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Speakers Biographies Claire Armstrong (Playing Live) Claire is an agent at Active, an agency and events company based in Scotland. She has previously worked for Celtic Connections and has done various freelance tour and festival work. Active represent a brilliant roster of international acts including Capercaillie, Breabach, Ross Ainslie and Jarlath Henderson, Bella Hardy, Session A9, The Sojourners and many more. They also produce Showcase Scotland at Celtic Connections Margaret Bennett (Trad Talk 1) Margaret is a folklorist, writer, singer and broadcaster. In the 60‟s, She emigrated to Canada to study Folklore at Memorial University in Newfoundland. From 1984-1996 she lectured at the University of Edinburgh‟s School of Scottish Studies and now teaches part time at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. She is a prize winning author and has written a total of ten books and has contributed to over 40 others. She has also featured on media productions and several musical collaborations. Margaret is famously more known as “Scotland‟s foremost folklorist” and was made Honorary Professor of Royal Scottish Academy in 2012. She has recorded a number of CD‟s with a range of musicians and has won awards including an Honorary Doctorate of Music in 2010 and “Le Prix du Québec” in 2011 for contributions to Quebec cultural studies. Paddy Bort (TradTalk 1) Paddy works as a lecturer at the University of Edinburgh, but he is also the Chair of the Edinburgh Folk Club, one of the longest running folk clubs in Scotland. The club received the Radio 2 “Folk Club of the Year” award in 2003 and has been nominated for a number of other awards including Scots Trad Music Awards in 2010 and the Scottish New Music Awards in 2011. Paddy continues to promote folk and traditional music by organising a month long festival of music that takes place during the Edinburgh Fringe called Festival Folk at The Oak. Simon Bradley (Trad Talk 2) Simon leads the The Simon Bradley Trio, a band of fiddles, banjo, mandolin, guitar and viola who describe their dynamic sound as „traditional swing‟. The band has just finished recording a CD Grogarry Lodge of original material written by Simon over the last 20 years. His previous compositions have been performed by many top acts. Gary Clark (Publishing) Gary formed the band that would become Danny Wilson in 1984 with his brother Kit and long-time friend, Ged Grimes in 1984, After 2 albums and singles chart success with Mary’s Prayer and The Second Summer Of Love, the band split in 1991. Gary embarked on a solo career releasing Ten Short Songs About Love in 1993 followed two years later by A Great Day For Gravity with King L and 1998‟s Transister. Since then he has increasingly focussed on writing and producing for other artists with great success, including Natalie Imbruglia, Liz Phair, Nick Carter, Ashley Parker Angel, K D Lang, Demi Lovato, Melanie C and Emma Bunton, Mc Fly and Delta Goodrem. Fiona Dalgetty (Funding) Fiona is a former Fèis Rois participant who returned home to Ross-Shire to take up the post as Chief Executive of Fèis Rois in April 2009. Fiona has previously worked for a number of other traditional music organisations, including the Edinburgh Youth Gaitherin, Lochgoilhead Fiddle Workshop and the Scots Music Group. She has experience of the formal education sector through her time spent working as a Cultural Co-ordinator for the City of Edinburgh Council. Fiona has been a specialist advisor (music) to Creative Scotland and a member of the Scottish Government‟s Traditional Arts Working Group. She is currently a Director of both the Traditional Music Forum and The Touring Network. When she is not busy writing funding applications and organising events, Fiona enjoys playing with her band, Highland Ceilidh.


Paul Downie (Recording) Paul is the co-owner of Scottish record label Comets and Cartwheels. The label was founded in 2011 and deals with the release of physical and digital records, focusing mainly on promoting indie and folk artists. Clients of the label include the likes of Fake Major and Kitty the Lion. Some of Paul‟s other endeavours include acting as the campaign coordinator for the “Save BBC Introducing” campaign; this was to prevent the axing of Radio 1‟s Introducing in Scotland show. He is also the co-owner of promotions company Pelmet Nites which promotes gigs for upcoming artists; past successes have included gigs for Frightened Rabbit and Twin Atlantic. Andy Dunlop (Playing Live) Andy is a vastly experienced tour manager with Red Bull Records‟ artists, most notably Twin Atlantic, travelling internationally and all over the UK. His broad career in the live music industry includes working as DF Concerts‟ Senior Operations Manager and several years as Events Manager at Glasgow‟s Queen Margaret Union. Admiral Fallow (In Conversation) Formed in 2007, Admiral Fallow are a folk/pop band based in Glasgow. Since the success of their debut album Boots Met My Face, the band have been touring and playing many festivals around the UK and all around the world. They were chosen to play on 2011‟s BBC television‟s Hogmanay live and were shortlisted for Scotland‟s Album of the Year award in 2013. Paul Fenn (The Music Industry and Independence) Paul is a founder and partner in Asgard, Europe‟s foremost booking agency for roots and acoustic acts though their roster extends well beyond that. Paul represents many Americana artists including Steve Earle, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Lucinda Williams, and Emmylou Harris as well as Richard Thompson and Julie Fowlis and is a key player in the Transatlantic Sessions lives shows and tours. Although the agency is based in London, Paul‟s home base has been in Edinburgh for the past few years. Stuart Fleming (Publishing) Stuart‟s background is a mixture of being a songwriter and producer and working in the industry since his late teens. He has worked at major and indie labels, run his own production company and artist management and has worked on the road in tour management and crewing. PRS for Music is a membership society of around 100,000 songwriters, composers, lyricists and music publishers. The members range from writers in emerging bands through to the likes of Calvin Harris, Gary Lightbody from Snow Patrol and Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber. Every time music is used at a live gig or broadcast on radio, TV or online PRS for Music collects royalties for the writers of that music. (PRS) Ian Hamilton (Funding) Ian has been Head of Creative Industries at Highland and Islands Enterprises since 2001. Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) is the economic and community development agency for an area covering more than half of Scotland's land mass from Shetland in the north to the southern tip of Argyll and including almost 100 inhabited islands. His role is to help grow the creative sector in the Highlands and Islands and provide support and help to creative businesses. Iain was responsible for setting up the trade network supporting the music industry in the region and is a co-founder of goNORTH, as well as being a musician himself. Stuart Hamilton (Recording) Stuart is the studio owner and sound engineer of Edinburgh based Castlesound Studios. Castlesound is the largest recording studio in Scotland and is credited as having one of the best equipment lists in the UK, with up to date technologies such as the Pro Tools HDX digital multitrack recording and editing system. Stuart has worked with a number of well-known artists including R.E.M., Frightened Rabbit and The Proclaimers. Besides from this impressive list of acts the studio also works with other areas of the creative industries such as film, television and radio.


Fay Hield (Trad Talk 2) Fay is a traditional English folk singer. She started her music career while studying Folk and Traditional Music in Newcastle when she helped form the acappella folk quartet, The Witches of Elswick. The group released two studio albums in their time together, “Out of Bed” and “Hell‟s Belles”. In 2010 Fay released her debut solo album, Looking Glass through Topic Records and released her second Orfeo in 2012. Fay was nominated for the Horizon Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in 2010. Aside from her music, Fay also consults for the AHRC Music Communities which is a research project held at the University of Manchester. She also participates in guest lectures at other educational institutions. Hield is also familiar with running events and runs two folk clubs – Royal Traditions and helps run Bright Phoebus. Stewart Henderson (Recording/The Music Industry and Independence) Stewart has been chairman of the Scottish Music Industry Association (SMIA) since 2010. Amongst other things, Stewart has helped organise and establish the Scottish Album of the Year Award. This award looks to give credit to a wide variety of genres within the Scottish music scene. Stewart also helped set up record label, Chemikal Underground, in 1994. This led him to work with artists including King‟s Daughters and Sons, Aereogramme and Emma Pollock (another of the founding members of the label). Robert Hicks (Playing Live) Robert is the man responsible for transforming the music scene in the Highlands and Islands. Working in Ullapool he tired of the non-existent music scene so he decided a few gigs would give the place a boost. He spent years booking bands to play in remote places in Scotland and in 2005 created Loopallu festival. As well as this he was also the former programmer for Belladrum, one of the creators of RockNess and a booker for Go North, Rob Hicks has served the Highlands well. His latest venture is his own record label, Middle of Nowhere Records who first signed Rachel Sermanni. Rod Jones (Playing Live/ Maintaining a Portfolio Career) Rod is a talented guitarist, singer and songwriter who is the founding member of the Scottish indie-rock band, Idlewild. Jones is also the frontman and founder of rock band, The Birthday Suit and the co-creator of the ongoing musical project, The Fruit Tree Foundation a company he helped create to raise awareness of mental health problems. He released two solo albums and is often described as an “energetic live performer” with his “gritty, yet melodic” guitar playing”. He is also the owner of Sing It Alone Records and Rod Jones Music. Michael Lambert (Marketing Your Music/ Funding) Booking agent, promoter, artist manager, director and music project co-ordinator, Michael is currently the director of Edinburgh based company Born To Be Wild for which he organises regular music industry seminars and networking events as well as an annual conference and showcasing event, Wide Days – an event which he started in 2009. He also finds time to manage two up and coming Scottish bands, Homework and Stanley Odd. He is a booking agent and promoter with Edinburgh based promotions company New Found Sound, where he books live tours and handles social media. Michael is also project co-ordinator for the youth music initiative project SPFL Music Box which includes all 12 Scottish Premier League football clubs. Nicola Meighan (Marketing Your Music) A freelance music journalist based in Scotland. Nicola has written for publications including The Sunday Herald, Q Magazine, MOJO, Time Out, The Big Issue, The List, The Quietus and Plan B. She also talks about music on BBC Radio Scotland and occasionally presents BBC Scotland‟s Vic Galloway Show. Nicola started her career working at Mute Records in London (Moby, Goldfrapp, Erasure) and for D-E-F artist management (Robyn, Moby). She is currently writing about music in The Herald with the latest news, album and gig reviews. David Milligan (ABC of Arranging) Dave Milligan is primarily a jazz pianist and improviser, but one whose musical imagination flows freely between all kinds of musical genres. He studied Jazz & Contemporary Music at the City of Leeds College


of music before settling in Edinburgh in the early 1990‟s. To this day he continues to draw inspiration from a wide range of music; from jazz to folk and traditional, film scores to dance music. In a professional career spanning twenty years, Dave has performed all over the world. He is one of the most highly regarded pianists in Scotland and has gained an enviable reputation as a highly skilled composer and arranger, writing works for large-scale ensembles down to solos, duos, string quartets and numerous arrangements for small groups. He is currently Musical Director of youth folk orchestra The Gordon Duncan Experience at Horsecross in Perth, and is in demand as a guest tutor at numerous youth learning projects, including: Feis Rois and Folkworks Durham Gathering: Youth Summer School. Charlotte Murray (Funding for Organisations) Charlotte grew up in Bath, Somerset, but came to Edinburgh initially to study English Language, Linguistics and Gaelic. She works freelance on a variety of different creative projects and isalways looking for new and interesting things to get involved with. These projects range from youth music, to science communication evaluation, to researching fairy tales! She is currently working with Mike Vass and Rusty Squash Horn Records on a number of projects. She is also involved with the Traditional Music Forum, Chemcord and the Edinburgh Youth Gaitherin. Duncan Mc Crone (Publishing) Duncan started working with MCPS (Mechanical Copyright Protection Society) in 1989. MCPS comes under the PRS for Music umbrella and collects the mechanical royalties for artists. Since Duncan joined MCPS his job has led him to work with a range of people in the music industry including record companies, recording studios, television producers and many other music users. Duncan is now based in the MCPS Scottish office which was opened in 1996. This is now also the home of Musicians Union Scottish HQ and is becoming known as the “centre of excellence” for Scottish Music business. Jennifer McGlone (Funding/ Maintaining a Portfolio Career) Jennifer has been working as a manager at Glow Arts since September 2005. Glow Arts is a consultancy company that focuses on fundraising and promoting different events within the creative industries, especially the music industry, including gigs and music education workshops. Past and present projects for the company have included Glasgow Jazz Festival, Music for Youth and Celtic Connections Festival. Jennifer also does a lot of work for Hands Up For Trad; this company is in place to raise popularity of traditional music in Scotland and include running such events as the Scots Trad Music Awards and the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year Award. Findlay Napier (Marketing Your Music) In 1996 Findlay joined the first ever intake of the BA (Scottish Music) course at the RSAMD. After graduating from the RSAMD in 1999 he played with a series of Scottish traditional music bands in Glasgow. After working on the In the Sunny Long Ago with Martyn Bennett he was invited to join the band Back of the Moon. The band toured extensively from 2000 till 2007 releasing three albums and finishing with a final gig in the Kennedy Centre in Washington, D.C. on 21 November 2007. Before the demise of Back of the Moon, Findlay began working on a project called Findlay Napier and the Bar Room Mountaineers, bridging the gap between traditional and contemporary songs and arrangements. Findlay hosts the 'Late Night Sessions' at Celtic Connections and is the organiser of the „Hazy Recollections‟ mini festival. Matt Parsons (Ditto Music) Matt is CEO at Ditto Music which he founded with his brother in 2005. Ditto is the largest Independent Digital Distributor/Licensor in the world and they employ 23 staff and have offices in Nashville, Melbourne and Liverpool, with more opening in 2014. Ditto Music is there to help unsigned bands and independent record labels release records and sell music online.


Dougie Pincock (Trad Talk 2) Dougie is described as having brought a modern sensibility to Scotland‟s piping tradition by incorporating modern influences in his music, including genres such as rock and jazz. Dougie was part of The Battlefield Band‟s line-up for seven years; the band has been credited as one of the longest running Scottish music institutions. After departing the band he then released a solo album in 1995. Dougie is currently the director of the National Centre for Excellence in Traditional Music at Plockton High School and is a regular contributor to BBC Radio Scotland‟s show Travelling Folk. Karine Polwart (Recording) Singer/songwriter Karine is known for her unique folk melodies and beautifully thought-provoking lyrics. In 2003 she was awarded Best Scots Signer at the Scots Trad Music Awards and has since successfully established herself within the Scottish music industry. Karine has gone on to win a number of musical credits from the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards, including Best Album for her debut album Faultlines in 2005 and Best Original Song for Daisy in 2007. Karine now has 5 studio albums. Patsy Reid (Maintaining a Portfolio Career) Patsy is a Scottish fiddle player who only two years after leaving the brilliant Breabach, has become the most in-demand traditional fiddle player in the UK. As a child she first learnt to play tunes by ear at the Alasdair Fraser fiddle camp on Skye. As a teen she made the trip to Alasdair‟s sister camp in California, where she learned her trademark percussive chopping style – a technique she introduced to Scotland. On top of that she has a Post Grad Diploma in Classical Violin Performance from the Royal Northern College of Music. Patsy has just released her debut album The Brightest Path which unites skills and techniques she has developed throughout her outstanding career combining both folk and classical works. She has extensive teaching experience, having taught at Alasdair Fraser‟s Fiddle and Cello Week, Feis Rois, Newcastle University – Folk and Traditional Music BMus, University of the Highlands & Islands – BA Applied Music. Patsy is currently a Gordon Duncan Experience (GDE) tutor and has just received a commission from GDE inspired by the Prestonpans tapestry. Steve Robertson (Playing Live) Steve is an Inverness based promoter, manager and musician. He has been booking events for one of the most popular music venues in the Highlands of Scotland, Ironworks, since 2008. The venue has hosted a number of successful artists such as Biffy Clyro, Enter Shikari and Professor Green. Steve is also a music programmer for another popular music venue in Inverness, the award winning Hootananny. Hootananny acts as a music platform for new artists and prides itself on its range of genres played across the bars three floors. They too have hosted a number of successful names including Jake Bugg and Little Boots. He is also responsible for showcasing emerging talent for the GoNorth seedlings stage at Belladrum festival. Donald Shaw (In Conversation) Donald is a Scottish musician, composer, producer and a founding member of the folk band, Capercaillie. Throughout his music career, he has also been involved in composing for film and TV such as American Cousins and the BBC TV series Hebrides. He has also produced or recorded on more than 50 albums in all areas of music. Donald launched his independent label, Vertical Records in 2000 which has released many critically acclaimed albums by artists including Capercaillie, Love And Money and Michael McGoldrick. In 2006, he was appointed the Artistic Director of Celtic Connections and since then has established the festival as one of global importance.


Mark Sheridan (Maintaining a Portfolio Career) Mark Sheridan is the Reader in Music and Creativity at the University of the Highlands and Islands which involves the development of the music portfolio across the network of partners. His company, Sheridan Music Consultancy is committed to providing high quality advice, support, strategic management and leadership in education, creativity and music. Mark supports the development of music, the creative industries and cultural activities across education and in public and private bodies. He has advised local authorities, Universities and Colleges and the Scottish Government. As a composer and performer he has worked with many of the leading musicians in Scotland. Dianne Stevenson (Publishing) Dianne started her industry career whilst studying Music Business at Stow College. During her time there she worked within their infamous “Electric Honey” label where the careers of Belle and Sebastian and Biffy Clyro began. Dianne later worked with various other music industry events including In The City and Born To Be Wide. She joined Rage Music in 2011 and since then has assisted with all projects throughout the company. Being the Music Co-Ordinator at Rage, she has an interest in synchronisation and is always searching for new and undiscovered artists to contribute to Rage projects. Jim Sutherland – Struileag (In Conversation) Constantly nudging at the boundaries of culture and style, Jim is a free-thinking original whose commissions have included composing music for film, TV, large-scale events and national celebrations. His fingerprints, as a musician, producer and composer, can be found on more than two hundred albums across a bewildering spectrum. He has collaborated with some of the finest musicians in their field, worldwide. With his roots in the Scottish traditional genre, his expansive reach extends to encompass electronic, orchestral, rock and pop music. Jim is currently artistic director of Struileag / Shore to Shore, an ambitious two year legacy project reaching around the world to tell the story of the people of the Gaelic diaspora. The Struileag project will culminate in an international touring show which will form a significant highlight of Scotland's year of Homecoming in 2014. David Taylor (Funding For Organisations) David‟s portfolio includes leading on the development of 2012 as the year of creative Scotland, an action plan for the development of traditional arts, and responsibility for developing a new strategy for our Capital funding programme. David joined Creative Scotland after an extensive career in the theatre and cultural sector. He has held positions at the University of Warwick Arts Centre, Eden Court Theatre, Cumbernauld Theatre, Tron Theatre and a director and secretary for the Federation of Scottish Theatre. He served for 6 years as a member of the Scottish Arts Council (SAC) Combined Arts Committee prior to joining the SAC and holding various directorate positions in Arts, Performing Arts and Drama and Dance. He is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh in Philosophy and English Literature. Simon Thoumire (In Conversation) Simon is a concertina player and composer who has been fortunate to perform all over the world. Simon has spent the last decade or so working with Hands Up for Trad who organise the Scots Trad Music Awards, BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award, Scotland Sings, Distil and many other projects designed to promote Scottish music. Pete Wishart (The Music Industry and Independence) Pete was, for 15 years, a member of the internationally successful Scottish group Runrig and has been the Member of Parliament for Perth and North Perthshire since he was first elected to the post in 2005. Previous to this he was the Member of Parliament for North Tayside between the years of 2001 and 2005. Pete is currently the Westminster Spokesperson for the Constitution, Home Affairs, Culture, Media and Sport, and International Development. Pete‟s leading role in IP issues at Westminster led the industryleading website Managing Intellectual Property to include him in their Top 50 most influential people worldwide for 2013.


Chris Wright (Trad Talk 1) Chris has worked as a traditional song specialist for the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches project for over six years, during which time he has catalogued many thousands of Scots songs and ballads recorded by the School of Scottish Studies in the 20th century. As a singer himself, he founded The World's Room, a traditional singing club that meets monthly in Edinburgh. Chris is also a published scholar, having written about various aspects of traditional culture, including most recently the influence of street literature on Traveller song traditions. Along with fellow ethnologist Steve Byrne, Chris is co-Director of Local Voices, which works with communities across the country to develop local heritage projects.

Words and music bios  

Bios of speakers appearing at Words + Music 14+15 March 2014. Perth Concert Hall

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