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Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas – Highlander’s Farewell (2011)

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Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas – Highlander’s Farewell (2011)

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01 – Highlander’s Farewell
02 – Jig Runrig The Ramnee Ceilidh
03 – The Pitnacree Ferryman			play
04 – Grand Etang Hull’s Reel
05 – Nathaniel Gow’s Lament for the Death of his Brother The Gallowglass
06 – The Wee Man form Uist The High Drive
07 – McLaughlin’s Strathspey
08 – Gloomy Winter’s Noo Awa’
09 – Whitewater					play
10 – Farewell to Nigg
11 – A Bruxa A Muineira de Chantada
12 – Cragmont
13 – La Sansonette

Alasdair Fraser – violin
Natalie Haas – cello
With Special Guests: 
Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill - Bruce Molsky - Brittany Haas - Hanneke Cassel - Laura Risk - Ryan McKasson - Evan Pric
- Emily Onderdonk - Mike Block - Tristan Clarridge

 

Clackmannan-born, California-based fiddler Alasdair Fraser and his American musical partner, cellist Natalie Haas, have been investigating and reinvigorating the relationship between their instruments that flourished in former times with spectacular success over recent years. This third album is yet more proof of both the musicians’ and their instruments’ compatibility. An expanded cast sees County Clare’s poet of the fiddle Martin Hayes and American old-time master Bruce Molsky shift the accent from Scotland to Ireland to Appalachia on the opening medley, and there are French and Galician interludes as well as a distinctly drawing-room quality on Gloomy Winter’s Noo Awa’. At the heart of the album, however, are the sparky understanding and mutual inspiration that make Fraser and Haas such a classy, self-sufficient pairing and emphasise their ability to give even popular session tunes such as Fergie MacDonald’s Jig Runrig and Gordon Dunan’s The High Drive a new lift. --- alasdairfraser.com

 

"Traditional music has always been a connective tissue between cultures, communities, and generations. Witness the duo of Scottish fiddle star Fraser and cello prodigy Haas. He is from Clackmannan, a small town in Scotland's smallest county. She is a Juilliard grad from California. When they met, he was teacher, and she was student. And yet on a new CD, "In the Moment," you would think they'd been playing together for centuries. While his fiddle dances, her cello throbs darkly or plucks puckishly. Then she opens her cello's throat, joining Fraser in soaring sustains, windswept refrains, and sudden, jazzy explosions. Their sound is as urbane as a Manhattan midnight, and as wild as a Clackmannan winter." ---Scott Alarik, Boston Globe

 

Scottish fiddle virtuoso Alasdair Fraser says he and brilliant young Californian cellist Natalie Haas 'both love the challenge of setting things in motion, and keeping the plates spinning.' Highlander's Farewell has special guests, but at core is their 3rd (and best) duo album. Now 55, 'the Michael Jordan of Scottish fiddling' was famous before Natalie Haas was born. They met when she was his student. Juilliard gaduate Natalie was then 11 and had only 'discovered' her instrument two years earlier. Said Fraser recently, 'As we increasingly played together, I saw this graceful intensity. Here's this young woman saying, 'Let's make this thing groove.' I would say, 'Can we pull this off, just the two of us?' And she would say, 'Yep!' She has the technique to go wherever our ideas take us.' Their duo takes them into new musical territory, even as it takes the cello back to a largely-forgotten role that it had oft-enjoyed in 18th century Edinburgh. The new album's special guests include Martin Hayes, Dennis Cahill, Bruce Molsky and Natalie's sister Brittany Haas. --- abc.net.au

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Last Updated (Monday, 25 April 2016 15:16)

 

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