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This concert, in part sponsored by the Harris Tweed company and commemorating the 125th anniversary of An Comunn Gaidhealach (The Gaelic Society), stood out as being of special interest on initial perusal of this year's programme for Edinburgh's annual extravaganza of harp music. It proved every bit as enjoyable and instructive as anticipated, but before concentrating one's attention on this show, mention must be made, albeit briefly, of the variety of musical delights from all over the world that had been on offer during the three days leading to this showpiece.

Exemplifying its true international aspect, the festival had treated its audiences to a display of the ceng (the Turkish harp), a performance of O'Carolan's early Irish harp music by a harpist from the Canary Islands, a duo set from Irish harpist Anne Marie O'Farrell and harmonica (mouth harp) maestro Brendan Power, and an evening of Welsh music featuring the likes of Robin Huw Bowen and Gwenan Gibbard. On the previous afternoon there had also been a very special celebration of the Clarsach Society @85 marked by the presentation of a Landmark award by Hands Up For Trad and featuring co-deviser Isobel Meiras and her harp ensemble, Na Claraisean, alongside an amazing cast on the same stage including Alison Kinnaird, Sileas, Corrina Hewat, Catriona Mackay , Wendy Stewart and early harp expert, Bill Taylor!

The Harris Tweed concert was based around the connections between the Gaelic language, making music and the production of the tweed, thus had a lot to live up to, but it was clearly devised with loving attention, featuring performances from Shine, Freya Thomson and friends and Mairi Macleod. It culminated in an ensemble performance of waulking the tweed. Harris Tweed originates from the Gaelic-speaking islands of Harris and Lewis, so there was a distinct Gaelic flavour to the evening's music.

The first half of the evening put the spotlight on Shine, the trio of Mary MacMaster and Corrina Hewat on electro-harps and vocals and Alyth McCormack on vocals - musicians with long outstanding careers of their own who have recently reformed after a hiatus of over 10 years. Their distinctive mixture of three-part vocal harmonies, with or without the accompaniment of the harps, provided a delightful start to the night's proceedings. Following their only album so far, recorded way back in 2011, they have accumulated a wealth of fresh material ready for a new album and judging by what was on show this night, it will be well worth waiting for. In this all too brief set, alongside waulking and other songs in Gaelic, there were some impressive original compositions in English from Corrina, notably Stronger and their final song, The Interval Song. Also notable amongst the original songs in English was Carmarthen Lad, a poem by Karen Tweed set to music, and a light-hearted contribution from Alyth about a chicken - the only song she claimed to have ever written! The most defining element in this first set though, was the harmonic blending of the three voices in the last item in the set, The Interval Song, playing deftly with musical terms such as octaves and keys!

The second half began with an experimental piece entitled Community And Star Dust- Exploration 1, a composition by Freya Thomson, one half of the harp duo, the Duplets. She was accompanied on harp by the other member of the Duplets, Gillian Fleetwood, and Fiona Rutherford. Various electronic sounds were contributed by Barry Reid. The programme notes explained this piece as an exploration of “communication and belonging through ancient forms of Gaelic vocables and audio manipulation techniques”. This proved a brief but stimulating diversion before the main event - the demonstration of the waulking procedure.

As a prelude to the setting up of the table for the waulking, Mairi Macleod from the Isle of Lewis and a frequent performer at the Harp Festival in recent years treated the expectant audience to some Gaelic songs of the cloth before all the members of Shine and various other invited performers, equipped with suitable pieces of cloth, sat around the table ready to waulk the tweed, with commentary on its production. Mairi then led the group of singers in an exuberant chorus of waulking songs to the sound of the thumping of the cloth against the table - an exciting end to a fascinating evening linking the production of the tweed to the Gaelic language and music.

This was without doubt one of the highlights of the six day festival, but the following final night's concert featuring Catriona McKay with her long-time fiddle partner, Chris Stout, in a collaboration with Kala Jula (a Swiss-Malian duo on kora, djembe and guitars) ably supported by Adriano Sangineto (a personable and talented Italian harpist) emphasised the inclusivity of the festival, showcasing the harp along with other instruments such as those just mentioned and Brendan Power's harmonica. The celebrations of the anniversaries of the Clarsach Society and An Comunn Gaidhealach with the ensemble performances and the waulking song demonstration were standout events, though, in another remarkable programme of concerts, workshops and courses that maintained the festival's international reputation.

Neil Hedgeland