I Wet Wet Wet have returned to the charts with their new single. ‘Cold Cold Heart’. and we know there must be plenty of you out there who'd like a limited edition boxed set of the CD-single to commemorate the occasion. The box includes four individual colour postcards of the band members plus one group shot and two l993 remixes of ‘Wishing l Was Lucky‘ by ace knob- twiddler Arthur Baker. in addition to ‘Cold Cold Heart' and the B-side 'Another Love in Me'. We‘ve got five copies to give to readers who can tell us the title of the
The List‘s Folk correspondent Nonnan Chalmers gives a thumbs-up to the Celtic Connections festival so far.
There is much to admire in the two- week Celtic Connections extravaganza at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. which got off to a fine start with a full hall charmed by Galician visitors Dhais, startled by the ﬁnger-blurring duelling banjo and fiddle of Ireland‘s Four Men And A Dog and given a rousing ﬁnale by Wolfstone’s emphatic Highland rock and reel. '
The organisers have a lot of courage booking so many expensive bands at a
popular. safely established. commercially viable bands like The Chieftains. Boys Of The Lough. Capercaillie. Battleﬁeld Band. Altan. De Dannan and younger clones.
There is some boppy. techno/pop/rock Celtic fusion and some continental visitors. but one could hope that next year there could be more attention paid to the authentic. traditional music and singing styles ofthe Celtic nations; for instance. Sean Nos singing from the West of Ireland, or the time capsule of piping. step dancing and Scots solo ﬁddling from Cape Breton, and at the opposite end of the scale. more at the cutting edge of experiment. the virtuoso lrish composer/pianist Michael () Suilleabhain. the current widespread coming together ofjazz and folk elements in a new synthesis. and the beautiful innovations of Breton and French groups like Archetype and the
original aborted first Wets’ album which was eventually released after Popped In Souletl Out had become a hit. Answers on a postcard to Listen! at the Edinburgh editorial address.
Grande Bande des Cornemeuses.
But a series of concerts does not a festival make. I know from Lorient and other major folk-based events that it‘s quite common for people to travel to a festival and hear little ofﬁcial music at all. being perfectly satisﬁed to listen to or take part in all the informal music and crack that gives the event its character and energy. This is the atmosphere that has to grow up. it has to feel like a party. a meeting, a ceilidh.
So. thou‘s welcome wean, to the expanding fatnily of Scottish music festivals. and may you long continue to blow in 21 Januar’ blast of quality music.
Celtic Connertimts is at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall until Sun 23. See listings for details.
I time of year when punters traditionally T don‘t turn out to concerts. exhausted and left penniless as they are by the g rigours of the festive season. Indeed. 3 promoters generally are extremely admits to having a model in that other ' cautious about putting on even one : city east of Glasgow. ‘Remember when . . . . . . ,
band or performer at this time of the ; the Edinburgh Festival started. ll didn 1 year. never mind four or live each day. l slowly grow from small beginnings. it
The festival organisation, which is an i started big and got bigger!‘ in-house production by the Concert Lasting two weeks. Celtic Hall, inspired by the enduring success Connections is already the longest roots : of Brittany‘s Festival lnterceltique de music festival in the UK. but time will Lorient. has however a long~term goal ; tell if it can build an audience from a
I the latest in a stream of Edinburgh venues to let us know that they're looking for bands to play is Legends in The Cowgate, which used to be called The Phoenix. Bands who feel they’re more than up to the task of performing but have been frustrated by the lack of opportunity should pick
stretching at least over the next couple . wider spectrum of the general public _ of years and hopefully through to the than just the growing but
end ofthe millennium. That is to proportionately tiny folk/roots music change our concert-going habits, communities.
making this event an annual and major Given that it has to survive in the main from ticket receipts. the programming is slanted towards the
up the phone and call Sam , event on the music calendar. on 031-225 8382. ]
The director. Cameron-McNicol,
Saxophonist Russell Gowieson has been attracting favourable attention on the Scottish (an scene for some time now. He toured in the autumn i with Brian Shiels’ bop-based quintet , for Assembly llirect’s Jazz Club series, a ' and now returns with his own quintet i in that same classic saxophone- I trumpet-rhythm section format. : ‘ihere is a strong ﬂavour of the 60s , in the music we play — a lot of people ! say it’s the Blue llote sound, but I am a ? bit wary of using that, because it , i might get confused with the kind of " ; groove-based Blue llote stuff that is l fashionable on the dance scene. We are much more in the hard bop ar, 1 and I think we are now moving into an ‘ an even harder, East Coast style.’ I That’s East Coast USA, although with a strong Edinburgh and Fife representation in the band, you could be forgiven for thinking otherwise. ; Russell hails from Dunoon, and began i . playing recorder in school; ‘hellish’ ‘ technical confusions in graduating to a clarinet resulted in him being handed
I the forthcoming tour by The Beautiful South will be taking place without vocalist Briana Corrigan. but the band are taking pains to deny stories that she and Paul Heaton have had an acrimonious falling-out. Briana chose to leave. they say. due to mutual differences over the lyrical content of the band's new material. ‘Briana and l have the same gardening plot.‘ says E f wok“ back. Heaton. ‘An “acrimonious split" ‘ would mean misery for thousands of carrots.‘ The band's tour stops off at The Barrowland on 15 April with a new female vocalist, Jacqueline Abbott. .
Russell Gowieson time in swotting up on that goldmine . experiences I have had - saxophonists ; under his nose. lie is making up for it, i a saxophone instead, and he has never ; get a great deal there, with tutors like 3 though, with a strong and ‘properly
‘The Guildhall was one of the best
non liendell, Jean Toussaint and Stan ‘ llis training at school and the BSAMD , Sulnnann. I would have liked to work Steele on trumpet, Ronnie llae on i was classically-orientated but, by the j even more with Stan in particular -I I bass, and brothers Andrew (keyboards) ’ time he had passed through the ranks , always felt there was more to get from and Tom (drums) Gordon. (Kenny '; of SYJO (“being in the band gave us him.’ I Mathieson) ; the courage to get up and play’) and i He admits ignoring his dad’s jazz i The Russell Gowieson Quintet play at . signed up to study at the Guildhall in l records as a kid, but began playing in ' the MﬂSic 30!. Edinburgh on Mon 17. g london, he wastime in the (an 3 a local jazz-based dance band while and the Old Athenaeum theatre, canp. still at school, and now regrets lost , Glasgow on Fri 21.
; rehearsed’ band which features Golin
32 The List l4—27 January I994