|Sunday 04 November 2018 @ 02:00pm : -
Mairearad and Anna
Two of Scotland’s most revered multi-instrumentalists, Mairearad Green (accordion and bagpipes) and Anna Massie (guitar, banjo, fiddle) are a truly captivating duo, providing a highly energetic performance with an instantly warm and friendly stage presence.
Having played alongside each other for over ten years, they revel in an intuitive approach to each other’s musical ideas and interpretations, and an “almost telepathic communication” on stage (Hi-Arts), effortlessly showcasing the fruits of duo partnership to the highest level , creating “music more than the sum of just two parts” (The Scotsman).
Now based in Glasgow, Mairearad and Anna both grew up in the Scottish Highlands amidst very similar musical backgrounds (most notably, mandolin playing Dads!), and so share an innate understanding of Scottish culture and music. As a duo they have enjoyed many successes, including five stars in The Scotsman and high praise from KT Tunstall, becoming a much-loved live act.
Their three albums – 2009’s eponymous debut, ‘Doubling’ in 2013 and ‘Best Day’ 2015 – have met wide critical acclaim, Mairearad and Anna was recorded live, just the two musicians – the live double act – whilst Doubling features many layered tracks, building a more complex sound, though still just from the two musicians. At the heart of Doubling remains the live duo sets, intricately arranged and executed with symbiotic sympathy, enhancing their “must-see” reputation.
‘Best Day’ was recorded at Gran’s House Studio in Lamington in the peaceful and picturesque Scottish Borders. Remaining true to their live sound, the album is performed entirely by Mairearad and Anna themselves. Their pairing combines Mairearad’s deft and lyrical accordion style, as well as her masterful piping, with Anna’s unparalleled versatility on guitar, fiddle and banjo. After over twelve years playing together, in the last few years, both have introduced songs to their live set, demonstrating the pair’s seemingly infinite abilities as musicians, but also the symbiotic synergy of performing together. ‘Best Day’ is the duo’s first album to include songs, and they are currently working on album no.4 which will also include songs.
Both award-winners, Mairearad currently performs with King Creosote and Mike Vass and Anna with Blazin’Fiddles and Rant. They have also previously performed with a number of well-known bands and artists; The Poozies, Bella Hardy, Box Club, Kate Rusby, Karine Polwart, Karen Matheson, Capercaillie and together in Scotland’s one and only Celtic Big Band, The Unusual Suspects.
"...the camaraderie and sheer fun of musical collaboration is plainly evident and infectious." ~ Songlines
"You guys were killing it…amazing playing!" ~ KT Tunstall
"full of energy and verve….first class" ~ R2 Magazine
"An exuberant, beautifully recorded album…crisp, clean and crystalline." ~ fRoots
"The young Scottish duo of accordionist Mairearad Green and Anna Massie, on guitar and banjo…in sparkling style, performed largely original material with frequent playfulness of delivery… belying their formidable technical prowess, in music that seemed much more than the sum of just two parts" ***** (FIVE STARS) ~ The Scotsman
"Anna Massie on guitar, fiddle and banjo, Mairearad Green on accordion and smallpipes – adds up to a wide palette of permutations, most of which featured in this relaxed, highly enjoyable performance…shifting the lead/accompanist balance, swapping and sharing the melody, harmony, chords and rhythms with deceptive fluency." ~ The Scotsman