The Illawarra Folk Festival Announces 2018 Lineup

Illawarra Folk Festival
Image Courtesy of Illawarra Folk Festival

Our favourite mid-sized folk festival, the Illawarra Folk Festival dropped its massive 2018 lineup this week and as usual we’re very very impressed

The Illawarra Folk Festival always manages to pull out the big guns and the best up and comers and 2018 is no different. The lineup this time around includes the likes of Eric Bogle, Cass Eager, The Go Set, Breaking Trad, Maggie Carty and Mairtin Staunton, Claire Anne Taylor, Devil on the Rooftop, Golden Whistler, Handsome Young Strangers, Lizzie Flynn, Paddy McHugh, Shelley’s Murder Boys, The Button Collective, The Northern Folk, The Raglins, The Royal High Jinx, The Scrims, Big Erle, Jane Aubourg, Kay Proudlove and many many more.

The Illawarra Folk Festival takes place in Bulli, NSW from the 18th to the 21st January. To get more information including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here.

The full lineup of Illawarra Folk Festival artists is below:

International Artists:
Breaking Trad (Ireland), Dan Walsh (UK), Edgelarks (UK), Eleanor McEvoy (Ireland), Faith i Branko (Eastern Europe), George Mann (USA), Himmerland with Mairi Campbell (Denmark/Scotland), Jonathan Bob Lynn (Canada), Josefina Paulson & Jonas Akerlund (Sweden), Ken Field’s Hoot Band (USA), Kevin Welch (USA), Maggie Carty and Mairtin Staunton (Ireland), Oi Dipnoi (Italy), Scott Cook & The Second Chances (Canada), Steve Turner (UK), The Beez (Germany), The Small Glories (Canada)

National Artists:
Eric Bogle, Mikelangelo (The Balkan Elvis), Cass Eager, Darren Coggan, Taikoz, The Go Set, Albion Fair Morris, Baz Cooper, Emma Nixon & Iain McKenzie, Black Joak Morris, Brian Bell, Bush Music Club Inc, Christopher Shaw, Claire Anne Taylor, Combined Union Choirs, Den Hanrahan and the Rum Runners, Devil on the Rooftop, Dom Ferry, Ella Belfanti, Franke, Glover & Sorrensen, Golden Whistler, Good Tunes, Greshka, Handsome Young Strangers, Honey & Knives, Jane Germain & Ian Simpson, John Broomhall, Karen Law & Family, Lagoon Hill Zydeco, Lisa Lazuli Music, Little Foot, Lizzie Flynn, Margaret Walters, Maurie Mulheron and Pat Craigie, The Merry Widows Unplugged, Michael-John Azzopardi, Nick Charles, Nick Rheinberger, Noel Gardner, Paddy McHugh, Peter Mace, Peter Willey, Robyn Sykes, Romisounds, Rusty & The Saint, Santa Taranta, Shelley’s Murder Boys, Snez Musica, Sydney English Country Dance, The Button Collective, The Grenadiers, The Honey Drippin’ Mudskippers, The Northern Folk, The Protesters, The Raglins, The Royal High Jinx, The Scrims, The Simon Kerr Perspective, The Ten Quid Poms, Tililili, Wally Byrne

Local Artists:
Alex Sreckovic – Smokehouse, Atif & Sako, AZ-I-AM, Beatmeisters, Big Erle, Carefree Road Band, Chord-eaux, Cinnamon Twist School of Belly Dance, Circus WOW, Cranky Franky, Curious Rendition Orchestra, Egypsy, Light Being Yoga-Erika Steller & Fiona Davis, Gobsmacked!, Heart to Heart Storytelling, Irish Famine, Jackie Dee, Jane Aubourg, Jimmy and Shay, John Nichols & Wolfgang Kloger, Josh C. Music, Kala Ilango, Kay Proudlove, Kenny Bartley, Kevin Sullivan, King & Queen of Green, LANEY and Friends, Lizzie Bennet, Love In The Jungle, Meridian, Murmur, No Such Thing, Roger Gordon Fyfe, Silver Lotus Tribal Bellydance, SingGongGo, Southern Gentlemen, Swing Booty, The Calamities, The Capricornia Project, The Con Artists, TheGroove, The Humphreys, The Scratchies, Steampunk Vagabonds, Swingaleles Wollongong, The Water Runners, Tia Juana, Vic Janko Orkestar, Wolf Gordon Music, Zlatkos Balkan Cabaret

Youth Artists:
Claire Doherty, Fergus Bailey, Folkaphonic Youth Orchestra, James & Jackson, Little Glory, Paddy & The Wonderband, Shalani Music, The Bowhemians, Tim Lukey, Whisper Out Loud, Zingara

Cobargo Folk Festival Announces First Headliners for 2018

Eric Bogle
Image Courtesy of Eric Bogle

Wait, we’re talking about 2018 festivals already? Where has this year gone!

The Cobargo Folk Festival, held in the NSW south coast village of Cobargo, has already revealed a bunch of their headliners for next years event.

Australian folk music legends Eric Bogle (above) and Neil Murray head up the announcement along with fellow Aussies The Northern Folk. From an international point of view Cobargo has managed to snag the Peter Rowan Bluegrass Band (USA), Christine Collister (Isle of Man) with Michael Fix and the Alan Kelly Gang (Ireland). And there’s obviously a bunch more to be announced over the coming months.

The Cobargo Folk Festival takes place in Cobargo, NSW from the 2nd to 4th March. For more information including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here.

The Fleurieu Folk Festival Announces Winter Warmup Mini-Festival

Eric Bogle
Image Courtesy of Eric Bogle

While we wait patiently for the return of the Fleurieu Folk Festival in October South, Australian folk fans can rejoice with the announcement of the Fleurieu Folk Festival Winter Warm Up on the 28th May.

The mini-festival will take place at the Port Noarlunga Bowling Club in Port Noarlunga, south of Adelaide and promises a day of folky goodness from some of South Australia’s top artists.

Headlining the Winter Warmup will be folk music legend Eric Bogle who has called South Australia home for much of his life in Australia. Joining Bogle will be a lineup of amazing South Australian artists including Soursob Bob, Astráil, Courtney Robb, Gillian Murray, The Cajun Band, Hut and many more.

The Winter Warmup is the Fleurieu Folk Festival’s major annual fundraising event so get along to support some amazing local music. For more information check out the official Facebook event here.

First Round Of Artists Announced for Port Fairy Folk Festival 2016

Mary Black
Image Courtesy of Mary Black

It looks like we’re well and truly into that time of year when the major folk festivals start announcing their lineups. The next cab off the rank is the Port Fairy Folk Festival, arguably one of Australia’s top folk events, which next year will be held from the 11th to the 14th March.

The Port Fairy Folk Festival enters its 40th year in 2016 so as you’d expect the lineup is going to be huge. The first round of artists did not disappoint either – announced this time around were Ayleen O’Hanlon, Claymore, DakhaBrakha (Ukraine), Dave Arden, Eric Bogle, Fourplay, Grigoryan Brothers, John McCutcheon (USA), Katie Noonan’s Vanguard, Lloyd Spiegel, Manran (Scotland), Mary Black (Ireland, above), Moxie (Ireland), Nicky Bomba’s Bustamento, Pierce Brothers, Ruby Boots, Steve Poltz (USA), Sara Storer, Shellie Morris, Suzannah Espie, The Bushwackers, The East Pointers (Canada), The Ugly Uncles, Truckstop Honeymoon (USA), Three Kings, The Woohoo Revue and The Young’uns (UK) with plenty more to come.

Tickets for the 2016 Port Fairy Folk Festival are already on sale. Check out the official web site for more information.

12 Hours at the 2015 Illawarra Folk Festival

Illawarra Folk Festival
Image Courtesy of Illawarra Folk Festival

Every year as my train pulls away from Bulli station after another successful tilt at the Illawarra Folk Festival I promise myself “next year will be the year I come for the whole weekend, not just a day”.

Then when January finally rolls around again and my pockets are empty following the excess of the Christmas period I always find myself whittling down my expectations and deciding “just one day at Illawarra will do”.

But one day is never enough.

The Illawarra Folk Festival is no longer the little festival I first started going to when I moved to New South Wales 10 years ago. And 10 years ago it had already outgrown its life as a “little festival” having moved to Bulli from Jamberoo to accommodate a much larger audience. This year saw more than 11,000 people make their way through the gates of Bulli Showground proving once and for all that the Illawarra Folk Festival is one of the big guys.

There’s plenty of reasons why I’ve always loved Illawarra. The fact it’s an easy train ride from Sydney for one. It’s mid-January timing meaning it manages to attract the best talent from the New Year’s festivals for another. And that despite the fact that there were 11,000 people through the door I can spend my day walking around the site bumping into old friends, making new ones and feeling right at home.

This year I chose Sunday as my one day at Illawarra for no other reason than it fitted my schedule best and the timing of the final concert – around 6pm – meant I wouldn’t be ridiculously late home. I caught the first train down, rocking into the festival before 9am and before, it turns out, most of the music had started. I parked myself where I could see a blackboard session featuring Mandy Connell in the Tantric Turtle, studied the program intently and let the upcoming day wash over me.

And then I was off! Having just a day at the festival meant I needed to see as much as possible in a small amount of time. Anyone tracking my progress around the showground would have seen me almost running between venues, ducking in halfway into sets, saying g’day to the artists as they clambered off stage only to then piss-bolt to the next gig.

This sort of program onslaught meant I missed more than a few of the artists I wanted to see because of clashes including The Mae Trio, Cloudstreet, Fred Smith, Sparrow-Folk and Big Erle. It also meant I managed to catch snippets of artists that I originally didn’t have down on my list like the Tim Edey Trio as I cut through the Slacky Flat Bar on my way to another gig. Plus it meant that by the time I realised I should really eat something most of the stalls had shut up shop for the weekend and I was left with the option of chip-on-a-stick or a sandwich when I got home. I chose the latter.

But I did see some amazing music. And the variety! This is what is special about the Illawarra Folk Festival – in one moment you can watch a contemporary singer-songwriter like Joe Mungovan (who slipped a James Taylor number into his set because he felt is was the only folk song he knew), run between competing folk-punk shows from The Go Set, The Bottlers and Handsome Young Strangers (who were strangely playing at exactly the same time in different venues) or soak up the jazzed up trad of Stray Hens. Artistic director David De Santi is obviously a lover of folk music in all it’s various guises and this flows through to possibly the most eclectic lineup of any festival in Australia.

Of the international guests I was most impressed with Canadian trad trio The East Pointers and the Euro-Scottish folk of Black Market Tune. The former were just a powerhouse live – one of the tightest bands I’ve seen in a very long time and so charismatic! I can imagine they won the hearts of many young ladies in the audience and may even have inspired more than one person to pick up the tenor banjo (well, I was inspired, so that counts). The latter ingratiated themselves with the crowd with the simple charm and ability to switch their Austrian accents to Scottish brogue as their music demanded. I can’t recommend either of these bands enough.

The Stray Hens were my pick of the local acts. I’m sure I’ve seen these guys at The National before but this was the gig that truly made me fall in love with them. Mandy, Sally and Rowena (along with Richard and Ryan in their rhythm section) are interpreting and elevating traditional songs in a way I’m not seeing many Australian artists do and it’s mesmerising. Festival bookers take note – get the Stray Hens on your lineup or forever be sorry.

And then there’s Eric Bogle. I tried not to fill my Illawarra Folk Festival seeing artists I’d seen 100 times before but somehow I still managed to find myself in the Black Diamond Marquee listening to the songwriting legend. And he was everything you’d expect – funny, passionate, engaging and beautiful. When he played “And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda” introduced with an explanation that he’d been asked to sing the song at the Anzac Day 100 year anniversary sans the final verse (“bugger that”) it was just magic.

As the Finale Parade made it’s way through the Showground I ducked out of the festival and dragged myself up the road to catch the train back to Sydney, exhausted but ultimately satisfied. Once again the Illawarra Folk Festival had exceeded my expectations and left me wanting more – exactly what I want from a folk festival.

My train wound its way through the mountains back to the big smoke and I made a promise to myself – next year “next year will be the year I come for the whole weekend, not just one day”.

30th Illawarra Folk Festival Announces First Round of Artists

Eric Bogle
Image Courtesy of Eric Bogle

This coming January is the pearl anniversary of the Illawarra Folk Festival and they’ve just announced a “pearler” of a first lineup announcement – their pun, not mine! The festival, held in Bulli just north of Wollongong in New South Wales, boasts 13 onsite venues and is easily one of our favourite events of the year.

The first round of artists for the 30th Illawarra Folk Festival include a bunch of Timber and Steel favourites including Afenginn, Eric Bogle (above), Ted Egan, Big Erle, The Bottlers, The BordererS, Chloë and Jason Roweth, Claude Hay, Cloudstreet, Fred Smith, The Go Set, Lime & Steel, The Lurkers, The Mae Trio, Margaret & Bob Fagan, Martin Pearson, The Morrisons, Sparrow-Folk, Stray Hens, Takadimi, Timothy James Bowen and many many more.

The Illawarra Folk Festival will be held at the Bulli showground from the 15th to the 18th January. For more information check out the official site here.

The full lineup announcement so far is below:

International:
Afenginn (DENMARK), Anna Ludlow Band (CANADA), Bettina Schelker (SWITZ), Black Market Tune (SCOT/AUSTRIA), David Francey (CANADA), Debasis Chakroborty & Kriti Ensemble (INDIA), The East Pointers (CANADA), George Mann (USA), Jaron Freeman-Fox & The Opposite of Everything (CANADA), Kristina Olsen (USA), Melisande – Electrotrad (CANADA), Reg Meuross (UK), Scott Cook (CANADA), Tim Edey Trio (UK)

National:
Stephan Pigram, Eric Bogle, Ted Egan, Folkaphonic Youth Orchestra (premiere), Allez-gator, Appalachian Heaven String Band, Azadoota, Bernard Carney, Big Erle, The Bottlers, The BordererS, Chloe & Jason Roweth, Claude Hay, Cloudstreet, Curragh, Dave de Hugard, David Beniuk, Deep River, Choir, Don Jarmey, Enda Kenny & Lindsay Martin, Fred Smith, Guerilla Zingari, Gina Williams & Guy Ghouse, The Go Set, Greg Champion, John Broomhall, Jordan C. Thomas, Junior, Lagoon Hill Zydeco, The Lazy Farmer’s Sons, Lime & Steel, The Lurkers, The Mae Trio, Margaret & Bob Fagan, Martin Pearson, Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club, Michael Fix, Mike Martin, The Morrisons, Neil Adam & Judy Turner, Nick Rheinberger, On The Stoop, Pat Drummond, Sally Harris, Sparrow-Folk, Springtide, The Squeezebox Trio, Stray Hens, Takadimi, Terry Serio’s Half Truths, Timothy James Bowen, The Transylvaniacs and Kengugro, Vardos, The Wish List

Blue Mountains Music Festival Announces First Lineup

Xavier Rudd
Image Courtesy of Xavier Rudd

The Blue Mountains Music Festival, which will be held from the 14th to the 16th March next year, is one of our favourite events throughout the year. Close enough to Sydney that it’s accessible (we’ve been known to watch the last act on a Sunday and then catch the last train back) yet far enough away that you feel like you’re getting away from it all, the Blue Mountains Music Festival has the best of both worlds.

The first lineup for the 2014 festival was announced this week and as usual it’s the perfect combination of folk, roots, indie and world music from Australia and around the world. Heading up the festival will be Xavier Rudd (above), Ash Grunwald and Lior, who will be joined by the likes of Rory McLeod, Eleanor McEvoy, Hanggai, Blair Dunlop, Peter Rowan Band with Richard Greene, Rose Cousins, Eric Bogle, Jeff Lang, Slava & Leonard Grigoryan, Flap!, Sunas, The Woohoo Revue, The Pigs, The BordererS, The Tiger And Me, Jack Carty, Mustered Courage, George & Noriko, Hat Fitz & Cara, Dan Parsons, The Mae Trio and many many more.

Tickets for the festival are on sale now. For more information check out the official web site here. The full lineup so far is below:

Xavier Rudd, Ash Grunwald, Lior, The Good Lovelies, Rory McLeod, Eleanor McEvoy, Hanggai, Chipolatas, Blair Dunlop, Swamp Thing, Peter Rowan Band with Richard Greene, Rose Cousins, Eric Bogle, Jeff Lang, Slava & Leonard Grigoryan, Flap!, Roesy, Jesse Valach & Blues Mountain, Grace Barbe, Sunas, The Woohoo Revue, The Pigs, The BordererS, The Tiger And Me, Benny Walker, Jack Carty, Mustered Courage, George & Noriko, Hat Fitz & Cara, Dan Parsons, Equus, Circus Solarus, Allan Caswell, Rachael Brady, Snez, Andrea Soler, The Mae Trio, Cole And Van Dijk, Belle Jar, Wagana Dancers, Gregg Borschmann’s Heartland Conversations, Poets’ Breakfasts

Brunswick Music Festival Announces Full 2013 Lineup

Lucy Wise
Image Courtesy of Lucy Wise & The B’Gollies

The Brunswick Music Festival in Melbourne has finalised its 2013 lineup and it’s looking like it’s going to be huge once again. Showcasing the best in folk, roots and world music the Brunswick Music Festival takes over the inner-north Melbourne suburb of Brunswick from the 13th to 24th March as well as hosting a massive street party on Sydney Road on the 3rd March.

The lineup this year includes some legends of the folk scene as well as some of our favourite up and coming performers including Seth Lakeman, Lucy Wise & The B’Gollies (above), Vin Garbutt, Enda Kenny, Dougie MacLean, Mike Compton, Eric Bogle, Archie Roach, Finbar Furey, Bill Jackson, Andy Irvine, Paul Brady and many more.

For the complete program and information on how to get your hands on tickets check out the official site here. The full list of performers for the 2013 Brunswick Music Festival is below:

Go Jane Go, Sweet Jean, John McCutcheon, Luke Plumb & Peter Daffy, Seth Lakeman, Lucy Wise & The B’Gollies, Vin Garbutt, Enda Kenny, Dougie MacLean, Fiona Ross, Purple Dentists, Nicola Hayes & Hélène Brunet, Mike Compton, Buffalo Nickel, Eric Bogle, Chris Wilson, Three Kings, Archie Roach, Skin Choir, Meyhané, The Cartridge Family, Miserable Little Bastards, Finbar Furey, Saoirse, Mary Coughlan, Kelly Auty, Boris Conley, David Olney & Sergio Webb, Bill Jackson Trio, Brunswick Women’s Choir, Judy Small, Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas, Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Club, Apodimi Compania, La Voce Della Luna, Kavisha Mazzella, Sean Taylor, Dan Lethbridge & Shane O’Mara, Chris Smither, Marisa Yeaman, London Klezmer Quartet, Zaporozhets, Shaking The Tree, Bronwyn Calcutt, Sweet Mona’s Choir, Nilusha Dassenaike, Alex Pertout, Andy Irvine, Paul Brady, Dancehall Racketeers, Baylor Brothers, Mike Cooper, Alasdair Fraser

Thank Folk It’s Friday – 25th January

TFIF

This Week in Folk

All the News From The Week That Was

– We kicked off the week with a live version of “Timshel” from Mumford and Sons captured by the very talented folks at Sideshow Alley. Details here

Eliza and the Bear have released the official video for their epic track “Upon The North”. Details here

Paul Simon announced Bluesfest sideshows in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and the Hunter Valley with Rufus Wainwright in support. Details here

– In March this year Billy Bragg will release his 10th studio album, Tooth & Nail, which promises to be more personal and less political than what we’re used to. Details here

– WA folk-roots outfit Ruby Boots released their new video “Kellie Anne” and have hit the road for an east coast tour. Details here

– Staying in WA, Perth based indie-folk singer-songwriter Amanda Merdzan has just released her brand new video “Afraid”. Details here

– Sydney based folk singer Brett Winterford is about to head out on tour to support his latest single “Hey Make Believer”. Details here

Bluesfest have added even more artists to the 2013 lineup including Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite, Skipping Girl Vinegar, Kim Churchill, Genevieve Chadwick and much much more. Details here

Passenger revealed another new song via a live video, this time it’s “Stolen Toys”. Details here

The Leisure Society return with their first album in two years, titled Alone Aboard the Ark. The band have put together a trailer for the album, which is due in April, and are giving away a track for free. Details here

– Sydney based folk-pop singer-songwriter Jordan Millar has announced a brand new album, Cold Lights On Curious Minds, that will be launched next month with a show in his home town. Details here

Eli Wolfe is about to head out on a massive national tour in support of his upcoming brand new EP Perfect Moment. Details here

– The latest track to surface from the upcoming pirate music compilation Son of Rogue’s Gallery is the offensive “Asshole Rules the Navy” by Iggy Pop and A Hawk and a Hacksaw. Details here

– Canberra based folk band Julia and the Deep Sea Sirens have announced a tour to support the launch of their “new” album Family Pets. Details here

– The National Folk Festival has added a trio of Irish folk music legends to its lineup in Paul Brady, Andy Irvine and Finbar Furey. Details here

– One of the bands most likely to take out the Hottest 100 tomorrow is Of Monsters and Men, and they’ve just released their new video “King And Lionheart”. Details here

– The Gum Ball added a second round of artists to it’s 2013 lineup including The Hillbilly Killers, The Eastern, Melody Pool and more. Details here

– Californian folk-rock quartet Dawes have announced plans to release a new album, Stories Don’t End, in April. Details here

Bear’s Den, the London-based trio with links to Mumford and Sons and the Communion label, have announced plans to release their new EP Agape in March. Details here

– The trailer for the upcoming Coen Brothers film based around the 60s folk revival, Inside Llewyn Davis, has finally been released. Details here

Interviews

“I’ve been catching up with lots of old friends; it’s been great. Seeing friends’ grandchildren. I remember when I was here years ago, driving down to Myall Lakes, all the way down overnight, then stopping at the lakes just there – like glass. And just lying on a bench, and all the birds – the first time I’d heard any Australian birds: kookaburras, currawongs – they had two voices”Rory McLeod chats to Bill Quinn. Interview here

Timber and Steel Presents

Jay Hoad
Jay Hoad with Lauren Glezer
Sunday 27th Januray – The Workers Club, Melbourne, VIC

Gigs Next Week

Archie Roach
Friday 25th January – State Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Saturday 26th Januray – The Parade Ground @ Old King’s, Sydney, NSW

Don’t Mention The Wall
21st to 26th January – Tamworth Country Music Festival, NSW
Sunday 27th January – Dubbo Folk Club, NSW

Kim Churchill
Friday 25th January – The Northern Hotel, Byron Bay, NSW
Saturday 26th January – Widgefest, Jugiong, NSW
Friday 1st February – Melbourne Zoo Twilight Series, Melbourne, VIC

Lachlan Bryan
Wednesday 30th January – The Retreat Hotel, Melbounre, VIC

Little Wise
Friday 1st February – The Front Gallery, Canberra, ACT

Numeralla Folk Festival
Friday 25th to Monday 28th January – Numeralla, NSW

Of Monsters and Men
Tuesday 29th January – Metro Theatre, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 31st January – The Northern, Byron Bay, NSW

Rory McLeod
Friday 25th January – Yackandandah Town Hall, VIC
Friday 1st February – Fremantle Workers Club, WA

Ruby Boots
Thursday 31st January – Transit Bar, Canberra, ACT
Friday 1st February – FBi Social, Sydney, NSW

Sarah Blasko
Friday 1st February – Adelaide Festival Centre, Adelaide, SA

Tamworth Country Music Festival
18th to 27th January – Tamworth, NSW

The April Maze
Wednesday 30th January – Old Kirk Concerts, Yamba, NSW
Friday 1st February – Maleny Upfront Club, Maleny, QLD

The Starry Field
Friday 25th January – Hibernian House, Sydney, NSW
Tuesday 29th January – Cafe Lounge, Sydney, NSW

The Underscore Orkestra
Sunday 27th January – Camelot Lounge, Sydney, NSW

The Wooden Music Festival feat. The Perch Creek Family Jug Band, The Quarry Mountain Dead Rats, The Bearded Gypsy Band
Friday 1st February – Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh, VIC

Friday Folk Flashback

“Shelter” – Eric Bogle

I’m sure I’ve posted this before as a FFF but given tomorrow is Australia Day it’s well worth a revisit. No one quite writes a patriotic song like a Scotsman, especially when that Scotsman is Eric Bogle. Hope your weekend is dressed in green and gold.

St Andrew’s Day Playlist: Colin Lillie

Colin Lillie
Image Courtesy of Colin Lillie

Today is St Andrew’s Day, the day we celebrate all things Scottish. With so much amazing folk music coming out of Scotland over the years and so much international folk music being inspired by the songs and artists of Caledonia we thought we better take some time out to celebrate the day.

And what better way to celebrate St Andrew’s Day than to ask Scottish-born, Alice Springs-based singer-songwriter Colin Lillie to present to us his favourite Scottish songs – and he’s delivered in his best Scots accent. If you’re in need of subtitles hit up Colin Lillie via his Facebook page (and have a listen to some of his fabulous music while you’re there).

When Gareth asked me if a wid like ti write a top 15 fir St. Andrew’s Day an after aw the excitement had wore off, a was left wi a sudden loss o memory an a mind that wis completely void o aw hings St. Andrew an aw hings Scottish. See ave been living in Alice Springs now fir 7yrs playing an working on ma ayn music, that a had firgotten where ma musical journey had began. I mean a spoke aboot certain songs but I had no really reflected on those influences that lie deep in wha a am.

Now once a got oor the panic an began ti hink an got through yon school years that whole pick yer partner fir the Gay Gordon’s got through the shortbread commercial an whiskey drinking image. A began ti remember some songs that took me back ti the days o going through mum an da’s record collection. A wis lucky wi ma mother as she had a great taste in music and when a wis younger a thought ma da had nay taste. He had pipe bands and Jimmy Shand and his accordion band, that he aw ways took wi him on the tours as he wis a bus driver. An so its wi him a begin this journey.
A remember this day as clear mum an dad wir oot an a wis going through there vinyl records and cassettes (yes a time when music came wi sleeves an covers) A came across a tape wi twa fellas wi big wooly jumpers an these two strange looking instruments. A slid the cassette in ti the wee drawer closed it shut and began ti listen.

As the music began to play I read the cover I knew most of the title o the songs so a fast forward to the song titles a had never heard and there a found song number one.

1. “The strangest Dream” – The Corries
This is the first song that made me hink aboot the words made me listen an feel its the song that helped me descover the power o the story teller a was aboot thirteen when this happend. The song its sell was writen by American Ed McCurdy in the 50s an as been coverd by many a famous folk and country star but ti me this is by far the best.

2. “Jock O Braidsoly” – The Corries
When a did go ti school history wis one o ma fav subjects but as ye grow ye learn and discover that no aw history wis told. An fir me songs like this wan an others told me ma country’s history in a way that opened ma eyes. Great story this one!

3. “The Ark” – Gerry Rafferty
This song just reminds me that no matter where we are from or where we are going there is a place where we are all known (Alice Springs). Also it shows how an incredible song writer Gerry was. I don’t think when he started playing wi Billy Connolly in the folk clubs of Scotland that he quite knew where is music would go.

4. “St Anne’s Reels” – Aly Bain and friends
Now this is just some gid auld fiddle tunes Aly wis aw ways on the telly. But a love the way he is no afraid ti experiment wi new and auld sounds an no be to traditional.

5. “Now I’m Easy” – Eric Bogle
Ti be honest a never really listened ti Eric until a came ti Alice. A thought his songs were written by others how wrong wis a!!!! As before music for me has been the best teacher, fir me the song writer seems ti record moments in time to be rediscovered by a new generation an like many Mr Bogle leaves many a stories for people like me ti find and look in to the past and see how life was fir others. This song is just magic!

6. “Let’s Start a Band” – Amy MacDonald
I first heard Amy because ma mum sent me her CD an as a listened ti it a thought ti ma self whit and incredible mature voice an song writer then a discovered her age and was blown away. She is a folkie has won a number of folk awards and a love her. A great wee Scottish lass wi a huge voice.

7. “Parcel O Rogues” – Luke Kelly
A lived off an on in Ireland for 3yr and a wis lucky ti be introduced ti same great music an fir me a don’t think any wan has sung this Burns poem with as much soul. I think it speaks fir its sell!!

8. “A Man’s A Man Fir Aw That” – Robert Burns
This is a poem buy Burns that a feel is a gid way ti hink about life.

9. “The Galent Grahams” – Battlefield Band
Reminds me of auld family friends that were aw ways there fir me as a boy.

10. “Growing Up Beside You” – Paolo Nutini
First time a heard this guy sing a just was flattened and this song fir me just shows how good a songwriter he is. In many ways it just reminds me how a feel about me and my Son a grow each day with him in my life.

11. “When Ye Go Away” – The Waterboys
This is a song I play often in Alice as Alice is a place where you meet new folks all the time make friends quickly but as quickly as you make them they leave just as quick and that can be hard but that is the magic of Alice Springs, the Territory and music. Am blessed ti perform as its aw ways gid ti make new friends.

12. “Ae Fond Kiss” – Eddi Reader
The moment you hear Eddi sings this ye ken that she has made this song her own. That ti me is whit being a performer is aw about sure we can sing others songs but its when you make it yer ayn that when the song becomes timeless.

13. “Green Fields of France” – The Fureys
I always loved this song from the moment I heard it on a tape of my mothers. I have saw Finbar Furey perform this song as well as the whole family in Ireland and Australia. When i foond oot a Scotsman actually wrote it it took it ti another level.

14. “Take You Home” – Emily Smith
There is not much i know about Emily I just know that she has a voice that I can only describe as home!!!

15. “Caladonia” – Dougie Maclean
This song wis first used fir a Tenants Lager Ad in the 80s which wis rocked up so a grew up no hearing Dougie performing it until later years. But ti me when ever am home sick missing a bit o the auld country I get ma guitar and sing this song wi aw that a am. A love ti perform it and always get a great reception from the listeners.

Well a hope ye enjoyed ma choice an a hope we get ti meet wan day. Take care an Happy St Andrews Day!!!!!

And as a special bonus we just had to include the clip for Colin Lillie’s own “Man’s Broken Heart”.

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