Tonight marks the start of the Burns Supper season proper and I dread to think how much haggis the burdz parents will consume between now and the end of February.
In recent years, Scotland has reclaimed Rabbie and his wonderful songs from the heedrum hodrum brigade and I love coming across interesting interpretations of his work. This was a real find: a beautiful rendition of one of my favourite Burns’ songs.
Celtic Connections has a twist to its Burns’ night programme, giving it over to Hamish Henderson. I’m not complaining and I’m looking forward to an evening spent in the company of some great folk singers and some of Scotland’s greatest protest songs. But I’d like them to make room for this one. And of course this one, which, if there’s any justice, will be Scotland’s anthem one day.
Hey non-folkies, it’s safe to come out now. What is required is a choon in praise of the great, big, fat, rollicking weekend, which is what the burd is aiming for. This great track from the Whigs fits the bill nicely.
Some predictions for break through bands this year which will no doubt doom them to obscurity for evermore.
The first couple of releases from Akron/Family’s bizarrely monikered new album have set the music blogosphere alight. Naturally, the burd has been liking them for a couple of years now. And with every album they just get better. The video for So it Goes is pretty stunning too.
Braids have burst on to the scene and to the top of emusic’s chart. Not always a surefire recommendation of goodness but in this case, entirely justified.
And finally, the Builders and the Butchers have quietly been building a loyal following. The new album, Dead Reckoning, is just fab and the team at Mad Mackerel have as usual got a great track to give away free. Enjoy.
Hurrah for Scotland’s new Makar! And haud me back, she’s a wumman! Liz Lochhead’s appointment is not without its controversy – she’s not written any poetry for years, say some; she only got the job because she is a woman, say others. Phooey.
I prefer Scots Whay Hae’s fulsome tribute and interestingly, he picked the very same piece I had lined up for this post. Liz will mak a great Makar and the burd wishes her well.
Open with the Closing:
You should never try to make a Lover
Of someone who ought to be a Friend
So let’s open with the closing –
Begin with the end.
Don’t have to be a Guggenheim scholar
To realise when I’m beat –
Don’t get all hot under the collar
when I tell you I’ve got cold feet.
What right had I to think it might be easy?
Why was I so sure it would be fun?
You know we’d hate to complicate it –
So let’s end it before its begun.
First the phonecall, starter’s orders
For an over-eager heart –
I was off before the pistol.
No, no, never try and make a lover
Of someone who ought to be a friend.
So let’s open with the closing,
Begin with the end.
This week, Google surprised us all by celebrating Cezanne’s birthday. Not the most obvious choice of artist but it fair pleased the burd, for I like him lots. And blue features prominently in a number of his most famous works, including L’Estaque. There are so many unsubtle shades of blue going on in this painting, it shouldn’t work. And at first glance it probably doesn’t. But take your time and you’ll find a master at work.