Pul­sat­ing Is­lay Ses­sions show plenty of is­land spirit

Argyllshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Mary Don­nelly

THE 2017 Is­lay Ses­sions are done and dusted, bring­ing an end to an event­ful week­end of mu­sic, whisky and the re­lease of the late is­land mu­si­cian Fraser Shaw’s tune book.

One first-time attendee, Cathy Pid­s­ley, de­scribed the ses­sions as ‘an an­nual event not to be missed’, with an open­ing per­for­mance by Scots Trad Award Com­poser of the Year nom­i­nee Adam Suther­land and Mark Cle­ment.

Satur­day gave vis­i­tors a hands-on ex­pe­ri­ence dur­ing the day with a mu­si­cal work­shop run by Scots Trad Award Tu­tor of the Year nom­i­nee Emma Tom­lin­son, fol­lowed by a tour of var­i­ous dis­til­leries in­clud­ing Bruich­lad­dich, Caol Ila and Bun­na­hab­hain. The even­ing per­for­mances fea­tured artists such as Joy Dun­lop, Mhairi Mar­wick, Ron Jappy, Jen But­ter­worth and Laura-Beth Sal­ter.

Fi­nally, the mo­ment ar­rived for Fraser’s tune book to be in­tro­duced: Fraser’s brother Greig gave a beau­ti­ful speech about him and his dream to re­lease a book, af­ter which the first few copies were pre­sented to a few peo­ple who were key to get­ting this im­mense project off the ground.

The band Tan­nara then took to the stage with a pul­sat­ing set of con­tem­po­rary and tra­di­tional tunes and songs, be­fore all mu­si­cians in the room got up to fin­ish the night off with a favourite com­po­si­tion of Fraser’s, The C-Side.

The fi­nal day of the fes­ti­val ended qui­etly with mu­sic by Innes Wat­son, set­ting to mu­sic his poems of or­di­nary daily life – namely of a robin and a chicken who were walk­ing in the woods. Each night ended with a late night ses­sion at the Port Char­lotte Ho­tel bar.

Artists at the Fri­day night ses­sion.

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