TEXAS COMES TO SCOTLAND
Top Names on Caithness Festival
Strong Support by British, Irish and European Artists
Real hardcore country music comes from the Heart of Texas – and Heart of Texas Records is bringing real country artists to this year’s Northern Nashville Caithness Country Music Festival, set to be staged at the Indoor Riding Centre, Halkirk, over Easter weekend (April 3-5).
The festival, which now celebrates its eleventh anniversary, has built up a reputation for booking Texas acts for exclusive appearances and this year welcomes the return of Heart of Texas recording artists Amber Digby and Justin Trevino alongside first time visits by Jade Jack and Jeff Woolsey.
Christine Gray, who heads up the NNCCMF’s organising team, explains that Texas artists have always been very popular with the festival audiences. “We are delighted, once again, to be welcoming pure country acts to our festival, introducing some new acts alongside those who were very popular when they first appeared here”.
Once again working with Tracy Pitcox, founder of Heart of Texas Records, the festival will feature two of its well established artists, Amber Digby, now acclaimed as one of the leading female country entertainers from the Lone Star State, and singer/record producer Justin Trevino whose forthcoming album will be a tribute to one of his musical influences, Johnny Bush.
Making their British debuts are fiddle player/vocalist Jade Jack, one time pupil of the legendary Bobby Flores and former member of Leona Williams band, and Jeff Woolsey, a honky-tonker guaranteed, in the best Texas dancehall tradition, to “keep ‘em on the floor”.
“Supporting these acts will be the cream of Texas country musicians so, with a wealth of talent like that on stage performing traditional country music, we think we have once again come up with a winning formula of live music that’ll win over the crowd and leave them wanting more” says Ms. Gray.
Also sharing the bill alongside the Heart of Texas artists is another Texan or, in this case, a group with an edgy country feel, The Derailers, hailing from Austin while, from Nashville comes the multi-talented (singer/songwriter/record producer) James House. Both these acts have developed loyal followings on this side of the Atlantic following previous visits and record releases.
Not to be overshadowed by American artists, there’s Rene Meijer from Holland and a triple bill of Irish entertainers, Gerry Guthrie, Trevor Loughrey and Anthony McBrien. And, of course, the Festival has never overlooked the homegrown artists and this year’s line-up includes Manson Grant & The Dynamos, The Duke Boys, Country Side of Brendan McPhee, Broken Note and the Norman Borland Band. Plus young local talent is given the spotlight with appearances not only by Thurso High School Band but also by two of the school’s pupils, Rosie & Craig, who were finalists in an Inverness talent contest. Compere for the event’s five shows is George Malcolm.
The NNCCMF is the creation of the long-running Northern Nashville Country Music Club. Established in 1987, the club took a gamble in 2004 when it decided to stage a first festival. An immediate success, it has grown from year to year and, because of the calibre of the acts booked and, in spite of being situated in the far north of Scotland, has seen audiences travelling from all areas of the British Isles – and beyond!