"CELTICANA"

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Welcome

Steve Crawford & Spider MacKenzie from Aberdeen in Scotland make music that is at times rich in warm, candlelight intimacy and in others all burning hell fire and brimstone. Bold and eloquent songwriting, and delivery, often reminiscent of the classic ‘70s singer/songwriters, combines with acoustic guitar, wailing and weeping virtuoso harmonica and mellifluous vocals to complete this dynamic duo. As Germany’s WAZ newspaper simply put it, “Top class music from Scotland”. 

To record their soon to be released (June 1st 2020) and long awaited second album ‘Celticana’, they relocated first to Nashville to rehearse in the city’s historic East Side, soaking up all the muse this musical heartland has to offer. From there they travelled on to Moon House Studios in Austin, Texas to work with veteran musician-producer and former Texan musician of the year Chris Gage. The result is music stylistically drenched in Americana set to lyrics that spin stories from the Scottish motherland. 

The album was mastered by the five-time Grammy nominated Jerry Tubb, whose previous work includes albums by Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson. In contrast to their stripped-back debut album ‘5am’, which features the duo alone in an almost live setting, Celticana benefits from Gage’s excellent contributions on piano, mandola, mandolin, guitar, Hammond organ and harmony vocals alongside the mighty Austin rhythm section of David Carroll on upright bass and drummer Kevin Hall

Since the release of their first album ‘5 am’ in 2008 to great reviews (Scotland’s biggest selling newspaper The Daily Record awarded it five stars) the duo have gigged extensively in Scotland and across mainland Europe, with their first gigs in the USA in 2018. 

What the press & revered musicians say


“Top class music from Scotland” WAZ newspaper – Germany

"A fresh and upbeat collection, just what we need at the moment" - BBC Radio NAN GAIDHEAL

"As good a combination of vocal, guitar and harmonica as you're likely to hear"  - Folking.com

"I just listened to "Celticana" with Spider MacKenzie and Steve Crawford. The CD is full of great songs, great vocals and Spider's harmonica is a high spot. Put an ear on this one. You'll be glad you did" - Charlie McCoy most recorded harmonica player in history, Grammy-winning, Country Music Hall of Fame legend.  

“Spider Mackenzie’s harmonica emotes the feelings that emerge from the lyrics and music of Steve Crawford. Together, the Scottish pair has introduced a version of Americana music that raises the bar for everyone.”  - Texas Lifestyle Magazine


“It’s been a long time since I’ve heard a guitar and harmonica combo this good” - Fatea Magazine

“Powerful alt-country and blues arrangements from a singer with a voice with 'open-road 'Americana' written all over it”  - The Daily Record

“Confident in every different style they play they serve an enticing mix of country and jazz to their enchanted audience – bluesy, funky, humorous and presented most virtuously” - WAZ newspaper – Germany

"Lovely acoustic country and blues tinged harp behind the great vocals of guitarist Steve Crawford, It is what the harp was made for" - Harmonica World

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Shows & tours

Mar2

Steve Crawford & Spider MacKenzie sind ein Musikduo aus Aberdeen, Schottland. Scottish Folk und Americana sind die Zutaten ihres ausgeschlafenen Songwritings. Steves lyrische Akustikgitarre ergänzt kongenial Spiders virtuos wehklagende Mundharmonika. Die zwei Musiker nehmen den Ball auf, den ihnen die klassischen Singer/Songwriter der 70er zuspielten. Die Bandbreite reicht von getragener Kerzenscheinidylle bis zu schwindelnden Uptempo-Kaskaden. Um ihr zweites Album Celticana aufzunehmen, verließen sie ihre schottische Heimat, um in Nashville, Tennessee, zu proben, wo sie alles aufsogen, was die Muse dieser magischen Musikmetropole zu bieten hat. Die Reise führte das Duo weiter zu den Moon House Studios in Austin, Texas, wo Chris Cage, legendärer Produzent und »Texas Musician Of The Year«, ihre Aufnahmen produzierte. Das Resultat: »Celticana«, das die schottischen Wurzeln der Musik des Duos stilsicher in einen uramerikanischen Kontext setzt. Als Gast haben sie sich Johannes Epremian (Violine, Gitarre und Gesang) eingeladen, dessen Liebe zur Kultur und Musik der Cajuns zentraler Motor seiner Musik ist.

Tickets from €18.00. Concessions available

Mar21

This is a rare Home Country Gig for the Aberdonian Duo of Guitarist and Singer Songwriter, Steve Crawford, and legendary Harmonica Player, Spider MacKenzie. They are Big in Europe, having made the step up from the club circuit to larger venues. Now based in Germany, Steve Crawford has established himself on the Music Scene there, winning a Best Folk Album nomination in the prestigious Critics’ Awards for his work with Fiddler, Sabrina Palm; also playing with popular Cajun band, Le Clou. Spider MacKenzie is the go-to Harmonica session player for many other musicians on both sides of the Atlantic. Christine Albert, the former Chair of the organisation, which stages the Grammys, commented about Spider – “It is rare to come across a harmonica player with such a genuine empathy for American music. He is an incredibly talented musician”. Steve and Spider’s most recent Album, Celticana, recorded in Austin, Texas was described by Folking.com – “As good a combination of vocal, guitar and harmonica as you’re likely to hear, decorating songs that remind me of the quality and easy skill of early Jackson Browne.” Admission is £11 (Payable at the Door or tickets can be reserved by emailing kenneth@fivefurlongs.plus.com).

We are excited to be heading back to our favourite venue to play in our hometown. Door will open and 7.15 and we will be on stage at 8pm. Tickets are £12 before April and then £14

Steve Crawford & Spider MacKenzie from Aberdeen in Scotland make music that is at times rich in warm, candlelight intimacy and in others all burning hell fire and brimstone. Bold and eloquent songwriting, and delivery, often reminiscent of the classic ‘70s singer/songwriters, combines with acoustic guitar, wailing and weeping virtuoso harmonica and mellifluous vocals to complete this dynamic duo. As Germany’s WAZ newspaper simply put it, “Top class music from Scotland”.

To record their most recent album, ‘Celticana’, they relocated first to Nashville to rehearse in the city’s historic East Side, soaking up all the muse this musical heartland has to offer. From there they travelled on to Moon House Studios in Austin, Texas to work with veteran musician-producer and former Texan musician of the year Chris Gage. The result is music stylistically drenched in Americana set to lyrics that spin stories from the Scottish motherland.

Steve Crawford has featured his songwriting on numerous albums over the years including with founding members of Old Blind Dogs in the band Catford. More recently, his work with the band Ballad of Crows won praise from legendary folk hero Mike Harding when he said, “Listen carefully to the words, they’re making really great music”. Now based in Germany, he has also established himself on the folk scene there in his work with the popular Cajun band Le Clou and also in his duet together with fiddler Sabrina Palm, receiving a nomination for best folk album from the distinguished German Critics Award (Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik) in 2019 for their second album, ‘Two’.

Spider MacKenzie is well established as one of the UK’s finest harmonica players. He is the go-to session player for many revered Scottish musicians - the late great Tam White, guitarist Andy Gunn and more recently UK Perrier Jazz Vocalist award winning singer Niki King have all sung his praises. Discovered by Stateside musicians as well, he has been called upon as a session player for a number of recording projects. Paying tribute to him, Christine Albert, former chairman of the Board of Trustees for the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, the organization that puts on the Grammys wrote: “I feel that it is indeed rare to come across a harmonica player with such a genuine empathy for American music. He is an incredibly talented musician”.

Since the release of their first album ‘5 am’ in 2008 to great reviews (Scotland’s biggest selling newspaper The Daily Record awarded it five stars) the duo have gigged extensively in Scotland and across mainland Europe, with their first gigs in the USA in 2018.

PRESS

“As good a combination of vocal, guitar and harmonica as you’re likely to hear, decorating songs that remind me of the quality and easy skill of early Jackson Browne” (Folking UK)

“Their music may be inspired and influenced by musicians on both sides of the pond, but it doesn’t actually come from anywhere. It’s already there. The music is embedded in Steve and Spider and they are graciously welcoming it to surface” (Texas Lifestyle Magazine, USA)

“An absolute asset to fans of wonderful folk, blues and Americana music” (Rootstime, BELGIUM)

“Masterful and rich Celticana, underpinned by perfect playing and singing, creating a whole that just shines with class” (Times Past & Times Passing, UK)

“I sat spellbound…..in love equally with Steve Crawford’s strikingly charismatic voice and Spider MacKenzie’s wistfully virtuoso harp playing” (Acoustic Guitar Magazine, GERMANY)

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