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Live Reviews
One Fine Day For example, Hal and Calum
21st November 2008 smiled readily which seemed to
complement the music. Nikolaj,
IT HAD BEEN A PLEASANT permanently turned to towards his
If you’re looking for somewhere
NORTHUMBERLAND DAY, piano, was at a disadvantage here
‘though the weather was closing – but what he did was what I’d
to record or rehearse your next
in with the arrival of dusk. As a never seen before in folk: akin to
piece of work, consider the
result, fewer people had turned jazz musicians when one of their
up at Allendale Village Hall than number is doing a solo, he would
Stables at Cromarty.
the local music promotion group clap Calum and Hal as soon as he
under its energetic co-ordinator was able to leave his keyboard.
We provide a comfortable, light airy space in the Stables Gallery
Larry Winger had hoped for. This was delightful to witness
with terrific acoustics at very reasonable rates. Complete peace This was a pity, because the and his two comrades began to
and quiet in the tranquil setting of Cromarty, a picturesque village at event, going under the name reciprocate in turn: if I hadn’t been
the tip of the Black Isle, north of Inverness. Easy access for parking, of One Fine Day, proved to be feeling a warm glow already, this
nearby accommodation, meals and close to a great pub.
absolutely superb. The three definitely would have ensured that
young multi-cultural musicians I would!
Room With a View - The Wire - Runrig:
- Nikolaj Busk from Denmark
“ the recesses of our minds lay this desire to record in
(piano and harmonium), Hal But now it’s probably time to say
somewhere nice. Serendipity stepped in, and The Stables
Parfitt-Murray whose roots are a bit more about how One Fine
in Cromarty came to my attention. On first viewing, the place
Danish, Australian and Scottish Day emerged, so I will let Calum
seemed too good to be true; it’s a beautiful building, recently
(violin, viola and vocals) and take over:
renovated as an Arts centre, with whitewashed roughcast walls,
Scot Calum Stewart (flute)
topped by wooden beams and an immediate positive feeling inside.”
- didn’t seem downhearted and “The project at the moment is
weren’t tardy getting into their using all our names – but we’re
For more info contact: Arts Development Manager,
stride, once Calum’s flute had not strictly a band. One Fine
Caroline Hewat by email:
or phone 01381 600354 . To see the facilities visit our
started behaving itself and Day is the touring name for the
stopped sounding scratchy. gigs that we do, not really the
And what a stride... group of us. I suppose it began
“We owe a debt of gratitude to the Cromarty Arts Trust for making
when I met Hal in the UK when he
life so simple and for making us feel so at home.” IaIn Bayne, RunRIg
As befitting their mixed origins was in Newcastle about six years
they started with Rio di Mio, a ago. I was doing the folk degree
Registered as a Charitable Trust SC003018
piece written by Nikolaj. Following there. We played a bit at Celtic
that was The Sweetness Of Mary, Connections, too. Meanwhile,
then Calum’s Strathspey, written Hal and Nikolaj were playing
by... well, Calum. Not to be together in Denmark. I was aware
outdone, Hal’s first tune was his of Nik and he of me, I’ve many
own Alfred’s Nap. Throughout Scandinavian friends. I heard his
the evening, such self-penned CDs and thought he was a great
tunes exceeded traditional or piano player - well, he’s a winner
familiar ones. Now: some people of four Danish music awards
reading this will by now be wearily already! We got together, all
sighing about ‘too clever by half’ three, and talked about ‘making
tunes. ‘they’ll never last’, ‘typical music with no borders’, we
of young performers’ etc. But wouldn’t worry if it was ‘classical’
Messrs Nikolaj’s, Calum’s and or ‘traditional’ or ‘authentic’. So
Hal’s offerings weren’t about that. we said, ‘let’s have a project’.
Quite the reverse. In the main We knew we needed to be a
they were exceptional and should threesome – three can do much
stand the test of time. The playlist so more together, you know. So
proved very eclectic, from Jenny we became as you see us now.“
Picking Cockles to Polsha jigs
like Lille Vilgot from Helsingland. “Maybe people would wonder
There was a couple of songs how we operate, but it works. We
521 Pages. 186 songs from the period 1587 TO 1784
as well, sung by Hal. The first don’t meet up to practise as such,
was an unusual rendering of the it’s more than that, we’re enjoying
splendid Australian convict ballad each other’s musical company,
Jim Jones, ‘unusual’ because bringing ideas to the occasion
ISB NUMBER 978 14251 37045
it was slowed down and sung and seeing how they go down.
rhythmically – but in doing so, it So, ‘Calum Stewart, Hal Parfitt-
rather lost the savage bite of the Murray, Nikolaj Busk, One Fine
‘normal’ performance. The other Day’ is how we see ourselves.
song was Jon Boden’s version of We haven’t got an agent (Hal and
The Prickle-eye Bush which was Nikolaj have), but maybe we’ll
very sound, and got the audience explore that issue sometime”.
£19.95 excluding P&P
joining in. Nikolaj and Calum
provided tasteful accompaniment, OK, it appears unorthodox
Also Available From
Nikolaj on the harmonium when what they’re doing (as they say
it seemed more appropriate than themselves), but if it leads to more
the piano. occasions like Allendale’s - well,
good on ‘em!
They were attractive for an
audience, these three fellers. Steve McGrail
The Living Tradition - Page 64
Issue82.indd 64 24/2/09 14:02:56
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