Swingin’ Fiddles (Biography courtesy of the Artist's site, 2007)
A young Shetland band, formed in November 2003
Astryd Jamieson (16 yrs) - comes from a musical family, her mum, Debbie Scott, dad Ronnie Jamieson and Grandad Frank Jamieson are all well known Shetland composers and fiddlers. Astryd began playing the piano at the age of 7 with Linda Peterson, and for the last two and a half years has studied Shetland style vamping with Violet Tulloch.
Maggie Adamson (14 yrs) - began playing fiddle at the age of eight, with Bernadette Porter and is currently taught by Alan Gifford. She is enthusiastic about music and plays various instruments and in different styles. Maggie has held the titles of Shetland Intermediate and also Junior Young Fiddler of the Year, and has been successful in several competitions for Fiddle in mainland Scotland for the last 4 years. She also plays in the National Childrens Orchestra of Scotland.
Laura Lockyer - (19 yrs) started playing the fiddle at the age of 10, initially with Bernadette, then with Trevor Hunter, currently she is studying with Margaret Scollay. Laura’s Grandad, Jim Marwick of Orkney was her inspiration to carry on with traditional music. Laura enjoys a variety of musical styles. She was Shetland’s young Fiddler of the Year in 2003, and has also had consistent success in Scottish fiddle competitions last year.
Brian Nicholson - (?? yrs)is a well known and accomplished musician playing in a variety of genres. Currently he plays with Sheila Henderson's Band, May and Mackie, Maddrim, and Hom Bru. We were very grateful to Brian for helping us out on the CD "Take Note" and on our new release Wir Waanderins - so giving the guitar input a touch of his class!! - and giving us the benefit of his arranging experience. See www.hombru.co.uk for a more extensive bio.
Swingin’ Fiddles - had a great year in 2004, being lucky enough to have played at several festivals including- Celtic Connections, Gig N’ The Bann (Ireland) and the Blend (Stirling) as well as taking part in the Shetland Fiddle and Accordion Festival. They had a short trip to Norway playing on the Norrona. Laura took part in an Icelandic festival. The fiddlers have taken part in Groove Camp in Pennsylvania. The mix of tunes we enjoy playing may be due to the wide range of music we have heard and the musicians we have met. We all enjoy sessions (especially in the Lounge), and enjoy playing at community and charity events, Arts Trust events, in the Care Centres and at the Shetland Accordion and Fiddle Club.
2005 continued to get better, Celtic Connections again in January, A most amazing week in February at the Folk Alliance/Mundial Conference in Montreal, Canada, with 4 showcases! (Many thanks to Dana and Folkquebec), Camping at the Newcastleton Festival in July - and coming home with the trophies for the best Ceilih Band and Open Fiddle Competitions!! Accompanying Junior Shetland Folkdance at a brilliant festival in Kaalag, Norway in August, Followed by Northern Ireland in September for Gig 'nThe Bann(having won the Ann O'Brien Open Stage event in2004) To crown everything this led to a 4 night tour in Northern Ireland in October culminating in a headline performance at An Culturlann in the Falls road Belfast.
We finished '05 playing in Grantown on Spey for their "Hogmanay in the Square" Celebrations along with local band Smuid and were really chuffed to be joined onstage by Matt McGrannachan. Not sure if they were succesful in this years attempt to break the World's biggest Strip the Willow record!!! - Maybe next year?
2006 has been brill so far, Grantown, then up to Rousay in Orkney for a music night!! We finished January in Glasgow for Celtic Connections, In March, Maggie and Astryd went to Musselburgh and came second in the trio competition with Robert Menzies, Maggie won the under sixteen fiddle championship, and we had a great time at the dance! Thanks to Andy & Pat O'Donnell for arranging a smashing gig in Edinburgh during the Easter holidays, to Robert and Kaela for joining us and Arthur for doing the sound. At the end of April the Shetland Folk Festival was hectic but great as usual.
One of the highlights of this year was an invitation to play at the Maalloy Dagen festival in Norway - the craic was mega!! Helge, Albannach and Dublin Legacy made sure the week was one big musical spree.
Another unforgettable week was at the North Atlantic Fiddle Convention in Aberdeen in July, We met people from all over the world some old friends - Alan Jabbour, Ken Perlman,from America; Dana, Claude and Marie Soleil,Bea and Aimee from Quebec; Laura Risk, Mark and the star - Antoine! We also made lots of new ones - Dougie Lawrence, Judy from Australia, and even got our picture taken with the Lord Provost - after a crackin session wi the Cullivoe Fiddlers!
August was full on with Shetlands Fiddle Frenzy, (well named) Laura and Maggie were delighted to play at the Clickimmin concert with Quebecosse - not sure which was best - the concert or Phil Cunninghams jokes!
And September took us back to Gig 'n The Bann in Ireland, this time accompanied by guitarist Stuart Shearer from Orkney, We had an absolute ball! Thanks to Brian McArt, Matt and Sean for coming over, and Lyra Celtica for their kind comments.Hospitality at Philip O'Niels was superb as usual.
At the end of September we were in Billy Kays studio with Philip Anderson from Orkney and managed to record our next CD just in the nick of time before Laura went to Uni in Aberdeen - she is going to be a primary teacher!
Many thanks to Brian Nicholson again for his great guitar accompaniment. The CD should be out soon, called Wir Waanderins - and nae wonder!!!