03 October 2009

 

Gaelic events in Edinburgh in October

Please prefix numbers with 0131 (+44131 from outside the UK)

Saturday 03.10.09 – 7.30pm Comunn Tir nam Beann Ceilidh, St. John’s Church Hall, Princes St. with Lothian Gaelic Choir & solo singers & instrumentalists. (Cont: 334 7005)

Sunday 04.10.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Rev Angus Smith. (Cont: 225 1900).

Monday 05.10.09 – 6.30pm Advanced Gaelic for Learners Telford College course, Boroughmuir High School. (Cont: 559 4428).

Tuesday 06.10.09 – 7.00pm Ulpan course (7pm-8.30pm) at Old Fire Station, East Norton Place. (Cont: ulpan@iletec.co.uk)

Tuesday 06.10.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 07.10.09 – 6.45pm Edinburgh Place-names – origins & history, 4-wk Telford College course with Neil Macgregor. (Cont: 0131 559 4428)

Wednesday 07.10.09 – 7.15pm Edinburgh Saltire Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – SNP Rooms, 16 North St Andrew Street; an opportunity to learn Gaelic songs in a supportive and friendly environment; prior knowledge of Gaelic not essential as tuition is provided. (Cont. 669 6418 or see website)

Wednesday 07.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Thursday 08.10.09 – 7.15pm Lothian Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – Tollcross Primary School, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07906 318561)

Thursday 08.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Friday 09.10.09 – 7.00pm Ceilidh nan Amhrain Gàidhlig – Gaelic & Irish songs to learn, Tollcross Community Centre. With Deirdre MacMahon.

Sunday 11.10.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Mr John A. MacMillan. (Cont: 225 1900).

Monday 12.10.09 – 6.30pm Advanced Gaelic for Learners Telford College course, Boroughmuir High School. (Cont: 559 4428).

Tuesday 13.10.09 – 7.00pm Ulpan course (7pm-8.30pm) at Old Fire Station, East Norton Place. (Cont: ulpan@iletec.co.uk)

Tuesday 13.10.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 14.10.09 – 6.45pm Edinburgh Place-names – origins & history, 4-wk Telford College course with Neil Macgregor. (Cont: 0131 559 4428)

Wednesday 14.10.09 – 7.15pm Edinburgh Saltire Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – SNP Rooms, 16 North St Andrew Street; an opportunity to learn Gaelic songs in a supportive and friendly environment; prior knowledge of Gaelic not essential as tuition is provided. (Cont. 669 6418 or see website)

Wednesday 14.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Thursday 15.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Friday 16.10.09 – 7.00pm Ceilidh nan Amhrain Gàidhlig – Gaelic & Irish songs to learn, Tollcross Community Centre. With Deirdre MacMahon.

Sunday 18.10.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service (Communion), Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Rev. Angus Smith (Cont: 225 1900).

Monday 19.10.09 – 6.30pm Advanced Gaelic for Learners Telford College course, Boroughmuir High School. (Cont: 559 4428).

Tuesday 20.10.09 – 1.00pm Gaelic Lunch Club, Mount Royal Hotel, Princes St. Guest speaker: Prof. Matthew Maciver. (Cont: 07906 318561).

Tuesday 20.10.09 – 7.00pm Ulpan course (7pm-8.30pm) at Old Fire Station, East Norton Place. (Cont: ulpan@iletec.co.uk)

Tuesday 20.10.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 21.10.09 – 6.45pm Edinburgh Place-names – origins & history, 4-wk Telford College course with Neil Macgregor. (Cont: 0131 559 4428)

Wednesday 21.10.09 – 7.15pm Edinburgh Saltire Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – SNP Rooms, 16 North St Andrew Street; an opportunity to learn Gaelic songs in a supportive and friendly environment; prior knowledge of Gaelic not essential as tuition is provided. (Cont. 669 6418 or see website)

Thursday 22.10.09 – 7.15pm Lothian Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – Tollcross Primary School, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07906 318561)

Saturday 24.10.09 – 7.30pm Edinburgh Argyll Association Ceilidh with the Greenock Waulking Group, Linda Campbell (accordion) & Mike Turpie (small pipes), St John’s Church Hall, Lothian Road. (Cont: 453 5766)

Sunday 25.10.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Rev. Murdo Macleod. (Cont: 225 1900).

Monday 26.10.09 – 6.30pm Advanced Gaelic for Learners Telford College course, Boroughmuir High School. (Cont: 559 4428).

Monday 26.10.09 – 7.30pm Annual Highland Lecture – “The Challenge of the Gaelic Language Act” given by Dr Wilson Macleod, University of Edinburgh, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Free admission. All welcome.

Tuesday 27.10.09 – 7.00pm Ulpan course (7pm-8.30pm) at Old Fire Station, East Norton Place. (Cont: ulpan@iletec.co.uk)

Tuesday 27.10.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 28.10.09 – 7.15pm Edinburgh Saltire Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – SNP Rooms, 16 North St Andrew Street; an opportunity to learn Gaelic songs in a supportive and friendly environment; prior knowledge of Gaelic not essential as tuition is provided. (Cont. 669 6418 or see website)

Wednesday 28.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Thursday 29.10.09 – 7.15pm Lothian Gaelic Choir weekly rehearsal – Tollcross Primary School, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07906 318561)

Thursday 29.10.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan course, Tollcross Comm. Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 0131 664 228)

Friday 30.10.09 – 7.30pm Saltire Society Edinburgh Branch Ceilidh – St George’s West Church, Shandwick Place. With Lothian Gaelic Choir, Spaegi (fiddlers) Calum Macleod (clarsach & voice), Amy Moar (piano & voice), Stenhouse Primary Choir. (Cont: 556 5900).

Labels: , , , ,


 

Gaelic events in London in October

Please see the attached PDF

London Gaelic what's on Guide - October 09

many thanks to Eoghann for putting together this excellent newsletter.

Labels: , , , , ,


01 June 2009

 

Leo's Tavern, Donegal



I visited Leo's Tavern during the Irish June holiday weekend 2009. It was somewhere I had been meaning to go back to for a while, having had a few very memorable nights there back in 1996 on the stage and being entertained by Leo himself. I had meant to go there when I was working in Belfast in 2007 but never made it and the opportunity to go during the holiday weekend in 2009 now that I'm in Dublin was too good to miss.

However, it's a changed pub indeed from 1996. Let me explain for those who went to the old Leo's and who might be thinking of returning. First off and not surprising at all considering his age, Leo himself no longer performs regularly - his accordion is still on the stage just like it used to be but his appearances are mostly limited to a few special occasions, coaches of tourists in the summer and playing at weddings. It was unfortunately inevitable that he wouldn't be able to carry on the 6 nights a week performances he enjoyed for so long, but for all that it's great praise indeed that he managed to play as long and as regularly as he did despite his age. We've certainly got a lifetime of happy memories from his younger days.

The pub was also redeveloped in 2005 and is now run by Enya's younger brother Bartley Brennan. The new pub includes a back room which has lots of Enya and Clannad memorabilia, a mini-shop and restaurant. These changes were necessary in part to accommodate the large crowds, particularly in the summer. The food is great - I didn't get to see the function room as it only opens for organised events. There is also separate public and lounge bars. The public bar is smaller than the old bar so has more of a cosy feel, however you need to go into the lounge bar/restaurant if you want to see the musicians. I was in the public bar and on the same ground where traditional music once filled the air, the TV was on instead with Britain's Got Talent final. There's fewer items of the band / Enya within the bars now, I believe that a lot of these are in the function room at the back.


Double Platinum disk for sales of Watermark in Australia


With Leo being a draw in his own right, his semi-retirement means that other artists take the stage with one act per night, generally starting around 10:30. A bit late compared to Leo's 9:30 or so. With the revamp what has been been lost is the authenticity of the place. Whilst accepting it needed to be larger, you no longer feel that you are on the same stage that Clannand/Enya began on - it's a bit like going into the room where W.B. Yeats wrote poetry, only to find it had been modernised as part of a refurbishment - the link to the past is weakened. The other thing which is lost is the ceilidh atmosphere which Leo brought with him. It wasn't just him on the stage but it was a real ceilidh with spontaneous performances from members of the audience, including myself and Moya Brennan on the same night in 1996. You didn't know what to expect, one night there was a brilliant Irish singer from Iowa. Such is the nature of a true, unorganised and spontaneous ceili but again that is lost. When I was there, despite it being a holiday weekend in June, the place was largely empty. Harder to draw people in with Leo not there and combined with the recession it's changed times indeed from the packed houses of a few years ago.

It's a pity I missed the 40th anniversary celebrations in September 2008, it would have been the best party ever but perhaps tinged with sadness marking the pub's former focus as probably the best music pub in Ireland.

Still, I hope to be back one day. Leo's tavern and Bunbeg are great places to get away from it all.

Craig

Labels: , ,


21 April 2009

 

Susan Boyle and the local talent contest

OK, I thought I'd add this piece of local info for the millions of Susan Boyle fans watching her on YouTube etc.

Personally I think she's a brilliant singer, even more so that she broke the mould for what the judges expected a winner to look like.

However, it seems that despite an incredible voice and world wide fame even she seems to have struggled at my local social club's talent contest, so reports this week's Linlithgow Gazette, a paper from the same county as Susan Boyle.

As if that wasn't surprising enough, three other UK talent finalists have also failed to win anything in the local talent contest. They are: Michelle McManus, winner of the UK wide Pop Idol series 2, David Sneddon, winner of the UK wide Fame Academy on BBC and Andrew Muir, a top ten finalist in the previous Britain's Got Talent.

Good going that West Lothian has so many singers capable of reaching the top in UK talent contests, if only they could win at the Linlithgow Rose social club down the road they'd have it made!

Craig
An occasional singer who is #1 on Google out of 500,000+ pages...

Labels:


03 March 2009

 

Gaelic events in Edinburgh: March/April 2009

Info from Com-pàirteachas Gàidhlig Dhùn Èideann (Edinburgh Gaelic Partnership)


Sunday 01.03.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Mr John A. Macmillan. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 03.03.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 04.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 05.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh. (Cont: 664 2228)

Saturday 07.03.08 – 11.15am Family Gaelic Club, TollX Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07729 307487)

Friday 06.03.09 – 8.30pm “Bothan” at new venue - GRV, 37 Guthrie Street, Edinburgh with Mary Macmillan. (Cont: 07906 318561)

Saturday 07.03.09 – 7.30pm Comunn Tir nam Beann Ceilidh, St. John’s Church Hall, Princes St. with Gaelic singers Kirsteen Grant, Ian Maclean, Dougie Gillespie, Rena Gertz, Martin Gourlay & instrumentalist Robbie Greig. Piper - Neil McClure. MC – Dougie Gillespie. (Cont: 334 7005)

Sunday 08.03.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Mr Neil Martin. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 10.03.09 – 1.00pm Gaelic Lunch Club, Mount Royal Hotel, Princes St. Speaker: Dolina Maclennan. (Cont: 07906 318561)

Tuesday 10.03.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 11.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 12.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh. (Cont: 664 2228)

Saturday 14.03.08 – 11.15am Family Gaelic Club, TollX Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07729 307487)

Sunday 15.03.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Mr Alasdair Macleod. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 17.03.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 18.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 19.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh. (Cont: 664 2228)

Saturday 21.03.09 – 11.15am Family Gaelic Club, TollX Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07729 307487)

Saturday 21.03.09 – 1pm – 6pm Edinburgh Saltire Gaelic Choir – Gaelic singing workshop for phrasing, vocal techniques, harmony, Gaelic pronunciation etc. Duddingston Kirk Hall, Duddingston Rd.W. £10.00.

(Cont: http://www.edinburghsaltiregaelicchoir.org.uk )

Sunday 22.03.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Mr Neil Martin. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 24.03.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 25.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 26.03.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh. (Cont: 664 2228)

Friday 27.03.09 – 8.00pm “‘S math sin” Ceilidh/Dance for Edinburgh Gaelic Community – Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh. Singers/musicians and Black Rose Ceilidh Band. Tickets from Ceilidh Culture Box Office (228 1155) or tickets@gaelic-edinburgh.net

Saturday 28.03.08 – 11.15am Family Gaelic Club, TollX Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 07729 307487)

Sunday 29.03.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Rev. Angus Smith. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 31.03.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)

Wednesday 01.04.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 02.04.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh. (Cont: 664 2228)

Thursday 02.04.09 – 7.30pm Lothian Gaelic Choir - Gaelic Singing Workshop with Kenna Campbell, Colmcille Centre, 2 Newbattle Tce. (Cont: 07818 067524 or http://www.lothiangaelicchoir.org.uk

Saturday 04.04.09 – 7.30pm Comunn Tir nam Beann Ceilidh, St. John’s Church Hall, Princes St. with 2008 Silver Pendant winner Lynn Phipps; Norrman Mackinnon (Gold Medallist), Ceitidh Smith, Angus Montgomery (accordionist), Scots singer Scott Gardiner, Highland Dancers & piper Neil McClure. MC – Angus Montgomery. (Cont: 334 7005)

Sunday 05.04.09 – 12.30pm Weekly Gaelic service, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. (Cont: 225 1900).

Tuesday 07.04.09 – 7.30pm Gaelic Conversation Circle – SNP Rooms, North St. Andrew St. with Calum Cameron. (Cont: 334 7005)
Wednesday 08.04.09 – 7.15pm Ulpan tuition class, Tollcross Community Centre, Fountainbridge. (Cont: 664 2228)

Airson tuilleadh fiosrachaidh mu ghnothaichean Gàidhlig an Dùn Èideann, cur fios gu Iain Macleòid, Oifigear Coimhearsnachd air 07906 318561 no post-d gu john@andarach.com.

For information on Gaelic activities in Edinburgh & to add your contact details to the circulation list, contact John Macleod, Gaelic Community Officer on 07906 318561 or john@andarach.com Weekly updates on Gaelic activities in Edinburgh now featured in the Stornoway Gazette (paper & website). See also http://www.duneideann.net

“’Is fheàrr a bhith lag, seòlta na bhith làidir, aineolach!”
(‘Better to be frail and perceptive than to be robust and ignorant!)

Labels: , , ,


26 November 2007

 

First year contracting

Today marks the first anniversary of the start of my career full time contracting, so here's a look back on the previous year including some of the things that I did that were by products of that transition and the associated lifestyle and most of which I wouldn't have done had I still been a full time permanent employee in my previous job.

Here goes:

Was Project Manager for Tesco.com grocery, one of the world's leading e-commerce sites

Was Project manager for a major public sector project in Northern Ireland, part of the Causeway programme.

Gained security clearance

Bought laptop for working away from home

Bought PRINCE2 course, studying in my spare time

Went to the gym a lot

Went to over 80 live performances

Considerably improved my singing.

Turnover of my company that I founded in 2001 is now sufficient to require VAT registration. Filed first VAT return, very boring.

Got RBS Black card.

Visited debating chamber at Stormont

Met the Minister for Enterprise in Scotland

Appeared in the Belfast Telegraph, helped with research for programme on Ulster Scots

Learned about what really makes a good hotel and that few hotels are actually worth staying in for more than a few nights before total boredom sets in. Campaigned against rip off WiFi rates.

Significantly increased my income and moved house.

Admired Central Scotland and the Ayrshire coast from 16,000 feet on a clear blue day, several times.

Was Information lead for a Techcrunch 40 company, Crowdspirit.

Met lots of interesting people from all over the world.

Got used to 4am starts every Monday.

Walked from my bedroom to work every day.

I can now drink in a smoke free pub anywhere in the UK, something I campaigned for on national TV in 1990.

Became my own boss.

Labels: , ,


31 May 2006

 

Cough, cough. Pay attention please.

Having been bothered by a cough for the last few days and been singularly unimpressed with the variety of medicines on offer, I decided to try a different approach.

I have always wondered why when you have a chesty cough that you drink something that goes in your stomach. The logic seems perverse, like pouring something into your ear for a sore eye. Sure, your body might absorb the liquid and the ingredients might end up in the right place, but this also seems like a waste of time, like taking a pain tablet for a stiff ankle rather than just rubbing something onto the ankle itself. Why not have a directed cure rather than something that affects the whole body?

As someone who did singing fairly seriously for about 6 years (solo, small groups, choirs, Mod Gold Medal competition) as well as taking a keen interest in training singers (article on Gaelic singing technique), I've been aware of vocal sprays for a while.

So I looked for a cough spray, since something inhaled is likely to hit the spot quicker and go into the lungs, somewhere that would be difficult for cough syrup to end up. A search for "cough spray" in google.co.uk returns no pages at all.

The US seems to have got its act together on this one, with several products on the market. Given the advantages of:

1. You don't need to bring a spoon, or wash it afterwards
2. You get an exact metered dose
3. There's no chance of spilling it and making a great sticky mess.
4. The bottle is more compact
5. The container is a lot lighter than a bottle

One wonders why such a product has not caught on in the UK.

Meantime I'll borrow an inhaler, seems to do the job better than the cough mixture.

Sprays: the coffin of coughing (groan).

Labels:


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?