Five Hungry Joes – A pictorial archive of the Trashcan Sinatras. Legendary Scottish Band

Light is in the Horizon
October 16, 2022, 2:36 pm
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Made up of songs left behind, but not forgotten, from her previous two long players, the new album, ‘Light is in the Horizon’ by Eddi Reader is a delight.

Twelve songs filled with charm and love – they always are to be fair – played by a whole host of well-kent musicians: Phil Cunningham, Boo Hewerdine, Katie Walters, Alan Kelly, Alison Freegard, Stephen Douglas, John Douglas and many more.

Out now and available via Reveal Records – ‘Hope and light is in the horizon always…’

2022 Eddi Reader Reveal Records

September 30, 2018, 5:25 pm
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‘Cavalier’ is the new album from Eddi Reader and it’s a cracker.

Sixteen songs mixing original compositions and traditional material – a handful of them co-written with her husband, John Douglas. Recorded in Glasgow it features a vast array of well-known musicians – Boo Hewerdine, Alan Kelly, Michael McGoldrick, John McCusker, Phil Cunningham, Simon Dine, James Grant, Monica Queen and last but, by no means least, Stephen Douglas from the Trashcan Sinatras – all make appearances.

Maiden’s Lament (An Charraig Donn) is a traditional Irish waltz and opens the album. Things speed up with Wonderful, the first of the new songs. A bit of a poppy number about finally accepting your children are no longer children. It’s followed by the title track Cavalier – a song about freedom that’ll get you up on yer feet. Hands up, I was caught by my daughter shaking my backside to it in the kitchen. Not ashamed.
Starlight wouldn’t look out of place in an old smoky jazz club, with it’s lovely baritone and tenor harmonies.

Next, we go way back to the 18th Century. Meg O’ The Glen – a Robert Tannahill poem – is an uptempo Celtic cracker with accordion, fiddles ‘n’ whistles.

My Favourite Dress features a stunning vocal by Eddi accompanied by soft piano and guitar. A lovely song of remembrance and past times and the wanting of living your life again though your too old to do so. There’s something about the vocal on Deirdre’s Farewell To Scotland that’ll tug at yer tear ducts. Ethereal, and reminicent of Cocteau Twins’ Elizabeth Fraser.

Fishing and Maid O’ The Loch are back-to-back numbers in the middle of the album. Both written by John Douglas, the former seems to be about keeping yourself afloat in troubled times, with the latter, about the last ever paddle steamer built in Britain, which is currently being restored. A happy accident in the running order?

There’s A Hole In The Desert Dear Darling was written for an absent friend. Swaying back and forth with Phil Cunningham accompanying on accordion, it’s wonderful stuff. Old Song written by Boo Hewerdine, is bookended between A Sailor’s Farewell To The Sea and The Loch Tay Boat Song – a cracking hat-trick.

 A talented bunch…

Pangur Bán And The Primrose Lass is a 9th century Irish poem about a cat reworked into a traditional folk tune. It’s a quirky, jaunty tune that’ll get you smiling and tapping your feet.

Go Wisely, is the one song on the album, for me, that resonates the most. Being a Dad to a sixteen year old daughter, I’m at that stage of trying to let go, hoping she makes the right choices. Eddi sings, “Go ahead, I always knew this day was comin” So true.

With all the nonsense going on around us in the world, it’s fitting that Eddi closes the album with a rendition of Robert Burns’ A Man’s A Man For A’ That, a hopeful lament that one day we can all come together and be in harmony – a bit like this album.

Bloody wonderful!

2018 Eddi Reader / Reveal Records

April 28, 2012, 3:45 pm
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Boo Hewerdine is not really someone I was familiar with until he’d written and co-written a fair number of songs for/with Eddi Reader. From there I discovered that he’s released a dozen albums or so throughout his career. A career which didn’t really get serious until he formed The Bible in the mid-Eighties. I’d heard the band name before but never made the connection. However, a quick look through the old CD collection, and there at the back of the cupboard, was Graceland – probably their best known single.

As well as writing for Eddi Reader, Boo has written for a number of musicians over the years including Natalie Imbruglia, Marti Pellow, Spice Girl Mel C, David McAlmont, Suggs from Madness and kd lang.

What’s all that got to do with the Trashcans though?

Well, on Boo’s last studio release, God Bless The Pretty Things, both John and Stephen Douglas appeared on half-a-dozen songs or so. John on electric guitar and Stephen on drums and percussion. The album shuffles along at a steady pace with acoustic finger-picking taking the lead on most songs over accordion, banjo, double bass and strings. Track 5, Rags, with Del Amitri’s Justin Currie, is a particular favourite.

Recently, Boo has collaborated with American singer/songwriter, Brooks Williams to form State Of The Union and John got in on the act by filming some videos of Boo and Brooks on his trusty old Super8. Watch them here.

Anyway, I’m going off now to discover some more Boo.

2009 Navigator Records Navigator11

November 19, 2011, 3:30 pm
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‘Small Towns and Famous Nights’ is the first official band album from The Alan Kelly Gang – see previous post for more info on Alan Kelly – and includes a track penned by the Trashcans’ John Douglas.

‘Connemara’ is sung by Eddi Reader and was inspired by John’s recent discovery of details of his Connemara Grandfather, John Keane and family, all of whom were singers, musicians, fisherman and tale tellers (the boy’s from good stock don’t you think?). The song tells the funny story of his great Uncle Colm Keane’s first meeting with Seamus Ennis in the 1940’s when Seamus was collecting songs in Connemara for Alan Lomax, one of the great field collectors of folk music of the 20th century. The two men became great friends with Colm being the source for over 200 songs.

It’s another great song and another great album. Hopalong and buy it here. It won’t disappoint.

2011 Alan Kelly / Black Box Music BBM006

After The Morning…
November 19, 2011, 2:51 pm
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…is Alan Kelly’s self-produced, 3rd solo album – a superb collection of Irish Traditional, original, Breton and Galician music. Alan Kelly is regarded as one of Ireland’s most accomplished musicians in any genre, he is a composer, arranger and piano accordionist and also a regular performer on the traditional and folk music scene.

Guest vocalists on the album include Kris Drever and Eddi Reader, where the latter sings like a bird on John Douglas’ tribute to Robert Burns, ‘I Hung My Harp Upon the Willows’ – which as you know appeared on the Trashcans’ last LP, ‘In The Music’.

It’s a very different version of the song and has a countryish feel with piano accordion, double bass (John plays geetar by the way), and Eddi’s singing is, as ever, truly engaging.

It’s a belter!

2009 Black Box Music BBM004

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