Here’s ten most vocal and ten most musical reasons why Celtic Connections is Europe‘s finest Celtic music festival.


Scottish Women No apologies for opening with a whole bunch of great women singers in this concert combining voices from the Gaelic and Scots traditions. including Flora MacNeill, lshbel MacAskill. Sheena Wellington and Elspeth Cowie among the dozen or so singers. Mar/i Auditor/um. Thu 75 Jan. Sinead O’Connor The controversial Irish singer make her festival debut this year. and will doubtless be featuring material from Sean-NOS Nua. her recent album of traditional Irish


Kepa Junkera Kepa Junkera blazed onto the Wider European folk scene in the mid-90s With his sensational playing on the trikitixa. the traditional accordion of his native Basque region. Main Auditor/urn. Tue 28 Jan.

Aly Bain Tne master fiddler from Shetiand rer iains at the top of his form these days. and is rarely heard to better effect than in a duo setting like this one W:th Sweden's Ale Moiler. Piping Centre. Fri 17 Jan.

Martin Hayes The Care-born fiddier :s the most expressive

songs she learned as a slip of a lass. Mar/i AUd/fO/‘ltllll, Thu 76 Jan.

Mary Coughlan Another fine Irish singer who was also no stranger to controversy early in her career. She is a versatile artist who is equally at home in folk. rock. blues and jazz contexts. Old Frui'tniarket. Thu 76 Jan.

Dougie MacLean The DurikeId-based singer and songwriter is still best known for writing the ubiquitous Caledonia. but he remains a very pOpular performer. and will present his beautifully crafted songs

Dougie MacLean

Evelyn Glennie

of performers. and his Well- established duo With guitarist Dennis Cahill generates a glorious sense of musical sharing. Martin is also one of the stellar Bow Brothers On Sun 19 Jan. Glasgow C(lf/TCUTEII. Fri 17 Jan.

Evelyn Glennie The Scottish classical percussion Virtuoso is a highly eclectic musician. and learns up here With Northumbrian piper Kathryn Tickell and composer Dave Heath in the lavrsh Spirit of the Celts. Main Auditorium. Wed 22 Jan.

Sharon Shannon Shannon has been a frequent Visitor to

in four different contexts. Mar/i Auditor/uni, Fri 17 Jan. Eddie Reader There are a number of Burns—related avents in this year's programme. but Eddi Reader's venture into uncovering ‘the emotional gold' in the great man's songs '5; the most intriguing. With the BSNO adding string power. Mai/i Ar/d/tor/t/rn. Fr/ 24 Jan.

Blue Murder Another group effort where the vocal talent comes team—handed. Blue Murder features several of England's heavyweight names. including Martin Carthy. Norma Waterson

Eddi Reader

Liam O'Flynn

the festival over the years. and is guaranteed to proVide a sparkling exhibition of accordion VITTUJSITV Willi her excellent band. Old Frurtriiarket. Sun If) Jan.

Liam O'Flynn Uilleanri piper Liam O'Flynii is one of the master inuSICIans on the Irish folk scene. and never fails to please. He meets up here With a younger bearer of that same tradition. flute and whistle specialist Michael McGoidrick. Mai/i Audito/‘iu/n. Sat 2:3 Jan. Duncan Chisholm Fiddler Duncan Chisholm holds his own With any of his conteniiiora'ies at fast

and Eliza Carthy. Stratlic/yde Suite. Mon 27 Jan.

Billy Bragg The conscience of British pop and all-round good gee/er. Billy Bragg has kept the faith with his deeply-held socialist and anti-racist beliefs. and continues to turn out some of the most sincere and committed music around. Old Fruit/market. Tue 28 Jan. lshbel MacAskill Gaelic song is one of the fundamental planks of the folk tradition in Scotland. and there are few who can match the Lewis-born singer as an interpreter of it.

Billy Brag

tempos. and has the edge when it comes to Si()‘.".’ airs. He teams up iii/1th |\.’£tl‘. Drever. and Will also be heard v-ritn Wolfstone on Sun 26. Piping Centre. Thu 23 Jan.

Tony McManus liic- Edinburgh-l)ased guitarist is now firmly established ii the top handful of Celtic musicans on his instrument. His superbly musical playing draws ()l‘ a range of Celtic traditions. ‘.'.’li.'l a distinctly contemiXi'an; edge. Glasgow (Earliest/at. lliti (90 Jan.

Didier Squiban T'iree concerts featuring the Breton liltlt"f;i [)dter S:i;.'l>;iti_ whose


Pip/rig Centre. Wed 25) Jan. The Rambling Boys A celebration of the troubadour tradition. starring big names from he USA (Tom Paxton and John Herald). Scotland (Dick Gaughan. Brian McNeill and Archie Fisher) and England (Roy Bailey). Main Auditor/urn, Fr/ 37 Jan. Cara Dillon Followrng a baptism Willi bands like Oige. De Danaan and the Equation. Irish singer Cara Dillon continues to carve out a solo career With her distinctive and expressive singing. Strat/ic/yde Surte. Sat 1 Feb.

C" \.\

Cara Dillon

work "as er‘coinpassed i’£l(lli?()l‘.£t. B"eton YiitlSlC.

class cal arid ;a//. The tr'iLogy is .oosely ltaseq or: three of' "-5; recording pr‘o‘ects. Tron T/iet'itr'e, Thu (ilk/arr; vlasgcug Cathedral, Sat 1 Feb; St Andrews it: the Square. Sun 8 Feb.

Carlos Nunez l"e (Tei'. ;:

r \t 21' v\ t‘ ~ H’ 'V/\v‘l";v‘v\

Sikh.”"(It)(1(i'.:(}\.(1\i(i'itl‘.-. eve? 0‘ t)?’(i"."‘.(}"(i~1:(7" f'ie tact-d stage " Y"e as' ti. (littlt and ‘."<: ti". (iti (at 1, :,~.:'

(xii ‘>Nti' 1’ 'xi " .‘]\I ' (s'titi s" " 2 " i'

‘v . 'THE LIST 43