A New Ceilidh Band is Born

There will be a Family Ceilidh in Whiting Bay Hall on 15th October, courtesy of the recently formed Arran Ceilidh Band. The Band is available for private bookings such as birthdays, weddings and parties.

Introducing the band: On fiddles are Alice Maxwell and Rhodri Herapath. Alice played with the String Road Potholes ceilidh band for over ten years, playing for the Brodick summer ceilidhs as well as parties and weddings. She teaches violin and piano and is enthusiastic about bringing people together to play music.

Rhodri’s introduction to violin was with the Suzuki technique, and he enjoys playing classical and folk music. He recently played Mahler’s first symphony with the West of Scotland Schools Symphony Orchestra. He is a keen kayaker and is about to paddle to the Mull of Kintyre with his tent.

On keyboard we have Cerys, Rhodri’s sister. She also learns violin with Alice and has a lovely singing voice as well as playing the French horn and ukulele. She won the Best Musician Award this year at Lamlash High School. She is presently besotted with her new black lab puppy, Olive, and wants to be a vet.

On bass let’s meet Sarah Ransley (aka Ranners) from Coventry. Fairly new to the island she has a Masters degree in popular music performance from Coventry University and has played session bass for various artists from acoustic folk to alt-soul-synth genres. She works for The Arran Team.

The sound-man and guitarist is well known island thespian, David Simpkin, who won the Best Actor Award in the 2018 Arran Drama Festival. He can be seen around the island on his “works vehicle” – his trusty bicycle, on which he travels to his various gardening jobs. As a youth he played in a band called The Laughing Sundays, and is also a talented song writer.

Cèilidh is a Gaelic word meaning a traditional Scottish or Irish social gathering. The word originally simply meant “a Visit”. This “visit” later extended to singing, dancing, story-telling and playing music. In keeping with this meaning, members of the audience are welcome to recite a poem, sing a song, or play a tune.

So get your dancing feet on, and come along and enjoy the fun!