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Tag: music


Beerdrinkers & Hellraisers

Craft beer and live music make for a great combination!

I thoroughly enjoyed being at Razernij again, a beer and music festival I had only been able to visit once before. Usually it coincides with BXLBeerFest, but since that sadly was eventually cancelled this year, it freed up some of my time to spend an afternoon in Rumst.

I brought my own version of a ploughman’s platter, to soften the blow of the alcohol a bit. It helped… a bit!

But first: London

We only had a couple of hours on our first day in London, but we managed to squeeze in a fish meal at Hook Camden, a visit to BrewDog Camden — with some familiar Glaswegian faces — and a last drink at a pub near our hotel, The Queen’s Head, with live piano music.

The Musical City

Glasgow is a very musical city. I don’t just mean the National Centre of Piping, but also the many artists originating from the city, and the bands that have been discovered here.
But even though I’ve been here a couple of times now, I hadn’t been to King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut yet. So this time I had my girlfriend h–na pick the most promising band of the week — Young Kato — and reserved some tickets for them.
I didn’t quite realise they would be preceded by a supporting act. I should have known, since Oasis was discovered right here, when performing as a supporting act.
But there wasn’t not just one, but three bands preceding the main act!
I don’t know if any of them will ever will become famous — the potential was there — but if they do, I can at least say I was there while they were still playing as a supporting act…

The Kelvingrove Bandstand


The Kelvingrove Bandstand November 2012 & August 2015.

I took the above two pictures, nearly three years apart. I like how it’s turned out. Plus, seeing and hearing Teenage Fanclub play ‘Did I Say’ here was a joy to behold.

Piping Competition


Darach Urquhart, Piper by Richard Findlay@FotoFlingScotland @_Highland Games
Via Flickr:

Lochearnhead Highland Games 2015

Solo Piping Results


1 Darach Urquhart (Big Spree)
2 Peter McCalister
3 Graham Mulholland
4 John Mulhearn
Judges: A Wright, M McRae

1 Gordon McCready
2 John Mulhearn
3 Finlay Johnston
4 Ben Mulhearn
Judges: A Forbes, A Frater

1 Gordon McCready
2 Finlay Johnston
3 John Mulhearn
4 Graham Mulholland
Judges: J Banks, G Lumsden

Lochearnhead Highland Games – History

The Highland Games have been a classic part of Scottish culture for centuries. Many stories have been told purporting to explain the origins of highland games:

A method of finding the best warriors to fight for the clan chieftain
A way of passing the time for agricultural workers – using available items such as hammers, tree trunks and bales of straw as a means of testing the strength.
Whatever the origins, highland games take place regularly in many highland villages and towns every year. Set in the splendid natural amphitheatre of the surrounding hills, Lochearnhead Games are still run along traditional lines as a “village games”
Ewen The games were first run many years ago with the three villages – Balquhidder, Lochearnhead and Strathyre – taking turns to host the games. For a few years the games lapsed before being re-started by Mr Ewen Cameron, then the proprietor of the original Lochearnhead Hotel. He was himself a notable heavyweight athlete taking over 100 first prizes over a season when he was competing. Ewen stood almost 6 feet 5 inches in height but did not look anything like this as he was 22 stones in weight, with a 53 inch chest, 16 inch biceps and 36 inch thighs, remotely related to the great A.A.Cameron he was , like his predecessor , a very good wrestler and for a long time was unbeaten, on one occasion he even beat the British Cumberland style champion, which is no mean feat, for it took a lot then, as now to “coup”the lads from the north of England. On one occasion Ewen packed up his caber and went off on his own to Denmark to appear before 30,000 spectators proving , as always, a wonderful ambassador for Scotland.

When the games once again became a regular annual event they were always held at Lochearnhead games field, mainly for reasons of space and convenience.

The three villages are now in the midst of the new Trossachs National Park, and have wonderful historical links to many of the famous Scottish clans. To this day, there is a strong presence of the clans MacLaren, MacGregor. Macnab, Stewart and Cameron, all whom have been represented as Chieftain.



This year, the Wickerman will not be a mythical representation, but a image that symbolizes love. Love for nature, love for each other and love for yourself. Love. Caring for each other. Together, through love, try to make the world a better place.

Although strictly speaking not Scottish or Celtic, kilts seem to be quite popular at Castlefest anyway, both with performers and public. Needless to say what I will wear then…

Scottish Weekend Alden Biesen


This Saturday my girlfriend and I visited the Scottish Weekend at the Alden Biesen castle in Bilzen (Belgian Limburg). Although there are more Scottish festivals and games in Belgium, this is one of my favourites. This is mainly because there are some interesting competitions being held, like the Highland Dancing Championship and the Belgian Championship for Pipe Bands.

One of the pipe bands competing (in fourth grade) was the MacLaren Pipe Band Venlo, so that was an excellent opportunity to meet up with a clan member that couldn’t make it to the Clans’ Days.


Apart from the competition, there were lots of other music performances, like a concert from the Jarlath Henderson & Ross Ainslie Band pictured here. I would have loved to see Bags of Rock, but their gig was just too late to be able to get home afterwards, and since I had to work the next day… Next year I might just take a tent and stay the whole weekend, to be able to see everything!


Na Fir Bolg – part 2

Just spent a great weekend at the music festival Na Fir Bolg. As expected I wasn’t the only one in a kilt, although some of the garments that would probably identified by their wearers as a kilt, would not really qualify as such by a strict definition…

There were quite a few bagpipes on stage as well: Corvus Corax, Berlinski Beat, The Black Tartan Clan and Kadril all used them.


Oh, the drink / bottle holder turned out to be quite useful, although most of the time it was easier than I expected to find a spot at a table.


Na Fir Bolg


In a couple of hours I’ll be off to Na Fir Bolg, a nice folk, rock and cabaret music festival in Vorselaar, in the province of Antwerp.
One of the groups performing is The Black Tartan Clan. When I went to one of their concerts a couple of months ago, almost everybody was kilted—including me, of course—so it made sense I would pack my black kilt for this weekend.
Since folkies usually are quite kilt friendly anyway, I decided to wear a kilt the rest of the weekend as well.

On top of the selection of artists, one of the nice things about this festival is the fact they still serve beer in real glasses. So I spent some time to stretch my leather drink / bottle holder to fit a full-size Guinness pint glass! It might come in handy… 😉