From the "Minstrel" Newsletter
ID you ever stop to wonder how Amazing Blondel got their name? According to John Gladwin, Terry and he had been playing at a folk club in Middlesborough shortly after the break-up of Methuselah. After the gig Eugene McCoy, the now famous restaurateur and Masterchef guest, when asked what he thought, was heard to reply, " ...very Blondel". Blondel stuck and 'The Amazing' was added and the rest is history. 'The', incidentally, was dropped in 1970 shortly after 'Evensong' was released.
Very interesting you may ask but who was this Blondel character anyway? Malcolm Holmes has been digging around in the bowels of his computer at HTD and sent us this brief biography that he found on © Microsoft Encarta.
Blondel de Nesle was a French minstrel, Born in Nesle in Picardy. A favourite of King Richard I of England , he accompanied him to Palestine on the Third Crusade. (John says that King Richard fancied himself as a bit of a Simon and Garfunkel and often wrote and performed songs with Blondel.) According to legend, when Richard was on his homeward journey (Homeward Bound?) he was captured and imprisoned by the Duke of Austria in December 1192. Blondel wandered through Germany in disguise, searching for his master. At last he discovered that King Richard was a captive in the castle of Durnstein in Austria. He was singing outside the castle and heard Richard's voice answering from the dungeon. The minstrel immediately returned to England, where he reported the King's place of imprisonment. A ransom was procured for the release of the King and he was saved.