Legacy Meets Woolly Rockers!
August 11, 2016
Here at Legacy we absolutely love all of the Woolly Rockers, so it’s only right that we spoke to the woman behind the wool!
Liz Powner, the creator of Woolly Rockers has been knitting, sewing since the day she can remember, and we wanted to find out more about what inspired her to create her collection…
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO DO WOOLLY ROCKERS?
I started a long time ago! When I was a kid I found a pattern in one of my grandmas Woman’s Weekly magazines for nursery rhyme characters. I made Little Miss Muffet and Little Boy Blue.
Years later, when I was at home one summer between university terms, I made the Little Boy Blue with a longer jacket and fashioned them into the Sergent Pepper Beatles in red, yellow, blue and pink. I kept these with me and a friend saw them and asked me to make some more, so I did.
Then word got around. I made a set for a photographer, Terry Rawlings, and left them for him to pick up in my friends vintage clothes shop, What the Butler Wore, in Waterloo.
Bridget, who runs the shop, showed them to her friend, Lois Wilson, who was a writer for Mojo magazine, and she wrote a feature on them. I’ve had a lot of orders from then onwards.
WHICH WAS THE HARDEST BOB DYLAN DOLL TO MAKE?
The hardest of the Dylans was probably Nashville Skyline. I had the idea initially as a photography project: to make every single Dylan album cover by posing the Bobs and reproducing the LP cover photo. Nashville Skyline was hard for a couple of reasons.
Firstly the guitar, a Gibson J200 with the flower detail. I was able to reproduce this with embroidery which was quite satisfying. Also, because he doesn’t really have a beard but is a bit stubbly I tried using really fine wool for the stubble – but I still think he looks a bit too beardy!
Because all the facial features are embroidered there are knots at the back of the head, it would be impossible to do someone who was completely bald – the knots would show!
WHICH WOOLLY ROCKER ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?
Frida Kahlo. I made a few artists for a collaboration with an artist friend. Frida is so distinctive looking with her monobrow and Mexican dress. I really enjoyed making her. She has a lot of colourful embroidery and flowers.
WHICH ROCKER ARE YOU THINKING OF CREATING NEXT?
At the moment I’m working on Jimi Hendrix, the Monterey Pop festival outfit. I’ve made him before but I’ve improved the design of the Rockers so they have a wire frame, this is wrapped with strips of wire for the bodies before the knitted body is sewn on.
This means they can stand up by themselves and it’s possible to put them in different poses, like playing guitar!
I want to make a new improved Jimi, as well as Willie Nelson, Led Zeppelin and Prince. I’d like to get some more commissions as it’s great to make them for people who are really going to get a kick out of their favourite artist, knitted in wool and fully posable.
I’m there for the fans who aren’t going to find their favourite band as action figures; something that’s not available on the high street or anywhere else.
WHAT MUSIC DID YOU LISTEN TO GROWING UP?
I grew up living with my mum and my grandparents, that might be why I feel like I was born out of my time.
The radio was always on and there are a couple of songs that seemed to be playing a lot while I was growing up, like Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell, and House of the Rising Sun by The Animals.
My mum also listened to a lot of Motown and soul, that was her thing, she was a Mod before I was! Then I remember her having the Sound of Bread album that everyone had in the seventies. I loved that… still do.
When I was about fifteen I got massively into Bowie and Roxy Music. I had a good friend who was into Pink Floyd and loved Syd Baretts early songs, but then as a student I was mainly into indie stuff like My Bloody Valentine and Primal Scream. I studied in Leicester where there were a lot of Indie/Sixties crossover nights.
I crossed over, gradually picking up Monkees and Beach Boys records from the market for fun. The first sixties band I took seriously were the Byrds. They had three fabulous songwriters with Gene Clark, Roger McGuinn and David Crosby… So from there I got into lots of other singer songwriters as well as obscure freakbeat and psych like July, Kaleidoscope, The Poets and Wimple Winch. I had Rubble albums and the British Psychedelic Trip Compilations of rarities.
WHO ARE YOUR FAVOURITE ARTISTS?
I still love a lot of psychedelia, bands like The Nazz and The West Coast Pop Experimental Band.. the really freaky stuff but also singer songwriters because you get a sense of what someone is really about and their sensibility as a songwriter.
I had Dylan’s sixties albums for ages, but it was when I really got into Blood on the Tracks that I became a huge fan. This coincided with me learning to play guitar.
I would listen to that album on headphones and try to learn the chords and the words. Then I’d practice them… everyday!
Through Dylan I discovered other contemporaries like Phil Ochs, Tim Hardin and my current absolute favourite – Townes Van Zandt! I adore him. There’s Gene Clarks solo albums, Neil Young obviously, James Taylor, Paul Simon, Nick Drake, Joni Mitchell and Emmitt Rhodes.
I love a lot of country rock too: Gram Parsons and the Flying Burrito Brothers, The Eagles and Poco.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVOURITE ALBUMS?
Oh there’s so many…. The obvious critically acclaimed sixties classics like Pet Sounds, Revolver and Forever Changes are favourites of mine.
‘Blood on the Tracks’ is definitely an important one for me. Genes Clark’s solo albums. Townes Van Zandt… all of his! They’re just consistently great as the seventies go because he was doing his own folky cowboy thing.
The last thing I heard that blew me away was the lost psychedelic folk album, Parallelograms, by Linda Perhacs, it takes you places…
WHAT’S THE BEST GIG OR FSTIVAL YOU’VE BEEN TO?
I’ve been to some great gigs this year. I’ve seen Neil Young, Jeff Lynne, but probably the most amazing experience was seeing Fleetwood Mac and meeting Mick Fleetwood.
I did a commission for Mick. He asked me to make four sets of Fleetwood Mac dolls as he wanted to give then as gifts to the other band members. So my Woolly Fleetwood Macs are with Jon, Christine, Lindsay & Stevie.
I was able to deliver them personally to him in his dressing room and he loved them. I took pictures of him with the dolls, he really seemed taken with them. He was so lovely and it was great to meet him.
WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY LISTENING TO?
Mainly singer songwriters of the country & folky variety with fingerpicky guitar. I can’t get enough of Townes Van Zandt right now.
I met an incredible singer songwriter called Jay Fynn. We met at a Bob Dylan Basement Tapes Classic Albums event. I know Sid Griffin who was there speaking and he knew about my Dylan dolls. I had a knitted Bob with me and Sid waved it around to everyone in the audience, so afterwards a few people asked me about them.
Jay Fynn subsequently asked me to make a Tom Waits. In the process I heard Jay’s songs, which are some of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever come across.
He’s amazingly talented and has self-released an EP called Tumbleweedin’ which I made available through my Woolly Rockers shop online.
From Mr Fynn I learned a few fingerpicking tricks on the guitar and picked up on some more lovely folk songwriters that influenced him, like John Martyn, Jackson C Frank and Bert Jancsh.
I know I’ll continue to be inspired by music and make more Rockers. It’s great to be able to have an idea for someone, research pictures and bring them to life… With wool!
If you would like to learn more about Woolly Rockers visit Liz’s website here.
Our Artist of the Month Bob Dylan – voice of a generation, Nobel laureate and American treasure – today releases his first new studio album in eight years. And the reviews are in…Read more
Fifty five years on from his domination of the UK album chart with five albums in the top twenty, and with the Nobel Laureate once again releasing new music with ‘Murder Most Foul’ and ‘I Contain Multitudes’, our Artist of the Month for May is the one and only Bob Dylan.Read more
From charts to shows, record releases to record-setters – it’s This Week In Rock…Read more
Epic careers are launched, coveted awards are won and charts are topped – it’s this week in rock…Read more
Ever wondered what history’s biggest rock stars were up to over the festive period? Wonder no longer, it’s This Week In Rock…Read more
Legendary shows, groundbreaking album anniversaries, eye watering memorabilia auctions and more – it’s this week in rock.Read more
We’re proud to announce a brand new chapter in Bob Dylan’s acclaimed ‘Bootleg Series’. ‘Travelin’ Thru, 1967 – 1969′ is the 15th volume in the series and features 47 previously unreleased recordings.Read more
All star shows, landmark releases, the rise and fall of legendary venues, it’s This Week In Rock…Read more
Double whammys, numbers ones, history making shows and many happy returns – this week in rock down the years…Read more
The legendary 1975 leg of Bob Dylan’s mythic Rolling Thunder Revue has been collected into a comprehensive new 14 disc collection, featuring 100 previously unreleased recordings, available now.
An extraordinary accompanying film, ‘Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story By Martin Scorsese’, is streaming on Netflix now.Read more
Bob Dylan is one of the world’s most influential and ground-breaking artists and in 2016 was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature ‘for having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition’.Read more
The latest in the award winning Bob Dylan bootleg series is ‘More Blood, More Tracks’ celebrating the 1975 masterpiece. Here’s what the press are saying…Read more
We’re thrilled to announce an eagerly anticipated new chapter in the acclaimed Bob Dylan Bootleg Series, out now.Read more
With the release of ‘More Blood, More Tracks’ – a celebration of his 1975 masterpiece ‘Blood On The Tracks’ – the incomparable Bob Dylan is our Artist of the Month for November.Read more
As rock’s first Nobel Laureate tours Japan and Asia this summer, we’re pleased to announce a new collection of live recordings from the peerless Bob Dylan.Read more
As ‘Girl From The North Country’ – the critically-acclaimed new play in which the action is interwoven with Bob Dylan’s extraordinary songbook – continues to wow West End audiences, we’re pleased to announce ‘The Music Which Inspired Girl From The North Country’, out now.Read more
2017 has produced some of the most exciting reissues, limited edition and original vinyl albums of recent years, resulting in some ‘must-have’ records. Here are our Top Five picks, which should belong in the collection of any vinyl lover in your life, or of course, your own.Read more
The latest chapter in Columbia/Legacy’s highly acclaimed Bob Dylan Bootleg Series is out now.Read more
We’re proud to announce that the original cast recording of ‘Girl From The North Country’, the critically acclaimed new play from Conor McPherson featuring the music and lyrics of Bob Dylan, is out now.Read more
We’re giving you the chance to win one of our CD Book Sets – take your pick from Bob Dylan’s The Bootleg Series Volumes 1-3 [rare and unreleased] 1961-1991, Elvis Presley’s Platinum A Life In Music or AC/DC’s Black Tracks.Read more
Legendary Nashville road band, Old Crow Medicine Show today release their live version of Bob Dylan’s seminal double album, ‘Blonde On Blonde’.Read more
In his first ever three-disc release, voice of a generation and nobel laureate Bob Dylan today releases ‘Triplicate’, 30 classic American tunes, reimagined with Dylan’s inimitable talents as vocalist, arranger and bandleader.Read more
Collecting 30 brand new recordings from the nobel laureate, ‘Triplicate’ will be the first three-disc release from Bob Dylan.Read more
On Sunday Bob Dylan became the first musician to receive the Nobel Prize for literature. Read his humbling acceptance speech (delivered by the United States Ambassador to Sweden, Azita Raji) here…Read The Speech...
For the first time, the Real Royal Albert Hall concert, originally recorded for a live album in 1966, has finally been released…Read More...
As one of the most original, influential and culturally fascinating artists to have emerged in the 20th century, the man born Robert Allen Zimmerman in Duluth, Minnesota in 1941 has also proved to be one of its most divisive…Read More...
It’s one of the most ambitious box set projects in history – every single known recording of Bob Dylan’s legendary 1966 live shows across the US, UK, Europe and Australia collected in a huge 36 CD box set.Read More...
The boundary between pop lyricism and poetry or literature has long been a cause of debate, and never more so than in the recent decision to award Bob Dylan the Nobel Prize For Literature. The Quietus’ Luke Turner explores the frontier.Read More...
Bob Dylan has become the first musician in history to win the Nobel Prize For Literature.Read More...
One of the most ambitious box set projects in history comes to fruition on Friday, November 11th.Read More...
Iconic artists photographed and mapped around New York City!Read more
We spoke to Liz Powner to discuss her wonderful Woolly Rockers collection and her favourite music…Read more
Every month, we’ll gather up essential online pieces for you to enjoy!Read more
Take a different look at classic album covers and iconic pix from the likes of Hendrix, Dylan, The Clash etc.Read more
- Blowin' in the windBob Dylan
- The times they are a-changin'Bob Dylan
- Mr Tambourine manBob Dylan
- Like a rolling stoneBob Dylan
- Subterranean Homesick BluesBob Dylan
- and lots more!!...
‘Forever Young’ on The X Factor: have you heard this song before?Read more
Listen to 3 tracks from the forthcoming Bootleg series now!Read more
Bob Dylan’s 5th album “Bringing It All Back Home” was released in 1965 and was half acoustic half electric. What’s the story behind this artwork?Read more
‘Bob Dylan – The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series Vol 12’ is a deluxe 6CD anthology that will be released on November 6th.Read more
We are giving you the chance to own Bob Dylan 50th Anniversary Collection 1963Read more
Some of our favourite tracks and albums are currently available for a very special price…Read more