Archive for the Caledonian Mercury Category

The Chieftains: Voice of Ages

2012 marks the 50th anniversary of Ireland’s great folk music band, The Chieftains. Today only Paddy Moloney remains of the original Chieftains but the tradition marches on, changes but remains true to itself. The new album, Voice of Ages, fulfils that wonderful promise of merging tradition and modernity and […]

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Nina de la Mer, 4 a.m. : review

Nina de la Mer, 4 a.m. : review

Nina de la Mer was born in East Kilbride. She studied modern languages at the University of Sussex in Brighton, where she now lives with her husband and daughter. She has also lived for short spells in London, Brussels, Paris and Hamburg. Earlier this month, she appeared […]

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Old Ideas by Leonard Cohen: Review

Old Ideas by Leonard Cohen: Review

Losing your pension pot is hardly justification for a 77 year old entertainer’s completing a strenuous series of world tours, from 2008 to 2010, with a new album.  But if that’s why Leonard Cohen did it perhaps we should briefly give thanks to those who cheated him […]

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Review: Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra at Linlithgow Arts Guild

Review: Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra at Linlithgow Arts Guild

The Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra hit Linlithgow on Saturday with verve and a tight panorama of jazz from the last 90 years. Directed and led by Tommy Smith, the boy from Wester Hailes who now graces the international jazz world, they covered work by Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Dexter […]

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Review: The Wound and the Gift, by Ron Ferguson

Review: The Wound and the Gift, by Ron Ferguson

With The Wound and the Gift (St Andrew Press, £19.99), Ron Ferguson, journalist, minister, writer, has produced a stunning, insightful and unorthodox biography of the Orcadian poet, George Mackay Brown.  Ferguson knew Mackay Brown.  When he was minister of St Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall he became close […]

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Three-parent families, a grandfather aged 29: this is the modern world

Three-parent families, a grandfather aged 29: this is the modern world

The family is changing rapidly and enormously. One recent press article introduced three adults and a child whose relationship would have been unimaginable in the 1960s, or even in the 1990s. The mother was without a partner but was anxious to have a child. She met a gay man […]

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Review: Dick Gaughan at Glasgow City Halls

Review: Dick Gaughan at Glasgow City Halls

Dick Gaughan’s Glasgow’s City Halls set started with his now standard introductory number, Si Kahn’s What You Do With What You’ve Got, as close to individualism as Gaughan gets.  The Leith troubador remains the champion of solidarity but his interpretation of Kahn also challenges individuals.  The whole […]

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Review: Why Do We Kill? The Pathology of Murder in Baltimore

Review: Why Do We Kill? The Pathology of Murder in Baltimore

Kelvin Sewell was Baltimore police officer for 22 years.  An African-American in a predominantly (64%) African-American city, he served in homicide, narcotics and internal affairs.  Stephen Janis is an investigative journalist.  Together they have written Why Do We Kill? The Pathology of Murder in Baltimore (Baltimore True […]

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