#MANXMONDAYS – FINDING A REASON TO PLAY AGAIN – by Isla Callister

Hello! I’m Isla, a fiddle player and Manx Gaelic speaker from the Isle of Man. I moved to Scotland to study at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland a few years ago and loved Glasgow so much I decided to stay after graduating last July. Although I now live in Scotland, the culture, language and music … Continued

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THE GREAT STARISKI – by Seán Gray

I first contacted poet, Rab Wilson in 2016 looking for poems relating to industry in and around Ayrshire, in particular in my native Lallans Scots. I had been commissioned by Glasgow’s Celtic Connections festival to write a 50 min piece of new music as part of their New Voices concert series and I decided to … Continued

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ADAPTING, SURVIVING AND THRIVING – by Daniel Gillespie, SKERRYVORE

The Scots are universally known for their entrepreneurial spirit. As musicians, our creative spirit is generally at the heart of what drives us. Never have these two values been so important as we try to overcome what is the most testing period of our generation. Back on the 9th of March 2020, we had just … Continued

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SHARING CONTENT IN A NEW VIRTUAL WORLD, AND SOMEHOW ENJOYING IT! – by Rebecca Hill

(📷 Photos by Sandy Butler) Hi there! I’m Becky, a harpist based in Glasgow. When I was asked to write a blog I pondered over writing about my lockdown home recording set up and a step-by-step process of my recent virtual harp series. However, I’ve decided to speak a little more about how creating regular online … Continued

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THE ORKNEY SERIES – by Kristan Harvey & Jeana Leslie

Hello… we are Kristan and Jeana, one half of Scottish/Orkney folk band, FARA. It’s a pleasure to be asked to write this blog about one of the things we got up to during the lockdown of 2020! Back when FARA began – the unexpected result of a one-off concert at 2014’s Orkney Folk Festival – … Continued

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TRAVEL AND HOME – by Chris Gray

Hello! My name is Chris Gray and I’m a Scottish piper, whistle player, pianist and composer, originally from Lockerbie in the South West of Scotland. This past year, during the pandemic, has highlighted even more to me the intense pleasure of having the freedom to travel, and experience new places and opportunities. It is something … Continued

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THE PARTY LINE – by Andrew Bachell

Is there nothing new under the sun? It sometimes seems not. While 2020 will be remembered as the year we all discovered Zoom and online sessions, it is interesting to note that this is a phenomenon that has a precedent right back at least to the early 20th Century, when telephone lines were few and … Continued

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WHAT A CARRY ON – by Ross Couper

What a carry on this has been. The ups and downs have been seemingly never ending this year. In this blog I thought I would try and chart some of the things I’ve found to keep myself going with music. Back in March I was pretty lazy to begin with. I lay around like it … Continued

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URRANTA – by Deirdre Graham

URRANTA [Scottish Gaelic. adj. bold, daring, intrepid.] I’ve always been interested in words: definition, syntax, vocabulary; how they appear in different languages; how they come and go in trends; how we use them to communicate, persuade and empathise effectively. I’ve always been curious about people’s stories: pivotal moments, chance encounters, loves and losses and defining … Continued

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SHARING – by Rua Macmillan

‘Would you ever consider teaching online?’ One of my students asked me this just as the lockdown started. To be honest, I’d never really thought about it in any detail before. Our first lesson seemed to go pretty well – I could hear and see them, they could hear and see me, and we can … Continued

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