Radio Scotland Music Finalists Perform in Strachur

Item Posted: Monday 30th August, 2004

The Traditional Music and Song Association have arranged a country-wide tour of some of the best young traditional musicians around. The only Argyll event will be held in Strachur Memorial Hall on Sunday 3rd October at 5.00 p.m.

The tour features all the finalists from this year’s BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award, together with the 2003 winner, Anna Massie. This showcase for some of our most talented young musicians, and likely stars of the future, was first seen at Glasgow’s Celtic Connections in January and was a sellout, and considered to be one of the highlights of the Festival. The award itself, in its fourth year, is an established and internationally recognised platform to represent the breadth and depth of Scotland’s instrumental and vocal traditions.

Not everyone is enthusiastic about the idea of competition in music, particularly in traditional music where much of the fun is in its informality and relaxed atmosphere. Judges also have the unenviable task of not just deciding who is best on a particular instrument as in competitions such as the Mod, but deciding whether a supreme fiddler is “better” than an outstanding singer. Although aficionados of a particular instrument or style might have initial reservations, no-one can argue that a huge depth of talent is unearthed by competitions such as this. The resulting concert proves that all of the finalists were winners, but the major winners are the audience, who are treated to virtuoso displays of Gaelic song, clarsach, fiddle, accordion, guitar and Scots ballads.

The event in January got top ratings from The Herald:

…this year's final featured one of the strongest fields yet, making the judges' job of choosing a winner no enviable task. All six contestants were experienced performers with their own musical personalities, all well capable of putting their own
interpretations into tunes and songs and each contributing to the entertainment value of an evening that each year becomes increasingly more nerve-wracking for the audience than it appears to be for the tremendously assured and often jocularly nonchalant performer.

And from the Scotsman:

Gaelic singer James Graham from Lochinver beat off strong competition to become the first male Young Scots Traditional Musician of the Year, with a set of impeccably performed songs. The six finalists delivered a richly entertaining concert, and each provided yet more evidence of the remarkable growth in standards in traditional music in recent years. Three of the contenders were fiddle players who also sang,
and each brought a distinctive stylistic approach to proceedings.

The TMSA originally approached the Lochgoilhead Fiddle Workshop to host this event in Loch Goil as an enthusiastic local audience for top quality traditional music had already been established there, but the Workshop felt that not all those interested would be able to travel to Loch Goil. By holding the event in Strachur they hope that people from a wider geographic area will feel like attending!

At the same time a rare opportunity came up for an music organization in Cowal to link with a group in Bute, and the TMSA branch in Bute are co-hosting the event. It is therefore particularly appropriate that Western Ferries are sponsoring the concert.Both TMSA (Bute) and Lochgoilhead Fiddle Workshop hope that this is the first of many co-operative events between Bute and the main land.

The concert in Strachur will give Cowal residents and visitors a rare opportunity, whether they are “into” traditional music or just appreciate good quality music, to hear a range of soloists playing a wide range of music and song.

Fortunately extra sponsorship has also been found, which means that ticket prices have been kept below the sort of prices charged in Glasgow. James Bilsland (Oil and Gas Distributors), and Cowal Building Suppliers have generously donated towards the costs, so tickets have been pegged at £6.00 (adults) and £3.00 (schoolchildren), if bought in advance. For more information and bookings please call 01301 703481, 01 01700 831614, or check out the web site

Other News

One in a thousand!

Wednesday 14th April, 2010

Our pupils have success at Mid Argyll Music Festival ...

Arts Sale to Help Haiti

Sunday 14th February, 2010

Various artists/galleries we know are arranging a charity sale in Oban ...

Harmony Singing Workshop

Wednesday 10th February, 2010

being arranged by one of our members ...

Schools Gaelic Tour

Monday 18th January, 2010

Over 700 local children benefit from tour ...

Celtic Nordic link

Monday 4th January, 2010


Arts Winners in Argyll Awards

Monday 4th January, 2010

A brief profile of Argyll Arts Award winners and runners up More on other awards at www.forargyll. ...

Celtic Connections New Voices

Saturday 2nd January, 2010

New compositions well worth a visit ...


Saturday 2nd January, 2010

Run by these are the winners for 2009 ...


Thursday 3rd December, 2009


Hands Up for Trad Awards

Wednesday 2nd December, 2009


Homecoming – out with a bang or a whimper?

Wednesday 2nd December, 2009

The plusses and minuses of Homecoming will be debated long after 2009 is long gone, with the protago ...

LFW/Cowal Open Studios

Tuesday 17th November, 2009

Bring £250,000 to local economy ...

Cowal groups up for and receive awards

Tuesday 17th November, 2009


More Homecoming and Hands Up For Trad

Tuesday 17th November, 2009


Homecoming -last gasp!

Tuesday 17th November, 2009


Culture in Cowal

Tuesday 17th November, 2009

A great weekend of events/concerts in Cowal ...

Rhapsody09 review

Sunday 1st November, 2009

A number of our students ionvolved in Donald Shaw's Rhapsody ...

Mandolin Tour of local schools

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

4 schools have the chance of Mandolin Come and Tries this week ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

Three renowned Celtic musicians, Mairi Campbell on fiddle & vocals, Abby Newton on cello, and Ki ...

Award Winning Danish Trio

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

On their way to us! ...

LFW/FF Student wins Mod Medal

Tuesday 27th October, 2009


Tourism Award for Theatre Group Leader?

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

The shortlist for the Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards has been announced ...

Awards for Fyne Ales

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

Fyne Ales have always supported LFW, so we are pleased at their success! ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

Finalists announced soon ...

Readers express views on Homecoming

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

Park Weekly News and LFW cooperste to do a series of articles on HC09 Readers letters- ...

BBC Young Traditional Musician Finalists

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

a great illustration of the strength of the piping tradition in Argyll ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

You would normally have to travel to Trinity College, Dublin Edinburgh to see two very special arte ...

Great Houses Of Cowal

Tuesday 27th October, 2009


Paisley Festival

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

If yours is a more classical taste try out the Paisley Festival which is on until 7th November. ...

Perthshire Amber

Tuesday 27th October, 2009

Part of our Homecoming series in Park Weekly News on the Dougie MacLean festival ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

The emphasis of much of the Homecoming Celebrations for the rest of October will shift to the Highla ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

What might on the surface seem an odd combination comes neatly together in part of Cowalfest’s Homec ...


Tuesday 27th October, 2009

There may be few readers who have not heard of the Royal National Mod, but there will be many who ha ...

Jazz Concerts for Kirn and Lochgilphead

Thursday 15th October, 2009

Dutch jazz fiddler Tim Kliphuis has been hailed as the successor of Stéphane Grappelli ...

Rhapsody 09

Monday 5th October, 2009

Celebrating young Argyll ...

View archived news