Traditional music at summer sessions

THIS is the 13th year of the summer sessions, which started in 2000 with the Angus Folk, and later the Hairst Sessions.

Now as the Trad Angus Summer Sessions, the programme continues with events right through to September 9 at the Kirrie Festival.

The Trad Angus Sunday afternoon session on September 2 is at the Glenisla Hotel, Kirkton of Glenisla, 3pm-6pm with Maureen Jelks, Lesley McLuckie and ‘Friends of the Fish’.

Maureen is a well-known singer with recordings on Coorse and Fine’, ‘First Time Ever’ etc. and is hosting the open session with Lesley, another Dundee singer at the Fishermans Tavern session in Broughty Ferry, together with other musicians and singers from the ‘Fish’.

There will be Dundee songs, ballads and wee songs, and some great tunes.

On Tuesday, September 4 at 8pm, the Trad Angus Summer Session is at Three Bellies Brae, Kirriemuir with local musicians and singers, plus guest Barbara Dymock. Again, great songs and great Bodhran.

Barbara started singing in earnest in the 1970s - perhaps it was the legacy of her maternal grandfather Robert Smith who was an English gypsy.

As a medical student at Dundee University she joined the university folk club and discovered that there was a group of like-minded people who knew and sang the type of songs her Scottish grandparents had sung around their house in Methil.

Her first ever folk festival at Kinross was a great experience and she began assimilating songs at sessions, clubs and festivals, learning from the performers prominent on the folk scene at that time such as Dick Gaughan, The Bothy Band, Paul Brady, Tony Cuffe, Marjory Sinclair, and many more.

Barbara was a founder member of Ceolbeg, as lead singer and playing the bodhran on the instrumental sets. Of course Ceolbeg went on to become one of the best loved bands of the 80’s and 90’s, with an ever changing line-up.

After working in the NHS for 31 years, she opted for early retirement for other medical interests, and of course to spend more time with the music.

Meeting up with Christine Kydd again after a “long time no see” spawned the duo Sinsheen and together with Michael Marra they produced a well received CD called LIFT.

Sinsheen continues, but Barbara has always been a band member at heart.

After a gathering with musician friends at Girvan Folk Festival, one thing led to another and much to her delight her ‘backing band’ was formed and a new CD called Hilbert’s Hotel emerged - ‘a gorgeous solo debut featuring some great songs and a fine array of special guests’.

Retirement for Barbara has so far been mythical. She has taught exercise classes at Dundee University’s Institute of Sport & Exercise since 1991 and continues to do so. She does the odd medical locum and administers medical data at her husband’s GP practice.

So…… if you are looking for a folk singing exercise instructor trained in medicine, she’s yer wumman.!

These are open sessions, you are welcome to join in with a song or a tune, or just listen and enjoy the rich and diverse traditional music of Angus.

For more information about the Trad Angus Summer Sessions 2012 and the artistes taking part visit www.tradangus.co.uk and www.nigelsjelks.co.uk