Archie Fisher leaves Travelling Folk

Archie Fisher bows out of Radio Scotland’s Travelling Folk after many years. I believe the BBC felt it was time for a change…http://bit.ly/ad3H17

Foot Stompin’ Newsletter 25th February 2010

The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill Vol.2

The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill Vol.2

Hi there,

For the last week of February we’re offering one of our best selling CDs for £4.99 (60% of normal price). It’s Laughing Girl by virtuoso Shetland fiddler Jenna Reid. The Herald when reviewing the CD said of Jenna’s playing “Expect sparks to fly – and a good greet when she puts her heart and soul into the sad tunes”. http://bit.ly/2L0tQ1

1. New Releases – includes The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill Vol.2, Ceol Uibhist Volume 2
2. Fiddlers’ Bid – All Dressed in Yellow. Have you heard it?
3. Book of the Week – Precious and the Puggies
4. Scottish Music Hero – John D. Burgess. MBE 1934 – 2005.
5. Snippets – includes Twitter Helps Spread Gaelic to Spain, Bothy Ballad Champion of Champions 2010.
6. Foot Stompin’ FREE Scottish Music Ringtone
7. Reviews includes Archie Fisher
8. Best Sellers: includes Session A9, Mary Ann Kennedy and Na Seoid
9. Foot Stompin’ Scotch Whisky – Strathisla 40 Year Old
10. Discussion forum
11. Testimonials
12. Foot Stompin’ on Facebook and Twitter

1. New Releases (remember if you’ve bought from us before you get our loyalty 10% discount off everything)

ANOTHER NATIONAL BARD!! The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill Vol.2:  Since the centenary edition of his works and festivities in Paisley in 1874, which drew crowds of 15,000 to celebrate his life and art, Robert Tannahill has been sadly neglected. But thanks to Dr Fred Freeman, a project to record over 100 of Robert Tannahill’s  songs over five volumes is well under way. We are delighted to have Volume 2 available this week. Tannahill’s work is of a quality that compares with Robert Burns, and these songs constitute his great legacy.  This is a lovely album which features some of Scotland’s finest singers and musicians. £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/dlu5xG

UIST MUSIC!! Ceol Uibhist Volume 2: Ceolas, the music song and dance summer school set within the Gaelic speaking community of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides have just released a new CD! It features more of the many Tradition Bearers in Uist today. Included are songs and piping from Catriona Garbutt, songs from Duncan MacKinnon, Paul McCallum, Janice Simpson, dance music from ‘Na Deasaich’, Calum Iain MacCorquodale, Angus Ailig MacDonald and more…..£11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/ci5xEl

READY TO DANCE!! Ready..And! -Bobby Brown & The Scottish Accent: A lovely CD of Scottish dance music  played by Bobby Brown with his two great ensembles ‘The Scottish Accent’ and the ‘Cape Breton Symphony Fiddlers’. Joining them are the renowned Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser and, for one selection, two brilliant pipers from the 48th Highlanders of Canada Regiment, Pipe Major Reay Mackay and Pipe Major Sandy Dewar.  Bobby and his two groups have performed at concerts and dances throughout the Celtic world, and have toured Europe and Canada several times. £11.69 (£12.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/bNhxiT

COLLECTOR’S ITEM!! Binneas is Boreraig (Disc One) Audio CD – Piobaireachd by Malcolm Ross MacPherson: This is an 18 track CD (part of a 110 tune collection) recorded by Malcolm MacPherson (Calum Og) in 1959 as a companion to the Binneas Is Boreraig music book series. Pipers everywhere will be aware that these recordings represent a master player in his later years – with the benefit of a lifetime to re-study and reflect on the music passed down to him by a long line of piping greats. Malcom Ross MacPherson’s line of piping goes back directly to the MacCrimmons, through Malcolm’s father Angus, his grandfather Calum Piobaire and his great-grandfather Angus Cam, to the great Skye masters. It was the MacCrimmons whose mastery of Piobaireachd, the ancient classical music of the Highlands of Scotland, was unrivalled at any time in history.  £11.69 (£12.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/9TODOf

and

Binneas is Boreraig Volume 1 (book): This historical work edited by Dr Roderick Ross was first published 50 years ago and broke new ground in the publication of piobaireachd music. Subsequent volumes in the series were combined in the Binneas Complete Collection but  this book, containing 10 tunes, is the original first edition and has now become something of a collector’s item. A limited number are now available thanks to a discovery made in the College of Piping storeroom! Tunes covered are MacLeod Controversy, MacLeod of Colbeck, Craigellachie, Menzies Salute, Lament for the Chilkdren, MacFarlane’s Gathering, King’s Taxes, MacLeod’s Salute, Donald Duaghal MacKay and the Blind Pipers’s Obstinacy which can all be found on the CD ‘Binneas is Boreraig (Disc One)’ played by Malcolm Ross MacPherson. In their time, both the books and the original recordings were well used by real exponents of the high art of Piobaireachd. £5.39 (£5.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/dCHerl

Remember unlike many other websites you can speak to Foot Stompin’ on the telephone! Get us on +44 (0)131 441 3135 and we’ll help you anyway we can. We take all credit cards.

2. Fiddlers’ Bid – All Dressed in Yellow. Have you heard it?
I just thought I would flag up this amazing CD. I believe that Fiddlers’ Bid have made one of the best Scottish fiddle records ever. They have taken their own Shetland music (which they obviously love) and whilst not departing from their tradition in the slightest have created something completely modern and exciting. Their is playing is inspirational and the way the music is shared between the band is amazing. If you’re looking to buy one fiddle CD this decade this is it!
http://bit.ly/6cY8f

3. Book of the Week – Precious and the Puggies
A brand new book in Scots for younger readers by one the world’s favourite authors Alexander McCall Smith. It tells the story of the girlhood adventures of Precious Ramotswe, founder of the Number 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency. Wee Precious must solve her very first case involvin her freend Sepo, a piece and some cheeky puggies (monkeys) and so become a detective….

“Somebody wis breakin Rule Nummer Yin. Somebody in Precious Ramotswe’s schuil wis pauchlin things. First there wis Tapiwa’s cake, syne there wis Sepo’s jeely piece. Whit wid be nixt? Wha wis the thief? And hoo wis Precious gonnae mak shair that the wrang person didna get the blame?”

The author has decided that Precious and the Puggies appears in print in the Scots language for a year before it is translated into English or any other language.  He writes “I have long admired the Scots language and I admire people who are determined that we should not forget how to speak and read Scots…’ This wee book is translatit intae Scots by James Robertson an published by ‘Itchy Coo’ who specialise in Scots language books. It has a hard cover and a ‘Precious Ramontswe’s Guide to Scots words’ in the back. £8.99(£9.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/aWNsWd

4. Scottish Music Hero – John D. Burgess. MBE 1934 – 2005.
John D Burgess was a phenomenon in the world of piping.  At the age of four he began to take an interest in playing when his father made a scaled-down practice chanter for him.  When he was ten he went for lessons to the legendary Pipe Major William Ross at Edinburgh Castle, and from this his rise was meteoric.  From being an infant prodigy he beacame a boy genius, whose playing in juvenile competitions brought professional pipers in large numbers into the audience.

In 1950, at the age of sixteen, he started his professional career – and started at the top.  In his first appearance he won the Gold Medals for piobaireachd playing at both the Argyllshire Gathering, Oban, and the Northern Meeting, Inverness, an achievement never before dreamed of and never likely to be equalled.  In addition he won the march at Oban, the strathspey and reel at Inverness, and several other prizes, making him easily the most successful competitor at these two premier meetings.  Since then he won all the major awards, many of them several times.

In 1952 he was invited, with Pipe Major William Ross, to visit Canada and the United States, and this tour carried the legend of his brilliance to a wide and appreciative audience.  He then spent some time in the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders before joining the famous Edinburgh Police Pipe Band, of which he eventually became pipe major.  Later he moved to the Invergordon Distillery Band when this amazing “band of talents” was formed.  After two years – when this interesting experiment was discontinued – he decided to stay in the North, where the atmosphere seemed more conducive to the maturing of his ability.  There he had further help in piobaireachd interpretation from the old master Angus MacPherson, whose piping is two generation straight from the MacCrimmons.

Read the complete article about this amazing man… http://www.footstompin.com/public/article/celtic_music_heroes/john_d_burgess
Check out John’s CD http://bit.ly/cB15fV

5. Snippets
Hebridean Celtic Festival: Hall of Fame Nomination
The Hebridean Celtic Festival is pleased to announce its very own ‘Hall of Fame’. To mark its 15th anniversary in 2010 we are highlighting some of the superb artists, performances and experiences enjoyed by HebCelt audiences over past years.
http://bit.ly/9M1CPv

Scottish Arts Council awards Scots Music Group £75,750
Congratulations to the Edinburgh-based Scots Music Group who are celebrating a share of almost £800,000 to connect people through the arts and encourage long-lasting links between people, places and ideas.
http://bit.ly/cu1t4W

When Nicola Benedetti Met Aly Bain
They both play violin but their music is worlds apart…Nicola is one of the leading lights of the classical world and Aly is a bedrock of the Scottish folk scene. Could be a great programme – BBC Two Scotland, 10.00-10.30pm on Tuesday 2nd March.
http://bit.ly/bmDYKn

Stompin’ in Oban!! Job Opportunity
Skipinnish Cèilidh House is  looking to recruit 3 full time musicians for the busy summer season at the Skipinnish Cèilidh House in Oban. From 23rd June – 12th September 2010
http://bit.ly/9Jxzde

Let’s hear it for Paisley!
The town of Paisley has been named as the official host town for the Royal National Mod 2013, one of Scotland’s biggest music festivals … It is the first time the town will have hosted the event after previously losing out to Stornoway in the 2008 race.
http://bit.ly/dcOYMi

Creative Scotland is looking for a new Chair and Board Members
Do you think you could make a difference to the newly formed Creative Scotland? Now here’s your chance – why not apply!
http://bit.ly/b2uHZG

New Folk Presenter on Heartland fm
The popular Perthshire radio station has a new presenter – Katherine Liley – for their folk programme “‘Celtic Celebrations'”
http://bit.ly/aEPMsg

Treacherous Orchestra Tour Dates
The turbo-charged 13-piece supergroup featuring pipes, accordian, fiddles, whistles, flutes, electric guitar, banjo, bass, drums and percussion are on tour 26th March – 10th April. Don’t miss them!
http://bit.ly/aaPmWn

A buzz in the Borders!
A species of bumblebee has been spotted in Scotland for the first time in 50 years. The Southern Cuckoo bumblebee was found near the border with England at St Abbs in Berwickshire. It is black and yellow like other types but the male has distinctive antennae and is named after the cuckoo because it moves into the nests of other bees. …Matt McGinn had a song about a bee..
http://bit.ly/9PCO7s

6. Foot Stompin’ FREE Scottish Music ringtone
Here a great ringtone from top Scottish fiddle band Blazin’ Fiddles. This track Miss Johnstone makes everybody smile when they hear you phone ring! (You’ll find it down the page a bit!) http://bit.ly/6H7zj6

7. Reviews.

CD: Long Road Home –  Stringjammer.  4 stars. Reviewed in Scotland on Sunday
Conrad Ivitsky blew around the world for years as the bass player in Shooglenifty, but remains restlessly explorative. In Stringjammer he’s the singing captain of a changeable crew of musical pirates who have bonded in their disrespect of frontiers. Frets, folktronica, free reeds and fiddle, rolling rhythms, Latin jazz licks, country blues and quirky percussion come and go with the mists in just half a dozen myth and dream-laden songs. It’s winsome, clever stuff and you won’t resist the urge to smile….NC
http://bit.ly/b6qaDe

CD: Ken Campbell’s Ideal Band. Reviewed for Maverick Magazine
A poignant and heartfelt wonderful album to treasure, each song an absolute gem.A simply beautiful sound that is hard to come by.
http://bit.ly/ckR9Ez

CD: Sunsets I’ve Galloped Into – Archie Fisher. Customer Review  5 Stars
This album by Archie surely ranks as one of his best great song with Archie’s warm delivery a fantastic album for someone who would like a gentle start in their folk collection…Cheerydavie
http://bit.ly/aHW71A

CD: Shipwrecks And Static – Inga Thomson. 4 stars. Reviewed in Scotland on Sunday
The Shetland accordionist, keyboard player and songwriter (and member of the Karine Polwart Trio) lets her imagination go in this solo album. Child-like in its approach, with Heidi Talbot and Rory Campbell on additional vocals, Tom Cook sharing instrumental duties, and a wee spot from hubby Martin Green, the album mixes sincere acoustica with quirky electronica and found percussion, to disconcerting effect. There are even harmonies from an Armenian cave. Cheerfully mesmerising….Norman Chalmers
http://bit.ly/21szJ1

8. Best Sellers

CD The Early McKellar: Kenneth McKellar
20 tracks first recorded by one of Scotland’s most popular tenor voices, more than 50 years ago remastered and now available on CD.
http://bit.ly/bR1xRV

CD The Desperate Battle of the Birds – Breabach
With their dual bagpipes, fiddle, whistles  guitar and song are one of the most inventive and diverse bands to have emerged from the Scottish folk scene in recent years.
http://bit.ly/aJ7FrR

Bottlenecks and Arm Breakers by Session A9
Exciting CD from Capercaillie’s Charlie McKerron and other top fiddlers. £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/ddIrof

Mary Ann Kennedy and Na Seoid by Mary Ann Kennedy and Na Seoid
Top Gaelic singer come together to make a fantastic CD of Gaelic song including some unexpected classics! £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/djomPw

Partners in Crimeby Ross Ainslie & Jarlath Henderson
This is a energy piping CD with a twist. This has sold a lot of copies to pipers all over the world who are amazed at these guys dexterity. £11.69 (£12.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/btOVRd

Fairest Floo’erby Karine Polwart
Karine is normally known for her brilliant self-penned songs but many of us know Karine firstly for her beautiful renditions of Scottish traditional songs. Fairest Floo’er was a triumph in Scots song. Get it now! £8.09 (£8.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/8ZRgod

9. Foot Stompin’ Scotch Whisky

We’ve partnered again with the excellent Master of Malt to offer you the very best in Scotch Whisky. This malt from the Strathisla whisky distillery draws its waters from the calcium rich, peat-less Broomhill Spring. Rumour has it, kelpies – the supernatural shape shifting water horses from Scottish folk lore – haunt the spring at night!

Strathisla 40 Year Old – Gordon and MacPhail (70cl, 43%): A 40 year old single malt for under £100! You really don’t see many like this… The nose is rich and full. There are notes of sweet vanilla fudge with caramelised fruits and charred toasty oak with spice and gentle, cold wood smoke. £99.95
http://bit.ly/ctSudn

10. Foot Stompin’ Discussion Forum

Have you got something to say? Why not visit our discussion forum. Here are two subjects being discussed at the moment.

Shetland Council propose to charge pupils £160 a year for their music lessons
They have to make £1.5million in savings….
http://bit.ly/biMNLv

The end of an Era: Farewell from the Garden Sessions
Regrettably, the internet radio station with a special interest in folk music has closed down..
http://bit.ly/9eM1ua

11. Testimonials

I just wanted to thank you for the fantastic music podcast.  I live in Israel and don’t get to enjoy Scottish music like this often.  Thanks! Jonatha Degai

Just wanted to say great newsletter, catalog and service.  I live in the U.S., and you sent my CDs across the ocean faster than the “big river” guys, if you know what I mean. Kevin H.

12 . Foot Stompin’ on Facebook and Twitter

Follow Foot Stompin’ on Facebook and Twitter and we’ll send you daily Scottish music updates

Foot Stompin’ has a presence on Facebook. Come along, pay us a visit and say hello! http://bit.ly/5VSQRg

If Twitter is more your scene you can visit us here http://bit.ly/7GkifS

Foot Stompin’ FREE Scottish Music Podcast

The Very Best of Kenneth McKellar

The Very Best of Kenneth McKellar

Listen to the Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast No. 54

Here’s our mid February 2010 Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast. Great music featured this week are Calum MacCrimmon with his new CD Man’s Ruin, Joy Dunlop’s Dusgadh (Awakening). Next up is a couple of golden oldies – Kenneth McKellar from 1960 singing My Love’s like a Red Red Rose and Jim Cameron and his Scottish Dance Band (from 1951) with Corn Rigs. We move to the present with fiddle maestro Alasdair White’s CD An Clàr Geal (The White Album) and finish off with Salsa Celtica and The Great Scottish Latin Adventure. http://bit.ly/oWIhn

Foot Stompin’ 4th February 2010 Newsletter

Breabach - the Desperate Battle of the Birds

Breabach - the Desperate Battle of the Birds

Listen to the latest Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast

On Sunday we celebrated the 10th BBC Radio Scotland Young Tradition Award. The very first winner was Gillian Frame back in 2001 and with her band Back of the Moon she made this great album Fortune’s Road. We’re offering it to you for £3.99! 60% OFF normal price. This offer is valid for One Week Only! Radio producer Steve Dieterich said of the album “Received this new album yesterday, and have already been through it 3 times! WOW!! I listen to 10+ new albums a week an “Fortune’s Road” got my attention right away. Very appealing.” http://bit.ly/cEp8ml

1. New Releases – includes Breabach, Stringjammer, Ronald Anderson Band
2. Legendary Scottish Bands: Ossian
3. The BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musican 2010 – The results
4. Snippets – Dick Gaughan Lifetime Achievement, Barbara Dickson, Valentine’s Cards
5. Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast – includes Breabach
6. Reviews – includes Alasdair Fraser and Jim Reid
7. Best Sellers: includes The Chair, Blair Douglas
8. Foot Stompin’ Scotch Whisky – Campbelltown Whisky
9. Discussion forum
10. Testimonials
11. Foot Stompin’ on Facebook and Twitter

1. New Releases (remember if you’ve bought from us before you get our loyalty 10% discount off everything)

A GREAT BAND!! The Desperate Battle Of The Birds – Breabach: Breabach with their dual bagpipes, fiddle, whistles  guitar and song are one of the most inventive and diverse bands to have emerged from the Scottish folk scene in recent years. From their foot-stomping reels to their heart-warming songs, there can be no doubt why this acclaimed quartet have become a household name for many in the folk and roots music scene. Their second CD underlines their award-winning credentials with superb individual and ensemble playing coupled with skilful arrangements. What a fab CD! The album title comes from a legendary pibroch of the same name, Scotland’s oldest form of pipe music. £11.70 (£12.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/aJ7FrR

WAY OOT WEST!! A Far Away Place: Folk ‘n’ Roll:  High energy exuberant acoustic music from the Isle of Lewis in a folk-rock style played by three young and very talented musicians. Fiddle, guitar and even djembe blast out tunes and songs that you can’t help but dance to. £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/cqI4a7

HI THE ROAD!! Long Road Home (EP) – Stringjammer: An interesting six track EP of attractive yet quirky songs featuring ex Shooglenifty bassist Conrad Ivitsky on lead vocals. Not afraid of mixing up styles and genres, the band fuse Latin rhythms, with occasional twists of the Blues, but always staying close to the origin of their Scottish roots, working together toform a unique and refreshingly heady blend of tunes and songs. Conrad Ivitsky – vocals and strings;  Diane de Carabus – song, guitar; Jenny Gardner – fiddle; Pete Garnett – melodica; Willy Molleson – percussion; Mike Molleson – percussion, vocal. £5.39 (£5.99 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/b6qaDe

HIGHLAND REFLECTIONS!! Ma Sgaoil – Bi Beo: A second CD from the Gaelic band forging unique styles to self-penned folk/pop/rock songs. The songs are a reflection of island and Highland life, from dancing to the beauty of love, nature, the elements and the harshness of isolation and abandonment. Many songs carry a messages of love, youthful joy and reflections of childhood memories of growing up in the Hebrides £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/9fly5D

WATER MUSIC!! Scapa Flow – Ronald Anderson Band: A great mix of dance tunes, mostly from Orkney & Shetland and all played with style and confidence by Ronald and his excellent band of fine musicians. Ronald Anderson (accordion), Erika Shearer (fiddle), Colin Wilson (drums), Margaret Scollay (piano), and Jim Halcrow (2nd accordion). Great variation and tempo. £11.25 (£12.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/aboVyr

Remember you can also buy from Foot Stompin’ by phone – +44 (0)131 441 3135. We take all credit cards. If you like a friendly voice at the end of your phone we’re here!

2. Legendary Scottish Bands: Ossian

Groundbreaking band Ossian were one of Scotland’s best folk groups ever. They were a unique and very special band.  Their instruments included harp, fiddle, smallpipes, whistles, cittern, mandolin, guitar, piano, bodhran, vocals. Ossian -named after the legendary 3rd century Celtic Bard and folk hero, was formed in 1976 and fast became a popular focus for a whole generation of up and coming traditional musicians.
Mae McKenna (sister of Hugh McKenna of The Sensational Alex Harvey Band) was introduced to a band formed by Billy Jackson, George Jackson and John Martin who at that time called themselves Contraband The band recorded one album on the Transatlantic label in 1974 but when shortly after Mae left to start a solo career Contraband disbanded in the Spring of 1975. Within a couple of years, Billy, George and John had joined forces with guitarist/singer Billy Ross to become Ossian. They recorded two famous albums Ossian (1977) and St Kilda Wedding (1978). More changes when Billy Ross left for a solo career but singer/guitarst Tony Cuffe stepped  and the band took on their most distinctive sound to date. Ossian went on to record some very fine albums and achieve wide international acclaim. To celebrate 20 years since the group was formed, a memorable Ossian reunion took place at Celtic Connections in 1996 and featured the line-up Billy Jackson, George Jackson, Billy Ross, John Martin, Tony Cuffe and Iain MacDonald. Tony Cuffe died in 2001 and George Jackson in July 1998.
Billy Jackson continues a hugely sucessful solo career both as a composer and performer. John Martin went on to join Easy Club and latterly is enjoying international acclaim playing fiddle with the Tannahill Weavers.

Ossian’s CDs are fast becoming hard to find. Check out the two albums available at Foot Stompin':
Ossian (first album from 1977) £11.69 (£12.99 for first time customers) http://bit.ly/dCgoCl
The Carrying Stream (1997) £11.69 (£12.99 for first time customers) http://bit.ly/a3Wrgn

3. The BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musican 2010 – The Results

Six of Scotland’s finest young musicians battled it out on Sunday 31st January in the grand final of BBC Radio Scotland’s Young Traditional Musician Of The Year awards 2010 at Glasgow’s City Halls. Presented by Mary Ann Kennedy and broadcast live on BBC Radio Scotland as part of the Celtic Connections festival, the winner was announced as Daniel Thorpe from Inverurie who won the coveted title with fiddling performance.

Daniel was delighted with his musical accolade: “I am absolutely delighted and surprised. I’m still coming to terms with winning, I’ve got a permanent smile on my face and I think it’ll be there for the next three weeks!”

Read more about it… http://bit.ly/cbYILD

If you are in the UK you can listen to the finals concert: http://bit.ly/dnlChP
Watch video of the finals concert: http://bit.ly/aj4e6v

4. Snippets
Once in a lifetime!
Congratulations to Scots singer Dick Gaughan who was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award during the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards ceremony on Monday evening. Well deserved!
http://bit.ly/cCA8kU

Another successful festival!
For the third year running,attendances at Celtic Connections Festival topped 100,000 with gross ticket sales reaching over £1 million.
http://bit.ly/cWjGdS

Barbara Dickson Signs to Greentrax
We hear that Barbara Dickson OBE, the Dunfermline-born singer and actress has signed a contract for the Greentrax label and will record a new album for release in the autumn….
http://bit.ly/dukPji

Great Photos!
Take a look at the pictyures taken by photographer Louis de Carlo of the Young Trads Birthday Bash at Celtic Connections Festival.
http://bit.ly/dtL2Ge

Alistair Hulett RIP
A talented singer, songwriter and internationalist, Alistair sadly passed away on 28th January.
http://bit.ly/8Z1l13

Valentine Cards
Don’t forget to buy a Valentine’s Day card! Make your loved one feel even more special with a Foot Stompin’ card in Scots or Gaelic. £2.25 (£2.50 for first time customers)
http://bit.ly/bJ9bp3

Fancy learning some Gaelic song?
Glasgow fiddle workshop has started a Gaelic Song class, which runs every Monday night from 7.30 – 9.30 at Stow College. If you are a learner of the language, songs can be a great way of learning new vocabulary, increasing your proficiency in pronunciation and your confidence in using the language.
http://bit.ly/bj0E8e

Breabach and Le Vent du Nord
Still a few chances to catch these two great bands on their current Scottish tour ..check where you can see them here
http://bit.ly/dgUpYQ

Hands up for Young Trad Ambassadors
A motion presented to the Scottish Parliament states that “the Parliament recognises the worth of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year competition’s finalists for musical excellence, as ambassadors for their nation’s culture and heritage and contributors to the wellbeing, both economic and social, of Scotland…” Excellent!
http://bit.ly/bKvVNv

5. Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast
Here’s our February 2010 Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast. This podcast features all new releases. We start with the new CD from Breabach –  The Desperate Battle Of The Birds which is followed by Mairearad and Anna. Next is Conrad Ivitsky’s Stringjammer and then Ma Sgaoil (Unleashed) by Bi Beo. Then it’s Scapa Flow by Ronald Anderson Band and we finish off the programme with Folk ‘n’ Reel. http://bit.ly/oWIhn

6. Reviews

CD: Cora: Skalder Customer Review 5 Stars
This debut CD is amazing, some fantastic compositions played beautifully. A nice variety of tunes,I find it very difficult to choose a favourite but would say listen out for Esson’s Croft…Elaine
http://bit.ly/dk38i7

CD: I Saw the Wild Geese Flee -Jim Reid. Customer Review 5 stars
One of my all time favorite CDs (I wore out my original cassette!) to sing along with…….NY Scot
http://bit.ly/cENAeR

CD: Portrait of a Fiddler – Alasdair Fraser. Customer Review 5 stars
Sweet, sweet music..What a player!…. Erin MacRae
http://bit.ly/9yyA9N
7. Best Sellers

CD: Huinka – The Chair: What a fab band! The 8-strong ‘The Chair’ from Scotland’s Orkney Islands set the floor alight with their superb brand of high energy “stomp” music.
http://bit.ly/acJedh

CD: Maidean Dubh’ an Donais (The Black Stick of the Devil): Dr Angus MacDonald is one of the famous piping MacDonald brothers of Glenuig and this CD comes 19 years after his acclaimed album A’ Sireadh Spòrs. It is great!
http://bit.ly/4nYz8s

CD: Mairearad & Anna. The girls are both excellent and inventive players and this their debut as a duo is a demonstration of their abundant talents.
http://bit.ly/7ssxPC

CD: Air Chall :Lost. Rachel Walker. This is the third release from the talented Gaelic singer and again one is struck by the beauty of her voice.
http://bit.ly/5wm91U

Book: Manran (Blair Douglas):  The first published collection of Blair’s compositions has so many of his brilliant tunes.
http://bit.ly/5IqRQD

CD: A Shirt Of Silk Or Snow: Wendy Weatherby’s album of songs and cello is proving very popular.. and quite rightly so, it’s lovely!
http://bit.ly/9PFgK8

8. Foot Stompin’ Scotch Whisky

With our partners Masters of Malt we’ve got two more fabulous whiskies for you to peruse. We’re going to feature Campbeltown. Campbeltown whiskies are a curious mix. Characteristics include a defined dryness with a pungency, smoke and a solid salinity. Imagine a cross between the Lowlands and the Western Highlands with a pinch of salt thrown in for good measure.

There was a time when Campbeltown was the most prolific of all of Scotland’s whisky regions. Around a century ago there were as many as twenty-eight distilleries in the geographically smallest of Scottish appellations. Today there are but three: the newly founded Mitchell’s Glengyle, though it will be a few more years ‘til any Glengyle single malt whisky is bottled, Glen Scotia and Springbank, a distillery which produces three very different whiskies using different levels of peat and still combination. Campbeltown sits on the Mull of Kintyre peninsula protruding from the western coast, ‘mist rolling in from the sea’. It is the proximity to the coast that gives the whisky its salty tang. Campbeltown single malts are often superb aperitifs.

Springbank 10 Year Old: The 10 year old from the Springbank distillery in Campbeltown, a mixture of both bourbon and sherry matured whisky. The peat is present and quite pungent with an earthen rootiness. Notes of exotic fruits and a hint of salinity. £28.95 http://bit.ly/9TMpZz

Longrow 100 Proof: A 10 year old from the Springbank distillery, matured in bourbon casks before bottling at 100 proof, or 57% abv to you or I. The nose is of good body with a spirity sweetness and there are notes of marmalade and orange peel, hints of cut flowers and a vague iodine note. £40.95 http://bit.ly/c0lNvQ

9. Foot Stompin’ Discussion Forum
Our forum is a busy place! Feel free to join in.
Celtic Connections Highlights on BBC Two (Sunday)
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Gaelic concert for Haiti
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10. Testimonials

Wow! what speedy service!  the CDs arrived with today’s post.  Many thanks…..Kirsten

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Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast No 50

A quick note to say I’ve just realised that the foot stompin podcast has reached 50 – woo hoo!!

You can listen to the current foot stompin podcast

Merry Christmas and a Happy NewYear and we will see you in January!

BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award 2010 Semi-Finalists Announced.

BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2010 - 2009 winner - Ruairidh Macmillan

BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician 2010 last years winner - Ruairidh Macmillan

The BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award is 10 years old this year and again we have a great lineup of young musicians for the semi-finals. From pipes and song to fiddle, accordion and harp we’ve got an excellent night of music ahead on Saturday 3rd October in South Lanarkshire.

The musicians are:
Steven Blake – pipes, piano (Livingston)
Patrick Callahan – accordion, harp (Glasgow)
Mairi Chaimbeul – clarsach, voice (Isle of Skye)
Shelley Clark – song (Sanquar)
Amy Corfield – fiddle (Paisley)
Andrew Gibb – accordion (Biggar)
Megan Henderson – fiddle, accordion (Fort William)
Emily Hoile – clarsach (Newcastle upon Tyne)
Lorne MacDougall – pipes, whistles (Carradale, Argyll)
Hannah Phillips – clarsach (Glasgow)
Daniel Thorpe – fiddle (Glasgow)
Kyle Warren – pipes (Helensburgh)

The semi-finalist concert on Saturday 3rd October is in Coulter Hall, Coulter starts at 7.30pm. Tickets are £8 and £6 conc. The concert is a culmination of a weekend of workshops where the young musicians learn about the music business from guest speakers.

Simon Thoumire, the event organiser said:
“It’s amazing to think that we have been going for 10 years and every year the quality of the musicians is superb. This will be another exciting night of music in South Lanarkshire.”

From this concert 6 musicians will win through to the final on 31st January, 2010 at Celtic Connections festival, Glasgow. This is an excellent opportunity for the young musicians to hear bands, meet influential people, play an amazing concert at the City Halls, Glasgow which is broadcast to a wide audience live on BBC Radio Scotland.

Last years winner Ruairidh MacMillian has had a busy year and is due to record his debut CD with Greentrax Recordings in the autumn.

Many thanks to our sponsors who are Scottish Arts Council, Celtic Connections Festival, Greentrax Recordings, Foot Stompin’ Scottish music, Musicians Union, Traditional Music and Song Association, and Watercolour Music. Please support them.

This Award exists to encourage young musicians to keep their tradition alive and to maximise their musical potential by the pursuit of a career in traditional music. The winner will be provided with high profile performance opportunities and the necessary tools and advice they require to launch a career in traditional music.

ENDs

Note to the Editor
Contact Simon Thoumire Hands Up for Trad on 07775 854572, info@handsupfortrad.co.uk, http://www.handsupfortrad.co.uk
Previous BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award winners:
Gillian Frame, Emily Smith, Anna Massie, James Graham, Stuart Cassells, Shona Mooney, Catriona Watt, Ewan Robertson, Ruaridh Macmillan
http://www.handsupfortrad.co.uk/press/Young_Traditional_Musician_semifinalists_2010.htm

Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast No 40

Michael Marra Silence

Michael Marra - Silence

Listen to the Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast No 40

Wayhay we’ve made it to 40 podcasts! Actually there are more podcasts than this kicking around as I seem to have been doing this for years now. I must find them all – surely I must have them backed up…

Anyway here is the podcast playlist.

People And Songs Of The Sea by Compilation

Track – Farewell Tae The Haven (Davy Steele and Ceolbeg)

It was great hear Davy’s voice again when I first put on this track. Davy died in 2001 and I think his voice as been missed in the scene. I very nearly formed a band with Davy years ago with Gregor Borland but just as it happened he got the unmissable opportunity to join the Battlefield Band. He was so excited when this came along and the band definitely helped him gain the recoginition he deserved. This is a lovely arrangement by Ceolbeg as well.

Leaving Mingulay (A Fagail Mhuighalaigh) by Maggie MacInnes

Track – Beinn A’cheathaich

Maggie is the daughter of the legendary Flora McNeil and in this album you can really hear her class. The recording also sounds fantastic – it is really clear.

The Collection by The Iron Horse

Track – The Iron Horse Medley

During the ninties this band were working all over the place. It’s amazing how a band stops playing and the memories fade. They made quite a few CDs plus music for a documentary called ‘The Gamekeeper’ that was very popular. This CD captures all their past glories.

The Collection by Tannas

Track – Mairead Nan Cuiread – The Bob Parson’s Strathspey

I watched this band start and end. They started off as Fire in the Glen playing in the bars and evolved into Tannas doing concerts. For their 2nd album (they made three in all) they got Donald Shaw into produce and you can really hear his influence in the sound of the track.

This Feeling Inside by Mairi MacInnes

Track – Follow the Light

I have to admit to not knowing a lot about this album. I purely picked it because of the quality of Mairi’s vocal – it is beautiful! I’ve only met Mairi a few times but it is a joy to hear her sing here.

Silence by Michael Marra

Track – Silence

As I said in the podcast Michael is a real master. His voice on this track is brilliant. I don’t think he receives the proper recognition of his talents. Most of his records are not easily available which is a travesty. Not only is Mick a great singer songwriter he is also a painter and recently just had his first exhibition.

Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast No 30

Listen to the Foot Stompin\' Free Scottish Music Podcast No 30

Salsa Celtica - El Camino

Salsa Celtica - El Camino

In preparing this podcast I had two things in my mind – Celtic Connections and Robert Burns 250th birthday. I started of by choosing Salsa Celtica who play the Old Fruitmarket on the 24th January. I’ve always loved the bands fusion of latin and celtic. Their stage show really works and their energy filters through to the audience. They’re accompanied on the night by the Long Notes, a band featuring Glasgow’s Jamie Smith who was a finalist in the 2002 final of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award. The 2009 event is in the City Halls at 5pm on Sunday 1st February. If you can’t make it along it is also going out live on BBC Radio Scotland.

Next up is Rod Paterson. I’ve loved Rod’s singing since hearing him first in the Easy Club. As an aside I first heard the Easy Club on Radio Scotland’s Travelling Folk in the eighties. I remember sitting listening to the radio ‘taping’ the tracks I liked and the Easy Club came on with the title track of their first album. I was bowled over by their swing, arrangements and tunes and from that minute I was set apon the musical path I still foraging today. Amazing. Anyway I love Rod’s singing – he has such a rich smooth voice and his treatment of Burns is tops.

The next track is neither Robert Burns or Celtic Connections but a track I was set on programming in our last podcast. It features Shetland fiddler Debbie Scott and legend Peerie Willie Johnston and The Selkie’s Song is a re-release from 1985. It is amazing to hear Willie playing with his much vaunted style. It’s a swinging track and it’s great to hear both musicians in tandem with each other.

Our next Burns track is from Sheena Wellington. This is Sheena’s version of Ae Fond Kiss from her Hamely Fare album. This was the CD that was released with Sheena’s version of A Man’s A Man (For A’ That) that she sang at the opening ofthe Scottish Parliament in 1999.

The next track is from Luke Plumb and James Mackintosh’s new CD A Splendid Notion. I was listening to some of the new releases the other day and this one jumped out at me. I really like ‘raw’ albums where musicians do what they do without much else and this is one of them. The whole album is simply mandolin and percussion. I think this is a risk worth taking for musicians as it really bares the soul with no room to hide. Well done to Luke and James.

Our final track is from the Battlefield Band’s Home is Where the Van Is. This is one of the most exciting concerts for me at Celtic Connections. It is part of the festivals ‘Classic Album’ series and they bring together the original band lineup to perform. This was the first piece of music I ever bought myself. I got the cassette from the old Rae Macintosh music shop in Edinburgh. We had Silly Wizard and Jimmy Shand in the house but this was the first endeavour with my pocket money. I didn’t really like it a first. It was very different to the Silly Wizard LPs in the house. I grew to love it though and still listen to it frequently.

Foot Stompin’ Free Scottish Music Podcast – Highlands and Islands Feature

Listen to the Foot Stompin Free Scottish Music Podcast

Foot Stompin Free Scottish Music Podcast

Foot Stompin' Free Scottish Music Podcast

All of the bands/singers on this podcast come from the Highlands and Islands. I’ve started of the programme with the energetic The Chair from Orkney. Their win in Folk Band of the Year category of the Scots Trad Music Awards 2008 topped and amazing year for the band. They had folks up dancing everywhere they played. They also feature one of Scotland’s top fiddlers Douglas Montgomery who plays with Saltfishforty. Definitely worth a listen. 2009 can only get better for the band.

Talking of top fiddlers the next CD is Bryan Gear and Violet Tulloch. He has great technique and clarity in his playing. Ofcourse it helps to be accompanied by piano legend Violet Tulloch. I first met Violet on the Aly Bain and the Young Champions tour of 1990. We travelled all over Scotland in a tour organised by the TMSA. We had some great parties and made some excellent new cocktails.

I love this next track by Catriona Watt. When she won the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award in 2007 she was a unanimous choice by the judges. Her album Cadal Cuain is beautiful. Hopefully we’re hear a lot more of her singing live in 2009.

I don’t know much about Niall Matheson but I loved his playing when listening to the CD. As a double gold medallist he has established himself as one of our foremost pibroch players, as well as being a noted exponent of the lighter music of the ceòl beag tradition. The last tune in his set is called Barbara’s Jig, a tune that we have played for years in Keep it Up.

Lots has been written about the next musician Kris Drever. He just won Instrumentalist of the Year at the Scots Trad Music Awards. He is more noted for his singing nowadays but he is one of Scotland’s top guitarists. He really swings and folks should always look out for opportunities to have a tune with him.

We finish up the podcast with a track from the new Skipinnish Deluxe Blend of Highland Music Vol 3 CD. It’s a great title with lots of great music. I’m always drawn to the music of Deoch n Dorus. I think it is because their accordion sound reminds of Silly Wizard. They also swing like Silly Wizard! Check them out.

See you in two weeks.

Phew…

Well it’s been a while. Every year I forget how much work the Scots Trad Music Awards (http://www.handsupfortrad.co.uk/tradmusicawards) is and how much concentration it all takes. Most things take second place. It was a success though. The Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow was a great venue with lots of staff who made the event run very smoothly. In the last two years for example we’ve had to have a team of volunteers to set the 50 tables, open the wine and decorate them. This year one of the Fruitmarket staff did the bulk of this and we only had to apply the finishing touches. Also as usual the time during the day of the Awards flew by. We were in there at 10am and I still struggled to get my silver suit on with time to spare!

There was a lot to be happy with this year. Getting TV coverage was amazing and the final programme broadcast on Monday 8th December was brilliant. We managed to achieve our aims in putting on a glittering show that celebrated Scottish music and culture. I enjoyed the preparation for the event working alongside Beesnees TV company as it made me be very exact with all the details.

I had decided this year to get two Gaelic speaking comperes so they could bounce off each other and I thought this worked really well. Our regular host Mary Ann Kennedy worked really well with Tony Kearney (Rivercity BBC soap star) and they bubbled along throughout the ceremony. I also asked Scots writer Matthew Fitt to introduce the Scots Singer of the Year Award in Scots and he carried it off with aplomb! He was very funny while getting his message of parity across. Linda Fabiani MSP opened the event well in her usual very positive manner and she made the announcement that she is setting up a group to look at the Traditional Arts – chaired by David Francis – that will report directly to her. This is an exciting development and let’s hope it has teeth.

The bands all performed great. It was brilliant to have Capercaillie start the show – these guys have shaped the current music scene more than any other band in my opinion. Everyone played great though – Karine Polwart Band, Breabach, St Rochs Ceili Band, Session A9, Strathclyde Police Pipe Band, Lau, Kenna Campbell and friends, Jimmy Shand Tribute and The Cast. Mairi Campbell and Dave Francis (The Cast) performed a brilliant finale and possibly had the quietest audience of the night. Their version of the ‘Sex and the City’ Auld Lang Syne went down a treat and everyone sang along.

The one thing that was missing from the Ceremony was the general public. We chose the Old Fruitmarket for two reasons 1. It is a great venue for a TV programme and 2. I thought it was a much bigger venue than it turned out be. Point 2 unfortunately proved to be wrong. The public are the ones that buy the CDs, go to the gigs and it was very disappointing to me that there was no room for anymore that 400 people (last 2 years have had 1000 folks). The only way I could do something about this was to organise a Satellite party in Lauries Bar. It was not the same thing as coming along but I did my best to put on lots of acts, pipers etc and our compere for the night Darren MacLean I hear did a brilliant job of keeping the night moving. I believe the event was a success. Next year capacity is not going to be a problem with DG One in Dumfries being a massive venue more in the vein of the Nevis Centre.

I enjoyed our festival club at the Fruitmarket. Paddy Callahan performed a great Trad Music Disco and everyone was up dancing. When Session A9 came on they were brilliant. There whole vibe instantly lifted the room and the dance floor was full. Many people were dancing on the stage (including a Scotsman journalist!). What a great band.

A disappointing aspect of the weekend was the celidh attendance. There wasn’t enough people there although they were all dancing to the brilliant Occasionals. I got to think about this for next year. On the night we were up against The Skye Ball and a sold out Runrig concert which might have made a audience difference but maybe folks are not wanting to go out and dance on the Friday night? Maybe we need to do something more glitzy (and expensive…)

All in all though another milestone for us. Onwards and Upwards

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