It’s March and I’m only just getting round to wishing you all a happy 2020!
I ended 2019 on quite a high, winning the Belhaven Award for Innovation with Kinnaris Quintet at the Scots Trad Music Award. I was in Vienna on the night we won, and found out via twitter whilst I was stood drinking gluwein at a huge Christmas market. It was a complete surprise, and one we are all so grateful for. I feel really lucky to be so well supported by family, Calum, friends and peers, and really we wouldn’t be able to do what we do without it. The bursary will mean we can use this year to really focus on making some new music, as well as our own beer – yipiee!!

I had a fantastic, and very eventful tour with The Shee in Germany last October, with the surprise early arrival of twins to the Szifris family! They’re all doing very well, and we’re looking forward to working on new material with Signy next month.

In fact, 2020 seems to have become my year for writing, which is great, as its one of my favourite parts of my job! I’m currently writing material for a new solo album, for the project I have with Ali Hutton, gathering ideas to use with the Shee, and we’re focussing on writing new stuff in Kinnaris Quintet too!

We brought in 2020 at Mareel in Shetland, to a great crowd and incredible pyrotechnics. I got to do a set with a fre of my favourites – Jenny Henry, Calum MacCrimmon, Lewie Peterson & Jenn Butterworth before briging in the bells with Kinnaris. Calum joined us on the highland pipes for ‘pockets,’ a tune he wrote, and diddled to us when we were writing our first album. Great night!

Kinnaris Quintet Mareel feat. Calum MacCrimmon – Pockets – Hogmanay 2019