Laura Marling joins Mumford & Sons onstage in a barn

London folksters launch debut album 'Sigh No More' with a Hertfordshire hoedown

Laura Marling joined Mumford and Sons onstage for a cover of Dolly Parton’s ‘Jolene’ as the band launched their new album with a show in a barn at Lordship Farm in Standon, Hertfordshire, last night (October 5).

Celebrating the release of their debut ‘Sigh No More’, Mumford and Sons played a special set surrounded by bunting and straw. They aired songs from their debut record and recruited friends, including singer-songwriters King Charles and Pete Roe along with Marling, to perform several covers.

The band came onstage at 9.10pm, with their grinning frontman Marcus Mumford announcing: “We did it… Well done for getting here, sorry if it took you ages,” referring to the heavy traffic affecting the coaches which bought some of the audience from London to the show, before adding: “How sick is this barn?!”

As well as playing their cover of Parton‘s ‘Jolene’, which has previously been covered by the likes of The White Stripes, the band also aired their version of the spiritual standard ‘O Mary, Don’t You Weep’, which folk singer Pete Seeger and more recently, Bruce Springsteen have each put their own spin on.

Marcus told the crowd how the idea for the barn-based gig had come to them after they had passed an island in the Hebrides and imagined how amazing it would be to play a gig there, but realised it was so small they’d have to bring their own crowd.

He added that they had played a wedding last year, which turned out to be one of the band’s best gigs ever, so together with the island show Mumford and Sons decided the only solution would be to throw their very own countryside barn dance.

Mumford and Sons played:

‘Sigh No More’
‘Awake My Soul’
‘Little Lion Man’
‘The Cave’
‘Winter Winds’
‘Jolene’ (with Laura Marling)
‘O Mary, Don’t You Weep’
‘Roll Away Your Stone’
‘Whispers In The Dark’
‘Feel The Tide Turning’
‘Where Is My Heart’

The band’s raucous set was then followed by ’21st century barn dance’ band Cut A Shine, who lead the crowd in a variety of hoedown-friendly folk dances.

Meanwhile Mumford and Sons are three and a half weeks into a UK tour which culminates on October 11 at Northampton‘s Roadmender.