Sarah-Jane Summers - Highland Strathspeys For Fiddle

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(December 2010) 5 tracks (1h 22mins): Lady Mary Ramsay (by Nathaniel Gow) * Bodaich Bheag Abriachain (traditional) * Highland Whisky (by Niel Gow) * Lady Madelina Sinclair (traditional) * Donald Morison (by Alexander Grant of Battangorm).

A tuition DVD for Highland-style Scottish strathspey bowing and ornamentation, for lower intermediate to advanced players.

Five progressive lessons and five great strathspeys, featuring the history of each tune, bowing and ornamentation, and examples of combining fiddle, dance and song together.

Strathspey: the word calls to mind the rugged beauty of the Scottish Highlands, the swirling steps of dancers, the rhythm of Gaelic song and, at the heart of it all, the music of the fiddle. At times fast-paced and driving, at times lyrical and gentle, the Highland Strathspey is perhaps the most complex form of Scottish fiddle music.

In this tutorial, Highland native Sarah-Jane Summers goes beyond teaching tunes to show you how the music relates to the landscape, language and dance of the Highlands. She tells the history of each tune, and introduces you to the authentic Highland flavour underlying the music, through images of landscape and musicians. She teaches bowing techniques to Strathspeys, ornamentation, and also illustrates how the roles of singer, dancer and fiddler intertwine.

Sarah-Jane is an engaging and thoughtful tutor, whose warm teaching style and deep knowledge inspire students from New Zealand to North Carolina. She performs worldwide as a solo artist with her own trio, co-founded the band Fribo, and was director of the RSAMD Junior Academy traditional music course in Glasgow. She learnt fiddle from Donald Riddell, who himself learnt his fiddling from a relative of Sarah-Jane's - Alexander Grant of Battangorm (1856-1942). She has been teaching Scottish traditional music for more than 20 years.

Sarah-Jane Summers (fiddle) with Juhani Silvola (guitar), Margaret Stewart (Gaelic song) and Sheila McCutcheon (dance).

"A great Strathspey teacher, and lots of fun! Encore!" (student at Swannanoa Gathering, USA)

"A deft touch and lyrical grace..." (The Scotsman)

"Destined to stand with the great Scottish fiddlers..." (Folkwords)

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