With the stunning photography of Cailean Maclean and over 450 of Freeland Barbour’s compositions, The Music And The Land - The Music Of Freeland Barbour (a sumptuous 2-volume book in a slip-case) is a wonderful tribute to Scotland’s landscape and traditions. The book was published by Birlinn Ltd in October 2015 and launched with concert/ceilidh nights at The Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh and The Old Fruitmarket, Glasgow.
This album The Music And The Land - The Concert contains much of the magic of these two nights, a chance to hear just a few of the compositions from the book, and also to hear music from the distinguished list of performers. Everyone in the concert had also made a contribution to the book in some way and this made for a wonderful atmosphere and, in the words of author James Robertson, “A book launch like no other”.
The album includes contributions from The Occasionals Ceilidh Band - comprising Freeland Barbour (accordion), Mairi Campbell (fiddle), Alison Smith (fiddle), Kevin Macleod (tenor banjo and mandolin), Gus Millar (drums) and Neil MacMillan (piano) - with guests Martin Carthy (songs), Phil Cunningham (accordion), Ross Ainslie (smallpipes and Highland pipes), Simon Thoumire (concertina), Gary West (smallpipes), Jane Gardner (piano), Jane Barbour (piano), Billy Kay (speech) and Cailean Maclean (speech). These guests appear solo and in various combinations with Freeland which makes for a wonderful album of real listening pleasure.