Saturday 12th January 2019

String Jam Club opens its 23rd year of bringing quality folk & roots music to the Borders with the highly-acclaimed Scottish trad duo Ryan Young & Jenn Butterworth on Saturday 11th January.  Ryan Young “leads the ‘New Wave’ of traditional Scottish fiddlers” according to BBC World on 3, bringing new & exciting ideas to the folk genre.  He holds both a first class honours and a Masters degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, as well as being a twice a finalist in both the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Awards & the BBC Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year, as well as Scots Trad Music Awards ‘Up And Coming Artist of the Year’. He was nominated for the Horizon Award at the 2018 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards & was the winner of Best Musician for 2018.  Ryan Young, despite his comparatively young years, is already on his way to becoming a folk giant.
Ryan’s fiddle playing is influenced by the great Irish fiddlers, especially Martin Hayes, but focuses mainly on Scottish music, bringing new life to very old, often forgotten tunes by playing them in his own unique way, infused with Irish fiddle stylings.  Playing like a man possessed, his performances take the music to an unbelievable level, with fresh melodic ideas, uplifting rhythmic drive & a great depth of dynamics and precision. His sound is distinctive & he always manages to take the listener on an adventurous & emotional journey in any performance.  In his own words: “I want to play in a way that allows the music to flow through me, & it is the music that is heard, rather than any technical or lack of technical ability. In the end, I think that playing in a heart-felt way is all that should matter.”  That last sentence says everything you need to know about this world-class musician. His technical skill is beyond most people’s reach.  It is simply stunning.  But when you actually listen to the music that is channelling through him, what takes your breath away is not the technicality, but its emotional intensity & lyricism, passion & sensitivity, & a profound musicality that will touch even the stoniest of hearts. It is no wonder that Ryan has been described as “a force of nature” in a Scotsman in a 5-star review.
Ryan will be accompanied by superb guitarist Jenn Butterworth, ‘Musician of the Year’ at the MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards 2019 & one of only four musicians shortlisted for ‘Musician of the Year Award’ at the prestigious BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2019.  Based in Glasgow, Scotland, she is a lynchpin of the vibrant & thriving Scottish folk scene, performing regularly with a wide range of artists including her own projects ‘Jenn Butterworth & Laura-Beth Salter’ and the fabulous Kinnaris Quintet (also sell-out guests at String Jam Club earlier in 2019).  Jenn is a highly recognised teacher with a wide range of teaching experience, & was recently awarded ‘Tutor of the Year’ at the 2015 Scots Trad Music Awards.  She is Lecturer in Practical Studies in the Traditional Music Department of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, is a regular member of the teaching staff for Glasgow Fiddle Workshop & has recently taught for Fèisean nan Gàidheal, the National Youth Folk Ensemble (EFDSS), Halsway Manor & Burg Fürsteneck (Germany).

Ryan and Jenn were nominated as ‘Folk Band of the Year’ in the Scots Trad Music Awards & were the only UK artists to be selected to perform at the Womex Expo 2019.  They gave a simply awe-inspiring performance at STRING JAM CLUB last year & are back by popular demand. The music was exhilarating, magical, and exciting, nearly causing a riot after the first set of tunes. They got two standing ovations & three encores, & the atmosphere was so exciting that we just had to book them again. This will be an inspirational gig & an unbelievable display of exceptional trad musicianship.

“A force of nature.” (***** 5 STARS The Scotsman”)
“Leading the ‘New Wave’ of traditional Scottish fiddlers, virtuoso Ryan Young”  (BBC World on 3 - August 2017)
“Young’s playing is so richly expressive, channelling such deep emotion, that it feels like a dramatic performance in a theatre…one feels that here we have a potential heir to Duncan Chisholm for sheer emotional intensity.  It’s a remarkably mature debut album from one so young.”  (Paul Matheson, Folk Roots 2017)
“Uniquely graceful and expressive playing. A future star of the Scottish fiddle world.” Aidan O’Rourke (Lau)
“His self-titled debut album simply brims over with originality and talent.” (August 2017)
“Nuance, wit, risk-taking, contrast and above all a real sense of joy in making music were all there in abundance and Young’s solo feature, where he appeared to have been truly possessed by the melodies, was as exciting as it was uplifting.”  (Rob Adams, The Herald)
“Butterworth’s style is what makes her one of the most in-demand musicians in Scotland. There are few guitarists in this country able to so intricately guide a set with melody and rhythm.” (The National Newspaper)

Live at Sidmouth Festival
Live at String Jam Club
Ryan Young interview & tunes
Ryan Young’s Website
Jenn Butterworth’s Website
String Jam Club on Facebook

Tickets £14
Book now Eventbrite (booking fees apply)
Book your tickets via the String Jam Club Box Office phone line 07930-872033 (no booking fees)
Payment in person (cash or cheque to ‘String Jam Club’) at the County Hotel, High Street, Selkirk 01750-705000 (no booking fees)
10% discount off County Hotel restaurant meals for ticket-holders 6-7 pm.
Advance table reservation recommended 01750-705000   
DOORS OPEN 7.30 ENDS 11.00pm (approx).

Saturday 8th February 2020

Amy Duncan is a compelling performer of original, rich & heartfelt folk-pop, and “an antidote for whatever may vex your soul”​ ​(​Folk Words).  The Edinburgh-based songwriter multi-instrumentalist creates emotive songs, combining intimate vocals, guitar, electric upright bass, synths, and piano creating a distinctive folk-pop sound.  You can expect skilful and tasteful use of the instruments and vocal loops to provide multi-layered textured arrangements for her affecting lyrics and haunting songs.

Amy’s debut album 'Pilgrimage' was released on US label Plain Recordings in 2006 after they discovered her home recordings on My Space. Amy self-released a further 2 albums achieving TV placements on BBC 3 Lip Service and the Netflix version of 'Charmed'. Creative Scotland funding made it possible for Amy to work with producer Calum Malcolm (The Blue Nile) leading to Amy's 4th album 'Cycles of Life' being released on Linn Records (2013). As a result Amy was chosen by Showcase Scotland as one of two Scottish acts to perform at the Eastern Canadian Music Alliance (2014) and was part of the Made In Scotland Showcase at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2013 and 2014. Amy went on to record a further two albums with him including 'Undercurrents' (2016) which was released to great praise in 2016 and was featured in Folk Radio UK Top Ten Albums of 2016. The album was described as "a crystalline sound world, with confidently poised delivery and bittersweet delicacy" by The Scotsman and “spacey, introspective, contemplative, acoustic pop with touches of jazz and of classical minimalism” by fRoots. The follow-up release 'Antidote' (2017) received 4**** reviews in both Maverick & R2 Magazine as well as receiving widespread airplay.

Amy is currently working with an animator on a series of music videos inspired by her abstract photography, to be released gradually throughout the year, culminating in an album release in summer 2020. We are greatly looking forward to Amy’s first visit to the club for a compelling evening of rich & heartfelt folk-pop.

"Duncan's voice is heavenly." (Maverick Magazine)
"Amy Duncan's music makes the world a better place, and right now we need her, and those like her, more than ever." (Alistair Braidwood)
"A crystalline sound world, with confidently poised delivery and bittersweet delicacy."  (The Scotsman)
"Spacey, introspective, contemplative, acoustic pop with touches of Jazz and of classical minimalism." (fRoots)
“This absorbing and captivating set from Amy Duncan, brimming with exquisite vocals and instrumental virtuosity, was a delight from start to finish.” (The Fountain, Live Review)

Silver Net
Amy Duncan website
String Jam Club on Facebook

Tickets £12
Book now Eventbrite (booking fees apply)
Book your tickets via the String Jam Club Box Office phone line 07930 872033 (no booking fees)
Payment in person (cash or cheque to String Jam Club) from the County Hotel Selkirk TD7 4BZ  (no booking fees).
DOORS OPEN 7.30 for 8.00 start. ENDS 11.00 PM (approx)

Saturday 14th March 2020

We bring you Scottish Americana at its finest when award-winning songwriter Dean Owens, one of the UK’s finest troubadours, appears with his new power trio The Southerners.

Dean Owens is widely hailed as one of UK’s finest troubadours, with fans including Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh and BBC legend "Whispering" Bob Harris. His new trio, The Southerners, brings together the formidable talents of award winning multi-instrumentalist Tom Collison on keys and bass guitar (sometimes both at the same time) and guitar maestro Jim Maving (Case Hardin, Don Gallardo) on electric, delta slide and mandolin. Their recent debut on the English tour circuit in June 2019 met with exuberant standing ovations and several sellouts.

Armed with a searingly soulful voice, skilfully crafted songs and earworm inducing melodies, Dean’s music conjures the wild romanticism of the open road, distilling the Scottish and Americana vibes into a unique blend of celtic spirit & country soul. The unfettered enthusiasm of a rock’n’roller coupled with the sympathetic delivery of folk’s best storytellers.

A Dean Owens gig isn’t just about the songs though. Dean is also a witty raconteur (“a blether” in the Scottish vernacular), with anecdotes about his travels and the songs – from a 7 album solo career, and his days with Scotland’s original Americana/alt country/cowpunk band, the Felsons - peppered throughout his set. His performance takes his audience from tears to laughter to rocking out, in the course of just a few songs.  A new album – The Man From Leith (The Best of Dean Owens) – will be released on Eel Pie Records in March 2020, so audiences can expect a dive through his formidable back catalogue as well as some new songs.

“One of Scotland’s best troubadours… fabulous.” (Bob Harris BBC Radio)
“Scotland’s most engaging and haunting singer-songwriter.” (Irvine Welsh)
“Magical… if you have a chance to see them do yourself a favour and go along… one of the happiest and most life affirming shows of the year.” (Americana UK)
“One of the standout Americana artists this side of the pond.” (Lonesome Highway)
“A little bit country, a little bit rock and soul.” (Mojo 4 Stars ****)
“Many of Scotland’s finest artists have stamped their mark by blending country roots with their own traditions. Dean Owens is right up there with his own distillation of ‘Celtic spirit, Country soul.’ Jim Maving and Tom Collison showed their class in their ability to intensify that mix, the strongest intoxicant on offer.”  (Your Life In A Song)
“Scottish, Americana in a unique blend.” (No Depression)
“His songwriting craft can stand proudly with the best … albums like this don’t come around too often.” (Fatea)

Dean Owens - UK Song of the Year Award 2019 - (UK Americana Music Association) for Southern Wind
Raining in Glasgow
The Last Song
Dean Owens Website
Dean Owens YouTube
Dean Owens on Facebook
String Jam Club on Facebook

Tickets £14
Book now Eventbrite (booking fees apply)
Book your tickets via the String Jam Club Box Office phone line 07930 872033 (no booking fees)
Payment in person (cash or cheque to String Jam Club) from the County Hotel Selkirk TD7 4BZ  (no booking fees).
DOORS OPEN 7.30 for 8.00 start. ENDS 11.00 PM (approx)


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