I’ve had a great year so far with lots of great collaborations and projects! It’s certainly been my busiest year so far, with a number of live performances, festivals and tours alongside my studies at The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
I started off the year performing in various concerts throughout Celtic Connections. A lovely performances as part of Aidan Moffat’s Where You’re Meant to Be Farewell Concert featuring Aidan Moffat and James Graham, Danny Couper, and Margaret Bennett. I was also part of a new project titled Old Roots, New Shoots , an inter-generic project showcasing the different styles of music found in the North East of Scotland, featuring Old Blind Dogs, Jenny Sturgeon, Clype, Rick Redbeard, Best Girl Athlete and even a Doric rapper, Jackill! I spent the rest of the month gearing up towards the BBC Radio Young Traditional Musician of the Year Final, which was held in City Halls in Glasgow, which was won by the wonderful Charlie Stewart.
There was no rest for the wicked and I headed up to Aberdeen to host a fundraising concert for my debut album, which coincided with the launch of my indiegogo campaign, which raised £6,368. The Old Roots, New Shoots team had a brilliant reception at our Lemon Tree performance too! I took my first trip to Uist for a performance at the South Uist Folk Club, and failed then passed my driving test…
April had the trio heading out for our spring tour! We headed to Huntly, Herga, Lewes, London, Glenbuchat, Montrose and Fochabers, St Albans, Haddenham and Edinburgh! We took part in the Hands up For Trad Battle of the Folk Bands too! After wisdom teeth removal, I headed straight up to Orkney for the first time to play at Orkney Folk Festival with the full band. What a great festival! I also performed in a collaborative performance titled “Interwoven”, featuring BMus Traditional Music Students and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Big Band.
June was the month with lots of unaccompanied singing! First, Luc McNally and I headed to Portsoy 8th Haal in Banffshire. Then it was the Keith TMSA Festival, where I was placed 1st at Best Local Singer and 2nd at Traditional Singer! I also started recording my debut album featuring guest Simon Gall!
Myself and Luc McNally featured at the Inspiring Aberdeenshire Awards ceremony and performed in the gale at Portsoy Boat Festival. Then it was off to Sark! What a beautiful little island. Before this year, I had no clue it even existed. The trio had such a fun time on the charter boat…
July started as it meant to go on, very very busy! The first saw us performing at The Reid Hall in Forfar, supporting Manran with our good pals from Gnoss. Next was Aberdeen’s Silver City Stramash concert with the North East’s finest, Old Blind Dogs, who were presented with their Landmark Award by Hands Up For Trad. I was back upto the North East the following weekend for Stonehaven Folk Festival, joined by Aidan Moodie and Graham Rorie. We had a lovely Friday night concert with the Jarlath Henderson Band. On the Saturday of Stonehaven, I held a workshop titled “Songs of the North East”, using Tam Speir’s wonderful songbook, “Fin I Wis Young”. The last July festival was Cullerlie Traditional Singing Weekend and it was grand! The guests and audience alike were comprised of some of Britain and Irelands great folksingers. It was lovely to meet with old friends and make new ones too. Highlights included a great workshop titled “Songs of Place” held by Matt Quinn and Sid Calderbank. Guests included Margaret Bennett, Pete Shepheard, Rita Gallagher, Matt Quinn, Mark Dunlop, Bob Knight, Annie Reid, Jim Taylor. It was terrifying to sing infront of so many brilliant folksingers, who really know their stuff, but it was lovely to hear such a wealth of unaccompanied song in one festival, held at Tam and Anne Reid’s farm, Cullerlie Farm Park, home to Tracey and Eric, Paul and Sarah.
What’s to come…
Here’s how the rest of the year is shaping up!
5/8 Belladrum Tartan Heart Festival
18/8 Edinburgh Festival Fringe at Acoustic Music Centre
19/8 Innerleithen Music Festival with Nomad Beat
7/9 Linlithgow Folk Festival
10/9 Best Of The West Festival – Inveraray Castle
13/9 Edinburgh Folk Club
16/9 Naklo Music Festival, Poland (Scots/Polish) 23/9 Wauchope Hall Yetholm
10/10 Leith Folk Club
31/10 Star Folk Club, Glasgow
8/11 Aberdeen Folk Club
9/11 Folk at the Salmon Bothy
10/11 Hootananny Inverness
18/11 Milngavie FolkClub
20/11 The Burns Club of London (Koshka Duff/Carol Anderson)
14/12 Loughton Folk Club
15/12 The Big Comfy Bookshop,