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Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011

Valmai Goodyear 09 Mar 10 - 07:27 AM
Valmai Goodyear 09 Mar 10 - 08:15 AM
GUEST,leeneia 09 Mar 10 - 02:16 PM
Valmai Goodyear 12 Mar 10 - 03:17 AM
Murray MacLeod 12 Mar 10 - 03:29 AM
Valmai Goodyear 12 Mar 10 - 04:28 AM
Tootler 12 Mar 10 - 07:10 PM
Valmai Goodyear 13 Mar 10 - 05:55 AM
Valmai Goodyear 19 Mar 10 - 07:52 AM
Valmai Goodyear 21 Mar 10 - 05:25 AM
sciencegeek 21 Mar 10 - 06:08 AM
Valmai Goodyear 21 Mar 10 - 07:53 AM
sciencegeek 22 Mar 10 - 07:09 AM
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Subject: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 09 Mar 10 - 07:27 AM

Apologies for the somehwat tabloid thread title; it's difficult to fit in enough to show what I'm talking about. This is very early notice of an event at the Lewes Saturday Folk Club. It's rather special and people might want to make a note of it. We're not taking formal bookings yet, but let me know if you'd like to go on the Interested list (valmaigoodyear [at] aol [dot] com).

STEEL SKIES with ALISTAIR ANDERSON

Saturday 19th. March & Sunday 20th. March 2011
TWO DAYS OF WORKSHOPS plus PERFORMANCE
Elephant & Castle, White Hill, Lewes, Sussex, UK BN7 2DJ
One day: £30. Two days: £50.
Steel Skies performance on Sunday March 20th: free admission with charity collection. Informal session to follow performance.
Alistair's Saturday evening performance at the Lewes Saturday Folk Club: £5 for workshop participants, £5 for non-participants.

Alistair Anderson's first major composition Steel Skies was described by the Guardian as "the finest recent original contribution to the tradition of English music". It is a suite of pieces based on traditional forms and inspired by the landscapes and townscapes of his native area of Newcastle and Northumberland. The CD has recently been re-released.

This is a very special opportunity to spend two days working on the music of Steel Skies under Alistair's direction, with a final performance early on the Sunday evening. Admission to this will be free with a charity collection. The full performance takes just under an hour, so there should be time for an informal session afterwards.

On the Saturday evening, Alistair will also be the guest performer at the Lewes Saturday Folk Club.

Alistair Anderson has been at the forefront of the performance of traditional music for over three decades. Internationally acknowledged as the leading performer on the English Concertina, he has taken the music of Northumberland to new audiences around the world, touring extensively throughout Europe and has no less than 35 tours of America to his credit. As well as championing the traditional music and musicians of the area, he has a growing reputation as a composer of new music rooted in the local traditions. He also plays the Northumbrian pipes. He founded the Newcastle University Traditional Music Degree course and remains one of the most uplifting and inspiring performers of the music.

Valmai (Lewes)


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 09 Mar 10 - 08:15 AM

At the risk of stating the obvious, the charity collection will be taken from the audience for Steel Skies, not from the performers.

Valmai


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 09 Mar 10 - 02:16 PM

I have heard Steel Skies here in the U.S. It is a wonderful composition.

Best of luck with your event!


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 12 Mar 10 - 03:17 AM

We already have nine names on the Interested list. Steel Skies is not just for concertinas, but has parts for fiddles, mandolin, viola and Northumbrian pipes. I imagine other melody instruments could be fitted in.

You may have heard The Road To The North and Dog Leap Stairs, both of which come from Steel Skies and have been recorded by other people.

Valmai


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 12 Mar 10 - 03:29 AM

..."Alistair's Saturday evening performance at the Lewes Saturday Folk Club: £5 for workshop participants, £5 for non-participants." ...

just checking, thought maybe workshop participants might get a discount, or non-participants might have to pay more ...


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 12 Mar 10 - 04:28 AM

Murray, you're right. £5 for participants and £7 for non-participants.
Thanks for pointing that out.

Valmai


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Tootler
Date: 12 Mar 10 - 07:10 PM

You're in for a treat, especially for participants. Alistair is a great tutor.

I remember dog leap stairs was one of the tunes we worked on the first year I went to Caedmon Folk Music Classes, the term before it moved into the Sage - the tutor then was Anthony Robb who is a good friend of Alistair's.

A couple of years later I was wandering along a street leading up from the quayside in Newcastle when I came on the actual dog leap stairs. It is a very steep and somewhat long flight of stairs and I decided against actually going up them as I had had pleurisy some years ago which left some damage on my right lung and as a result, I get short of breath quite easily.


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 13 Mar 10 - 05:55 AM

I've just found an image of Dog Leap Stairs. Even someone with a matching pair of lungs would have trouble with these.

The original recording of Steel Skies featured concertina, Northumbrian pipes, fiddles, viola, flute piccolo, whistle and mandolin.

Valmai


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 19 Mar 10 - 07:52 AM

Here are details of the reissue of the Steel Skies CD as part of Topic Records 70th. anniversary celebrations.

Valmai (Lewes)


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 21 Mar 10 - 05:25 AM

And some reviews from 1982 and 2010:

Alistair Anderson - Steel Skies

Steel Skies was created by Alistair Anderson in 1982 "one of the first attempts at a composed musical folk soundscape and it remains one of the most successful." Jon Boden 2010. Inspired by the traditional music of these islands, Anderson's interweaving melodic lines on concertina, Northumbrian pipes, flute, mandolin and two fiddles produce a "fluid living work" (Daily Telegraph). Hugely influential at the time and described by the Guardian as "the finest recent original contribution to the tradition of English music,"   the recent reissue on CD has rekindled interest in the work.

Steel Skies 2010 reviews
"Anderson's vision in creating a fully realised new work, drawn from and naturally embedded into the musical traditions of the British Isles, gains even more significance as the years pass. Anderson is, of course a master of the English concertina and pretty hot on the Northumbrian pipes. Yet it is the complete entity that is so impressive and even now the range and balance of Anderson's melodies take your breath away."                                                 Colin Irwin Froots

"This was one of the first attempts at a composed musical folk soundscape, which seek to evoke the spirit of a particular area and it remains one of the most successful. For me its greatness lies in its lack of sentimentality... The tunes are largely unaccompanied in the conventional contemporary sense of strumming guitars or vamping piano or accordion, but solo instruments weave their polyphonic magic managing to be both evocative and invigorating"                          Jon Boden

The sold out performances at Newcastle Festival and London's Purcell Room caused quite a stir in 1982. Indeed the success of these, and subsequent performances, led to Anderson creating South Bank Summer Folk a weeklong celebration of folk within a high profile classical music festival. Although this event stopped when Margaret Thatcher disbanded the Greater London Council, the success of the festival led directly to Anderson being asked by Northern Arts to set up Folkworks an organisation which went on to help introduce a whole new generation to traditional music and became one of the founding partners of The Sage Gateshead.

Steel Skies 1982 reviews

"Bravely Anderson has decided to break with the traditional mould of unison melody playing... and a complex trelliswork of harmonies is created. All in all this is a delightful landmark in the development of folk music"                                                                                                  The Scotsman

"Anderson has achieved what many others have tried without success. He has composed a work which, while remaining rooted deeply in the traditional music of his region of Britain, contains neither pastiche nor attempts to fuse irreconcilable elements. The melodic lines of songs without words give way to dance patterns enriched by unexpected harmonies and delightful combinations of instruments. It is a fluid living work, which will yield even more riches with successive performances."                                                                                       Daily Telegraph


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: sciencegeek
Date: 21 Mar 10 - 06:08 AM

great news about the Topic cd releases.... hope they do more soon, plenty of fine LPs that are still languishing.

I do wish I could see Ali again... but wrong side of the puddle for me...

I also miss his small pipe playing... just lovely.


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: Valmai Goodyear
Date: 21 Mar 10 - 07:53 AM

Sciencegeek, might there be any chance of pestering the great and good over there to set up a tour for him?

Valmai


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Subject: RE: Ali Anderson: Steel Skies, Lewes UK 2011
From: sciencegeek
Date: 22 Mar 10 - 07:09 AM

good question... we do have any number of great festivals around the country - though they do require advance prep work- but if he is here for a short stay, then other bookings can work around them.

I haven't been a concert manager for some time now... but I suspect that Dick Greenhouse - our fearless Mudcat & Camsco Record leader - might have a few leads to follow.

If Ali were anywhere near Rochester, NY I could probably line up a house concert. Bring the pipes!


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