To coincide with @edinharpfest the Virtual Edinburgh International Harp Festival 2020 we have added four recordings of pioneer professional harper and singer Héloïse Russell-Fergusson recorded in Edinburgh in 1933 for release on the Beltona label. These have been restored by Stuart Eydmann from original records held in private collections.
Ms Russell-Fergusson had a role in establishing the Clarsach Society in the early 1930s and the tracks are among the oldest recordings of the small harp in Scotland. They were preceded only by those by Patuffa Kennedy-Fraser from 1929, which can also be heard on rareTunes.
We will be adding further archival tracks by Héloïse and more harp-related material in due course so register to follow rareTunes if you wish to receive notice of this and other additions.
Might this be the oldest surviving non-commercial recording of Scottish fiddle music. Explored here: https://raretunes.org/professor-maclellan-of-berkeley/
Stuart Eydmann adds two new tracks played on a new miniature concertina recently made for him by Andrew Norman. More to follow. https://raretunes.org/stuart-eydmann/
Simon Thoumire recently asked whether we knew anything about fiddler William Craig, his life and music. Like others we knew little but had been intrigued by him for some years. After a brief flurry of research we offer the following information as well as three of his pioneering tracks.
Elgin melodeon player Fred Cameron recorded these figures for quadrilles and other tracks in 1910.
The great John MacDonald plays a fragment of the pibroch Lament for the Children and Pipe Major Forsyth plays “The King’s Piper”, plays The Flowers of the Forest and Mallorca.
Singer Earl Robinson paired his song that opens with the line “What is America to me?…” with Robert Burns’ A man’s a man for a’ that.
Listed to the strings of the BBC Scottish Orchestra playing traditional dance music, arranged and conducted by Ian Whyte. More to follow later:
RareTunes is now 10 years old. We are still uploading tracks from our original system and have recently added fiddlers, singers, pipers and folk groups. Happy listening! Many, many more still to come!
Eight Scottish concertina players* and their music have been added to rareTunes. This is just the start as a new area dedicated to the instrument is in preparation. Watch this space!
*Alexander Prince, Walter Dale, Tommy Dale, George S. Morris, Jack Easy, Peter McCabe, Victor Smith and Jimmy Dickson.