Showing posts with label band. Show all posts
Showing posts with label band. Show all posts

Saturday 3 February 2024

Ciaran Ryan Celtic Connections 2024



   

Ciaran Ryan played at the Old Fruitmarket, as part of Celtic Connections 2024, when he supported Kinnaris. 

Ryan is a dynamic, high energy player. He is a Scottish tenor banjo player, one of the UKs top players and a founding member of folk band Dallahan, His second solo album, Occupational Hazards, was released 2024. 

 







Wednesday 31 May 2023

Aly Bain’s soaring Shetland fiddle


I’ve been taking photos at Celtic Connections Transatlantic Sessions since 2008, and one of the highlights is the soaring fiddle of Aly Bian. He plays with an ease and grace that makes it all look effortless -  which is genius in itself.




As a child Aly liked the shape of the violin and started lessons at age eleven when he sat on the knee of his teacher. He was a protégé of Tom Anderson and of the passing on the heritage of Shetlands.

 

Eventually he left for Glasgow and where he played radio Glasgow and played little clubs

He uses a driven bow. Aly play a Scandinavian fiddle made by Adolf springer – which is “sweet and more like a voice”.

 


Aly has recorded 11 albums with Phil Cunningham, with whom he continues to tour extensively. In 2023, he has been recording with Eric Clapton at Abbey Road - 




The Transatlantic Sessions – Since 2008, Aly, along with Dubro master Jerry Douglas, has led the ever more popular Transatlantic sessions as the finale of the major winter festival, Glasgow’s Celtic connections. Hosting many iconic musicians as well as popular Scots Gaelic singers, and American country singers.

 

1960s Aly played with several bands and was in great demand – The HUMBELBUMS, MIKE WHELLANS, BOYS of THE LOUGH. 


Friday 30 December 2022

Song Bird Christine McVie

 

Fleetwood Mac 1970s

I was deeply saddened to hear of the death of our beautiful songbird Christine McVie. – best known for songs with the rock band Fleetwood Mac such as Don’t Stop, Little Lies, Hold On, and of course her classic Songbird. She says the song came to her overnight and she had to keep singing it until morning when she was able to then record! 

 

Christine began playing with Fleetwood Mac in 1968, initially as a session player and joining the band in 1970. Her first compositions with Fleetwood Mac appeared on their fifth album, Future Games. She remained with the band through many changes of line-up, writing songs and performing lead vocals. 

In early 1970s the band moved to LA after the death of Peter Green and Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks joined. Christine and Stevie were great friends. Rumours is one of my all time favourite albums. 


Christine spoke of her long standing friendship with Stevie Nicks -  “We're totally different, but totally sympathetic with each other. We are dear, dear friends. We don't have any competition on stage,” McVie told Rolling Stone of her band mate Nicks in 2014; that was but one of the many compliments the two artists have exchanged in public over the years.”

Fleetwood Mac were distinctive being led musically by two women! Also for mixing English rock and LA sounds. 


Lindsay Buckingham & Christine McVie


In 1998, after 30 years with the band, she left and returned to England to set up home there. She then lived in semi-retirement, releasing a solo album in 2004. After therapy to over come her fear of flying she was able to visit band mate drummer Mick Fleetwood in Hawaii and returned to playing with the band. She also recorded an album with L
indsay Buckingham.

Reunion Fleetwood Mac 2014

McVie was an English musician and songwriter. She was best known as keyboardist and one of the vocalists of Fleetwood Mac. McVie was a member of several bands, notably Chicken Shack, in the mid-1960s British blues scene

She was described as "the prime mover behind some of Fleetwood Mac's biggest hits". Eight songs written or co-written by McVie, including - “Don’t Stop, Everywhere, Little Lies, Hold On, (on Fleetwood Macs 1988 Greatest Hits album)

She played on the band's last studio album, Say You Will. McVie also released three solo studio albums. As a member of Fleetwood Mac, McVie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and in 1998 received the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music.

She appeared on stage with Fleetwood Mac at the O2 Arena London 2013 and rejoined the band in 2014 and for their On the Show tour 2014. McVie received a Gold Badge of Merit Award from BASCA, the Ivor Novello award for Lifetime achievement. She was also the recipient of two Grammy awards

 


 

Wednesday 30 November 2022

Bob Dylan on Good Voice Ovo Armadillo Glasgow



Dylan held us inspired with his voice, the master of his song craft, and the unforgettable storyteller. Our iconic bard held sway with his top-rated band – Bob Britt’s flying-V guitar solos, multi instrumentalist Donnie Herron on lapsteel, mandolin and fiddle, the dynamic, unconventional drummer Charlie Drayton, Tony Garnier on upright bass. 


Dylan was centre stage and he stood at times behind his wooden piano: he’s worked to get the sound just right and though he’s mostly in shadow, he appeared upbeat. Dylan digs deep into the American and the more distant European songbooks –and he states both the Scots and Irish folk ballads as influences, along with the classics. He mixes up with Chicago blues, blistering rock n roll, new Orleans flavoured knockabouts and stately melodic reflections.


*Tonight Dylan sang his new album, Rough and Rowdy Ways, 

Bob is proud of his new album which has had top reviews, his first of new songs since Tempest in 2012. Dressed all in black, the band are silhouettes and as the songs begin they are illuminated by the brightly lit squares beneath them, backdropped by deep red velvet – as if floating to that promised land Dylan’s’ words and songs offer us. He’s the true prophet of our times, even though he asks not to be! 

We’ve entered slower paced past times before mobile phones, before flashing lights, to inhabit the moment and be free of burdens. The band are strung as one, emphasising the rush and flow – asking, questioning, apologising, and quiet searching of our souls. Dylan’s been through many doorways, seen many distant shorelines. At 80 he’s given us another classic album.

 

Now at 80 he continues as the journeyman going strong – His band are on top form with surging guitars, to subtle, gentle, backing rhythms surrounding the deep power of Dylan’s words. He savours the live experience, that exchange of song and audience, sharing his voice with his long standing and admiring fans. He seems more at ease with himself, and certainly the new album is slower tempo, chilled and intimate: while still offering the questioning and grit we expect. His songs don’t come easy and they get under your skin. 


**SONGS

**Dylan sang 17 songs tonight – 9 from his 2022 album Rough and Rowdy Ways

He began his show with Watching the River Flow (written 1971) about those creative urges so crucial to his life. And followed by the complex opening track from R & R, I Contain Multitudes.

The memorable and often quoted lyrics of False Prophet and When I Make my Masterpiece. The intimate stillness of a lovely love song I’ve made up my Mind to give Myself to You. He sang an impressive Black Rider, with unexpected key changes, ‘The road that you’re on, same road that you knew, just not the same as it was a minute ago.” My mind is at war, Hnag off your arm. 

Followed by My Own Version of YouMother of Muses.The haunting slow drumbeat of Crossing the Rubicon, a metaphor to take a leap into the unknown and commit to certain journeys - Take the big road, whatever road you can. Bob sang the chilled relaxed happy rituals of favourite track Key West. We were left in harmonyAfter which he said, “Hello everyone”. Dylan was centre stage and he stood at times behind his wooden piano: he’s worked to get the sound just right and though he’s mostly in shadow, he appeared upbeat

 

**Other than the album, Dylan performed Most Likely You’ll go your Way and I’ll go Mine from Blonde on Blonde album. Followed by one of his ultimate classics with surging guitars Gotta Serve Someone, from Slow Train Coming album – backed by Bob Britt’s surging guitar, Donnie Herron’s dynamic pedal steel guitar and the thundering drummer Charlie Drayton. And a very slow version of I’ll be Your Baby Tonight; a cheerful and an cheerful upbeat Be Alone with You, from 1969 album Nashville Skyline - Under the starlight sky; and a swinging cover version of That Old Black Magic


Dylan performed a rousing rock blues Goodbye Jimmy Reid on which he plays harmonica – an upbeat tribute to the blues giant. To those having a free voice. When Dylan said, ”Thank you everybody, Hope you are all well.” For their final song the band performed Every Grain of Sand – and with band introductions. 


After which the band and Dylan lined up centre stage, then exited and came back for a final bow, when there was a rush of applause when I thought how much Dylan’s songs and music have meant to so many, and especially for those musicians in his footsteps (and for me). Like the Scots bard Robert Burns, Dylan looks back to the great writers before him and also to what lies ahead.

I might have hoped, as in 2011, Dylan had encored two of his classics (Rolling stone, All Along the Watchtower), but this show was about new material mostly and we left grateful, satisfied and thankful.  He sits at the turbulent crossroads. He continues being the journeyman bringing his messages of a better way. Hope of those journeys, Fear of time taking us all. 

 

In my life by far, his long life of music and poet of our times. I’ll cross that Rubicon to the Promised land. Take me to the river – free me from sin. Will he still be touring at 80, still the journeyman, journey home. The Never ending Tour runs through 2024.



This is Bob at his classic and contemporary best! This is my third Dylan concert. First was with my son at the SECC Glasgow, when Dylan was hunched over his keyboards. The second gig, 2011, was a much livelier Dylan performance at the Braehead arena, where Dylan even danced! And we stood alongside his long-standing disciples at the front. The fan beside me was my age and also with his son and he had been to every Dylan concert here since his first one in Scotland – at the age of 18. It was a humbling experience and Dylan performed several of his classic songs (set lists are online)

Dylan clearly much prefers the smaller venues and this concert in 2022 at the Armadillo was more intimate and old worldly, took us back in time, before mobile phones, before internet and before flashing lights, glitz and glamour- when we could simply be in the moment to listen clearly to the quality, aged instruments, to the changes in tempo, clarity, depth, resonance and range of voice. We’ve forgotten today how to be in the moment, how to look or listen, as we disappear into our virtual realities.

I hope Dylan continues on his ever ending world tour and continues to write and perform such memorable and hard hitting words and music. And that I get to hear him some more live – it’s a surreal and uplifting experience.


**SET LIST

*Watching the River Flow

*Most Likely You’ll go your way and I’ll go Mine

I Contain multitudes

False Prophet

When I make my Masterpiece

Black Rider

My Own Version of you

*I’ll be our Baby Tonight

Crossing the Rubicon

*Be Alone with you

Key West

*Gotta Serve Someone

I’ve made up my mind to give myself to You

*That Old Black Magic

Mother of Muses


**REVIEWS

Neil McCormick on the Telegraph, as “one long magnificent ride for his most loyal fans and “The wise old poet has stirred up a cryptic cauldron of truths and clues, philosophy, myths and magic.”

 

“Breath of its cultural references and the depth of Dylan’s lyrics ‘ Mikal Wood Los Angeles Times.

“old blues songs, Shakespeare, classical mythology, the bible and pop culture” Kenny Doole Exclaim

 “why are intellectual references so rare in contemporary music.”

 

Rolling Stone ranked Key West as second best songs of 2020 and 7th in a list of 25 best Bob Dylan songs 20th century. 

“ a poetic balm for a world in profound turmoil.” 

Bob Dylan, All the Songs, Philippe Margolin and Jean Michel Guesdon, claim R & R is placed between Highway 61 Revisited, Blond on Blonde and Blood on the Tracks, and in other words on the same level as his master works. Several stand out tracks are singled out for mention – Key West, I Contain Multitudes, Black Rider. 

Rough and Rowdy Ways album -  is the 39th studio album by American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan released on June 2020, through Columbia Records.It is Dylan's first album of original songs since his 2012 album Tempest following three releases, one a triple album a triple album that covered traditional pop standards. The album was recorded at Sound City Studios in January and February 2020. The session musicians included all of the then-current members of Dylan's Never Ending tour band alongside other musicians, such as Blake Mills and Fiona Apple. The album's sound was described by critics as Americana, folk, blues and R & B. 

Rough and Rowdy Ways was preceded by the singles "Murder Most Foul", "I Contain Multitudes" and "False Prophet", "Murder Most Foul" became Dylan's first song to top any US Billboard chart. The album was universally praised by critics, described as being one of Dylan's best works and placing highly in many year-end album lists, including the top spot on four lists. It peaked at No. 1 in more than ten countries and No. 2 in the United States and Australia.

Surrounding Dylan, leaning in like heliotropes, are three guitarists playing electric, acoustic, lap steel, mandolin and fiddle (the latter three are by Donnie Herron, and not all at the same time). Longtime electric upright bassist Tony Garnier plucks away next to newbie Charley Drayton, a loose and bouncy drummer who seems to make contact with his kit via anything but wooden sticks. The transitions between the songs are jazzy and fantasia-like, as though each cut played is conjured afresh out of a shimmering ether.

Crucially, there’s an air of playfulness here – testament to Dylan actually being in a very good mood


Sunday 27 February 2022

Rura at Celtic Connections 2022

 


For RURA’s Celtic Connections gig on the final Celtic weekend it was clear the band were glad to be back performing to a live and packed theatre audience. Their past gig in 2020 at their sold-out Old Fruitmarket gig was a rousing and energetic affair, when the band celebrated their ten years together.


Rura are multi-instrumentalists and play keys, pipes, guitar, bass, bohran, flute and drums. The band – Steven Blake (Pipes & Keys), Adam Brown (Acoustic Guitar), David Foley (Bodhran & Flute) and Jack Smedley (Fiddle) – and were joined by James Lindsay (Bass), Mark Scobbie (Kit), Sorren Maclean (Electric Guitar). Plus tonight a String section of Seonaidh Aitken, Megan Henderson (Violins), Pasty Reid (Viola) Alice Allen (Cello); 


Tonight there was a expectant hum in the packed venue. This concert was the launch gig for the band’s new 2022 EP Our Voices Echo, in which they have collaborated with several top talents of the Scottish folk world – Duncan Chisholm, Julie Fowlis, Ross Ainslie, Michael McGoldick, and Hannah Rarity. 

Rura electrified the Theatre Royal Glasgow with their full wall of sound and lively performance led by fiddle player Jack Smedley and dynamic rhythm guitarist Adam Brown. The band began with a set of their tunes from their 2018 In Praise of Home





Fiddle-player Duncan Chisholm who has been popular for offering  his tunes in idyllic settings during Covid, praised the band, saying he had listened to Rura’s Praise of Home during the lockdown and that it had helped him when the going was tough. Chisholm played on the haunting A’ Mhairead Og, followed by a Runrig song Chi Mi’n Geamhradh and Running the Cross, composed by Chisholm. 


Gaelic singer Julie Fowlis sang a poignant Dh’èirich Mi Moch Madainn Cheòthar, backed by soaring flute and fiddle. Michael McGoldrick performed on flute a joyful Famous Last Words (Donald Shaw). Ross Ainslie was upbeat on whistle on Floyd To Ke Anlong and on pipes for Peel Pier Fear, followed by The Wrangler

While rising talent Hannah Rarity brought the cast and audience together for an uplifting grand finale of Take This Heart Of Gold (Andrew Marlin). For the encore the band played Horizons.  


The band are multi-layered and enriching, with fast-paced fiddle, pipes and rhythm guitar, both refined and dynamic, no easy task! Rura is an award-winning, ceilidh band and join the ranks of those top Scottish touring bands. They have appeared on the BBC’s Hogmanay Live and played the main stage at many festivals.  



Saturday 31 October 2020

Singers Transatlantic Sessions

Jim Lauderdale

Julie Fowlis


Here are a few images of the top singers I’ve been privileged to take photos of, who have sung with the Transatlantic Sessions band at Celtic Connections music festival Glasgow over the past decade. Nothing much beats singing with such a quality band! 

Wonderful memories. 

 

https://www.celticconnections.com


John Paul White

Kris Drever

Cara Dillon
Sierra Hull

Eddi Reader

Karen Matheson

Rachel Sermanni




Sunday 26 July 2020

Famous Gig Images






Snowpatrol


Now I attend and take photos at Celtic Connections festival each January. I’ve been so fortunate to take photos at some awesome gigs – from the intimate folk clubs, the open air festivals, the packed concert halls, the iconic Glasgow music venues. 

There is challenges at all, being unobtrusive at the small venues and dealing with lighting and other pit challenges at the bigger events. One of my first big outdoor event was the band Snowpatrol at Bellahouston Glasgow. It was a perfect sunny day and there is that adrenalin rush being at the front of the huge pumped crowd. 

At the SECC Glasgow we were lined up by the security and after a wait, we were led to the pit at the front of the stage. We stood there looking at the angles, the lighting, the stage and the audience. Photography is often about a lot of waiting, re-checking camera settings and being ready for the star's entrance. Suddenly Elton John appeared waving at the side of the stage. 

Oh i miss those live gigs, folk clubs and festivals! ... and hope they will return again one day very soon. 

Elton




Paul McCartney


Stevie Nicks



Laura Marling at the Old fruitmarket

Mogwai