My work as a photographic artist has included the Edinburgh Festival, Scottish Ballet, Celtic Connections, Manchester Jazz Festival (MJF) and many concerts such as Elton John, Fleetwood Mac and Snow Patrol. In particular I try to mix the old with the new and capture moods such as quiet moments of inner reflection. One of my main interests is taking images of new artists – several of those I’ve photographed are now signed to major labels.
Five years ago when I took up my first Canon camera, I was able to combine my long held passions for both art and music by pursuing music photography. I had taken some images with a small digital camera at a live gig at the Metro London and I realised that the art of photography was about having a ‘good eye.’ After I received excellent feedback for my photos I worked on developing my craft and skills.
The unique blend of Shetland fiddle and West Virginia song, dubro and Irish pipes is always a joy to hear at the Transatlantic Sessions. Warm fires appeared to chase away the winter chill at the Glasgow concert hall and this concert is always a major highlight at Celtic Connections – celebrating folk and roots music from around the world.
Dubro master, Jerry Douglas, was the very congenial host. He entertained us with Jimi Henrix’s ‘Hey Joe’. Aly Bain was on good form, even though he dropped his fiddle at one point. Ah the joys of live music!
Irish singer Cara Dillon, whose voice is sublimbe, gave a glowing performance – she sang ‘Banks of the Foyle’ and ‘P For Paddy’, ‘Bonny, Bonny’ and ‘Sailor Boy.
Paul McKenna sang ‘The Dreamer’, a song to encourage past dreamers to keep faith, also ‘Long Days’ and ‘Banks of the Moy’.
It was great to see the return to the TS stage of West Virginian,Tom O’Brien, who sang ‘Where the River Meets the Road’, from his new album. He also sang ‘Guardian Angel’ and ‘Keith in a Palm Tree’.
Phil Cunningham performed his tune ‘So Long Liam’ and Nashville’s Gretchen Peters impressed the audience with the character and emotion of her songs and voice: she sang ‘Matador’, ‘On a Bus to St Cloud’ and ‘Black Ribbons.Her Peters has received good reviews for her 2018 album, Dance with the Beast.
Molly Tuttle is a young American artist with a unique guitar style; she performed ‘Take the Journey’, ‘Million Miles Away’ and ‘Save This Heart’. She is 2018’s AMA Instrumentalist of the Year, plus she won Song of the Year at the International Folk Music Awards with ‘You Didn’t Call My Name’.
Tunes included: ‘The Wishing Tree Set’, ‘The Federals’, ‘Shake a Leg’, ‘Andy Brown’ and ‘Sailors Hornpipe’. The Transatlantic Sessions offers exchanges between Celtic and mid American bluegrass and country music. Music to re-energise and recharge the soul.
These top quality singers were backed by the Transatlantic house band – Shetland fiddler Aly Bain and dobro virtuoso Jerry Douglas and musicians Russ Barenberg, Phil Cunningham, John Doyle, Michael McGoldrick, John McCusker, Donald Shaw, Daniel Kimbro and James Mackintosh.
(Part of Celtic Connections 2019)
Photos and Review Pauline Keightley – https://pkimage.co.uk
Old Fruitmarket, Celtic Connections 2019
These three bands lit up the warm fires of live music!
The audience at the wonderful Old Fruitmarket venue was treated to an international line up of award-winning Celtic musicians. They did a fine job interpreting the musical traditions of Galicia, the French Canadian Acadia islands and Scots Celtic.
Xabier Diaz Galician folk musician Xabier Diaz performed a colourful set along with the exuberant female voices of JNoró Adufeiras de Salitre choir – who sang indigenous language songs and played traditional Galician percussion with spoons, tambourines and boards. Also performing were the Alvarez brothers, Gutler (hurdy-gurdy) and Javier (diatonic accordion). Diaz mixes tradition with modern innovation. Their music evokes the rich culture of the Spanish peninsula (given autonomy in 1981).
Musician and composer Xabier Díaz (Berrogüetto, aCadaCanto), is a major voice in the trad-galego scene. He is also a collector of Galician folklore. Their first album, The Tambourine Man (Músicas de Salitre, 2015), has reinterpretations of traditional Galician music and an avant-garde approach; it pays tribute to the simple sound of traditional percussion. In 2018 they released Noró (Músicas de Salitre, 13 songs with voice and percusiion –a “declaration of love to the North”. Website
French Canadian multi-instrumentalists, Vishten hail from Prince Edward island. The trio performed a fiery set with a faster style of Cajun music. They play traditional Acadian music along with contemporary vibes and rousing songs. Vishten consists of Emmanuelle and Pastelle LeBlanc and Pascal Miousse. They performed on fiddle, guitar, accordion, octave mandolin, whistles, piano, bodhrán, jaw harp and foot-percussion. They said it was hard to find joyous archive songs, but they managed it with the song Miracles. They have a new album called Horizons. Vishten website
Scottish award winners Talisk burst onto the stage with fiddle, accordion and guitar. The band are led by concertina dynamo Mohson Amini, who is one of the most physical and full on energetic players, ever! The trio also consists of talented fiddler Hayley Keenan and guitarist Graeme Armstrong. They played a set of dynamic, expressive and challenging tunes. The band have received excellent reviews for their new album Beyond, where they mix traditional tunes with innovative electronic sounds. Talisk website
Encouraging to hear musical traditions kept alive and relevant with modern innovation and creativity. A highly entertaining evening of enriching live music.
Grace and Danger Review
A troubled soul looking for love…
What a glorious concert to celebrate one of Scotland’s best loved singer songwriters, John Martyn. He was born in London, and after his parents divorced when he was five, he returned to live in Glasgow with his father and grandmother. .
The tribute concert was hosted by double bass player Danny Thompson, who recounted many anecdotes of his time touring with John Martyn. Martyn’s immense legacy is well preserved and the fine artists at this concert performed many of his best loved songs as part of Celtic Connections. We were graced with some excellent guitar playing by American blues guitarist Eric Bibb, who opened the concert with the perfect Solid Air. He also performed Easy Blues and a moving One World.
Several younger singer songwriters expressed Martyn’s widespread musical influence. With the full band Ross Wilson (aka Blue Rose Code) performed Make no Mistake . In his first set he sang a soulful Fine Lines and Bless the Weather, along with strings led by Greg Lawson. Lucy Rose sang I Couldn’t Love You More with intimate emotion, while Katie Spencer sang, Hurt in Your Heart and John the Baptist. John Smith performed the songs, Walk Down, Spencer the Rover and Go Down Easy. aAccompanied by Danny Thompson on double bass, he sounded very Martyn-like.
Popular Scottish singer Eddi Reader performed Dancing, Certain Surprise, with the upbeat, string ensemble and a moving Fairytale Lullaby. Brit award winner Paul Weller of The Jam played the songs, Evil in Your Heart and Sweet Little Mystery.
The concert ended with all of the acts on stage to sing Martyn’s unforgettable best loved song May You Never. This was followed by a video of Martyn in concert singing the poignant Over the Rainbow.
What a memorable, moving night! Like many of the greats, Martyn mixed various influences to take his music to the edge with pounding blues rhythms, Celtic heart and moving soul. He recorded 22 studio albums and toured extensively.
Photos and Review Pauline Keightley – www.pkimage.co.uk
Kathleen MacInnes with amiina at Celtic Connections 2019
What an impressive concert. Kathleen is one of Scotland’s foremost Gaelic singers with her broad range and husky tones. To begin her concert she sang Gaelic songs, after which she was joined by the Icelandic group amiina; the band were the string section of Icelandic avant rock sound sculptors Sigur Ros.
amiina‘s music was subtle and sublime and beautifully complemented Kathleen;s soothing voice. What a unique combination. Their music produced haunting, atmospheric soundscapes. They performed a poem by Alexander MacColl Smith, ‘The Waves that Bear the Saints’. amiina also performed some of their own tracks and showcased their diversity and richness of sound.
Kathleen is from south Uist and won Gaelic singer 2006, (Scots Trad music awards). A high quality and thoroughly enjoyable concert.
They were supported by the excellent four part harmonies of Irish singers Landis.
Photos & Review Pauline Keightley – www.pkimage.co.uk
The Celtic Connections opening night Sync of the Times was a rousing concert with over a hundred young musicians on stage in celebration of the passing of traditions between the generations. They enjoyed a memorable experience performing f Gaelic music alongside some of Scotland’s most celebrated folk musicians.
This concert began with a moving film by a young musician, from the Isle of Grimsay, about his grandfather and his hope that the traditions would be passed on through the generations by preserving and celebrating heritage and culture through Gaelic music.
We were then treated to music by the Celtic Galician folk orchestra Son De Seu. This year Celtic Connections festival is paired with the small Celtic country of Galicia. Also performing were the Orkney youth musicians, HadHirgaan and the young musicians from the 5 Feisean, (Fèisean nan Gàidhealthe supports the development of community-based Gaelic arts tuition festivals throughout Scotland).
The evening’s entertainment was led by musical director and fiddler Duncan Chisholm. Also appearing were Gaelic singer Julie Fowlis, fiddler Lauren MacColl, folk band Daimh, fiddler Aiden O”Rourke, piper Brighde Chaumbeu, and Donald Shaw (festival director) and his ‘Harvest’ music.
.What a first class experience for the young musician – I hope they were inspired by performing at Celtic Connections 2019 memorable opening concert
Review and Photos by Pauline Keightley – https://pkimage.co.uk
Pauline Keightley - PKImage: Portrait and Music Photography and Review
Sunday 10 Feb 2013
Bellowhead, the ten-piece English contemporary folk band, gave an exhilirating performance at Glasgow's ABC 02. Between them the band play a number of instruments and include a four-piece brass section. They were great fun, talented and entertaining and presented an ideal opportunity for photographs.
I met another photographer there, who was shooting for the English Folk Dance and Song ( EFDS), an organization which was set up to promote English folk music. He was very familiar with the band and explained that Bellowhead started with the duo of Jon Boden and John Spiers. Speirs plays melodeon and concertina and Boden plays fiddle and guitar and also stamps the rhythm on a stomp box. The pair brought in the other musicians to form a full band ? filling a gap in the market for a top quality English folk band. Their line up includes - Benji Kirkpatrick, Rachael McShane, Paul Sartin, Pete Flood, Brendan Kelly, Justin Thurgur, Andy Mellon and Giles Lewin.
At the gig they sang vocal harmonies on traditional folk songs and also played an assortment of jigs and reels of traditional country dance tunes plus sea shanties. Their sound draws on a diversity of musical styles and influences from the old English tunes, such as Greensleeves and Can You Dance the Polka, to a sound similar to the popular 70s band, Steeleye Span.
The band are highly entertaining and Jon Boden is a naturally theatrical front man. On stage the band are both polished and energetic. The packed crowd of all ages were clearly up for a good night and they were in no way disappointed. I highly recommend the band to anyone looking for a fun night out and it was good to see a band making folk accessible for a younger audience.
Bellowhead richly deserve the accolades that have been heaped upon them ? five-times winners of 'Best Live Group' BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2005, 2007, 2008 & 2010 and BBC Radio Folk Award 2012 for their album Broadside, which made number sixteen in the UK official album charts and number one in the UK independent album charts. Their previous album Hedonism went silver (selling over 60,000 copies) and is the highest selling independently released folk album ever. The band developed a new ale to go along with their album release!
I did wonder why they weren't playing at the more atmospheric Old Fruitmarket with its olde worlde charm. It would have fitted their sound perfectly. Maybe next time.
Review by Pauline Keightley www.musicfootnotes.com
Friday 8 Feb 2013
American singer songwriter Aimee Mann performed at Celtic Connections 2013 at Glasgow's ABC 02. Known for her insightful songs and well received albums, including Charmer, her eighth studio album released in 2012.
In her honey-toned and expressive voice she performed songs from the album, including: Living The Lie, Soon Enough, Charmer, Disappear, Labrador and Slip and Roll.? She also sang Save Me, the song she wrote for the film Magnolia, which was nominated for a Golden Globe.?
In addition we were treated to some of her extensive back catalogue?and she performed: Wise Up, Fourth of July and I Should Have Known. Also in her set were a couple of covers, One, a Harry Neilson?s song, and for a bit of fun she sang a Thin Lizzy number for her encore.
Mann draws her audience in with ease with songs that are subtle and sincere and which seem to hold an undercurrent of uncertainty.
She was accompanied by a very tight band, and as she said herself, 'she rocked in melody in a soft rock kind of way'.
Amelia Curran and Ted Leo provided excellent support and she performed a couple of duos with Leo, who is an American punk rock/indie rock songwriter and multiinstrumentalist. He's played in the bands Citizens Arrest, Chisel, The Sin-Eaters, The Spinanes, and Ted Leo & the Pharmacists.? Amelia Curran is from Newfoundland and has followed her Juno award-winning Hunter album with Spectators.?
Aimee Mann is married to songwriter Michael Penn (brother of actors Sean Penn and Chris Penn).
Review by Pauline Keightley?
Review: All Will be Well Celtic Connections 2013: Saturday 2 Feb 2013
Cara Dillon with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra Glasgow City Halls: Friday 25 Jan 2013
Twentieth Celebration Concert - Celtic Connections 2013: Sunday 20 Jan 2013
Review Emeli Sande Old Fruitmarket Glasgow 10th April 2012: Sunday 29 Apr 2012
M?nran at the Late Sessions Celtic Connections 2012: Tuesday 7 Feb 2012
Fred Morrison at Celtic Connections 2012: Sunday 5 Feb 2012
Madison Violet: Sunday 5 Feb 2012
bring it on home concert for gerry rafferty: Thursday 2 Feb 2012
Edinburgh International Book Festival 2011: Thursday 27 Oct 2011
The Raghu Dixit Project at OranMor: Sunday 14 Aug 2011
Stag and Dagger Festival: Monday 23 May 2011
Michael Marra at Mugdock: Wednesday 11 May 2011
The Low Anthem,: Saturday 23 Apr 2011
March, 2011: Tuesday 15 Mar 2011[ RSS .91 RSS 2 ]