Scotland's Favourite Folk n' Fun Band

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click here for printable version Newsletter  July 2019


Contents (go to):                            Alistair's Updates                            Walter's Wisdom                            Peter's Blog                            Gig Guide


The Caledonian Folk and Blues Festival 2019


Hi, Folks.

2019 will be our Silver Jubilee, our 25th year playing at The Guildford Arms, during the Edinburgh Festival. The show will run from Thursday 15th  to Saturday 24th of August. We will again be sharing the hosting with Yard of Ale hosting the first five nights and Sandy Tweeddale the last five nights.

We have another great line-up of guests including the tried and trusted Bedford Falls, FC Ukulele and Mad Ferret Band. We also welcome newcomers, Fire In The Grate who have been carving out a name for themselves in and around the capital these last couple of years. I'm sure they'll go down well with the Guildford audience.

We hope to see you sometime during our stint. Remember, the show is not only great fun, but it’s also absolutely FREE.


Regards, Alistair



Thursday15th to Monday 19th


Yard Of Ale (Hosts)

Having performed every year at the “Caledonian Folk and Blues Festival” since its first run, Yard Of Ale return to host the Guildford Arms for its 25th year from Thursday 15th to Monday 19th

“These guys know how to entertain with an eclectic mix of songs and their excellent musicianship on guitars, with some banjo, mandolin and fiddle appearing in the mix. They perform numerous Scottish and Irish favourites and broaden out to include songs from Steve Earle, Bob Dylan, Rick Nelson and Lindisfarne.”   Reviewed by Ben  Douglas   one 4 review



Thursday 15th (and Tuesday 20th)


Bedford Falls (Guest)


“Bert” Bertram and Richie Henderson form one of Edinburgh’s most popular and hard working local outfits, bringing an eclectic mix of music and styles, ranging from Crowded House to Little Feat, Steve Earl to Bruce Springsteen.




Friday 16th and Saturday 17th


FC UKulele (Guest)

The return of this unique 5 piece band - consisting of ukuleles in all shapes and sizes,  drums, harmonica, 4 part vocal harmonies and the occasional kazoo! Expect unique arrangements of classic songs, old and new, with a repertoire that covers blues, rock, pop, soul and anything else in between. Not to be missed!




Sunday 18th


Fire in the Grate (Guest)


New to the Guildford Arms, Fire in the Grate is a five piece acoustic band based in Edinburgh who play all kinds of Americana, from old time, bluegrass, classic country and western swing through to modern American country influenced singer/songwriter material. The instrumental lineup includes guitars, fiddle, mandolin, accordion, bass (electric or acoustic) – and occasional guest appearances from banjo and dobro.




Monday 19th


Mad Ferret Band (Guest)


A welcome return of  the Mad Ferret Band from Perth. They are well known on the Scottish music scene for their hard hitting blend of traditional and contemporary folk music. Their lively, energetic performances are packed with “blisteringly fast mandolin solos”, tight vocal harmonies, driving Cajon beats and earth-moving guitar sounds.




Tuesday 20th to Saturday 24th


Sandy Tweeddale (Host)


A stalwart of the “Caledonian Folk and Blues Festival, Edinburgh based, “Blues 'n Trouble” and “Blue Hyenas” singer/guitarist is an internationally renowned exponent of blues, country and ragtime, played with style.

Sandy will be hosting the show from Tuesday 20th to Saturday 24th  August, playing with two different line-ups:

The Sandy Tweeddale Duo Tuesday 20th to Friday 23rd

The Sandy Tweeddale Blues Band on Saturday 24th 



Tuesday 20th


Bedford Falls (Guest)


Bert and Richie return for another rollicking night at the Guildford. Last chance to see these guys this year. Entertainment guaranteed. Not to be missed. (see Thursday 16th for biography)


Wednesday 21st



Mud In You Ear Duo (Guest)


Alan Jones and Thomas Lucas are established experts at purveying authentic old blues styles, evoking the back porch parties and chitlin' circuit of the delta and the southern States. Classic country blues.

Thursday 22nd

Davey Sloane and the Rattlers (Guest)




Friday 23rd




The Mike Breen Band(Guest)

Hard working and hugely popular Edinburgh covers band. Join the amazing Mike Breen Band at the Guildford as they bring the house down with their dynamic and engaging versions of Rock, Pop and Grunge classics...




Saturday 24th

Sinead Savage
and her band (Guest)


An experienced, authentic and emotive singer with a huge voice and a great stage presence, Sinead Savage is a professional singer from Northern Ireland. Having grown up singing in the church choir from an early age, she knew she would pursue singing professionally.  She has worked regularly as a session singer for a number of studios providing backing vocals and composing music. She also works as a backing vocalist with artists and has performed with John Cale as a backing vocalist in the Primavera Sound festival in Barcelona. 



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Walter's Words of Wisdom

"Headless Chicken Time"


OK, we’re past midsummer, so it’s all downhill from here! Well, not quite. Before we get to the season of snow, ice, frost and Christmas shopping (how many days left?), we have autumn and its seasonal bounty. But even before that, we have the cultural extravaganza of the Edinburgh Festival. And what fabulous delights there are.

Yard of Ale is, of course, raising the standards of musicality (and noise level!) in the area around The Guildford, but that’s by no means the only entry in the Fringe guide for me. The Really Terrible Orchestra has its yearly concert in St Cuthbert’s Church on Saturday 17th August at 16:00, and I’ll be scraping away at the back of the first violins. As the name may imply, the RTO is an orchestra for enthusiasts whose enthusiasm exceeds their musical ability. So it’s as much about the craic as the music, as our conductor, Sir Richard, introduces each item with flair and humour. As usual, to give the players (and the audience) a rest, there is a talk about halfway through, which will be given by Sally Magnusson this year. Alexander McCall Smith, our founder, may also make an appearance.

However that’s not all for me. My further two entries in the Fringe guide are for Fire in the Grate, the bluegrass/country band I also play fiddle in. It has two evenings “Playing the Americana Songbook” at The Argyle Cellar Bar (9th and 25th August) starting at 9:00 and 8:00 respectively. And if you are really lucky, or maybe a masochist, you can see me in both bands at the Guildford on Sunday 18th as Fire in the Grate will be Yard of Ale’s guest act.



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Peter's Blog

Pedro's Sunsational Scribblings!

Going Hypers in Cyprus!

Throw another log cabin on the barbie, sunny Jim…it’s those lazy hazy days of summer. Hazy certainly was the bye-bye word for last summer. The annual cavorting at the home of my sporting heroes Musselburgh Athletic (the Market Street Magyars) became my rehearsal for a ‘battle of the bands’ competition organised by local muso Sean Passe-Tout. I discovered later I had been awarded second prize, though unfortunately I had entered the fancy dress competition by mistake.

This annual event takes the form of the family barbecue at our magnificent football stadium, the ‘San Seagull’ in the affluent ‘quite near the harbour’ area. This stupendous edifice has seen several grand outings with your yodelling Yardles-the latest a successful annual concert with guests Fiona Spelling-McStake and Ian James-McHyphen, where proceedings ended with the quaint local custom of pelting us with burning toilet rolls shouting “welcome to hell”. I was vewy pwoud.

Any road up, before crashing back into our carefully planned anarchic mayhem the lovely Snow White and I depart to Cyprus to cellar bait the wedding of our niece Louise Hibby-Criesalot Gillan and her dashing fiancé Jamie Jobbiewheecher. This promises to be a large gathering of the clangs, the country has not seen major hostilities for well over 45 years so we shall endeavour to keep this excellent record intact by not having our attempts at ‘the slosh’ mistaken for a Haka. I’ll be thinking of you all as I let my hair down and buckle my kilt up-and if I can do it in that order I remain…      

Yours Aye,

Pedro x

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Next Edition: October 2019


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