Caroline Clark

I was born in Cardiff, Wales, and after a brief period in London I grew up in Bristol. I come from a large, sociable family who, like a lot of Welsh people, enjoyed a good singsong. My dad, in particular, had a big, booming voice and would regale us with anything from Welsh classics to Al Jolson (sometimes, embarrassingly, on his bended knees). In my teens, while discovering the Beatles and Stones like everyone else, I also found folk music. I was a regular member of the Bathurst folk club, where I particularly remember Adge Cutler (pre-Wurzels) singing his unaccompanied West Country ditties, typically to a well-oiled audience.

Moving to London in the 60s to attend University College I met Tony, who could do a lot of the folk guitar styles and who encouraged me to join him on stage –I can play a mean set of spoons, but mainly singing. It was great fun hitching around the UK performing in folk clubs. I had a good range at the time (it's a bit less now) and can hold a tune. I had a habit at the time of bending up to the root note of a piece, which Tony dubbed "banana notes" and teased me mercilessly about.

Later, in the early 70s folk singers started doing this deliberately. Of course, they had to work at it, whereas in my case it came naturally (or should I say unconsciously). Another great thing about those early folk club days was seeing acts like John Martyn, Richard and Linda Thompson and Martin Carthy when they were just starting out – often playing the university folk club to 50 people or less! And of course, we would see Pink Floyd and the Incredible String Band any chance we could. Big Ted, as performed by Tony, was one of my Dad's favourite songs.

John joined us in the early 70s, and his bass and recording skills enabled us to form Tony, Caro and John and record "All On The First Day", the story of which is told in lots of places on this website. My brother Jonny – by this time a virtuoso harmonica player and a developing singer – became part of the live arm of TCJ, Forever and Ever.

I've lived in London ever since those heady days. I married John and we have a daughter, Liz. John passed away in 2005, but I remain very close to the other members of the band such as our keyboard player Rod (now in Spain), and of course Tony and his wife Barbara who live close to us in West London, when they weren't travelling the world with Tony's job.

Nowadays I'm a Professor of Medical Statistics at my old London college. I don't sing live much - save for the occasional family occasion and impromptu singsongs – but music is still an important part of my life. I enjoy live music and go to several gigs a month. I'm particularly keen on the new wave of young British folk acts and singer-songwriters like The Unthanks, The Young 'Uns, O'Hooley and Tidow, Blair Dunlop, Eliza Carthy and Lucy Ward. However I also enjoy Elbow, Richard Hawley, Alison Krauss, The Staves, Ed Sheeran and James Bay. And yes, that's the "1970s me" on the front of the recently-released TCJ archive set, Blue Clouds.