John Howes and Huw Jones met at the Valley Folk Club in Pontardawe in the mid 1970s. John had previously been a Resident Floor Singer at the legendary Adelphi Folk Club in Swansea and at The Wig and Gown Folk Club in Maidstone in the late 1960s. Inspired by some of the Breton musicians such as Marc Perrone, Huw took up the melodeon and started playing for Cam Carlam, the Welsh dance team from Pontardawe. In 1980 at one of the early Pontardawe Folk Festivals, they decided to get together and start a band to play for Ceilidhs and The Bear Band was formed initially with the mandolin player John Jeater. This band went on to become one of the most popular folk bands in South Wales for over 30 years
(click to The Bear Band)


During the Ceilidhs, the band would play two or three songs and these became the starting point for John and Huw to develop a song based band to perform a broad range of folk and roots based material at clubs and festivals. They decided to name it Bear Bones – not only making reference to The Bear Band but to the fact that they were the ‘bare bones’ of their music. The Bear Band had an ever changing line up, and while Bear Bones’ initial gig was played with Jon Evans on Bass and Lyndon Whife on drums, it eventually settled down as a trio with Robert Musgrove on bass.


The Band played their last concert at the Pontardawe Arts Centre in 2017 at The Acoustic Meeting Ground.


Traditional Folk & Roots-based Songs & Music
bear bones studio
Poster for 1st Booking
Poster for the last Bookings
last booking