Celtic Connections 2022: Transatlantic Sessions

Glasgow Scotland, Transatlantic Sessions

Review and Photographs by Pauline Keightley

Celtic Connections 6 February, 2022

The Transatlantic Sessions concert celebrates the important musical connections between Scots, Irish and American traditional music. Songs capture those sometimes forgotten stories of emigration across the rough seas in small wooden sailing ships, with many hopes and dreams of a better life as the migrants  brought their old ballads and tunes with them. Sometimes they had no choice but to leave home – . it is important to remember our past..

Glasgow Scotland, Transatlantic Sessions. Paul Brady

(Glasgow Scotland, 6th February 2022. Paul Brady, Irish folk musician, performed at the Transatlantic Sessions on the final night of Celtic Connections festival 2022, Glasgow concert hall, with Scot, Irish and American musicians. Led by Shetland fiddler Ali Bain and from the States Dubro master Jerry Douglas.)

“Normally Celtic Connections welcomes 80 musicians from America,” festival director Donald Shaw said. “But due to all the Covid restrictions this year, only five Americans have been able to make it across and they are all on stage tonight!”

This concert included long-standing performers at Celtic Connections along with new faces. From US roots music, we were treated to the talent of Grammy-award-winning American singer Sarah Jarosz.

Sarah Jarosz

(Glasgow Scotland, 6th February 2022. Sarah Jarosz, grammy-award winning American singer songwriter, of roots and Americana music, performed at the Transatlantic Sessions on the final night of Celtic Connections festival 2022, Glasgow concert hall, with Scot, Irish and American musicians. Led by Shetland fiddler Ali Bain and, from the States, Dubro master Jerry Douglas)

She has a quiet stillness and one of those hypnotic voices that pulls you in. She sang Orange and Blue, Blue Heron, Hometown and Dylan’s Ring the Bell.

New faces also included, Haitian-American musician Leyla McCaila, who is an earthy and soulful singer and was previously with the band The Carolina Chocolate Drop. Award-winning and talented Scots singer songwriter Siobhan Miller sang traditional songs May Morning Dew, Honest Man and her own song Drifting and was clearly thrilled to have joined this elite band!

Glasgow Scotland, Transatlantic Sessions. Siobhan Miller,

(Glasgow Scotland, 6th February 2022. Siobhan Miller, Scottish singer songwriter performed Transatlantic Sessions on the final night of Celtic Connections festival 2022, Glasgow concert hall, with Scot, Irish and American musicians. Led by Shetland fiddler Ali Bain and from the States Dubro master Jerry Douglas)

Dirk Powell from Kentucky, who is a leading expert of Appalachian music, performed songs of his family’s inspiring history; Bright Light of Day, Waterdown and Walking Through Clay. He said it is important to tell our stories and spoke of his own family’s history and of his grandfather carving his name with his young man’s hope on an old tree.

Glasgow Scotland, Transatlantic Sessions. Paul Brady

(Glasgow Scotland, 6th February 2022. Paul Brady, Irish folk musician, performed at the Transatlantic Sessions on the final night of Celtic Connections festival 2022, Glasgow concert hall, with Scot, Irish and American musicians. Led by Shetland fiddler Ali Bain and from the States Dubro master Jerry Douglas. )

Popular Irish musician Paul Brady was another highlight and performed a top class show finale when he sang, Concert Going and Harvest time. This was followed by a grand finale, which was as always of exhilarating Scots tunes!

A special mention should be given for the talents of the band’s outstanding musicianship, they don’t come any better than this! Highlights from the wide variety of styles – Dirk Powell’s Waterdown, and Sara Jarosz’s vocals alongside Douglas’s dubro and Daniel Kimdro’s double bass. And, of course, Ali Bain’s accomplished Shetland fiddle. Phil Cunningham told how his musical partner Ali, after 35 years playing together, told him how talented he was!

Glasgow Scotland, Transatlantic Sessions

Glasgow Scotland, 6th February 2022. Transatlantic Sessions performed on the final night of Celtic Connections festival 2022, Glasgow concert hall, with Scot, Irish and American musicians. Led by Shetland fiddler Ali Bain and from the States Dubro master Jerry Douglas. )

Long may we be treated to such accomplished musicians. I hope there will be some recordings of the Transatlantic Sessions to enjoy on YouTube soon, which I highly recommend checking out.

The Transatlantic Sessions band is led by musical directors – Shetland fiddle legend Aly Bain, accordion legend Phil Cunningham and dobro genius Jerry Douglas, and the band includes John DoyleDaniel KimbroMichael McGoldrickJohn McCuskerDonald Shaw and James Mackintosh.

Review and Photos Pauline Keightley – pkimage.co.uk/celticonnections

 

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This section: Pauline Keightley, Photography

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Avatar of PatByrne Publisher of Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End; the community guide to the West End of Glasgow. Fiction and non-fiction writer.

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