CD Celebrates Sense of the Place

By bellmannews / August 13, 2021
poster art-style image of coastline south of Stonehaven

From Stonehaven Folk Club

Stonehaven Folk Club has launched a CD celebrating the culture, heritage and songs of the North-East – and featuring a galaxy of award-winning folk music stars

Stonehaven Folk Club was founded in 1987. It has been twice voted the BBC Alba Folk Club of the Year in 2009 and 2016 and has received several accolades for its work in support of the living tradition.

Recently, the Club set up the Folk-in-Crisis Fund in conjunction with Hands UP for Trad to provide financial relief for performing artists who were seriously impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. So far £21,510 has been raised.

The idea of making a CD flowed from this fundraising effort as a lock-down project and was made possible by the award last October of a Coastal Communities Grant from Aberdeenshire Council.

Sense of the Place  CD

The project, set in the coastal communities’ strip from Findon to St Cyrus explores what it is like to live on the fringes, the margins, where land meets sea in the North East corner of the Mearns. The inspirations for songs came from the lives and experience of the artists themselves and source material from some local historians and writers. They reflect on the sense of place, the people, the stories, and the roots that make us who we are.

Each of the CD songs is steeped in meticulous research, and is authoritatively performed, bringing evocative and dream-like qualities, raw emotion and strong story telling.  These tremendously powerful songs form a unique body of work that will be listened to, played and sung for generations.

‘‘It was envisaged that some of Scotland’s finest musician and local artists might like to contribute to the recording, and we were over the moon when artists responded to our invitation to take part.’  said Meg Findlay, project Artist Support . 

”We have ten artists who are all weel kent in the North East and stand with some of Scotland’s finest talents, particularly in musicianship and song-writing.  Here’s the list of artists and the song titles ….. you’ll have to wait to buy the CD to get the stories associated with these amazing songs.”

Iona Fyfe   –   Lady Finella

Claire Hastings   –   Keeper of the light

Kris Drever   –   Catterline

Mike Blackburn   –   Boat memories

Jenny Sturgeon   –   Violet Rae

Findlay Napier   –   The Snowdrop

Irene Watt   –   Calloused Hands

Steve Byrne   –   The Sands o St Cyrus

Bob Knight   –   Cutty Sark

Paul McKenna   –   Far From Home

Award-winning collaberating artists

The artists:   Iona Fyfe – deeply rooted in the singing tradition of the North-East and winner of Scots Singer of the Year at MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Award 2018.  Claire Hastings – Winner of BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year 2015 ‘A remarkably talented singer-songwriter’ SONGLINES Magazine.  

Mike Blackburn – sings from the heart and ‘Has a voice like warm velvet’ Ruth Fisher.  Steve Byrne – finalist in 2001’s inaugural Young Traditional Musician of the Year. Immersed in trad music since early childhood, writes in his native Scots tongue.  Irene Watt – musician, singer, ethnomusicologist, clarsach player and teacher who run three choirs. 

Findlay Napier – one of Scotland’s finest singer-songwriters, teaching artist, master storyteller, ‘mesmerising and addictive’ Maverick Magazine.  Bob Knight – well known and loved folk musician round the clubs in the North-East.  Jenny Sturgeon – featured artist for Travelling Folk and BBC radio, ‘Musically superb, fascinating and utterly charming’ Shire Folk.  

Paul McKenna – featured in Transatlantic Sessions 2019. His powerful, yet intensely emotive voice and passionate social conscience find expression in his new song.  Kris Drever – multiple award winner with an incredible seven BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards.  Much acclaimed – a phenomenon.  Joining them are the very accomplished musicians – Aaron Jones, Mhairi Hall, Emma Smith, Jen Austin and Mike Vass who provide excellent accompaniment.  

The CD is produced using the expertise of top producer of the folk genre, Mike Vass.

To find out more about the CD please see our website at

Or e-mail to order