Mind the gap

1. Round Window (4:41)

Words and music by Rebsie Fairholm

 

2. The Unquiet Grave (7:00)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm and William Shaw

 

3. MacCrimmon's Lament (4:13)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm

 

4. Buain A'Choirce (3:15)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm and William Shaw

 

5. Blackbirds & Thrushes (3:48)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm

 

6. Spirits of the Dead(2:19)

Wordsby Edgar Allan Poe, music by Rebsie Fairholm

 

7. Leafblower (3:41)

Words and music by Rebsie Fairholm

 

8. Fine Horseman (3:14)

Words and music by Lal Waterson

 

9. Geordie (5:05)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm, Steve Lang and Martyn Kember-Smith

 

10. Julia Dream (3:18)

Words and music by Roger Waters

 

11. She Moves Through the Fair (5:20)

Traditional, arranged by Rebsie Fairholm

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Mind The Gap features a mixture of lovingly recycled traditional songs and stuff I've written or co-written with friends. Fiddle and 12-string guitar rubs shoulders with Irish pipes, Celtic harp and electric guitars in an ethereal strange-folk mix.

 

Much of it is the work of other musicians who have kindly given me their time and talents. They include Steáfán Hannigan (uillean pipes), Martyn Kember-Smith (fiddle), Steve Lang (guitar), Jason Gazda (didgeridoo) and William Shaw (mandolin/fiddle). My gardening rant Leafblower features art rock star Phideaux Xavier on guitar, with Molly Ruttan on drums and production by Gabriel Moffat. My own efforts involve vocals, piano, Celtic harp, 12-string guitar, electric mandolin, whistle, percussion and various software instruments.

£10 + p&p

Postage costs £1.80 within the UK, and £4.95 to other countries in the EU.

 

Available in the US from Flowforth Productions

"An absolutely wonderful album's worth of entrancing whispered glowing heart-warming Celtic/old English (Pagan?) folk, embroidered with cleverly delicate instrumentation. ... Calming, uplifting, ethereal and a slightly new feel on something very traditional and unashamedly rooted in very old ways."

– ORGAN Magazine

 

"almost like a spiritual experience, an album of death, the afterlife, ghosts, moral injustices, mystical otherworlds and noisy garden power tools." – Progressive Ears

Also available to download from Bandcamp ! Click ye here.

The front cover artwork for Mind the Gap is a quilt design by New York artist Jeri Riggs, entitled "Fall From Grace". It amalgamates a traditional Islamic star pattern with the skeletal symmetry of the World Trade Center and the unusually deep colours of the New York autumn of 2001. Aside from its many layers of symbolism, it has a compelling soulfulness that I instantly fell in love with. Please do go and have a look at Jeri's online gallery, her work is beautiful.

 

The phrase Mind The Gap is the recorded warning announcement used on the London Underground to remind passengers that the trains and platforms don't always line up properly so please be careful not to plummet into oblivion while alighting from the train. For many years (decades?) they used a recording by a chap with a frightfully plummy accent, and if you listen carefully you can hear this version woven into the whirling pipes on Julia Dream. My friend Russ always said it's a warning about French wasps, because the chap's accent is so posh it sounds like he's saying "mind the guêpe". (Stand clear of the bees please.)

 

I have to admit that London and I don't like each other very much and I haven't been there for years, but the phrase is so ingrained in British national consciousness it seemed to fit well with an album rooted in the collective group soul of the land.

 

The reason I chose that title is because my music comes from the liminality, the places where one state crosses over into another. There's always a gap, or a hole to drop through. It works both ways. Sometimes you're gliding happily along and a hole opens up and swallows you. Other times you can't see any glimmer of hope until suddenly you drop through an unexpected gap into the light. And of course it's the Alice-in-Wonderland-style hole that you fall down for adventures and inspiration. But worlds or states of consciousness don't always fit together smoothly. It's just a little reminder to take care when stepping between dimensions.

 

The album features two covers, the magical Fine Horseman by Lal Waterson and an acclaimed cover of Pink Floyd's psychedelic classic Julia Dream, a song which I've loved since childhood.