Friday 15th June 2018 7:30pm

Location: St Andrew’s Parish Church, Sedbergh

Website: http://www.jamiesmithsmabon.com/

Composer-accordionist Jamie was taken every year by his folk-dancing parents to the mighty Festival Interceltique in Brittany, surrounding him from an early age with music from the Celtic regions and beyond.

Photo Ⓒ Paul Michael Hughes

From accompanying Welsh dancers at five years old; through early musical friendships with Celtic counterparts; to moving his young family to his wife’s native Isle of Man, Jamie’s life path is inextricably bound with his pan-Celtic style of composition.

Four firm friends help bring his compositions alive in virtuosic style: Oli, a Welsh fiddler with Balkan flair; Paul, a guitarist from Wales who’s more Manx than plenty of people born on the Isle of Man; Matt, a bluegrass-loving bass player from Carmarthen; and Iolo, a drummer from the Welsh woods with a passion for world music and jazz.

No wonder their sound is unique! Uplifting jigs and driving reels sit alongside haunting love-songs and sing-along choruses; add Russian bears, Asturian weekends and Galician pandeirettas for a World Music tour by a truly international Celtic band.

MABON is a band that draws readily on the vast range of its members’ influences, but does not attempt to make ‘fusion’; instead it is a constant pursuit of integrity in seeking to explore the music that gives them – and their listeners – joy.

Their most notable performances in recent times include WOMAD, Womex, Shetland, Rainforest World Music Festival, Borneo,Fairport’s Cropredy Convention, Hebcelt, Celtic Connections, and the massive Festival Interceltique de L’orient, as one major festival after the next becomes unable to ignore the band’s quality, sheer exuberance and ever-increasing profile.

Autumn 2015 sew the release of their 5th album ‘The Space Between’- a studio release to surpass all four of their previous albums in taste, musicianship, breadth and style. The more established instrumental sound continues to expand to include songs in both English and Welsh language: the instrumental and vocal aspects co-exist happily, bound together by their similar treatment – a genuine pursuit of beautiful, original music through inspired composition, skilful arrangement and exceptional performance.

History

The band first formed in 1999 playing mostly Welsh Celtic dance music in an acoustic quartet of fiddle, accordion, guitar and percussion.

Soon, Jamie started to experiment with composition, and the traditional Celtic tunes of Mabon’s early days gradually made way for his own creations, influenced both by traditional music and by other, more contemporary Celtic artists: the band’s first album, Lumps of Mabon (Deleted title), is half each traditional and original music, whereas the second consists nearly entirely of Jamie’s original music.

The second major shift in sound came with the addition of bass to the line-up, and Iolo’s move to drum kit: and through various permutations, expansions and contractions, the band’s core instrumental make-up has remained much the same until today.

Albums to date :

Ridiculous Thinkers (2004)
OK Pewter (2007)
Live at the Grand Pavilion (2010)
Windblown (2012)
The Space Between (2015)

Some other events in June 2018

Monday 4th June 2018 7:30pm

Sedbergh Music Festival – Kentdale Wind Quintet

Malcolm Arnold shanties, Thomas Arne, Paul Patterson, Norman Hallam’s ‘Charleston’ and more

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Tuesday 5th June 2018 8:00pm

Sedbergh Music Festival – Red Priest

Red Priest, founded in 1997 and named after the flame-haired priest, Antonio Vivaldi, is the only early music group in the world to have been compared in the press to the Rolling Stones, Jackson Pollock, the Marx Brothers, Spike Jones and the Cirque du Soleil.

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Wednesday 6th June 2018 7:30pm

Sedbergh Music Festival – Castalia String Quartet

The Castalia Quartet was formed in 2004 when Botton Eurythmy Ensemble asked Sonia Hammond to find musicians for several performances of Mendelssohn’s Octet in London, Eire and Botton Village. From this octet came the Castalia Quartet; Julian Cann, first violin and Sonia Hammond, cello are the founding members from 2004. Since then they have been joined by Jennie Jones, second violin in 2007 and Robert Dick, viola in 2013.

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