Aidan O'Rourke - Sirius (2006) @320Kbps
About the musician:
One of the UK’s most expressive and dynamic musicians, Aidan O'Rourke is a fiddle player and composer from Oban on the West Coast of Scotland. He is a member of BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winning trio, Lau and supergroup Blazin’ Fiddles and was recently voted ‘Instrumentalist of the Year’ at the Scots Traditional Music Awards.
A composer of flair and imagination, Aidan O'Rourke’s melodies have been recorded by many established artists and he has been commissioned by numerous arts organisations including the Dundee Rep Theatre, Folkworks in Tyneside and Tolbooth in Stirling, where he is the current musician-in-residence. Last year he made vital compositional and performing contributions to two new creative collectives. The first is Parallelogram, a genre-defying, beautifully anomalous nucleus of creative sound, which also features his Lau band mates Martin Green and Kris Drever in addition to Pete Wareham (Acoustic Ladyland) and Flook's Brian Finnegan (whistles/flute), John Blease (Drums) and Oli Hayhurst (Bass). The second is Cascade, a project that features Aidan alongside Andy Sheppard (saxophones), Sheema Mukherjee (sitar), Simon Thoumire (concertina) and Kuljit Bhamra (tabla/percussion) - musicians with international reputations for cross-genre and improvisatory work. Both of these collectives premiered at the South Bank Centre in London in the autumn of 2006 and were performed throughout 2007.
Other recent commissions include: Encore – a project involving some of the UK’s finest young musicians which toured extensively as the opening act for Blazin’ Fiddles and has been recorded for CD; Mantra Alba which featured the children of Dunfermline and welcomed the Dalai Lama to Scotland in 2004 and Sirius a work for 13-piece band that was commissioned by Celtic Connections New Voices series. Aidan’s musical style and expression is evident in this vast work which incorporates a wide variety of musical styles from ultra-traditional folk to jazz, roots and groove. The band featured some of Europe's top jazz and traditional musicians including Harald Haugaard, Charlie McKerron, Brian Finnegan, Colin Steele, Luke Daniels and Phil Bancroft and has not only been released on CD, but was chosen for performance by the Carl Nielsen Academy of Music (Odense, Denmark) as an example of how different musical genres can work together.
Aidan is much sought after as a teacher and session musician and has performed on over 80 albums, ranging from Runrig to Karine Polwart and Karen Mathieson. Always one who is keen to diversify, he has been a featured soloist in Donald Shaw’s spectacular “Harvest” concert and he also made his acting debut as a helmsman from Barra in the Highland Festivals theatre production The Seven Hunters.
In addition to his ongoing work with Lau and Blazin’ Fiddles, Aidan is also a member of the Colin Steele's Stramash and appears occasionally with Karine Polwart and Scotland's unofficial folk orchestra, The Unusual Suspects.
About the album:
This music was originally commissioned by Celtic Connections Festival in 2003 as part of the New Voices series. A lovely full-sounding album of great themes and gorgeous playing.
Aidan writes.." Burning the brightest star in the sky, Sirius has been used for centuries as a key navigational tool for travellers. As a travelling musician it is often difficult to appreciate what you are experiencing on the road. The people I meet and the places I visit often merge together as a tour progresses. In writing this music I took the time to reflect on my experiences and to appreciate the people, the places and the many adventures. I've been travelling and touring since I was 15, which is half my life. In the midst of these journeys , one thing has remained constant: Sirius. To me, Sirius represents home.
01.Falun Fine (outbound)
05.The Santa Cruz Redwoods
08.People’s Park (part 2)
10.Falun Fine (return)
Aidan O’Rourke – fiddle
Harald Haugaard – fiddle
Charlie McKerron – fiddle
Gordon Gunn – fiddle
Luke Daniels – melodeon
Brian Finnegan – flute, whistles
Phil Bancroft – tenor saxophone (soprano sax on track 3)
Fraser Fifield – soprano saxophone
Colin Steele – trumpet
Marc Clement – guitar
Foss Paterson – piano
Ewan Vernal – double bass
Mattie Foulds - drums
Quality: 320 Kbps