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Various Artists - “The Best of Scottish Music Vol. 2” - Greentrax CDTRAX 215

Is it really fifteen years since Ian Green hung up his polis cap for the last time and transmutated himself into the living legend of traddie recording for which he is renowned?  Yes it is, and what better way to celebrate an anniversary than by bringing out a compilation CD to remind everyone of your quality?  Ian did that five years ago with the cracking Music and Song of Greentrax and it is a mark of the pool of artists into which he can dip that none of the twenty featured here have appeared on any previous similar showcase compilations.

Yes, I did say twenty – giving us an hour and a quarter of music and song to enjoy.  This is a canny mixture of weel-kent faces and newer ones, from the exuberance of Macumba’s opening Gale Warning through to the dynamism of Salsa Celtica’s closing Yo Me Voy / Maggie’s Pancakes via the poignancy of the likes of Rob Mackillop’s Chancellour’s Farewell , this release just oozes quality and is a well-balanced and interesting collection.  Too many compilations end up sounding a bit similar throughout, but this one keeps your interest and would, for anyone unfamiliar with any of the artists, whet the appetite for more.

I’m sure he’s already making his plans for the twentieth anniversary release, but it’ll have to go some to beat this (but, knowing Ian, it probably will!)

Gordon Potter

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This album was reviewed in Issue 45 of The Living Tradition magazine.