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Hamish Moore and Dick Lee.

This CD - already well-known to many readers - has been re- released by Greentrax Recordings, and I quote from their covering note:- "When Hamish Moore and Dick Lee exploded on to the Scottish music scene as a duo in the late 80s, their unique music was described as a fusion of folk and jazz. Hamish, on the Highland bagpipe and Scottish smallpipes (plus whistles), 'fused' Scottish traditional music with Dick Lee's jazz, on saxes, clarinets and recorders, producing spectacular results. This re-release of THE BEES KNEES on Creentrax not only frees the album from the deleted category, but brings Hamish and Dick's ground­breaking work into one catalogue..."


Donald Lindsay (Into June and Peetza Freetza Records)

This is a short CD with a total playing time of less than twenty minutes. Into that pint pot Donald Lindsay has managed somehow to cram a quart of his artistry as poet, lyricist, composer and small-piper. His contemporary and thought­provoking lyrics appear on four of the seven tracks and his warm mellow-toned piping on six. He composed all the melodies except one. Backing is superbly provided by Sheryl and Ali R who support with fiddle, clarinet, guitar, recorders and voices, as well as being responsible for harmonies and arrangement.

The CD is gentle, relaxing and even soporific in parts, with thankfully neither conical bore nor bodhran to break the spell.

Track one, the lost lyric, gives its name to the CD, and is performed on smallpipes only. After a long introductory note, an unusual and haunting composition follows, incorporating (once) a pibroch embellishment on E, the whole being reminiscent of urlar in timing, whilst remaining Lowland in mood. This is a melody to "calm the savage breast".

Track two, shades on the glass, is introduced by smallpipes and voice. Backing quietly comes in to very tuneful augment a contemplative piece. The last verse consists of voice only, which is particularly effective after the cessation of all instruments at the end of the previous one. The track ably captures the subtle flowing­water effect it demands and the melody lingers in the mind long after the others.

Track three, all the way to Newcastle, is lightly introduced by guitar which is soon joined by smallpipes playing a warm, inviting and lively melody which proceeds at the pace and in the mood of "hey Johnnie Cope" or "burning the piper's hut".

Track four, the lady's lover (the gardener) begins with backing instruments joined first by smallpipes then by voice. The pipes hang onto one note during vocal verses then play melody in between. The vocalist repeats the last line of each verse in a hushed and intimate manner most appropriate to the composition. The last verse incorporates both male and female voices with a lengthy fade-out. Effective use of the fiddle is made in this piece which proceeds with a slowish but foot-tapping beat.

Track five, Melrose abbey ruin, starts with smallpipes, the backing coming in later. The structure seems similar to a military slow march, but slower yet. "The autumn leaves lie thick and still..." comes to mind and captures the atmosphere of the Abbey ruin well.

Track six, winter garden, is introduced by smallpipes followed first by male voice then by female. Again there is little instrumental melody while vocalization is taking place, and is confined to the spaces between verses. It is a strange jerky melody which effectively echoes the sung syllables of the lyric and captivates the listener.

Track seven, big Stewart's luck, is given by unaccompanied male voice, but is chanted as if it were instrumentally backed. At the end of the last verse the poem just stops, and the ensuing silence is poignant.

The labour, devotion and feeling which has culminated in the production of this CD is commendable and it is to be hoped that most will want a copy. It is on general release with the assistance of "" through,       or

through the post from Donald Lindsay, "Into June", 49 Morven Rd, Bearsden, Glasgow G61 3BY. Tel 0141 942 7560. £8 each + £1 p & p. New music will appear from time to time on Donald's website.

Martin Maslin.