Carlingwark Collection CD, Volume One

BLCD001

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Volume 1 of the three part set to accompany The Carlingwark Book of 30 Scottish Country Dances by Bill Little. This CD is by James Coutts and his band. £12 each or £30 per set. 

Volume 1 CD is by James Coutts and his band.

Volume 2 CD is by Scot Band and his band.

Volume 3 CD is by Ian Muir and his band.

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  1. Auchengar
  2. 75th Anniversary Reel
  3. Mrs Alison Veitch
  4. Cilla's Jig
  5. Bonnie Gallowa'
  6. Mairie's Wedding
  7. The Laxey Wheel
  8. Viennese Waltz
  9. Kirkcall Strathspey
  10. The Haggis
  11. Jessie Cannon's Strathspey
  12. Welcome Home
  13. Canadian Barn Dance

Reviews

Grade 
09-06-2018

Carlingwark Collection CD, Volume One

I have only met Bill Little once, at my first ever day school, in Manchester over thirty years ago, but the class has stuck in my memory for its precision, energy and enjoyment. I also remember some of the dances we did, which I later filleted to cobble together what became The Westminster Reel (originally, or rather unoriginally, named The Day School Reel). I do not remember whether any of his own dances featured, but this book, published by Castle Douglas and District RSCDS, demonstrates that devising dances has been a constant thread in his dancing and teaching career, which continues in Castle Douglas Branch even to this day, aged 94.
This is a CD review, and it is always difficult to give a true reflection of a set of dances based purely on reading and imagining, but I like the look of the dances: built around formations combined in different ways; a good variety of dance lengths; generally they look to be very danceable across a range of standards – several were written in the context of children’s classes or competition – and present something for everyone.
It is clear from the book’s introduction that, for Bill, the combining of music and dance has been much of the source of pleasure, with tunes carefully chosen for the dances: 13 of the
30 dances are strathspeys, with pastoral
or song tunes for seven of those. Some original tunes will be familiar, such as The Cradle Song for
Jessie Cannon’s Strathspey, Duncan Gray for The Haggis, and Scott Skinner’s Miss Dow’s Fancy for Rooftops (one of a dozen dances this tune has been selected for). Around half the originals are more recently composed, including Bill’s own composition for Miss Alison Veitch, and others by Gordon Shand, Ian Holmes and George Meikle.
Castle Douglas Branch have done Bill proud on the musical
side, through the publication of three excellent CDs
alongside the book of dances. The 30 dances are
interspersed with some additional tracks (see above). All
have been put together with real care, and each (or all)
can be recommended, with strong line-ups, good clear
sound, tempi well-judged and alternatives matched. For listening purposes, the preponderance of airs and song tunes reduces variety, but all come across well for dancing purposes.
If I had to choose one of the CDs, it would be James Coutts’, where Graham Berry’s piano, as always, provides beautiful rhythm, harmony and counterpoint to enhance, but not supplant, the strong lead from James, but there is great playing across all three discs. Scott Band has a fiddle in the hands of Gillian Ramsay in his six-piece band, but Ian Muir equally creates variety in his four-piece, particularly through Duncan Black’s second accordion. The ‘filler’ tracks are all good value, with James Coutts having fun with Ian Powrie’s Continental Waltz Jimmy and Mickie, matched by Ian Muir’s Scandinavian Waltz.
Jeremy Hill
RSCDS London Branch
Published in The Reel

Grade 
05-05-2018

Carlingwark Collection CD, Volume One

It’s always a delight to receive a new recording from James Coutts and his Scottish Dance Band. Firstly, the band line- up includes James and Iain Cathcart on accordion, Graham Berry on keyboard, Brian Cruickshank on bass and Ian Adamson on drums. The Carlingwark Collection Volume One features the music chosen by Bill Little to accompany his book, The Carlingwark Book of Scottish Country Dances.
The music on the CD is extremely well interpreted and executed by musicians at the very top of their game. The audio mix is equally well executed with every instrument well placed in the sound mix. It was refreshing to be able to pick out easily Graham Berry’s excellent keyboard work. The running order of all the sets on the CD has clearly been well thought out and has a transitio which is pleasant to listen to, from jigs to reels and strathspeys. The 13 tracks feature more than fty tunes, which represents great value for money. Some of the tunes peppered throughout this recording are The Heather Hills, The Hills of Glen Orchy, Wi’ A Hundred Pipers, Doug Cargill’s Reel, Neil Gow’s Lamentations for James Moray Esq of Abercairney, Provost Tongue of Monie eth, Annie Laurie, The Black Bear, Miss Margaret Brown’s Favourite, Elizabeth Donald of Mosside and The Countess of Loudon’s Reel.
My favourite track on the album has to be the band’s superb arrangement and interpretation of Ian Powrie’s waltz Jimmy and Mickie. A wonderful piece of music and still a great favourite!
Bill Brown
Part of a review from the Box and Fiddle

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Carlingwark Collection CD, Volume One

Carlingwark Collection CD, Volume One

Volume 1 of the three part set to accompany The Carlingwark Book of 30 Scottish Country Dances by Bill Little. This CD is by James Coutts and his band. £12 each or £30 per set. 

Volume 1 CD is by James Coutts and his band.

Volume 2 CD is by Scot Band and his band.

Volume 3 CD is by Ian Muir and his band.

Write a review