heroes and, for once, Helen, take centre stage.

Ian Chesterman

Thanks Ian, happy listening everyone.

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Samantha Proctor

Keeping Folk up to Date