DKOS Artists for Tues 31st Jan – Fidra / Barry Noakes /Heather Cartwright / The Background Sounds / Kristina Leesik & Eleanor Dunsdon
FIDRA – Leith
Fidra is the latest project from Leith-based singer/songwriter Craig Salter. Bringing together musicians from across Scotland, Fidra evokes elements of traditional Scottish folk music combined with a modern edge, blending a wide range of acoustic and electronic sounds. Fidra’s music centres around Craig’s guitar playing which draws heavily on traditional Scottish styles, but also has influences including bluegrass and country. The project also includes a range of Scottish musicians from a range of musical backgrounds including Pedro Cameron, Sarah Gallagher, Adam Milne, Kev Dunne and Fraser Hughes.
Fidra’s debut EP ‘Broken Ground’ was released on 1 July 2022 and features the band’s first single ‘Gannets’. The songs tell the stories of life around Scotland’s coasts and islands, and how communities have changed there over time. Fidra are now working towards their debut album, to be released later this year.
BARRY NOAKES – Glasgow
Barry sings of the world around him in a style crossing folk, country and indie. Originally from Coventry, home of the motor car and ska music, Barry grew up in a town coming to terms with its declining industrial past and increasing social deprivation. He was given the opportunity to learn piano and violin from an early age and was accepted as a choral scholar at Coventry Cathedral where he served 5 years in the choir. Completing his classical music education as a Viola soloist and member of the Coventry Youth Orchestra, Barry then turned to contemporary music as lead singer and guitarist in the band Sugarfix. Rediscovering the Violin as a contemporary instrument, he has spent the last decade playing traditional American fiddle and developing his solo material.
HEATHER CARTWRIGHT- Cumbria / Glasgow
Recently having graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with a degree in Traditional music, Heather Cartwright is a guitarist and singer-songwriter from Cumbria, based in Glasgow. Her interest in music began in her early teens when she started playing acoustic guitar. Her style is heavily based around fingerstyle but is evolving as a result of Glasgow’s traditional music scene. Composition and arranging are a huge part of her musical identity, and she likes to explore a wide range of textures, harmonies, and guitar techniques in her creations. Since graduating, Heather has been performing regularly with Scots singer of the Year (2022), Beth Malcolm, toured Austria with Young Traditional Musician of the Year winner (2018), Hannah Rarity, as well as performing as a solo artist at folk clubs and folk festivals in Scotland.
THE BACKGROUND SOUNDS – Glasgow
The Background Sounds are a Glasgow based band who can’t help mixing it up.
While we love 1920’s jazz classics, we rarely colour inside the lines. Our songs are mashed up, mixed up and sellotaped back together with modern melodies into irreverent new surprises.
We love the way that DJ’s can throw unexpected tracks together and it inspires us to approach making music in a similar way, but with live instruments. It’s like taking all of our favourite bits then beating them with a big musical stick until we find a way of moulding it into something that makes us happy.
Originally brought together through a passion for Swing, the band is formed of the core trio; Tom Bisset on Piano, Marnie Davis on glorious Washboard and Percussion, and Stig Morgan-Smith on Guitar and expensive hats. Three is the magic number, however, we do love flirting with trumpet players, fiddlers and other musicians. We love to watch their reaction when we show them our arrangements.
The pandemic was rough for all gigging musicians and it feels good to be free of the treacle that we seemed to be walking through. In 2023 we’re getting back to full power and are hoping to record, gig and perform at some festivals.
KIRSTINA LEESIK & ELEANOR DUNSDON- Glasgow
Kristina and Eleanor are a Glasgow based fiddle and harp duo, who met during their postgraduate studies in Traditional Music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in 2021. Blending their respective sounds of Swedish traditional fiddle and Scottish clàrsach, along with multilingual vocal harmonies and influences from classical and contemporary genres, they form a creative new duo.
Before moving to Glasgow, Kristina completed her studies in Swedish traditional music at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm in 2020 whilst freelancing across different projects both in Sweden and abroad. She currently performs with Swedish musicians Woodlands+Bäckafall, and Scandi/Scottish folk band, Tern.
Eleanor draws on her background in both classical and traditional music to bring interesting and innovative ideas to her playing. After studying pedal and lever harp at the University of York, she began work as a musician and teacher before moving to Glasgow. Recently Eleanor has recorded with trad/covers project Luke Daniels & The Cobhers and currently performs with Irish alt-folk band, Ranagri, who in 2022 toured across Germany, Italy and the UK.