PUSHING THROUGH RESISTANCE – by Alan Murray

I’m someone who still feels relatively new to the world of being a musician, so when it comes to writing a piece for a forum like this it can seem a little overwhelming. I can relate to many of the things that have been written about on here – feeling like an imposter; learning how … Continued

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BEGINNING TO UNDERSTAND PERFORMANCE ANXIETY – by Ellie McLaren

At the humble age of 9, I didn’t once bat an eyelid at the thought of taking to the stage in Banchory Town Hall to play two (relatively simple) tunes in the ’12 and Under’ section at the Banchory Accordion and Fiddle Festival. I did this year in and year out, gradually venturing to more … Continued

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TRAD MUSIC AND TOURISM – by David Francis

TMF Director, David Francis, muses on a couple of recent tourism documents. A bit late to this, but towards the end of last year two tourism strategy documents appeared, looking to the future of what many regard as a key industry for Scotland. ‘Tourism’ is a hard term to define because so much of the … Continued

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“APATHETIC, ALWAYS ILL AND MUSICALLY ILLITERATE”: A SINGER’S STRUGGLE – by Hannah Rarity

Throughout my formative musical years I embraced all things singing and turned away from many attempts to learn an instrument or theory via classical tuition methods. As a result I’ve often felt a sense of inadequacy when trying to communicate ideas to musicians I’m working with or have become quite frustrated when writing songs without … Continued

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HOW DO WE DEFINE SUCCESS AS SELF-EMPLOYED MUSICIANS? – by Ailie Robertson

It’s December, Trad Awards season and the time of year where typically people look back on the past year and evaluate it. And it always gets me thinking – how do we define ‘success’ in our industry? As someone who balances an active performing/composing career with teaching up-and-coming musicians at the RCS, I’m frequently asked … Continued

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THE WAR OF ART – by Sarah MacNeil

As I write this on December 12th it’s impossible not to know that it’s Election Day. So many people will be busy casting their vote and hoping for a party to be in power that will change things for the better, as they see it. For some that might mean, ‘getting Brexit done’ for others … Continued

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MAKING A JUMP INTO THE UNKNOWN – by Claire Gullan

Photos of Claire by Paul Jennings. Eek, I’ve been asked to write a blog! What a compliment – but what on earth am I going to write about?? Surely most reading this will be in the same boat – life as a musician? The only advice I could give myself was to write about what … Continued

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STUDYING LANGUAGES THROUGH THE LANGUAGE OF SONG – by Katie Macfarlane

Singing has always been my biggest passion in life and at the forefront of my growth as a human being. Anything that I do, the career choices that I make, always has my desire to sing at its root. In my very early years, I was always, almost subconsciously, exposed to Gaelic song in many … Continued

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GETTING THAT NEW PROJECT GOING – by Graham Rorie

My name is Graham Rorie, I’m a full time self-employed fiddle and mandolin player from Orkney living in Glasgow. I thought I’d focus this blog on how I got past the mental and logistical blocks of setting up a new project. Something I put off for far too long and can’t wait to get started … Continued

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STRIKING THE BALANCE – by Hayley Keenan

Hello there! My name is Hayley Keenan and I am a full-time musician and educator. I am a founding member of folk band ‘Talisk’ and play the fiddle alongside Mohsen Amini (concertina) and Graeme Armstrong (guitar). I am also a member of ‘Jim Jam Ceilidh Band’ and run a folk club in Largs called, ‘Largs … Continued

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