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VARIOUS ARTISTS
TMSA Young Trad Tour 2006 Live

Well – plenty of notes here – and all in the right place!  I think you can safely expect the standard of playing of the winners of the 2006 BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Awards to be on a pretty exalted plain – and so it proves.  The sets of tunes are fast and furious, with thoughtful arrangements and lots of jazzy inflections.  In fact one or two tunes are so jazzy as to have lost the folk element altogether (‘Offensive doctor flute pervert’ anyone?).  There is ‘though, a fine solo song and hurrah for that – it would have been nice to have heard how the instrumentalists coped with solo performance – it seems to be a dying tradition.  However, this seems to have been a terrific tour aimed at showcasing the fantastic playing of the participants and should act as a great springboard for their future careers.

Sleeve notes give information about the performers, half-a-page of thanks to sponsors etc and, apart from titles and composers, absolutely nothing at all about the music.  Why?  Aren’t the TMSA interested?  Do they think nobody will want to know what a song in Gaelic is about? And as to how to get hold of the CD – don’t know about that – certainly the TMSA website seems blissfully unaware of it’s existence, as does Amazon.  It’s well worth making the effort to find though.

Paul Burgess

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This album was reviewed in Issue 73 of The Living Tradition magazine.