13 tracks: Hornpipes: An Comhra Donn / The Galway / The Strand (Bell’s Big Ceilidh Band) * John Barleycorn (McCalmans) * Fort Charlotte / Calum Donaldson (Aly Bain) * The Lea Rig (Chorda) * The Cruel Brother (Dick Gaughan) * Lowlands Away (Bell’s Chorus) * Sandy Bell’s Man (Liz and Maggie Cruickshank) * Kirsteen (The McCalmans) * Crossing The Minch (Aly Bain) * Johnny Sangster (Chorda) * Sleepy Toon (Dick Gaughan) * Doon in the Wee Room (Bell’s Chorus) * Jigs: The Lilting Fisherman / Loch Gowna / Sweet Biddy Daly (Bell’s Big Ceilidh Band).
An album from the 1970s which was recorded in Edinburgh’s famous folk music bar Sandy Bell’s (The Forrest Hill Bar), and at Pan Audio Studios.
Many of the Sandy Bell’s Bar regulars of the time feature on the album, including Aly Bain, Dick Gaughan, The McCalmans, Chorda, Liz and Maggie Cruickshank, plus The Bell’s Big Ceilidh Band - local musicians who regularly played music in the Bar - and The Bell’s Chorus - regulars who frequently broke into song in Bell’s!
The album fully captures the atmosphere of the period, and even today the Bar continues to host musical sessions, being a starting point for visitors to Edinburgh who want to seek out real Scottish traditional music.
Bell’s Big Ceilidh Band are Jimmy Elliot (mandolin), Jimmy Greenan (whistle), Jock Brown (tenor banjo), Adam Jack (fiddle), Ian Hardie (fiddle), Peter McClements (fiddle), Norman Chalmers (concertina), Iain McNair (guitar), Allan Johnstone (guitar), Roy Martin (bass), Rod Paterson (bones), John Croal (bodhran) and David Baillie (bodhran).
‘Sandy Bell’s is unique. Nowhere else in the world is there a place where the folk music of a country is carried on in a similar manner. Someone should make a record of it.’ (Thorkild Knudsen)