Went through to Celtic connections on Saturday. We saw the 10th anniversary concert of Le Vent du Nord. Great band. Its the first time I have seen them. They had invited a few guests including Breabach, Vasen and Dervish. The fiddler, Olivier Demers in Le Vent du Nord is quite amazing.
Fiddle singing is difficult to do. But Olivier Demers, the fiddler was not only fiddling and singing, but also doing the whole rythmn section - with has feet!
So he was tapping, fiddling and singing - all at the same time. What good coordination has he???? Unbelievable. It looked VERY hard work.
This performance was a once in lifetime complete with birthday cake and birthday song sung by the audience.
I wasn't the only one to think this was great.
The Scotsman said "Things were threatening to become quite tearful, in a totally joyful way, by the end of this unforgettable show. A marvellous mutual love-in was hosted by Québécois quartet Le Vent du Nord – in whose decade-long coming of age Celtic Connections has played a significant springboard role – with three other top acts from Sweden, Ireland and Scotland, and a near-sellout Saturday night crowd.
Nothing was ever going to go far wrong, what with both the birthday and the mouth-watering line-up – completed by not one, but two string quartets, comprising the likes of Greg Lawson, Christine Hanson and Fiona Cuthill – but all concerned rose resoundingly to the occasion by evident dint of diligent preparation and rehearsal, which shone through in silky-smooth, sumptuously swinging ensemble interplay, delivering two hours of virtually non-stop musical highlights.In amongst a veritable feast of instrumental colours and textures, the rich and rare alignment of Väsen’s Olov Johansson, on nyckelharpa (Swedish keyed fiddle) and Mikael Marin on five-string viola, with Le Vent du Nord’s Nicolas Boulerice on hurdy-gurdy (ancient French keyed fiddle) was particularly revelatory – but no less so, once again, were the Canadians’ immaculately radiant, red-blooded four-part vocals, a sound as lusciously suave as it is resonantly earthy.
The set-list roamed seamlessly between material from each band’s repertoire, spanning and transcending traditions – not least in Boulerice’s breathtaking hurdy-gurdy solo, itself a mesh of the medieval with the futuristic – while vibrantly affirming each one’s uniqueness. An early contender for this year’s top Celtic Connections gig."
Nicolas Boulerice, one of the group played the hurry-gurdy. This seems to be making a come back as I have heard of a few folk players but its the first time I've seen t being played on stage.
Its an amazing sound.