Meredydd Evans is the foremost authority on Welsh folk singing, as a singer himself, as a collector and academic, and as one who is passionately involved in the promotion of the Welsh language and its culture.
Born in Llanegryn, Meirionnydd, and brought up in Blaenau Ffestiniog, he heard folk songs and melodies sung by his mother from a very young age. Later, as a student at Bangor University, he was influenced by Enid Parry (wife of Dr. Thomas Parry), who began his lifelong addiction to the musical heritage of Wales. The third woman to play a big part in his work is his wife Phyllis Kinney, an American opera singer whom he met while lecturing in America during the 1950s.
As a student, he formed the close-harmony trio Triawd y Coleg (see SAIN SCD 2568) and they became household names in Wales through the "Noson Lawen" BBC radio programme, releasing several records of popular songs, mostly composed by Mered himself. His first album of folk songs was released in 1954 on the "Folkways" label during his time in the USA, and it was named one of the 12 best folk records of that year. After returning to Wales with his wife, he became a university lecturer before being appointed Head of Light Entertainment with BBC Wales, and was responsible for many successful popular music and comedy programmes in the early days of Welsh language TV.
After leaving the BBC, he returned to his academic work, and became active in Welsh language campaigns, especially the campaigns to establish a Welsh language TV channel and a Welsh Medium Federal College.