Caledonian Folk and Blues at the Guilford

****

4 Stars

One of the longest running institutions at the Fringe is the Caledonian Folk and Blues at the Guilford Pub, an establishment famed throughout the year for a wide selection of quality food and an even wider selection of beer.

Throw into the mix local folk band Yard of Ale with guest basis Val, and a selection of visiting bands as well, and there is no admission fee either. Win, Win, Win!!!

Alistair McDougald, Peter Gillan and Colin Mackenzie are the trio of folkies that play every night of their run and they always produce a quality evening of music with their selection of Scottish, Irish, English and American folk music, together with a few C&W numbers and even a 50’s classic or two.

Yard of Ale do the first hour, and a selection of visiting performers play a middle set, before the Yardies finish off proceedings.

The packed out pub were thoroughly enjoying themselves with even a queue forming outside periodically were a testament to the popularity of this Fringe gig, and with 2010 event heading towards a conclusion let’s start looking forward to 2011.

****

Reviewed by Geoff

Guilford Arms V 107

19 to 28 August

20-00 to 24-00

Fringe Brochure P178

Maria Tecce: Strapless

5 Stars

*****

Maria Tecce has all the seductive qualities of sophistication and sensuality but there is much, much more to her performance. She has a fabulous voice, complete stage presence, and, boy, can she put across a song.

Her set contains a variety of songs based around the emotions of desire and love. There are the songs in Spanish with Latin rhythms. We may not understand the lyrics but she sings with such ferocious intensity, we know that this is a woman not to mess around with. When she performs the songs with a jazzy, bluesy feel every languid movement has a meaning. For some lucky guy sitting at the front, the song ‘What Lola wants, Lola gets’ will be especially enjoyable. Her performance of ‘Nature Boy’ was especially dramatic, being on her knees and absolutely still.

From her first entrance to her final exit, she captures and holds the audience’s attention A little confession: after her show, I did buy her CD.

Review by Ben

Venue; Venue Number                  Assembly @ George Street ; V3

Dates                                                  5 to 29 August 2010 (not 16, 23)

Times                                                 18.40 to 19.35

Fringe Programme Page Number: 193

Lady Carol: Malady

*****

5 Stars

It is not very often that this wizened reviewer gets blown away by a musician at first hearing. I usually find the attraction grows over a period of time, but last year I was with the Fringe show delivered by Lady Carol.

She is a stunningly attractive blonde, perched on a stool with only her trusty ukulele for company and blessed with a voice that is unique and amazing. I wanted more, I wanted a CD.

I’m pleased to say she’s back, but only for a short season, accompanied on piano and backing vocals by the lovely Kirsty Newton.  I am pleased to say she is in fine voice again and the hour spent in her company is the quickest of the week. She can handle all styles of music and turn it into her own.  Minnie the Moocher, Kate Bush, even Radiohead are given Malady’s treatment and to me she is even better than the originals. And she writes her own material to boot!

During the past year she has extensively toured the world, never anywhere for long, hence her short stay at The Fringe, but if you can, do yourself a favour, check her out today. And be prepared to be blown away as I was. And this year she does have a CD you can buy to enjoy the experience forever.

*****

Reviewed by Geoff

Assembly V 3

9 to 15 August

20-00 to 21-00

Fringe Brochure P 190

Camille O’Sullivan – Chameleon

*****

5 Stars (only because I can’t give six)

 I have been attending Fringe performances from this superbly talented Franco- Irish performer for a number of years now, and each time I see her it is in a bigger space and each time it is sold out. Not altogether surprising really, ‘cause the lady is a legend.

Nobody I know give the performance she does, she is sultry, sleazy, sexy, ballsy, very theatrical in the performance and boy can she sell a song, be it rock, jazz, blues or ballad she has the voice to excel at so many levels.

With the brand new show ‘Chameleon’ Ms O’Sullivan has rested a lot of her more established, well loved songs and replaced them with, for me anyway, less familiar numbers, but what is constant is the quality of performance of her and her extremely tight and virtuoso band.

From the onset, with a stage dressed in so many props, not least of all a functioning swing, to the end an hour or so later the packed Music Hall were hooked on her every movement, every word, every nuance of the experience and her stage presence was barely contained in the vast arena.

She had a shocking problem with a live mic that would have thrown many, but although visibly shaken, soldiered on with the show as if nothing had occurred.

Highlights? Too many really, but if pressed, the return of Brel’s Amsterdam and a Leonard Cohen finale would maybe just edge it me.

There is only one thing that worries me though. Is there a bigger Fringe space available in Edinburgh that will be able to cope with the ticket demands for next year’s extravaganza?

*****

Reviewed by Geoff

Assembly Music Hall Venue 3

5 – 30 August

22.25 to 23.35

Fringe Programme P 178

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