I THE FOLK ORCHESTRA English bunch ot classically trained players letting rip with music trom all overthe world. Imaginativer and theatrically pertormed. Greytrlars Kirk House, Candlemaker Row, 225 3626, untllt Sept (not 26 Aug). 2.30pm, £4 (£2).
I AWATIHAS The high Andes in costume, music and song. Exotic instruments, intricate rhythms and accessible melody.
World Music, StJohns, West End oi Princes Street, 20-25 Aug. 1pm; 28 Aug—1 Sept, 6.30pm, £4 (£3).
I VOICE OF THE TURTLE Uplittlng music and moving song ot the Jewish diaspora lrom the Spanish Inquisition, played on authentic instruments.
St Marks Unitarian Church, Castle Terrace, 18 Aug, 12.35pm; 19—21, 24, 26, 27, 29. 30, Aug, 6.10pm; 25 Aug, 6.40pm, £3.50.
I AVALOH Edinburgh-centred heavy Celtic tolk rock band in the Falrport mould play spacious pub venue. Preservation Hall, Victoria Street. 23—25 Aug, 10.30pm, £4.
I WALLOCHMOR CElLlOH BAHO Impossible not to want to dance to thistop Illght, accordion and liddle-driven, Scottish dance group.
Oueens Hall, South Clerk Street. 668 2019.17.18 Aug, 11pm, £3.50.
I ISAAC GUILLORY Tremendous guitarist and singer, Cuban-bom, American-educated and no stranger to Scotland. Acoustic Music Centre, Chambers Street, 220 2462, 20 Aug, 7.30pm, £5 (£3.50).
I RALPH McTELL The man who gave thousands ot bedsit guitarists the Streets ot London. Sixties tolkie songwriter in late night solo show.
George Square Theatre, George Square, 667 3704, 19 Aug, 11pm, £5.
Voice and guitar
Richard Thompson is the folk world‘s Eric Clapton. From the early days in Fairport Convention with Sandy Denny, through the later versions of the band as it established itself as a driving electric jigs-and-reels outfit. the guitarist‘s touch and imagination have been admired. He has a distinctive sound on the electric guitar and tremendous technique on the instrument, acoustic or otherwise; but it is his succession ofsolo albums, and his own songs that have built his following over the years. Quirky, bleak, compassionate and sourly humorous. his songs are the product of a creative soul born into England‘s post-war optimism, coming of age in the 605, and struggling through to contemporary society‘s selfish complacency. Better described as a rock singer/songwriter than a folkie, Thompson is one of England's leading musicians.
Dougie MacLean is a Scottish
Hwy‘w a“ . " em: H“ ' '
songwriter, guitarist and fiddler who has established a vision of Scotland in song and performance that manages to be gentle, romantic and somewhat sentimental. He long ago took the step of bringing all aspects of his recording under his own control. and set up a studio in his native Dunkeld. His label has released a stream of successful albums by various artists. as well as
Whitewash. the fourth of Dougie‘s own solo albums.
Traditional songs. and some from the pen of Burns or Tannahill. are mixed with his own hymns to injustice. rape ofthe land. poverty and the disenfranchisment of Scotland. delivered with a heartfelt commitment. But he whips up a completely different mood with his strathspeys. reels. hornpipes and fine fiddling.
Last heard in Edinburgh during the Folk Festival in March. Sally Barker impressed greatly with the beauty of her voice and choice of song. She can carry the gentlest love lyric or belt out the blues with great style. An unclassifiable performer. she played for years in bands. and now travels the country solo. or in this case with another fine blues singer Julian Dawson. (Norman Chalmers)
I Richard Thompson Assembly Rooms. George Street. Aug 25. 6.30pm; Aug 26, 9. 15pm, £7 (£6). I Dougie MacLean Acoustic Music Centre. Chambers Street. Aug 17. 7.30pm. £4 (£3).
I Sally Barker and Julian Dawson Acoustic Music Centre. Chambers Street. Aug 23. 12.30pm. £4 (£3): Aug 21 (With Ric Sanders. Andrew Cronshaw. Pete Morton. Keiran Halpin), 7.30pm. £5 (£3.50).
— Easy clubbing
Taking their name lrom Allan Ramsay's 19th century Edinburgh drinking society, The Easy Club, on their emergence in the mid-80s, did much to animate a stagnant tolk scene. Marrying swing rhythms to Scottish tunes and songs, and writing plenty at new ones, the group evolved over a law albums and gained many admirers, like Richard Thompson, without ever becoming a big draw at the box ottice.
But Easy Club guitarist Jack Evans thinks that 1990 ‘has been really good to us. Overthe lastiive years, a lot has happened in music and I think that people now leel our music makes more sense to them. Previously, in terms ol the audience, a couple at drinks were necessary, and then it all became clear! But we don’t seem so revolutionary now. We’ve become part oi the turniture oi Scottish music.’
Alter a long lay oil, the group had a successiul German tour in the early summer with various Festival dates up and down Britain, and are enjoying playing again.
‘We’d been brutalised by touring, playing so much we got stale and lost sight at the spirit and humour in the music. Now that we don't have to go out on the road, we have tun when we do, and the audiences are enjoying it too. How we just enjoy playing certain rhythms, our own style, although everyone is caretul not to slip over the line lrom technical proilclency to being clinical. We've got enough new Ideas
to make another album, but tor the moment we'll play anywhere they'll pay us our exorbitant iee!‘
Jack and some other Easy Clubbers can be tound in the instrumental sessions in the Acoustic Music Centre overthe Festival. The great part at August's tolk music takes place within this venue, which operates during term-time as a University Union, and has three bars, tood till late, sessions downstairs and concerts and cellidhs above.
Some oi the AMC’s events over the coming week include Ric Sanders, Fairport’s electric iiddler, teamed with Andrew Cronshaw, ot the electric zither, in an evening ot eclecticism. At the recent Traquair Fair, Andrew played his set at Gaelic airs on the zither, Galician dance tunes on the
concertina, and all sorts ot tuned drums, reed pipes and ilutes, to an ' appreciative audience in an orchard.
That atmosphere at dreamy introspection will be punctuated by Sander's wild violin style.
The Albion Band and Ashley Hutchings are also in the club this week, bringing the cream oi the Olde English tolk/rock establishment.
The Albions play a driving dance music in true contemporary roots style, and Hutchings otters ‘An Hour and a Bit with Cecil Sharp’, a look at the lite and achievement at Victorian England’s great chronicler at traditional music, dance and song.
Easy Club, Acoustic Music Centre, Chambers Street, 22, 23 Aug, 10.30pm, £4 (£3).
Andrew Cronshaw and Ric Sanders, Acoustic Music Centre, Chambers Street, 22 Aug, 12.30pm, £4.
Albion Band, Acoustic Music Centre, Chambers Street, 23, 24 Aug. 7.30pm,
£5 (£4). J
The List 17 — 23 August 1990 59