Isles fiddlers pitch in on version of Wild Mountain Thyme

Five Shetland fiddlers are among three dozen musicians who have joined forces to record a new version of the popular folk song Wild Mountain Thyme.

Catriona Macdonald, Chris Stout, Kevin Henderson, Ross Couper and Margaret Robertson are all part of the recording and video, which will be released by Edinburgh Tradfest on 1st May, the day the festival would have begun this year.

Laura-Beth Salter and Shetlander Kevin Henderson are two of those taking part in the recording. Photo: Dave Donaldson

Big names involved with the effort include Canadian instrumentalist JP Cormer, who was due to appear at this year’s now-cancelled Shetland Folk Festival.

Others are Eliza Carthy (vocals), Phil Alexander (accordion), Ali Hutton (whistle/flute), Laura-Beth Salter (mandolin), Kaela Rowan (guitar), Ross Martin (pedal steel), Keith Terry (bass), Aaron Jones (cittern), Steve Byrne (bouzouki) and Donald Hay (drums/percussion).

The recording was arranged and produced by University of Edinburgh traditional artiste-in-residence Mike Vass.

Jane-Ann Purdy of Edinburgh Tradfest said: “We were looking for an uplifting Scottish folk song with a summer vibe, no easy task. Wild Mountain Thyme is very popular and, like many other traditional tunes and songs, is claimed by both Scotland and Ireland.

“It’s also well known in North America and around the globe with many, many versions recorded over the years. However, ours is the first to include a mass band from Scotland, Ireland, England, California, Nova Scotia and Norway.

“We are hugely grateful to everyone who has united to create this new recording and hope that it will bring some joy to music fans worldwide, during these difficult times.”

The video will be released at noon on 1st May on YouTube and social media.


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