Posts Tagged ‘violin’

OWEN PALLETT

2010-01-14

[Picture of Final Fantasy's Owen Pallett]Sometimes I come across a name all the time, and that is the case these days with Owen Pallett. For me he’s everywhere.

I probably first came across this name back in 2007 when I heard Arcade Fire’s “Neon Bible”.  It’s a funny name: Owen Pallett. The chap is an overtly homosexual violin player and singer. OK, not my usual bag.

Then I spotted that he appeared on “Joys” from “Worried Noodles” a compilation of David Shrigley’s lyrics set to music back in 2007 (see my post on David Shrigley).

I went to a concert to see St. Vincent last year, she was in support of Grizzly Bear — and up cropped Owen Pallett’s name yet again (see my post on Grizzly Bear, and my review of the St Vincent-Grizzly Bear gig) — Owen did the string arrangements and stuff for Grizzly Bear’s “Yellow House”, and is associated with Beirut from a few years ago (see my post on Beirut’s The Gulag Orkestar).

I have his album “Heartland” which is just out, and tonight I spotted A tweet by Hue & Cry

Greg: Hav 2 agree with all the gr8 reviews. Owen Pallett’s “Heartland” album is a masterpiece. On my 4th listen :) http://bit.ly/7NVGih    9:46 AM Jan 18th   from web

This was the tipping point I think, it forced me to post here — and to look up YouTube! Here’s a vid uploaded of him with just a violin – live — doing a Joanna Newsom song:

[embedded video from Youtube.com]

The thing is, he’s a clever cookie — not just a violin player, but a graduate in musical composition. This explains why he keeps cropping up in all sorts of places — in my mind, usually associated with East Coast American/ New York and pretty “gay” acts such as  MikaOwen did the string arrangements for his album “The Boy Who Knew Too Much“, and The Pet Shop Boys (their “Yes” album from last year).

You can pretty-much guess what Owen Pallett/ Final Fantasy will sound like just from the associations, but he is definitely worth a listen; the musicianship is high, and it makes a nice change to hear something fresh! Enjoy!

Here’s an amateur vid of him playing live the Jennifer Rush/ Celine Dion “Power of Love” on YouTube: It’s just him and a violin, and it just ought not to work… but it does!  Brilliant!

[embedded video from Youtube.com]

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CHIC HENDERSON

2009-10-31

I just got a call from Chic Henderson from Auchtermuchty.  It was good to catch up with the auld rascal.  He’s 66 now, so he is not motorcycling as much any more — but he still seems pretty active in the Scottish and Irish folk music scene; his bands (The Randan Ceilidh Band) have several CDs, and he’s working on a new one right now.

He tells me that he toured Germany and the Baltic states again this year as a duo called Ardbeg — and that this will be his tenth year going out to South Korea for Saint Andrews at the Caledonia Society!

I met Chic in the late 1990s at the same place where I met my wife!  He was a draughtsman for one of our sub-contractors on site.  When I returned from my Swedish sojourn, Chic and I used to play Scottish folk music in Glasgow and Fife pubs.  It wasn’t what I was used to — it wasn’t my usual scene, but it was great fun!  We used to mess about with Toni Wood back then as well.  Chic had a project to photograph every Scottish castle when he wasn’t moonlighting as a weekend wedding photographer! Chic got up to 2000 Scottish castles — check out his site at www.scottishcastles.org.uk

Chic has posted some videos on YouTube under the name ChicChanter — check them out at www.youtube.com/user/ChicChanter. Check out The Randan Ceilidh Band too — www.randanceilidhband.com. Muchty Music is still selling the CDs by the way — www.muchtymusic.co.uk.

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