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40th Year No. 04 Dec 2016

The magazine for Scottish music enthusiasts

Festival Fever


Gary Innes


Memories of Pam Wilkie PLUS

News, Reviews, Club & Dance Diaries and much more...





3 the December issue of Box & Fiddle The magazine for Scottish music enthusiasts

Editor • Pia Walker 7 Tarvit Gardens Cupar, Fife, KY15 5BT Tel: 01334 657 850 Mob: 07715 115 489 Designer • Marie Martin Section icons by: FlatIcon

Cover Image Rosie Winchester Photo by Nicol McLaren Printer • Meigle Colour Printers

NAAFC Chairman • Nicol McLaren 9 Sheila Road, Blairgowrie Perthshire, PH10 6RP Tel: 01250 874 526 Vice Chairman • Iain Cathcart Tel: 01555 661 017 Secretary • Lorna Mair 7 Lathro Lane, Kinross KY13 8RX Treasurer • Willie Johnstone Executive Committee: David Cunningham Charlie Kirkpatrick Susan MacFadyen Margo Maclennan Tom Orr Richard Ross

December ALREADY!!! I hope you will like this month’s issue of the Box & Fiddle, in which we bring you articles, photos and results from the October festivals. Plus the New All Scotland Senior Champion from Lanark wrote a lovely piece, which I hope you will enjoy. November has been busy with hundreds Pia Walker, Editor of subscriptions coming in, so much so that my postie took great pleasure in telling me that he was going on holiday after the first few lots of mail came in! Thank you so much for the little notes with the subscriptions, they are lovely to receive: “No I don’t want to be taken of your list, the only pleasure I have @ 89”, “Many thanks for the reminder I look forward to B&F every month” and the many “Keep up the good job”. Just a few of the comments which makes all the hard work worthwhile for the whole team. So thank you from us all. We have a special offer this month to subscribers. If they gift a subscription to a new subscriber, they get a further month added to their existing subscription. I’m sure many of you out there know of someone who really should have the magazine sent to their door, and it is the month of giving, afterall. Our advertisers also have many lovely things available, why not treat yourselves? I have also been out and about again, this time going to Glasgow to interview Gary Innes, the new presenter of Take the Floor. I popped into Freuchie to talk to John Crawford and also visited Crieff, this plus the Scottish Dance Weekend in Tynemouth will appear January issue, which I am working on already. If you are going to send in anything for the January issue, do remember the very strict DEADLINE of 5th December – preferably before that date, as we have to get the magazine to the printers well before normal, due to the usual Christmas holidays and the Christmas mail chaos. We WILL send the magazine out in good time, but have no control over what happens in sorting offices. From the B&F Team, we wish you a wonderful Christmas and New Year.


Keep up with the latest news at Box & Fiddle (NAAFC)

The editorial team reserves the right to refuse or edit all copy. The views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the Editor. Use of material and advertising from this publication is strictly prohibited without permission in writing from the editor. While every care has been taken in compiling Box & Fiddle to ensure that it is correct at the time of going to press, Box & Fiddle assume no responsibility for any effects from errors or omissions.



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News 2016 Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship; Young Trad finalists hit the road;


Centre Stage





Tina Paterson

All Scotland Championship Shetland Accordion & Fiddle Festival

Memories of Pam Wilkie

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Club News


Club Diary


Take the Floor

The latest news from our clubs

You are never too old to go Clubbing!

Presenting Gary Innes Dance Diary Find the nearest dances and ceilidhs








Into the Green; Karen Tweed’s Merrie Melodies Vol 1

Albert Thomson, Armiger, Knight and Samurai By Charlie Abel

All articles, adverts, club reports and text for the magazine must be e-mailed to the editor by the 5th of every month at the latest. Copy received after this date cannot be guaranteed to feature in the next issue.






Send in your story. If you have a photo that tells a story, send it in with an explanation.

2016 Glenfiddich Fiddle Championship

Sunday 29th October saw me enter Blair Castle for the 2016 Glendfiddich Fiddle Championship, although this time it wasn’t a competition, but more of a concert from previous Champions. The William Grant Foundation has withdrawn its funding to this illustrious event, so this was the last chance to hear the most beautiful fiddle music in the most fantastic surroundings. Performing was most of the Champions as well as Tim MacDonald who was invited for the 2016 ‘Championship’: Maureen Turnbull now Burnett (1989, 91, 92) Keith Anderson (1994) Paul Anderson (1995) Russell Kostulin (1996, 97)

Gillian Risi (2000, 2001) Stephen Cordiner (2003) Ross Thomson (2004) Gemma Donald (2006) Calum Pasqua (2007) Raemond Jappy (2008) Rebecca Lomnicky (2009) Nicola Auchnie (2010) Maggie Adamson (2011, 2012) Maura Shawn Scanlin (2013) Mari Black (2014) George Davidson (2015) As Robbie Shepherd the presenter for the last 25 Championships recently had had a hip operation, his duties, apart from the opening and closing speeches were carried out by Fergus Muirhead. The photo shows all participating musicians on stage for the finale. Pia

Robbie Shepherd took his decision to take a break a little bit to the extreme in October, when a fall resulted in a hip replacement. As you can from the photo, this doesn’t stop him from getting out and about. Great you are back on your feet, Robbie, please stay that way.

tre Sta n e


What is your most cherished childhood memory? Meeting Minnie Mouse at EuroDisney in Paris.



Who was a big influence in your life and /or your music? My Parents, Grandparents and big sister Dawn.

What do you appreciate most in life? Family time. What is your greatest indulgence? Terry’s chocolate orange at the moment! What is your abiding musical memory? Playing with the Kirkwall City Pipe Band for Up Helly Aa in Lerwick 2008. It was the most amazing experience. What are your worst fears? Losing people close to me. I am also terrified of the deep sea! What are the best places in the world you have visited? Southern Ireland for the lovely scenery, great music and friendly folk, Guernsey for its beautiful beaches and Mallorca for the

If you had to leave what would you miss and what would you be glad to see the back of? I would miss all my family and friends and the community life. I would be very glad to see the back of the winter storms! If your house was on fire what item would you save? My accordion!

What was your first job? Waitress and kitchen assistant in the pub Mum and Dad used to own, The Quoyburray Inn. I started working there aged 12. What was the first time you performed in public? I honestly can’t remember, but it would have been playing the cornet which I learned at school, before I picked up the accordion. Before that I performed at Highland dancing competitions from age 6. My first performance on the accordion was at the Millennium Dome in April 2000 for Orkney’s day at the dome.


Tina Paterson Part of the always smiling 5-piece Kirkjuvagr Ceilidh Band, Tina hails from Orkney. The band is a family band and Tina plays the accordion with the occasional step dancing thrown in for good measure. sun, heat and warm sea! What is your favourite musical venue? St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall. You can’t beat the sound in there. How would you like to be remembered? For making people happy through music and dance. What makes you angry, annoyed or short tempered? People that go around moaning all the time or people that don’t respect others. It doesn’t cost much to be nice or to smile! What is your favourite location in Scotland? The Island of Westray where I spent a lot of childhood holidays.

Who are your heroes and why? Michael Flatley and Blair Douglas as I inspired to be as good at dancing as Michael Flatley and as good at playing the accordion as Blair Douglas when I was younger. The Scottish Dance Music scene - your thoughts and hopes? I feel that Scottish Dance Music is going good throughout a lot of the country, but it is declining in Orkney. My hope is for a revival so that generations to come can enjoy dances like we used to as children. What 5 people would you invite to your dream dinner party? All 5 of The Vatersay Boys as we would have fantastic after-dinner music! Your 1,2,3 of favourite tunes/ songs: 1. The Boat to Liverpool by Nathan Carter, 2. Kansas City Hornpipe by Fred Morisson, 3. by Celtic Thunder Today I will: Eat: Bacon and Onion Quiche and salad Drink: Summer fruits or peach squash Read: Tesco free magazine! Visit: A few shops on the street Watch: Coronation Street.



Festivals Tom Orr All Scotland Champion T

he All-Scotland Shield is the most coveted championship of its kind and I was delighted to win it at this year’s Perth festival. I have not competed for some time and in fact I have moved more to the other side of the table as an adjudicator, so it wasn’t an easy decision to enter once again. Competing solo should never be underestimated and I can assure it is one of the most exposed and daunting experiences a musician can put themselves through. It is intimidating for a youngster at the start of their musical career and only gets worse with age and experience. However, players continuing to compete no matter their age and experiences make for a fascinating competition and only help to inspire young competitors and give them the enthusiasm to put in the hours of practice it takes to learn our instrument. This was my driver to compete. My only goal was not to make a mess and let anyone down. To qualify for the final in this year’s competition was as hard as it has been for many years due to the extremely high standard demonstrated by the number of previous finalists and winners in the section. I was delighted to be announced as a finalist, which kick-started my day catching up with great friends and competing in some of the other sections. I love the pipe section as it’s all about interpretation and style, then the bands were a blast of fun. In a blink of the eye the final was upon us, a quiet moment in the practice room to collect your thoughts then back on to that lonely stage to put yourself through 5 minutes of mind games. The bell rings, a deep breath, a march, a strathspey and a reel later then it was all out of your hands. At this point I was content I made it through the day playing music that I was proud of. I was happy that I played with a style true to myself and that I had done my bit for the festival. Only when the third place was announced I

started to think about the competition again, then second, and then it was all or nothing. This was the part of the day that took me by surprise ... not that I had won, but the emotion that hit me when it was announced. I didn’t know how much it actually meant to me until then. The cheers and support from the audience was overwhelming and will stay with me for a long time. I am glad to have taken the risk and put myself back on to that stage and hopefully it has helped add something to the festival. The icing on the cake is that I am now 1 of only 2 to have won the title three times over its 66 year history. As for a record breaking fourth time? - Never say never. l




Memories of Pam Wilkie


uring the weekend of the recent Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Festival a rather moving ceremony took place. It was the wish of the late Pam Wilkie to have her ashes scattered in Lerwick Harbour. Pam had a great affinity with Shetland dating back to the early to mid-sixties whilst playing with the Ian Powrie band. The music of Willie Hunter, Jim Halcrow, Ronnie Cooper, Eileen Hunter, Peerie Willie etc. were to hold such lasting memories for her. Pam’s daughter Bev and her two sons made the journey up to conduct proceedings. The weather was very kind to us on the day with the sun shining so beautifully over the harbour. A nice turnout of musicians and friends were in attendance including Jackie Robertson, Brian Gear, Margaret Robertson, Doreen and David Halcrow, Violet Tulloch, Frank Thomson, Gordon Young and David Little to name but a few. It was a most fitting farewell to Pam, a musical legend in every sense of the word. Her unique musical creativity, kindness and warmth I will cherish always. RIP. l Dennis Morrison

Bev, Pam’s daughter sent in some photos and also wrote: Mum’s photo is now hung in the Lounge bar along other legendary musicians, Peerie Willie Johnston and Willie Hunter who wrote the tune Mrs Pam Wilkie as a tribute to my mum. The inscription on her photo said that even though mum played for the Queen three times at Balmoral, played the Albert Hall and travelled to Australia with the White Heather Club and Andy Stuart, the pinnacle of mum’s musical career in her estimation was playing with the Shetlanders. After 36 hours on the island, we left exhausted but knowing our mission was accomplished and she’s the one who ‘Never left Lerwick Harbour’.



Club News Just remember to seek permission to publish the photos and tell us the name of the photographers.

To ensure a more readable section, please only send in max 250-300 words. A photo tells a better story, so add one or two of those too. Why not of your audience?Information in Club News helps attract visitors to your club, so make sure your club sounds like the place we want to go to.

Kyle Innes Trio, Arbroath

ALNWICK As always at the club a great night of music, good company and enjoyment was had by all who attended, many thanks. The local artists were Ann Brown, Robin Cowens, Neil Riddell, Leonard Brown and myself on accordions. Jimmy Little on mouth organ, Susan Clark and Di Jevons played their fiddles and Ian Riddell played drums with all the groups of players, well done all. Our guest artists were Seamus & Brian O`Sullivan and Ian Cathcart. Seamus and Ian were on accordions with Brian on piano plus singing a splendid show song. As always a very polished performance from these guest players with a broad variation of music, very

well done to them. Some of the tunes played during the night were Rosewood, Tinker’s Waltz, Lewisvale, J B Milne and many more. Many thanks to all who attended and provided a most enjoyable night. Mungo Riddell ANNAN ST ANDREW The guests for October were the Garioch Blend Scottish Dance Band, who hail from Inverurie, north of Aberdeen. They had played at Crossmichael, near Castle Douglas and at two venues in the north of England and completed their tour at Annan. There was not one spare seat in the hall with visitors

present from as far afield as Lanarkshire, the Lothians and Scottish Borders. The band, acknowledged as being as one of the very best Scottish dance bands, comprised Charlie Esson on piano accordion, Willie Kellman on fiddle and occasional vocals and Charlie Esson Jr. on drums. They began by playing for a number of well known dances. The local players, accompanied by Fiona Paul and John Waugh on keyboard, John Douglas and John Waugh on second accordion and Jack McLeish and Billy Porter on drums, were James Johnstone from Annan who played two sets on a Shand Morino threerow button-key accordion. Willie Little from Dumfries playing two sets on whistle; Kenny Jackson from Stonehouse, a faithful supporter of the club, played piano accordion; Keith Robertson played piano accordion; John Cowan from Kirkcudbright played fiddle; Norman Swainson from Wigton played two numbers on piano accordion; Barbara Fisher from Carrutherstown played piano accordion; Ian Wood from Allendale in Northumberland played fiddle; Fiona Paul from Carnwath played piano accordion; John Douglas, the



Club Diary December 2016 DATE








Club Night (Visitors welcome)

The British Legion, Crieff PH7 3EB

7.30 pm

Irene Anderson 01764 654 298


Isle of Skye

Roddy Matthews Band

The Royal Hotel, Portree IV51 9BU

7.30 pm

Linda Shaw 01478 611 122


Lewis and Harris

Marie Fielding & Duncan Black

Caladh Inn, Stornoway HS1 2QN

8.00 pm

Janette MacIver 01851 704 870



Neil MacEachern

The Royal Hotel, Oban PA34 4BE

7.30 pm

Anne McFadyen 01631 562 077



Garioch Blend

Commercial Hotel, Cuminestown AB53 5WJ

7.30 pm

Pat Steele 01888 562 486



Robert Whitehead Trio

Clovenfords Hotel, Galashiels TD1 3LU

7.30 pm

Robert Cleland 01896 754 463



Dave Husband Trio

Arbroath Artisan Golf Club, Elliot, By Arbroath DD11 2PE


Tony Simpson 01241 875 326



The Pentlands Ceilidh Band

St Mary’s Club Rooms, Lanark ML11 7JS

2.00 pm

Shirley Cathcart 01555 661 017



Charlie Kirkpatrick Band

The Solway Lodge Hotel, Gretna DG16 5DN

7.00 pm

Robin Waitt 01387 371 423



Daniel McPhee

Pentland Hotel, Thurso KW14 7AA

7.30 pm

Ian Wright 01847 892 050



Charlie Todd & the Cameronian SDB

Glazert Country House Hotel, Lennoxtown G66 7DJ

7.30 pm

Billy Hutton 07889 021 972


Fort William

Màrtainn Skene

Railway Club, Inverlochy, Fort William PH33 6LY

7.30 pm

Alisdair MacDonald 01397 701 505



Eric Goodfellow Qrt.

Locharbriggs Social Club, Locharbriggs DG1 1XS

7.30 pm

Ian Gray 01387 760 276


North East

George Rennie

Royal British Legion, Keith AB55 5EN

7.30 pm

Rory Smith 07769 801 996



Club Night (Visitors welcome)

Seghill Comrades Club, Cramlington NE23 7TQ

7.00 pm

James Youngson 01670 356 410



Gemma Donald & Alan Small

National Hotel, Dingwall IV15 9HA

7.30 pm

Elspeth Weir 01349 877 675



Dave Husband Trio

Glenfarg Village Hall, Glenfarg PH2 9NU

8.00 pm

Russell Robertson 01577 830 642



Raymond Chuchuck Band

Park Hotel, Montrose DD10 8RJ

7.30 pm

Ron Ramsay 01241 879 487



Club Night (Visitors welcome)

The Reel, Kirkwall KW15 1KD

7.30 pm

Jim Marwick 01856 874 474


Button-Key (Windygates)

Christmas Party

The Greig Institute, Windygates KY8 5DG

7.00 pm

Mary Cook 01592 713 687



Club Night (Visitors welcome)

St Margaret Mary’s Social Club, Carlisle CA2 4JX

7.30 pm

Alison Davies 01228 675 505



Club Night (Visitors welcome)

Shetland Hotel, Lerwick ZE1 0PW

7.30 pm

Peter Leask 01595 693 162



Scott Band Band

The Stonehouse Bowling Club, Stonehouse ML9 3 EB

7.00 pm

Margaret Hannay 01698 791 163



Club Night with William Williamson

Biggar Bowling Club, Biggar ML12 6AX

2.00 pm

Charlie Todd 01899 308 327





ccordionist Frank has been around the music scene in Aberdeen and the North-East for many years, having been a member of The Jack Sinclair Band for some 30 years, doing recordings, theatre shows, and of course entertaining the Royal Family over the years at Balmoral and Birkhall. Although he plays a wide variety of music, most of Frank’s engagements now tend to be Scottish country dancing and reeling events throughout the UK with occasional forays into Europe, the

Middle East, and the USA. He has several RSCDS recordings to his merit, and enjoys the challenge of playing this type of music, which keeps up sightreading skills and ensures the brain is kept active with the challenge of learning the numerous tunes composed for newly devised country dances. Frank enjoys the privilege and fine musical feeling of leading a 6-piece band for Take the Floor. He adds: “if you surround yourself with the finest and talented musicians, they make you sound better than you really are!” One of the reasons that Frank decided to audition for Take the Floor was to highlight the talents of two young musicians - Neil Mitchell on drums, son of band leader Graham Mitchell and then highly talented fiddler Sarah Beattie who is a product of the Music Conservatoire. “Sarah is equally at home playing classical, folk or traditional Scots fiddle, and it’s a treat to play alongside such rare talent.” The other members of the band are David Little on keyboard, a long-time member of the Graham Geddes wedding band in Aberdeen, and of course well known bass player Brian Cruickshank who has an absolute wealth of experience in rhythm sections. Finally, there is the talented multi-instrumentalist Dennis Morrison on second accordion. Dennis is an anchor in any band situation and credited with arranging the harmonies and bass lines. Frank says about him: “Dennis finds and seeks out chords and progressions that no-one else can pick up, while ensuring that we don’t sneak in any dischords!” Frank’s choice of music for the programme will be very wide ranging and will include two ‘band leader’s choices’ - a slow air on fiddle by Sarah, and a surprise solo spot from Dennis Morrison on piano. l


Matthew Maclennan Scottish Dance Band                                   


Robert Black Scottish Dance Band – Tribute to Jim Johnstone


Frank Thomson Scottish Dance Band


Nicol McLaren Scottish Dance Band and Audience Session Aberdeen – Xmas Theme


Hogmanay Celebrations



Reviews Into the Green

Joshua Burnell Misted Valley Records Into the Green is York based musician and songwriter Joshua Burnell’s first full length album and a very good debut it is too. It is an album in two halves. The first half is a collection of independent songs with a more acoustic/folk inspired sound. The second half is made up of the seven Into the Green tracks and draw upon sounds reminiscent of folk rock and progressive rock. All seven tracks form one story which narrates the tale of a shepherd who loses his flocks and ventures into an enchanted wood to rescue them. Since the album draws heavily on fantasy and folklore, it seemed appropriate for Ted Nasmith to create artwork for the cover and inside of the album packaging as he is famed for his illustrations of Tolkien’s works. Another Tolkien illustrator, Ruth Lacon, provided artwork for the back cover of the album. Ted has also created some additional artwork for the vinyl release of the album. As you would expect given the credentials of the illustrators, the CD artwork is highly creative and innovative which is refreshing to see. Band members include Frances Sladen on vocals, Texan bassist Matthew Mefford and Sicilian fiddle player Antonio Curiale. Guests appearing on the album include Angela Gordon from Mostly Autumn on flute and Liam ‘Yom’ Hardy from Blackbeard’s Tea Party on cajon. The album was recorded at Paper Plane Studios by Dan Webster and also at Middlesbrough College by Nathan Greaves. This is a great collection of enchanting folk songs with

A great collection of enchanting folk songs with an equally great theme running through them

an equally great theme running through them. The album is available on iTunes so I would encourage to have a listen and I’m sure you will be pleasantly surprised! For more information and the latest news on Joshua and his band check out his website at: or via his facebook page:

If you wish your CDs, DVDs or books to be reviewed, please send them to: Bill Brown, 3 Galahad Close, Cippenham, Slough, SL1 9DT

Box & Fiddle - December 2016  

The magazine for Scottish Music Enthusiasts.