"It's always a joy to see Iona Lane who is a real rising star, constantly looking to innovate and progress."
- Tony Birch, FATEA (2018)
Iona Lane a singer, musician and songwriter from North West England. Iona is currently studying for a BA (Hons) Music (Folk) with a scholarship at Leeds College of Music. Iona has always had a passion for music but only recently started paving a career in it - she submerged herself in folk music, picked up guitar, and never looked back!
Over the past four years Iona has been building up a repertoire of original material, traditional folk songs and interpretive covers to perform at live gigs. She has released four EPs over this time: 'Dry Stone Walls' (December 2015); 'Solace' (February 2017); 'Pockets' (September 2017); and ‘Golden Sleeves’ (December2018). All can be found via the 'shop' tab at the top of this page or can be streamed via Spotify.
Over the summer of 2015 Iona featured as part of FATEA’s Summer Showcase download.
Iona regularly play gigs across the UK. Notable gigs from 2015/2016 include: supporting Ken Nicol (ex-Steeleye Span and The Albion Band guitarist); Steeleye Span and The Albion Band guitarist); supporting howdenjones on a number of their tour dates; supporting Blair Dunlop at Brewery Arts Centre (Kendal); playing on the same bill at Luke Jackson at Lancaster Castle and supporting Larkin Poe at The Convent (Stroud).
Highlights from 2017 include touring with howdenjones (Herefordshire and Gloucestershire), supporting Joel Gardner (Manchester), been on tour with LGGS Jazz Band to Lake Constance and played a set of gigs in London (August 2017), supported Iona Fyfe (Coventry), James Kirby (Lancaster).
In 2018 Iona has notably supported Edgelarks (Bristol), played at Busk Love Folk Festival (Southport), toured with fellow songwriter Kate Howden, performed at Folk On The Dock (Liverpool), FATEA’s Birthday Festival, and Folkstock.
Iona played live on BBC Radio Lancashire on the 2nd April 2016, and appeared on BBC North West Tonight on 3rd June 2016.
Iona's latest EP 'Pockets' was nominated for 'Best EP' at FATEA's Annual Awards 2017.
Iona is currently working towards her debut album.
"It's always a joy to see Iona Lane who is a real rising star, constantly looking to innovate and progress and she found a lot of new fans with beautiful songs." - Tony Birch, FATEA (2018)
"IONA LANE treats us to a short set of Joni-flecked indie folk. The five tracks were lovely, simple and acoustic but the highlight was yet another song that transported the Frenchay faithful to a different place. Her version of the traditional The Loch Tay Boat Song stopped time. Scots to its very bones and seriously beautiful. An utter treat." - Gavin McNamara (Downend Folk Club), 2018
“There may be a time when reviewers don’t mention Iona Lane’s age when reviewing her albums, but when she writes songs about leaving sixth form (‘The Leaving Song’) that might be a while yet. Nonetheless, the third EP from this young (y’see!) Lancastrian singer-songwriter impresses as much as her first two ... irrespective of her age. New EP ‘Pockets’ features a very pretty version of the traditional ‘The Loch Tay Boat Song’, but it’s the original material that impresses most. ‘Carved by Another’ has the feel of a sixties folk-pop classic and ‘Northern Town’ (which may be about the Manchester Arena bombing) has a wonderful tremulous vocal to match the emotional subject matter. It is on the (sort of) title track that Iona surpasses herself. Built around a ‘Fast Car’ type guitar figure, ‘Living Life out of Pockets’, about the lonely life of a travelling musician, may be her best song yet and the closest she’s got to the Joni Mitchell archetype. Supported on backing vocals and fiddle by her friend Abi Plowman, ‘Pockets’ is a work of depth, beauty and, yes, maturity.” - Jonathan Roscoe, Shire Folk Magazine (2017)
“The disc starts to spin and a delicately fragile yet startling clear voice, softly combining with violin and guitar, takes you straight to the heart of these simple but exquisite songs, which means you’re listening to ‘Pockets’ by Iona Lane. This EP or perhaps more accurately a mini-album, offers six songs, five original contemporary folk and one traditional. And once again, reveals more of Iona’s talent as a musician and a songwriter. The songs on ‘Pockets’ range through a variety of themes and messages - from a view of life as a board-game with the delightful ‘Weighted Dice’, through the keen observation of the transient life of the travelling musician within ‘Living Life out of Pockets’ to looking forward with uncertainty and longing, touched with anticipation in ‘The Leaving Song’, there’s also a fine rendition of ‘The Loch Tay Boat Song’. Iona Lane is a young talent with clearly a long road to travel, hopefully those travels will one day result in a full-length album.“ - Charlie Elland, FolkWords (2017)
"...This counterpoints the title track 'Living Life out of Pockets', which is a declaration of individuality based on an itinerant singer / songwriter who has made the choice and realises there may well be a price to pay. When trying to pick my track of the EP I rate this as first amongst many equals simply because of the quality of the writing, which is of the very highest standard... ...Another song that impressed me was 'Carved By Another', this time for the quality of the singing. It's pitched much higher than Iona's normal voice but at no point is a note stretched for or not quite hit. The vocalisations are quite stunning, having a real ethereal feeling, and it's a song that forces you to stop and listen. Although set in a garden this is also a song about planting metaphorical seeds and watching them develop into something new, although the sun won't always shine. Adding to the quality of this piece is the backing which is so simple it becomes almost hypnotic. A beautiful song." - Tony Birch, FATEA (2017)
“(In Solace) the voice remains at the forefront, with its intriguing timbre that makes it both ‘different’ and alluring. The music weaves itself around the vocals and as you listen, the depth of the lyrics catch you and carry you into the songs. This time around, the instrumentation is more in evidence but never enough to get in the way, the same applies to the production, which is tighter and more embracing, to give a fuller sound, however it’s never allowed to swamp the modest simplicity that makes Iona’s songs so moving.” - Tim Carroll, FolkWords (2017)
“I see only good things ahead for Iona, and I look forward to hearing more…” - Allan Wilkinson, Northern Sky Mag (2017)
"For someone who hasn't been writing and performing for that long, four-track EP Solace could be the work of a seasoned artist. That's especially true in the case of 'Amsterdam' - a remarkably mature piece of work that tracks a visit to six holocaust sites in the city. In contrast, the early-90s jangle of The Sundays shapes 'Sometimes' points in an alternative direction Iona could take with ease. Whatever she does next this is someone to keep a very close watch on." - Jonathan Roscoe, Shire Folk Magazine (2017)
"It will interesting to watch Iona's progress as she moves towards her debut album." - Gary Smith, Laurel Canyon Music (2017)
"Taking another bold step from the bedroom with her second EP finds Iona Lane quick to acknowledge her musical influences from fellow young upstarts Blair Dunlop and Larkin Poe, plus the master himself Steven Wilson. All making their mark on her brand of contemporary folk... It’s perhaps the stripped back solo performance of ‘I’ll Run Without You’ which is most significant. Shorn of a more ambitious arrangement and charged with a sure confidence to go it alone, it’s Iona backing up why it’s her name on the cover." - Mike Ainscoe, Sonic Bandwagon (2017)
"Solace is a milestone release for Iona, placing her firmly in that group of independent artists who are going to make a big impression in the years to come." - Tony Birch, FATEA (2017)
"Iona Lane makes her debut with an EP, Dry Stone Walls, six original songs with a rather lovely cover of 'Si Bheag Si Mhor', although 'Orkney' is the top track. She has a band that doesn't crowd her but can burst forth with exuberance when required. Iona is just seventeen and people are expecting a very bright future for her." - R2 (Rock 'n' Reel) Magazine (2016)
"Iona adds little touches that raise it just above the level of another bedroom singer-songwriter." - Jonathan Roscoe at Shire Folk Magazine (2016)
"It happens every time. She seduces you with sublime musical beauty. Then, slaps you in the face with a lyrical RPG! Completely addictive! The best, most honest, most human voice you could ever hear." - Kate & Paul of howdenjones (2015)
"Definitely one to watch!" - Roots & Fusion Radio (2015)
"Within seconds I was captured by the voice; distinctive, alluring, honest, and above all, original. Then comes the musical splendour, sparse yet as full as needed to allow the lyrics to express themselves... Watch out for this lady, she is destined for success!" - Tim Carroll at FolkWords (2015)
"Iona has a sweet and accurate voice, a lovely guitar sound, a range of material, and most of all an unfussy style. She has taken the time to get inside her songs, and has a single-minded determination to develop her technique, which is already unusual for someone of her age." - Bill Lloyd (2015)
"It is clear from the way Iona sings that she has a real connection with the songs, you can almost feel it in her voice... Great things to come." - FATEA Magazine (2014)
"Considering Lane is just 16, still at school, still busking and doing open mics and only been playing guitar for a year what she has laid down is pretty impressive and without a doubt she is one to watch for the future." - Folkall (2014)