Monday, June 30, 2014

A Winning Set

Here's something smashing from Inverary and District at the European Championships this past weekend. They took 1st with it. (Other results at Pipes/Drums, of course.) I thought the acceleration coming out of the slow air particularly impressive. It certainly lends a lot of excitement to the set; the very idea of the control and attention it must take to keep that many players glued so tightly to the tune at that point rather boggles the mind.

And what is with the inhabitants of Inveran inspiring such exceptional tunes? My favourite is still the reel "Mrs. MacPherson," (I don't care how many times I hear that one; I'm still not tired of it) but "Helen Black," that kicks off the set above is quite splendid as well.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

And This Could Be Yours, For Just. . .

Truth be told, I don't think it's likely I'll manage daily posts, as a habit, but I have accumulated a list of things that seem a shame to leave for too much longer. Today, you might like to have a listen to an instrumental arrangement of Stan Roger's classic "Northwest Passage," (with smallpipes, I might add) that Borealis Records will let you download and keep for your very own.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Fairy Tale

Well, now, it's been a while since a ballad has appeared here. (Okay, okay--it's been a while since much of anything has appeared here!) But don't mind that. Look! Or rather, listen! The distributors of Emily Smith's new album, Echoes, will let you hear a whole track from it. The track is King Orfeo. So, if that isn't a treat (all that, and Emily Smith to sing it!), I don't know what is.

If that isn't enough Orfeo for you, here's the second of two posts I compiled back in '10 (after being astounded by a performance of Monteverdi's L'Orfeo on the radio) to give you leads to a few other versions, largely written, of the tale.