Claire is a Shetlander, born and bred. She learned the fiddle with Dr Tom Anderson from the age of seven, and played as a member of Shetland's Young Heritage in Europe, New Zealand, the USA and Canada. Claire has tutored at summer schools in the USA, Stirling and Cambridge and taught fiddle evening classes for Scottish Culture and Traditions in Aberdeen for five years. She has played in numerous ceilidh bands including Shindig, Jingbang, Ceilidh Mor, Reel Din, Mastrick Street Preachers and Cambridge University ceilidh band, and she currently performs in the duo Blyde Lasses with Frances Wilkins www.myspace.com/blydelasses By day, she brings all sorts of stories to the airwaves as a BBC Producer.
Helen Lynch took up the tin whistle to entertain her baby daughter and avoid doing the washing up. Countless pub sessions and several bands later, she now plays up a storm in a style once charitably described as ‘Yiddish-Irish-Baroque’. Several years living in Eastern Europe added some Polish, Russian and Ukrainian influences to the mix. She occasionally plays the bodhran, if not prevented in time, and regularly moonlights as a teacher of Medieval Literature at Aberdeen University.
Frances Wilkins first started playing English Concertina in sessions in Shetland before moving to London where she studied music at the School of Oriental and African Studies. She holds a PhD in Ethnomusicology from the University of Aberdeen and is a researcher and visiting tutor in the university's Music department and at the Elphinstone Institute. She performs concerts with Blyde Lasses and Ellefish, and regularly teaches concertina and mixed instrument classes in traditional music.
Anne Taylor has performed on piano and as a dance-caller in countless bands across both Scotland and the USA , including JingBang, The Occasionals, The Old Blind Dogs, Shindig, Dr Twamley’s Audio Snakes & now Danse McCabre. When not playing and dancing, Anne is the Business Systems Manager for Schlumberger, and puts her PhD in plant sciences to good use by growing organic veg on her farm at Midmar. To try her excellent organic veg, click here: vitalveg.co.uk Luckily her green fingers don’t impede her nimble keyboard playing.
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Our current header image was taken by Nick Bramhall and you can find the original here.