Tapestry V - Banks & Braes

by Castlebay

Released 2007
Released 2007
Elegant but not stuffy Celtic music with harp, flute, fiddle, cello, 12-string guitar
Notes on the Music
Banks, braes, craigs, bens, dales and vales are only a few of the myriad names for the varied contours of the Celtic lands. We begin our trek in the Bonnie Hills and Dales of beautiful Dumfries & Galloway in southwest Scotland,once the home of Robert Burns who penned the lyrics Ye Banks & Braes to an ancient melody. Venturing south into the mysterious mountains of Wales Tyn na craig. Returning north to Perthshire, we climb Craigie Dhu,the “Black Crag” near the home of musician/composer Dougie McLean. Legends abound regarding the land. In the west of Scotland, The Bens of Jura rise out of the Hebridean mists and are said to represent a woman’s body.In Si Beag, Si Mhor Irish harper Turlough O’Carolan depicts the hill forts of rival faerie clans.Seeking a place for a pleasant outing, we might picnic on Woodcock Hill or roamThe Heather Glen. Salisbury Craig, near Edinburgh Scotland, was a place of solace for writer Walter Scott.

Come by the Hills / My Heart’s in the Hielan’s. Standing on The Heathy Little Hill we see a land that has endured many changes. Katahdin,a mountain sacred to Maine’s native peoples, and one of the oldest in the world is part of the same geological formation as the Celtic Mountains. The mist rises over Dobin’s Flowery Vale revealing the Hills of Harmony, the land of Fred’s youth. A New England immigrant remembered his native Ben Lomond and The Banks of Inverness leaving these tunes for us to find in a local collection of music. As our ancestors travelled the globe, we leave behind the ancient crags of the Celtic Lands and New England, and revel in the tropical beauty of Costa Rica, where we composed two melodies for Cerro Chato, the old volcano and Volcan Arenal, one of the youngest mountains in the world.

CASTLEBAY has toured the Eastern U.S., Ireland, England and Scotland playing at festivals and arts centers, as well as on radio and television. The duo maintains a commitment to cultural education, exchanging music and lore with colleagues and providing folklore and music programs for schools, museums, libraries and Elderhostels.

As a child in central Maine, Fred heard his older relatives singing woodsmen's songs and playing fiddle and accordion. In college he studied folklore with Dr Sandy Ives. His musical aptitude and innate inventiveness manifest in original songs in the traditional style often based on social history. He currently sings and plays classic and 12-string guitar, viola, fiddle, and woodwinds, providing an intricate soundscape for the songs. When he is not touring, Fred Gosbee engineers and produces recordings and designs and builds Celtic harps.

has loved, sung, researched and created folk music since childhood. A fascination with ancient songs and their stories led her to lifelong involvement with traditional music and ongoing research both in North America and the Celtic lands. Knowledge of the importance of music and sound in ancient culture informs her sensitive treatment of the songs. She now writes music reminiscent of her Celtic ancestors and inspired by the natural world, especially her native Maine. Julia Lane is an exceptional vocalist and a self-taught player of the Celtic folk harp. Her unique style has won three international competitions.

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Concerts in Brief

  • Mar 12
    The Ridge,  Exeter
  • Mar 15
    Dickey Memorial Presbyterian Church,  Baltimore
  • Mar 16
    Lakewood Manor,  Richmond
  • Mar 18
    Well-Spring Retirement Community,  Greensboro
  • Mar 19
    Country Club of Salisbury,  Salisbury