Janet Russell at Irvine Folk Club on Wednesday 3rd October

Janet Russell is the guest at Irvine Folk Club on Wednesday 3rd October and if you like good singing it is strongly recommended that you put the date in your diary.   Scots born and raised and now based south of Hadrian’s Wall, Janet is blessed with a terrific voice and a gift for getting others to sing – irrespective of their vocal talents!

Janet has played on the folk scene professionally for more than twenty years and has previously appeared at the Irvine Club with her singing partner Christine Kydd – and what a talented duo that was!

Starting off singing in Edinburgh Pubs was Janet’s introduction to playing in public. From those beginnings she has since played in concert halls, church halls, village halls, folk clubs and arts centres all over the UK, Europe and the USA.  As well as being a solo performer Janet is a committed and enthusiastic promoter of participation in folk arts.   She is recognised as an accomplished vocal harmony workshop leader.

Clearly Janet is in her element organising, promoting and participating community singing events.  She is involved with the Silsden Singers, the Street Choirs Festival inSheffieldand a harmony workshop in Angus. Her workshops include Pub Carols and Street Choirs and this year, with a number of others, has been working on a show called ‘Celebrating Subversion: an anti-capitalist roadshow’ As well as all of this Janet still finds time to record albums.  Her third solo album Love Songs & Fighting Talk was long awaited and well received.  Such is her standing among her peers that musicians of the calibre of Tom McConville and Steve Tilston were happy to provide musical support on the album.

Therefore, to hear this singer, songwriter and general singing enthusiast, get along to Irvine Folk Club in Vineburgh Conmmunity Centre in Quarry Roadon Wednesday 3rd October for 8pm.

Heather Heywood is the guest at the Girvan Folk Club this Friday 28th September.

Heather Heywood is the guest at the Girvan Folk Club this Friday 28th September.  Irvine Folk Club and Girvan have always had friendly relationships and Bobby Robb, the founder of the Girvan Club, has been a regular participant at the Irvine Folk Club and Marymass over the years.  If you fancy a trip, this Friday would be a great opportunity to experience a friendly club that has a lot in common with Irvine and to touch base with Bobby and the singers down there.   The club meets in the back room of the Queens Hotel at 8.30.  For those late birds among you, there is always an after hours session or you can wend your way home after the club finishes.

The Whistlebinkies at Irvine Burns Club and Folk for Heroes concert at Irvine Sports Club

Finally, you are reminded of two concerts in Irvine in early October. On Wednesday 10th October in Wellwood home of Irvine Burns Club the very talented Whistlebinkies will be taking the stage.  Admission at the door is £10 and this includes a glass of wine.  Meanwhile on Friday 12th October at Irvine Sports Club at Marress there will be a Folk for Heroes concert.  This fundraising night starts at 7.30pm and admission is £5 and features many local weel kent musicians.

Don’t miss David Francey – Wednesday 5th September. ‘From carpenter to songwriter’

Irvine Folk Club is very fortunate to have secured the booking of David Francey. The Scots born Canadian is revered in Canada and mentioned alongside such luminaries as Stan Rogers and John Prine.  Eric Bogle describes him as a truly gifted songwriter.  The date to hear David Francey in Irvine is Wednesday 5th September.

Born in Ayrshire, David’s first job at 10 was as a Paperboy and he was an avid reader of his deliveries. It established a life-long interest in politics and world events whilst developing the social conscience that is the background to his songs.  At 12 his family emmigrated to Toronto. Through travel, his attachment toCanadagrew. David hitched across the country three times and thumbed his way to theYukon. His songs reflect this attachment to Canada and its people.

David  Francey has all the elements essential for a successful: a passion for the music he creates; great songwriting; amazing voice; and an engaging stage presence and sense of fun.   He has nine CDs to his name, the most recent being Late Edition. His song The Waking Hour  was the 2010 Grand Prize Winner in The John Lennon Songwriting Award.  He has won oodles of awards for his songwriting.

His warm and rich voice and his modest style are the perfect backdrop to his impassioned and searching songs about the world we live in, so acutely observed by David.  He has mastered the art of storytelling through song.

This former carpenter who now lives with his family in the Lanark Highlands in Southern Ontario is currently appearing at Denmark’s Tonder Festival. He then starts his UK  tour before going to Ireland for a nine day tour which is sold out.  Lots of reasons therefore to make sure you are in the audience on Wednesday 5th September to hear one of Canada’s brightest musical lights David Francey.

Finally,  a date for your October diary. The Whistlebinkies, as described by  the late and wonderful raconteur Mick Broderick ‘ that damned band that keep following me around’ –  they are playing at Wellwood home of Irvine Burns Club on Wednesday 10th October. More details nearer the time.

Irvine Folk Club meets in Vineburgh Community Centre in Quarry Road at 8pm.

Irvine folk Club member Dawn playing fiddle at NAFCo – The North Atlantic Fiddle Convention

We saw a photo from NAFCO – The North Atlantic Fiddle Convention – where we see Irvine folk Club member Dawn playing fiddle along with young people from various countries.  See if you can spot her smiling face in the photo. NAFCO was held in Derry this year.

Irvine Folk Club member Dawn joins young fiddlers at the North Atlantic Fiddle Convention in Derry.


CLUB PROJECTS: Marymass through the Lens

Marymass Through the Lens – is a project recording this year’s Marymass Celebrations in photographs leading to a web based exhibition.  Several photographers took part and the photographs will be made available over the coming weeks and months.  If you took photographs at Marymass but were not part of the official project, is it not too late to get involved.  Your photographs can be selected for the exhibition and we can start planning early for next year’s festival.

To get involved with Marymass Through the Lens, phone Joyce of Marymass Folk Festival on 01294 551047 or email her at JoyceIFC@aol.com. As with the Folk Festival Fringe, Marymass Through the Lens has been made possible with support of an Awards for All grant.

The aim is to document all aspects of Marymass, including the town festival and the folk festival.  The intention is to display photographs in an Exhibition later in the year.  This is likely to be a web based exhibition but we hope that some of the photographs will be selected for display in the town and will be seen in future years as we build a festival photo archive.

Whilst the age range is 18+, younger people with a genuine enthusiasm will be considered – but no unaccompanied children.  To register interest for Marymass through the lens, phone Joyce of Marymass Folk Festival on 01294 551047 or email her at JoyceIFC@aol.com.

The first meeting to fully explain Marymass through the lens takes place on Tuesday 16thAugust in Vineburgh Community Centre in Quarry Road.  There are two sessions to choose from:  11am to 1pm or 7pm  to 9pm.  After this introductory meeting, there will be workshops every day which will last about an hour and support and tuition from experienced photographers will be on hand throughout.

As with the Folk Festival Fringe, Marymass through the Lens has been made possible with support of an Awards for All grant.