Glas­gow Let­ter

The Oban Times - - LEISURE - ROBERT ROBERTSON robert.d.robertson@hot­mail.co.uk

Re­view: The Pipe Slang

Mu­si­cal col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween the pipes and the fid­dle is hardly un­fa­mil­iar to us on the west coast of Scot­land, yet there is some­thing dis­tinctly fresh about The Pipe Slang, the de­but al­bum of duo Jamie MacDon­ald and Chris­tian Ga­mauf.

Per­haps this is due to the con­trast of their re­spec­tive up­bring­ings: Jamie on the He­bridean is­land of Tiree, and Chris­tian in the vil­lage of Loipers­bach in ru­ral Aus­tria.

Their meet­ing is ac­tu­ally a re­mark­able story. Chris­tian first heard tra­di­tional Scot­tish mu­sic through a lo­cal pipe band in Aus­tria and later spent time in Cape Bre­ton Is­land to de­velop his love of the genre.

Jamie has been born and brought up in a fine Gaelic tra­di­tion over on Tiree and I have al­ways ad­mired the pride and pas­sion with which he cham­pi­ons his na­tive mu­sic.

The pair met while liv­ing and study­ing on Uist and be­gan play­ing to­gether at lo­cal con­certs and events in the Western Isles. Af­ter trav­el­ling to As­turias (North­ern Spain) on a mu­si­cal and cul­tural ex­change project, along with per­for­mances at Ceòl on the Croft, Celtic Con­nec­tions, and Celtic Colours, the duo started work­ing on this – their de­but al­bum.

The re­sult is a colour­ful al­bum packed full of dif­fer­ent mu­si­cal in­flu­ences all tied to­gether beau­ti­fully by play­ing that is tight and to­gether yet nat­u­rally lively and en­er­getic. The choice of tunes re­flect their eclec­tic in­flu­ences.

The al­bum be­gins with a Pipe Ma­jor Don­ald MacLeod tune and then takes us on a jour­ney to As­turia, Cape Bre­ton, and Tiree. The is­land is rep­re­sented in both tune and song. Jamie’s twin sis­ter Anna gives a great ren­di­tion of Mo Nighean Donn à Cor­naig, ac­com­pa­ny­ing her­self on the clarsach.

Also guest­ing on the al­bum are Jack McRob­bie on gui­tar, Cape Bre­toner Adam Young on pi­ano, Anna-Wendy Steven­son on vi­ola, and step-dancer So­phie Stephen­son.

For any­one look­ing for a very in­ter­est­ing and well cho­sen blend of tunes and songs, it is well worth get­ting a hold of The Pipe Slang.

Co­munn an Taobh-an-Iar

The Co­munn an Taobh-an-Iar is start­ing its new ses­sion on Thurs­day Septem­ber 13 with a ceilidh in the El­lan­gowan So­cial Club, Mil­ngavie. The night will be chaired by Peter MacDon­ald and opened with a set on the pipes by Ken­nety Mac­far­lane.

The artistes for the even­ing are Mairi MacGil­livray, Mary MacMil­lan, Colin Fisher, and Calum An­gus MacDon­ald; with an in­stru­men­tal­ist still to be ar­ranged. Kirsteen Grant is the ac­com­pa­nist.

There will be tea, cof­fee, fruit juice and bis­cuits in the in­ter­val, as well as a raf­fle. Ad­mis­sion is £8 at the door and the night be­gins at 7.30pm.

What’s On

Fri­day Septem­ber 14: Cly­de­bank and Dis­trict Highland As­so­ci­a­tion ceilidh in the Napier Hall, Old Kil­patrick, at 7.30pm.

Wednesday Septem­ber 19: Ceol ’s Craic Club Film (screen­ing of ‘Agus a-nochd…the en­ter­tain­ers!’) in the Com­mu­nity Cen­tral Hall, 292-316 Mary­hill Road, 7.15pm with a Gaelic con­ver­sa­tion group at 6.30pm.

Satur­day Septem­ber 22: Oid­hche Amer­i­cana (Amer­i­cana Night) in Web­ster’s The­atre on Great Western Road at 7.15pm star­ring Iain Mackay, Wil­lie Camp­bell, and Ben­sider.

So­phie Stephen­son, Chris­tian Ga­mauf, and Jamie MacDon­ald. Step dancer, So­phie, is one of the guests on The Pipe Slang.

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