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The Stanley Ceilidh

2007

The 29 th Annual Stanley Ceilidh took place in the usual venue, the Tayside Hotel, Stanley, over the weekend of 2 nd – 4 th November 2007. The same format that has been so successful over the years has been retained, with an accordion and fiddle club type night on the Friday evening, informal sessions during Saturday and Sunday afternoons and the Saturday night dance to one of the country's leading Dance Bands.

First time visitor to the Ceilidh 15 year old Craig Paton SDB

By 7.30pm on the Friday evening all seating in the hall was taken, latecomers were squeezed in with standing room only. Almost 48 hours later the last artist of the weekend, Tom Orr, took to the stage to complete this epic feast of music. A record number of musicians delighted the audience over the duration, some 62 different artists who travelled over land and sea to be with us. Some Stanley regulars, some new faces and others who had heard the reputation the event has grown and had to experience it for themselves. Whoever you are, you'll be made most welcome at the Stanley Ceilidh.

The following list gives impressive evidence as to the standard of musicians on display. Amongst the line-ups we were treated to selections from 19 of the country's current broadcasting Scottish Dance Bands accompanied by many of the next generation of players to grace the BBC airwaves. In alphabetical order:

Ian

Adamson

Springfield

Drums

Stuart

Adamson

Newcastleton

Accordion

Iain

Anderson

Gartocharn

Accordion/Piano

Graham

Berry

Newburgh

Piano

Jim

Berry

Newburgh

Accordion

Bill

Black

Stanley

Accordion

Iain

Cathcart

Law

Accordion/Piano

Shirley

Cathcart

Law

Accordion

Lynne

Christie

Aberdeen

Accordion

Joanna

Cockburn

Dunbar

Piano

James

Corbett

Aberdeen

Accordion

James

Coutts

Dysart

Accordion

Luke

Crawford

Ladybank

Accordion

Suzanne

Croy

Blairingone

Bass

David

Cunningham

Kinsleith

Accordion

Amy

Dale

Rumford

Dance

Karen

Ferguson

Dunlop

Accordion

Marie

Fielding

Rumford

Fiddle

Shauna

Flockhart

Alloway

Piano

Heather

Fraser

Inverness

Drums

Neil

Galloway

Cupar

Accordion

Colin

Garvin

Livingston

Accordion/Piano

Scott

Gordon

Westhill

Drums

Susan

Gordon

Westhill

Fiddle

George

Gray

Alloa

Drums

Mabel

Gray

Alloa

Piano

Andrew

Gregory

 

Accordion

Caroline

Hardie

Earlston

Fiddle

Neil

Hardie

Earlston

Accordion

Roy

Hendrie

Troon

Accordion

Gordon

Howe

Blairgowrie

Fiddle

Joe

Hunter

Gulberwick

Drums

Ian

Hutson

Blairgowrie

Accordion/Piano

Niall

Kirkpatrick

Mull of Oa

Accordion

James

Leask

Lerwick

Accordion

John

Leask

Lerwick

Drums

Louise

Leslie

Bathgate

Piano

Scott

Leslie

Bathgate

Accordion

Hamish

MacDougall

Muir of Ord

Accordion

Shona

MacFadyen

West Kilbride

Fiddle

Susan

MacFadyen

West Kilbride

Accordion

Neil

MacMillan

Rowardennan

Accordion/Piano

Nicol

McLaren

Blairgowrie

Accordion

Robert

Menzies

Closeburn

Accordion/Fiddle

Dave

Millward

Kilmelford

Accordion

Alex

Morrison

Borve

Accordion

Violet

Morrison

Borve

Accordion

Ian

Muir

Prestwick

Accordion

Graeme

Munro

Edinburgh

Accordion

Scott

Nichol

Pathhead

Accordion/Piano

Alan

Nicolson

Brindister

Accordion

Callum

Nicolson

Brindister

Accordion/Drums

Tom

Orr

Hyndford Bridge

Accordion/Piano

Brian

O'Sullivan

Glasgow

Piano

Seamus

O'Sullivan

Glasgow

Accordion

Craig

Paton

Milnathort

Accordion

Bruce

Peebles

Lunanhead

Accordion

Bruce

Quirie

Perth

Accordion

Tam

Rankine

Midlothian

Drums

Davie

Scott

Dundee

Drums

Vaila

Tait

Edinburgh

Fiddle

Lindsay

Weir

Livingston

Accordion

Since last year's Stanley Ceilidh we have been selling our first commercial release, The Stanley Ceilidh – Volume One. This CD was released at the 2006 Ceilidh with tracks recorded at the 2005 event from 15 of the country's top artists. With the generous assistance from friends of the Ceilidh we have sold the majority of the CDs produced. Special mention should be made of Edmund MacKenzie from Plockton and Les McIntosh who sold over 100 copies each. Without help from these people and the many others who assisted we could not have achieved the level of sales generated.

As a result of this venture we were able to invite Jim Lang, a representative of CHAS, along to our Ceilidh this year to accept a cheque for £5,000.00. We were delighted when Jim accepted our invitation, and the short speech he made at the interval was enlightening and informative in respect of the vital work that CHAS carry out for so many ill-fortunate families in Scotland.

Iain, Jim Lang of CHAS & Graham

I still have a few copies of the CD available, so if you don't have one, please drop me a line or give me a call. iain@iaincathcart.com 01555 771021.

Some of the highlights from the weekend included a display of Irish Dancing from Amy Dale, daughter of Marie Fielding. Amy charmed the audience with a couple of dances, which gave the evening some added variety from the standard Marches, Jigs & Reels.

First time visitors to the Ceilidh included Neil Hardie and his band and Susan MacFadyen and her band. Both young bands with a great future, we hope to see the Ceilidh marked in your diary for future years.

Two young gentlemen dazzled the audience with their finger-work on the accordion. Craig Paton is surely one of the most mature players of his age group and has complete control of his instrument. Luke Crawford was a welcome visitor on the Sunday afternoon and we hope to see more of these two fine young players in the coming years.

Once again we were treated to some fine playing from the KODA stable; Scott Nichol, Robert Menzies and Tom Orr to name a few. This group played my favourite set of tunes of the entire weekend during the Saturday afternoon session led by Scott. A great sound, and one that could well feature on the Stanley Ceilidh – Volume 2…..!!

Karen Ferguson, Robert Menzies, Lynne Christie & Tom Orr enjoy a tasty beveridge

It was nice to see the return of many of our friends from abroad; Shetland, Lewis, Islay and Ireland all were well represented. Niall Kirkpatrick was also making his Stanley debut, all the way from the Mull of Oa in Islay. Niall has recently released his cracking debut CD “West Coast Swing”, sales of Niall's CD over the weekend were kindly donated to our cause, many thanks for that Niall. Similarly Alex Morrison from Lewis also handed over a box of CDs recorded by the Lewis & Harris Accordion Club for us to sell, a great gesture.

The “Shetland Bus” brought down another sizeable contingent, including two thirds of the Callum Nicolson Trio, who featured on a recent Take the Floor programme. Namely Callum Nicolson and Joe Hunter. Great to see you at the Ceilidh lads, hope your Mums and Dads bring you back some time soon.

Ayrshire brought us another bandleader making his first visit to Stanley, Roy Hendrie. A former British Accordion Champion, Roy was kind enough to give us a few sets on the Saturday afternoon and thoroughly enjoyed his visit. Also attending this year's event for the first time was Karen Ferguson from Dunlop, an enthusiastic young accordionist whose selections were very well received.

The Ceilidh wouldn't be what it is today without the support of regular attendees such as Lynne Christie, Lindsay & Colin, Scott & Susan, the O'Sullivans and the Gray family. Great to see them coming back year after year to meet friends old and new and to enjoy a tune and the crack.

Susan Gordon, Lynne Christie & Humpty Dumpty

The youngest visitor to Stanley this year was our very own Islay Cathcart, aged 6 months, who seemed to enjoy all the attention, if not the music. Just as well both sets of Grandparents (and numerous surrogate parents) were there to help as Shirley and I were kept pretty busy all weekend.

Our Saturday night dance was in the capable hands of Ian Muir and his Scottish Dance Band. What can I say about the musicianship on stage that night? Well, I could say that most of the band were excellent, only let down by the stand-in 2 nd box player, but then again, that's just my opinion.

The adulation given at the end of the dance proved how well the band played and also fitted in with the crowd who attended. The band comprised of Ian Muir on accordion, Susan Gordon on fiddle, myself on 2 nd box, Neil MacMillan on piano and Scott Gordon on drums. I first got to know Ian & Neil well through recent trips made abroad to play for country dances, and I can definitely say that they were on top form that night. We all enjoyed playing for the dance and everyone was sent home with a smile on their faces. Well done boys and girl.

A special mention should be made for Marina Bruce who travelled all the way from Lerwick to be at the Ceilidh. Marina is legendary in Shetland, not just for her delicious tablet, but also for her “persuasive” raffle selling technique. Marina took charge of the raffle books this year and single-handedly sold nearly £800 worth of raffle tickets over the two nights. I was absolutely astounded at this sum and have no doubt that no one in the building was left ticketless. Thanks Marina, please come back next year…..

Andy Gregory

Many thanks are due to all who donated raffle prizes and all who made donations to CHAS over the weekend. Also to Dave & Lil Millward and both sets of Shirley & my own parents for donating the star raffle prizes of hampers of goodies. It was also great to see Dave strapping on a box this year and giving us all a tune.

I had received an email in April 2007 from Neil & Jo Hardie, to let me know they had just bought the Tayside Hotel and were keen to meet with me to discuss the Stanley Ceilidh. Shirley and I had a successful meeting with Neil & Jo where we described exactly what went on over the weekend and what they could expect. Their willing co-operation and assistance over the weekend was excellent and many regulars commented on the improvements made to the hotel and to the level of service provided. I hope Neil & Jo have many successful years in the Tayside and we hope to work with them for the foreseeable future.

In traditional manner at the end of this year's dance I announced the band for next year's Saturday night dance. The band for the 30 th Stanley Ceilidh Dance will be Ian Hutson and his Scottish Dance Band. A popular choice, Ian and the band currently sit as “top of the pops” in the Scottish Dance World. Ian has supported the Ceilidh for a number of years now and following his success playing at the NAAFF dance at Musselburgh last year was well deserving of his “turn”.

Once again Graham Berry provided the sound expertise over the weekend and made one or two recordings to add to the 2006 tapes. Volume 2 will be in production shortly with a release date target of November 2008.

Finally when the dust [and accounts were] settled the grand total to be donated to CHAS following the 2007 Ceilidh was £1,950.00. A great effort by all who attended, contributed or helped in any way.

The dates for the 2008 Stanley Ceilidh are 7 th – 9 th November 2008 and all will made most welcome. Any enquiries should be directed to Shirley or myself on 01555 771021.

 

Iain Cathcart, March 2008.

 

 

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