Saturday, February 21, 2009

Brenna MacCrimmon and Friends

October Browne
I thought it was high time that I posted about music again - and since I had a great musical experience on Thursday night, I thought I would share it with you.

I have been friends with October Browne for some time, but since I have moved to Toronto,and she lives just around the corner I can drop in on her any time - and often do! I took this pic when October was playing at Gate 403 down on Roncesvalles where they have a Saturday folk club from 5-8pm. We often meet there and share a song or two.

October is a dedicated full time musician, and has just gotten back from a tour with Teresa Doyle. We have been trying to find time for a visit as we rush about trying to get all of our projects finished. So, I got an e-mail on Wednesday that she was playing with Brenna MacCrimmon ( below) at the Tranzac (Toronto Australia New Zealand Club and home to many of Toronto's folk/traditional events)
Brenna MacCrimmon
When I looked up the event - I saw that other musical friends would be there Ben Grossman, Anne Lederman ... so I decided that I deserved a treat. It started late (10pm) but that was OK because my Metal Arts Guild meeting went til 9:30 ...

I am SO glad I went! Not only did I get a chance to see my friends - I had a truly amazing night of music. Anne, Brenna and October started the night of with a lively set ranging from Moon Dog's compositions to Scottish Waulking songs in Gaelic. They are all amazing musicians - but I particularly enjoyed Brenna's singing, as it had been a long time since I'd heard it!

The second set was almost all Turkish music (Brenna has just put out a new CD of all Turkish songs) and was really fantastic. The ensemble, which consisted of Ben on Hurdy-gurdy, Rick Hyslop on fiddle and Bret Higgins on stand up base backing Brenna's vocals was just great. I am no expert in Turkish music - but there was a large Turkish contingent in the audience, and I don't thinkBen Grossman I enjoyed it any less than they did. It is very evocative and moving music - and Brenna's vocal stylings just took me right to another world - I loved it!

Music that is based in some cultural tradition is always more moving for me than pop music. It has some powerful connection to what is essential in us. Some of the pieces that were performed were written recently - but they still had that archetypal feel. You just know, without having to understand the language, that they were about the things traditional music is always about: love, loss, longing...

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