Sheila Darling & Bill Johnston, acoustic music for body & mind.

A little about what we have done and do

What we have done 

Bill and Sheila: are not actively pursuing their music 'for hire' at this time. We have enjoyed playing for dance and entertaining as a part of the Suffolk Folk Music Community for a number of decades and are enjoying an informal recreational involvement as others take up the baton . Our projects have included,

WITHOUT A NET: Bill Johnston solo, Bill Johnston and Sheila Darling duo. Acoustic music and song across a broad range of styles encompassing traditional folk, blues, bluegrass, old time, country and classic contemporary.

CEILIDH: Bill has played for Ceilidh Dancing since 1980 as a member of Wolsey Folk, Speed the Plough, Last Resort and Instep Ceilidh Bands. Instep disbanded in October 2015. He welcomes the opportunity to play for Country Dancing solo, duo, stand in and maybe in the future as a member of a band where the joy of dance is the main purpose.

BARDS OF THE HEATH: Bill plays melodeon, mandolin and concertinas with John Goodluck and friends in the Bards with effect from February 2013. The band is presently in limbo, although it retains a following which perhaps deserves to be met.

THREE MEN IN A SHED: 'Sh3♂ed' are Glenn Relf, percussion, Des Hart, Bass & Quattro, and Bill Johnston Guitars and Slide Guitar playing a mix of English and American Roots music. Formed in the Spring of 2019, discovering our repertoire and finding our feet. We do have a FB page with a number of videos already in place. We played a couple of shows until lockdown, currently in limbo.

Bill is one of the musicians with East Suffolk Morris Men, Sheila plays and dances with Pretty Grim Border Morris

On a 'never say never' basis we welcome approaches from people and organisations that may enjoy our music at events or seek a revival of any of the bands we have played in. We very rarely miss an opportunity to play for dance or strut a song set.

History to 2014: archive notes

1995 East Suffolk Morris Taiwan (Trade fair) (Bill), East Suffolk Morris Arras France (Bill). 1996 East Suffolk Morris Odoorn Folklore Festival Netherlands (Bill),Chameleonic Morris Men Yehiam Castle Renaissance Festival, Israel (Bill)

Bill and Sheila get together in 1997

1997-2011 Everyman Folk Club as residents (Bill and Sheila)

1997 Chameleonic Morris Men Telsai Lithuania (Bill), 1999 Ipswich Blues Day (Bill), Chameleonic Morris Men Akhisar, Turkey. (Bill), 2001 Chameleonic Morris Estonia Festival Baltica (Bill), Chameleonic Morris Men Ceyrac France (Bill),   Leiston Cold Fair (Bill& Sheila). 2002 With East Suffolk Morris. The Hague. (Trade fair) (Bill and Sheila), Bildeston Bluegrass Day (Bill & Sheila),  Chameleonic Morris Lithuania (Bill) Leiston Cold Fair (Bill & Sheila).  Manor Ballroom Ipswich :Peppery Productions (Bill with Holly Johnston support Oyster Band).2003 East Suffolk Morris Carcassonne (Bill) , Bildeston Bluegrass Day (Bill& Sheila), Seriously Hot Weekend :Peppery Productions (Bill and Sheila),  Chameleonic Morris  Umbertide Festival Umbria (Bill),  Walton Folk Weekend (Bill and Sheila),  Manor Ballroom Ipswich Peppery Productions (Bill with Holly Johnston support Eliza Carthy),  Big Music Night Bramford (Bill and Sheila),  O'Sheridan's Irish Bar Carcassonne (Bill and Sheila with motley morris friends). 2004 Arras Spring Trip East Suffolk Morris (Bill),  Ipswich May Day Celebrations Alexander Park Acoustic Tent (Bill & Sheila), ,  East Suffolk Morris Tour (Bill) & Bildeston Bluegrass Day (Bill & Sheila),  Steamboat Tavern  Folk Weekend ('Ducking & Diving'),  Lutsk  Festival Ukraine (Bill with Chameleonic Morris),  A Musical Evening in aid of Culpho Church restoration fund, (Sheila). Rendham White Horse Beer & Music Festival (Bill & Sheila),  Walton Folk Festival (Bill & Sheila), Norwich Arts Centre Acoustic Showcase,  Truckstop Orwell Crossing Lorry Park A14 .2005 ESMM Spring Trip Valencia,   St Patrick's Night White Horse Inn Rendham,  St Georges Night White Horse Rendham,  Acoustic Stage Alexandra Park Ipswich Bildeston Bluegrass Day,  Chameleonic Morris Men in Mongolia (Bill),  Rendham White Horse Beer Festival,  September Walton Folk Festival, Big Music Night Bramford Victory Hall,  Black Cat Arts Norwich. 2006 ESMM (Bill) Tour Breschia (Italy), Rendham White Horse St George, Alexandra Park Ipswich May Fair.Bluegrass Day Hadleigh, 43rd Beskidy Highlanders Week of Culture Poland  (Bill with Chameleonic Morris Men). TheWhite Horse Rendham.Beer Festival (Bill), Vimoutiers Foire de la Pomme, (Bill with ESMM), Jezzer's Musical Evening, St Mary Magdeline Hall, Highfield Approach, Ipswich. 2006 New Years Ceilidh Clopton Village Hall, 'INSTEP' ,  2007 Midwinter Bluegrass Day, Steamboat Tavern, Ipswich, Capel St Mary Church Social (Bill & Sheila), East Suffolk Morris Men Spring Trip Oporto Portugal (Bill), Orwell Crossing Bluegrass Festival (open mic Bill & Sheila),Ipswich Trades Council May Fair Acoustic Stage (Bill & Sheila),Bluegrass Day HadleighGeorge (Bill), Thaxsted Morris Ring Meeting (Bill with ESMM),Henley Community Centre Folk Night, (Jezzer and friends inc Bill), Kentwell Hall,(Instep), Holton St Mary Community Association( Instep),Great Bricett Summer Celebration: (Bill Cameo appearance with Holly), Rendham White Horse, Beer Festival (Bill & Sheila),  Chameleonic Morris Men Umbertide Perugia (Bill), Big Music Night 13, Jezzer's Charity Music Evening, Ipswich Victim Support Farewell Party, New Years Eve Dance at Clopton (Instep). 2008 Midwinter Bluegrass Day (Bill n Sheila),Thorpeness Dance Club Ceilidh: (Bill with Washday Miracles), Copdock PTA Barn Dance (Instep), Orwell Bluegrass Festival (open mic Bill n Sheila and Jezzer n Bill), ESMM Trip to Nordlingen Bavaria (Bill), Alexander Park May Festival Acoustic Stage (Bill n Sheila), Rendham Field Family Day  Ceilidh (Bill with Ducking and Diving, caller PhilSmith)).Demon Barbers support slot Corn Exchange Ipswich. 2009 ESMM Spring Trip to Malta, (Bill with ESMM) Support Jackie Oates Sproughton Church Hall, (Bill n Sheila), Big Music Night 16 (Bill as member Dark Hollow), Orwell Bluegrass Festival (open mic & informal), Ipswich Trades Council May Fair Acoustic Stage (Bill & Sheila), Big Music Night 17 (Bill n Sheila)  2010: ESMM Lubjiana (Bill), Big Music Night 18 (Dark Hollow), Orwell Bluegrass Festival (Bill n Sheila & Dark Hollow), Ipswich Trades Council May Fair Acoustic Stage (Bill & Sheila), support to Tom McConville Sproughton Folk, Hadleigh Bluegrass Day,Constant Billy Children's Festival, Wivenhoe Horse & Groom Annual Music Day, 8-14th September: Chameleonic Morris Men Summer Trip Umbertide (Bill): 30th September -5th October Chameleonic Morris Men Anniversary Trip to Bad Wildungen (Bill):  October 2010 Big Music Night Bramford Victory Hall 'Sometime Blue', November 2010: Henley Folk Night: Sometime Blue. 2011 Jan: Burns Supper Wangford (INSTEP), Henley Folk Night (Bill'nSheila),ESMM Palma Mallorca (Bill),INSTEP Snape food festival busk.2012 East Suffolk Morris in Cagliari, Sardinia: Bill 2013 ESMM Barcelona (Bill) 2014: ESMM Madrid, Big Music Night 27: Bill'nSheila


 Page updated 30th November 2021