Celtic Connections is the largest, winter music festival of its kind and the UK’s premier celebration of Celtic music, and this year will include a number of top traditional musicians from the Isle of Man.
This is not the first time that the Island has been represented in Glasgow’s annual, folk, roots and world music festival, but this year the Manx will be making their mark with local favourites Mec Lir and Manx Gaelic singer Ruth Keggin.
Mec Lir is a quartet of highly experienced musicians who have successfully progressed into the UK music scene, but have attracted a growing fan base on the Isle of Man with their octane fuelled gigs and contemporary approach to Manx traditional music. It’s a fast and furious pace with a refreshing appeal for all generations, but retains at its heart an orthodox message.
Meanwhile, Ruth Keggin has rapidly made her way to the top in music circles as a vocalist, sometimes as a solo artist, but also as a member of other groups, such as the bold, new vocal project ‘Aon Teanga:Un Çhengey’ (One Tongue) in collaboration with respected Scottish musician and broadcaster Mary Ann Kennedy and Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin; singer and musician from a Connemara sean nós dynasty in the west of Ireland. It’s appropriate that Ruth will be at the event as part of this trio, as at one time the Gaelic language was a single tongue, and whilst there have been moves to re-establish Scottish-Irish links in recent times, there has never been a project that unites the three Gaelic traditions.
The festival will bring Glasgow to life over eighteen days, with more than 2,000 artists and 300 events across 20 venues, with a choice of concerts, ceilidhs, talks, art workshops, and free events.
(Photos courtesy of Sean Purser and Phil Kneen)
(Courtesy of Manx Tails)