Hi folks. Thank you so much for the continued support. Today I want to say something about the bands who performed so brilliantly at the three recent book launches. A Method Actor’s Guide to Jekyll and Hyde is not a conventional novel, so we (publisher and I) did not want a straightforward book launch. Music was needed! Also, I’m not always mad-keen on being in the spotlight and if I can get the chance to share it and help promote deserving artists, I will take that chance.
First up, Ali Murray. He stepped in at the last minute and played the Stornoway gig. He even learned a couple of ‘William Campbell & Kevin MacNeil’ tunes (Local Man Ruins Everything and Every Month) the night before the gig. His amazing debut album An Endless Lullaby is out right now and I heartily recommend it. More information:
iglue is the musical project of Niall Masson and most excellent music it is, too. Some people compared him favourably to Bright Eyes and some people enjoyed the fact that he plays some unusual chords! Fantastic!
Hear for yourself:
iglue played at the Edinburgh launch in The Caves and at the Glasgow launch in MacSorley’s.
As did Niall’s pal, Cristin Mackenzie, who performed superb sets in each of these diverse venues to highly appreciative audiences. I don’t think Cristin has posted any music online (supply a link if you have, Cristin!); maybe he’s too busy writing songs and being a very proficient sound man at live gigs, including the lovely festival that is Sounds in the Grounds.
At which the mighty Brawth played. They were due to play the Edinburgh and Glasgow gigs, too, but had to pull out because of being out of the country and being out of good health respectively. Maybe they weren’t eating enough vegetable soup.
Keen-eyed readers may well have spotted that I namechecked Brawth in A Method Actor’s Guide to Jekyll and Hyde. This is a bit of an in-joke as my brother is in Brawth. My brawther, if you will. I wanted to amuse/surprise him when he first read the manuscript. They are a great live band and I often head through to Glasgow to see them play.
And finally a band that was a revelation to me.
Knox & Ion were the only to band to play who were a) previously unknown to me and b) not connected to the Isle of Lewis in some way. But boy, these guys were spectacular. Astoundingly, they haven’t gigged together very much; they are phenomenal musicians. To call it jazz doesn’t do it justice. One of their numbers was a jazzed-up Japanese folk song. I tried to buy their album, but they don’t have an album out yet. I settled very happily for a free demo.
Music needn’t be about who is being promoted most heavily by the biggest record labels, it needn’t be about the X-Factor-style hype or belittling of people, it needn’t be about anything more than wonderful music played by decent people.
(And apologies for unintentional font changes I couldn’t correct somehow. Think of them as a key change, or something. Damn, it’s still happening.