Celtic Connections 2023: Guitar Night

“Is there anyone here who doesn’t like guitars?” Anna Massie asked and one guy in the audience waved enthusiastically. I hope he survived the two hours of masterful fretwork that followed Anna’s question. I won’t go into any analysis here. I will just note that it was great fun seeing and hearing Anna, Tim Edey, … Continue reading Celtic Connections 2023: Guitar Night

Celtic Connections 2023: John McCusker and friends; Beth Malcolm

Our Sunday’s CC menu consisted of two concerts decidedly less loud but just as enjoyable as the gigs on two previous days. Celtic Connections’ New Voices series has always showcased brilliant upcoming artists and Beth Malcolm’s song cycle on theme of growing up and finding yourself was no exception. She is an immensely talented songwriter: … Continue reading Celtic Connections 2023: John McCusker and friends; Beth Malcolm

Celtic Connections 2023: Treacherous Orchestra + Víík

That evening was a really mighty blast 💥! Such energy levels, it’s a wonder I managed to sleep afterwards… Víík as the opening act were a really happy surprise. We had checked out their singles on Spotify and had thought they were kind of lame and perhaps self-consciously artsy. But on stage, the Danish-Norwegian band … Continue reading Celtic Connections 2023: Treacherous Orchestra + Víík

Celtic Connections 2023: Talisk & Project Smok

Back in Glasgow after three years! Celtic Connections 2020 happened just before covid shook the world - little did we know then that we would not return here until 2023… Me and my wife launched our CC23 with quite a bang. This was our third Talisk show and by far the most epic. Musically I … Continue reading Celtic Connections 2023: Talisk & Project Smok

Catriona Price: Hert

Catriona Price may not be a household name yet but the Celtic music community is surely familiar with Orkney’s fabulous fiddle strike force FARA whose lineup Catriona is a part of. She is also 50 % of the ambitious modern folk duo Twelfth Day. With classical violin training and already a long folk/trad career, she … Continue reading Catriona Price: Hert

Elizabeth Davidson-Blythe & Daniel Quayle: The Coast Road

I had never heard of Elizabeth Davidson-Blythe before and no wonder: she is a young American fiddler whose first album, The Coast Road, a collaboration with guitarist Daniel Quayle, was only recently released. But I will be very much surprised if I will not hear of her much more in the future, since The Coast … Continue reading Elizabeth Davidson-Blythe & Daniel Quayle: The Coast Road

“Namer of Clouds”: a belated discovery

Somerset folk singer-songwriter Kitty Macfarlane’s debut album came out in 2018 and I saw her brilliant solo gig supporting RURA in Celtic Connections 2020 but only now did I listen to the album, Namer of Clouds. And hear me: it’s a stunning achievement, especially as it was her first solo outing. Great tunes, wonderful lyrics … Continue reading “Namer of Clouds”: a belated discovery

Need music for a Celtic & Folk Xmas? Here’s my recommendations

The snow fell even here in the south of Finland over a week ago and, contrary to forecasts then, it has stayed, with more falling almost daily. It’s looking downright Christmasy out there and checking the calendar proved it - it’s time to take out Ye Olde (well not that old, really) Xmas music! I … Continue reading Need music for a Celtic & Folk Xmas? Here’s my recommendations

Some jaw-droppin’ musicians! Have mercy…

By pure chance I happened to listen to some dazzling albums over the past week - dazzling in terms of musicianship, that is. If you play an instrument and need some inspiration to fire up your own practising, check these out… The amazing debut album An Den Day Made Tae (2020) by the Shetland brothers … Continue reading Some jaw-droppin’ musicians! Have mercy…

Jeremy Kittel: my latest fiddle fave!

Sometimes you just remain unaware of great music and musicians for years. And when you do discover them, there’s always a great “where has this stuff been all my life!” moment. This happened to me a few days ago when I first heard the Michigan fiddler, composer, all-around great musician Jeremy Kittel. I was totally … Continue reading Jeremy Kittel: my latest fiddle fave!