Brighde Chaimbeul & Aidan O'Rourke w/ special guest Iona  Zajac

Brighde Chaimbeul & Aidan O'Rourke w/ special guest Iona Zajac

Friday, 3 February 2023, 8.00pm

Enthusiastic Eunuch Presents

Brighde Chaimbeul & Aidan O'Rourke
with special guest Iona Zajac
Friday 3rd February
The Workman's Cellar, Temple Bar
Tickets €16.50 from

“Simultaneously ancient and modern, profound and direct.” The Reeling (Folk Album of the Month) – The Guardian

Winner of the Horizon Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2019 – Brìghde Chaimbeul is one of Scotland’s fastest rising stars. A native Gaelic speaker, her style is rooted in her indigenous language and culture, but draws inspiration from a variety of piping traditions such as from Cape Breton, Eastern Europe and Ireland.

Her debut album ‘The Reeling’ has had an extraordinary response since it’s launch at a sold out Celtic Connections show at the start of 2019. It was named as Folk Album Of The Month by The Guardian, given five star reviews in both fRoots and Songlines, lavished with praise by BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction and listed as one of The Quietus’ Albums Of The Year So Far. The Reeling was voted one of the 20 Scottish Albums Of The Year by the SAY Awards (out of 293 submissions) and secured a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nomination for Brìghde. Musicians as diverse as Colin Stetson, Sam Amidon and Anna von Hausswolff have expressed their love for the record on social media, and Super Furry Animals frontman Gruff Rhys invited Brìghde to collaborate with him and James Yorkston at a special show in Kirkcaldy.

She was joined on the recording by violinist Aidan O’Rourke from experimental folk trio Lau, who also produced the album (and whom performs alongside her at some of her live appearances), Radie Peat from the Dublin band Lankum on concertina, and the pioneering 82-year-old singer and piper Rona Lightfoot contributing canntaireachd (a phonetic singing tradition used to teach pipe tunes – the word means “chanting” in Gaelic).

Growing up in a musical family in Sleat on the Isle of Skye, she was no stranger to the sound of the pipes, and indeed the sound of music at home. Hearing Rona play gave Brìghde her initial inspiration to take up piping when she was just four years old (she began studying the instrument three years later.)

Working closely with Aidan O’Rourke, Brìghde has devised a completely new way of arranging for pipe music that emphasises the rich textural drones of the smallpipes; the constancy of sound that creates a trance-like quality in the tunes. She has collaborated with many established artists over the years, including Ross Ainslie, John McSherry, Paul Meehan, Aidan O’Rourke, Carlos Nunez, Martin Green, Allan MacDonald.

“A unique, exciting and forward-looking album that sets the bar for 2019 very high indeed.” – The Quietus

“Exciting, unusual and gorgeous.” – Songlines

“Pure, vital energy… exceptional playing.” – Folk Radio

Iona Zajac

Iona Zajac is a writer and musician from Scotland, who has been quietly
building a dedicated following across the UK and Ireland in post-pandemic
times. A graduate of Glasgow University where she studied English
Literature, and a longtime player of the clarsach harp, she took advantage
of the silence and solitude imposed by successive lockdowns to learn the
nylon stringed guitar and adapt her sensuous and often abstract poetry to
song. These first solo endeavours, recorded in a bedroom in southwest
Glasgow in 2020, can be heard on her debut EP ‘Find Her In The Grass’.
She has since toured with Arab Strap, Billy Nomates, John Francis Flynn,
The Mary Wallopers and Shawn James, as well as enjoying the vibrant
and dynamic music scenes of Dublin and Glasgow.

“Find Her In The Grass takes the most elemental of components to create
an arrestingly majestic set of songs.” Secret Meeting

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Brìghde Chaimbeul & Aidan O'Rourke at Sligachan | Skye Live 2021

Added by Enthusiastic Eunuch on 13 January 2023

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