From the archives: Folk music: A quiet revolution

Laura Marling
Neil McCormick writes: "'Thank you. I’m Laura,” mumbled the pale and pretty 21 year-old, nervously collecting the award for Best British Female Solo Artist at this year’s Brits. It is not often award winners feel compelled to identify themselves, but you could almost hear a nation muttering “Laura who?”Self-styled acoustic folk singer Laura Marling had just seen off the challenge of household name Cheryl Cole. Poster girl for a new folk generation almost diametrically opposed to the superficial glitz of the mainstream music business, Marling was visibly uncomfortable. “This is really weird,” she muttered, before fleeing with her statuette. Things were about to get even weirder. At the end of the ceremony, Marling’s then boyfriend, Marcus Mumford, collected Best British Album with his band Mumford & Sons, after gathering around a single microphone to perform an intimate, acoustic folky ballad, arranged for banjo and four-part harmonies."