mandolinking.org.uk  2012


Mandolinking began in 1997 with the aim of linking mandolin players with resources available on the internet.

Since then, the internet has grown exponentially and, with it, the volume of information for both new and experienced mandolin payers. Mandolinking retains its enthusiasm for sharing this information and promoting the mandolin, by linking to the best of the resources we can find.


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The Mandolin Kings: Ray Jackson

This is a series of pages featuring some of the mandolin players who have inspired me….and I have to start with the original mandolin king: Ray Jackson:

if he could make the mandolin sound bigger. To my surprise he diverted the signal from the mandolin track to a Leslie speaker on the studio floor: these normally were used to play a Hammond organ through. The speaker has a spinning horn which has the effect of making the notes swirl around, similar to phasing. The sound was recorded and routed back through onto the mixing desk producing the mandolin sound on the record. I was suitably impressed at the transformation of my little mandolin line to the feature instrument it became in the song".

Perhaps the best known mandolin riff in pop history is the one played by Ray on Rod Stewart's "Maggie May". Brought in to add something to lift the song, Ray came up with the riff that everyone knows. And how was he credited on the sleeve of Every Picture Tells a Story ? "The mandolin was played by the mandolin player in Lindisfarne. The name slips my mind." Thanks a lot, Rod! And to add insult to injury, when performing the song on Top of the Pops, the Faces asked dj John Peel to mime the mandolin part. Here's part of the Maggie May riff story, as told to the BBC One programme: you tube clip. Next time you hear Maggie May don't forget to credit the mandolin king - Ray Jackson of Lindisfarne. And thanks for getting me started on the mando, Ray.


Ray Jackson on wikipedia

Key tracks:
Lady Eleanor - Lindisfarne
you tube
Maggie May - the infamous Faces appearance on Top of the Pops with John Peel miming
you tube
Mandolin Wind - Rod Stewart
you tube
Farewell - Rod Stewart
you tube


Ray Jackson

Lindisfarne were the band that made me take up the mandolin. Their unique sound was not just due to their superb folk-rock harmonies but also, to my ears, it was due to Ray's mandolin (although, to be fair, Si Cowe played the mandolin too). Chief songwriter in the band, Alan Hull, came up with Ray's moniker in a song from the 1972 album Dingly Dell:

"Listen to the mandolin king, doing his own special thing
strumming his strings, singing his songs
and when he sings you all sing along"


One of the great Lindisfarne tracks is Lady Eleanor. In an article on Lindisfarne's official website, Ray has this to say about the recording: "during the mix down of Lady Eleanor, I remember John Anthony asking our engineer Robin Cable