Celtic Connections returns for its 25th edition, with an ambitious and eclectic line up, guaranteed to brighten up a dark and cold Glaswegian winter.
Throughout its 25 years, Celtic Connections has grown in terms of events, stages and visitors, as well as in the music that it showcases, the genres it embraces and the international artists it welcomes. While staying true its roots in Celtic, Folk, and Americana, Celtic Connections 2018 looks to the future with an increasingly experimental and exciting music scene, showcasing promising new talent and cross genre fusions of jazz, classical and electronica alongside the best of Scottish Trad.
This year’s programme offers a mixture of concerts that will include a host of one-off musical collaborations alongside talks, workshops, film screenings, ceilidhs, art exhibitions, free events and late night sessions. Highlights include Elephant Sessions, crowned ‘Up and Coming Act of the Year’ at the 2014 Scots Trad Music Awards. This young Highland quintet lived up to that promising accolade, honing their high-octane fusion of folk, funk, rock and electronica into a behemoth big-stage sound, and winning hordes of new fans at major festivals including Glastonbury, Tønder and Lorient.
Also on the bill, Blazin’ Fiddles, who continue to retain their spot as Scotland’s foremost folk acts, much sought-after headliners across the Celtic scene. Today’s line-up – MacGregor, still, with Jenna Reid, Rua Macmillan, Kristan Harvey, Anna Massie and Angus Lyon – maintain the founding format of multiple frontline fiddles, plus powerhouse piano and guitar, and their signature incandescent sound. Featuring ex-Blazers Duncan Chisholm, Aidan O’Rourke, Catriona Macdonald, Iain MacFarlane, Allan Henderson, Marc Clement and Andy Thorburn, their 20th Anniversary gig at Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall celebrates not only two decades of leading the folk scene in Scotland, but also their new ninth album The Key.
Singer-songwriter Beth Orton will return this year with her ‘folktronica’ sound, which mixes elements of folk and electronica. She will be supported by Blue Rose Code who’s award winning new album The Water of Leith celebrates singer/songwriter Ross Wilson’s move home to Scotland after long years down south, and promises spine-tingling, soulful lyrics and exemplary musicality.
The festival will run from Thursday 18 January to Sunday 4 February 2018
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For the programme line-up and to purchase tickets please go to: www.celticconnections.com