This is an opportunity to hear three of the finest acoustic guitarists in Europe exploring their Celtic heritage. They are individually acknowledged as soloists in their own right and have all recorded for the prestigious Acoustic Music Records Label, based in Germany.
Between them they have clocked up tours and performances throughout Europe, Canada, United States, India and the Far East but this the very first time this tour has come to Wales.
They will be presenting music that draws on their respective Celtic traditions as soloists and will also combine in duo and trio settings for original and exciting collaborations.
Ian Melrose was born in Middlesbrough, England. As a youth he moved back to Ayr in Scotland with his Scottish parents and younger brother. Ian’s father was a member of the Scottish Fiddle Orchestra, so traditional music was always there somewhere. His early influences were the famous figures from the “British school of guitar-playing” i.e. Davey Graham, John Renbourn, Bert Jansch and John Martyn.
Now based in Berlin, he has made a name for himself on the European acoustic scene not only as a soloist but also with Scandinavian-Celtic duo Kelpie, Four-Styles Guitar-Festival and the Leuchter-Melrose Duo. He has done extensive tours of Germany, Holland, Italy, Norway and Canada and has done studio jobs for many well-known artists as well as writing film music. In 1996 he got the job of lead guitarist with the Irish cult band Clannad for their “World Tour”, which went all around the globe. You can hear Ian playing on the grammy-winning Clannad album “Landmarks”(1998) and on the “Clannad: live!”(2006) album. In January 2004 he was in Dublin playing on-, arranging and producing a CD for the Duggan brothers, “Rubicon” (MDM Records). In 2010 he did a short tour of Ireland as guitarist with Mary Black. As well as his critically acclaimed 6 solo CDs he has appeared on over 100 albums, writes a regular fingerstyle workshop for the German magazine “Akustik Gitarre” and is endorser for Avalon guitars and DR strings.
Soïg Sibéril is one of the most significant musicians to come from the Breton music scene.
He was initally attracted to this guitar by people like Wooddy Guthrie, Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan. He became more interested in Bluegrass music when he heard people like Doc Watson and Tony Rice but gradually he became more involved in the Breton dance music scene and realised it was time to explore his musical roots that were there in Breton traditional music.
He had the chance to meet other guitarists including Michael O'Domnhail (member of the "bothy band" group) who pointed him to the technique of "open tuning" which corresponded to the interpretation and to the accompaniment of Irish music. He went on to adapt this technique to Breton music through bands like "Gwerz", "Kornog", "Pennou Skoulm" and others.He is involved in numerous projects in Brittany and has conducted many masterclasses concerning the role of the guitar within traditional music.
He specialises in the traditional Celtic music of Wales and the areas where it meets music of other European and Scandinavian traditions. He is an acknowledged specialist on the solo acoustic guitar and alongside his solo concerts he has conducted workshops and masterclasses in many different countries. He has appeared twice at the Canadian International Guitar Festival, the Guitarras del Mundo Festival in Argentina, the East West Festival in India and three tours with the International Guitar Night in Germany, France and Hungary.
Currently he is involved in a number of touring projects which include The Devils Violin Company, The Nathan Thomson UK/Finnish project, Taith (with Gillian Stevens and Timo Vaananen), ALAW with Oliver Wilson-Dickson and Jamie Smith, and on going solo work in Europe.
Alongside this he has developed skills as a producer/engineer and arranger at the Studio that Gillian Stevens and he have developed in Abergavenny, Stiwdio Felin Fach.
Dylan Fowler has been a professional musician now for close on 30 years and in that time he has been active in many areas of music as a performer / composer and arranger. His musical palette draws on his experiences in contemporary European jazz, traditional music from the Celtic diaspora – particularly his Welsh heritage and his extensive experience as a collaborator with musicians from countries such as India, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia, Finland, Norway, Canada, Germany and Italy.As well as various group activities he has developed a reputation as an international guitar soloist and has three cds released on the prestigious German label, Acoustic Music Records which have received excellent reviews.”This is music with heart, soul and, above all a bullish determination to ignore recognised boundaries. “ Chris Jones – BBC online reviews.
Photo: Bozeanne Davis