We’re delighted to report that the lineup has now been confirmed for Kirkcudbright: On Song – a weekend-long celebration of singer-songwriters and the art of great song – it seems perfectly fitting therefore for Scotland’s Artists’ Town.
Set amidst Spring Fling weekend, from 24th-26th May, the brand new event features gigs and workshops dotted across the town throughout the weekend. Amongst the highlights will be an appearance from BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winner Steve Tilston. Born in Liverpool and raised in the Midlands, he made his recording debut in 1971 with the classic album An Acoustic Confusion and has been turning out quality recordings for over four decades since. Highlights of his back catalogue including ‘The Slip Jigs and Reels’ and ‘Here’s to Tom Paine’ and his songs have been performed and recorded by a host of artists including Fairport Convention and Dolores Keane. A stalwart of the folk club circuit, his work received more mainstream attention in 2011 when he appeared on Later.. With Jools Holland to perform and also talk at the piano with Jools Holland about his friend and collaborator Bert Jansch. In 2012, he shared the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award for Best Original Song with Bella Hardy, for his song ‘The Reckoning’. As well as a gig on Friday 24th May, Steve will host a very special workshop on Saturday 25th. Space will be limited for the workshop so sign up to our newsletter or keep checking for announcements on times and when tickets go on sale!
Also appearing is the legendary Wizz Jones – a stunning performer and writer of great songs with over fifty years experience in the music industry. In the early sixties, he busked his way across France, sharing artistic circles with Ralph McTell, Rod Stewart and The Incredible String Band’s Clive Palmer. Very much known as the “musician’s musician”, Eric Clapton and Keith Richards have cited Wizz as a major influence and Bert Jansch called him “the most underrated guitarist ever”. A thoroughly engaging performer and storyteller, Wizz will play a show on Saturday 25th May and host a workshop on Sunday 26th.
Also gigging and hosting a workshop over the weekend is one-time Burnsong award winner Kim Edgar. The Edinburgh-based singer-songwriter has since gone on to release two highly acclaimed solo albums and play an integral role in the ‘Burns Unit’ and duet with Paolo Nutini at the opening of the Scottish Parliament’s fourth term. The Daily Record called her “one of Scotland’s undiscovered gems” whilst BBC Radio Scotland’s Tom Morton described her as “exceptional”.
Sunday 26th May sees a visit from ‘The Living Bluesman’ Tom Attah – sure to be a highlight. As well as being a great performer and singer-songwriter he’s also a walking encyclopedia. Tom’s live shows are filled with energy, humour and stories that illustrate the origins of the blues and meanings of the songs and music. The last 24 exciting months have featured performances throughout the UK and Europe at venues and major festivals including the Glastonbury Festival, the Great British Rhythm & Blues Festival, Blues Autour Du Zinc in France and Blues Au 13 in Paris.
There’s also a return to Dumfries and Galloway for one-time frontman of Wolfstone, Ivan Drever. The Orcadian is now based in Norway, but makes regular trips to Scotland to tour and always delights audience. He combines amazing fingerstyle guitar skills with wonderfully insightful songwriting. Distilled Records will also feature, with appearances expected from Steven Finn, Manchester legend Spider Mike King and Steve Dowling.
As well as all the visiting talent, there’s also an abundance of locally-based performers on show across the weekend, including appearances from the brilliant Sean vs The Robots, Ross Bay poet and singer-songwriter Alan McClure and the wonderful Beck Goldsmith, who won many fans with a superb performance in the acoustic tent at last year’s Wickerman Festival.
With more acts and workshops to be confirmed (including gigs and workshops for younger visitors) it promises to be a weekend to remember. Sign up for the newsletter to stay up to date with with the details including when tickets go on sale – some events are even free!
KIRKCUDBRIGHT: ON SONG IS PART OF THE DUMFRIES & GALLOWAY ARTS FESTIVAL