A new CD being launched by a local group is Pure Dead Brilliant.
In fact that’s the name of the CD being released by Celtic Chaos at a concert and dance on Saturday, May 3 in Qualicum Beach.
The group has been together for about 12 years and began with Joyce Beaton on fiddle, Dave Barta on accordion and vocals, and Gordon Lafleur on Irish wooden flute and penny whistle.
Beaton is from Scotland and, while vacationing on the Isle of Sky, she attended a session with her husband John (who is now also with the band called Celtic Chaos). Joyce loved the name and decided to bring it home for her band. As for the title of the CD, “Pure Dead Brilliant” is a Glaswegian saying and Joyce is from Glasgow, John explained.
John has been a poet for many years and instead of contributing musically to the band, he’s a spoken word artist and performs in that realm with the group. One of his poems is on the new CD.
“The CD is real mixture: instrumentals fast and slow, songs you can sing along and dance to, and one funny poem,” he said.
John has been writing poetry since he was in grade school. He grew up in Inverness in the North of Scotland where he said poetry was part of the culture. In his father’s community there was a village poet who would write about common occurrences.
“He would write a poem whenever a cow died,” John laughed.
At the university John attended in Scotland, poetry was also a big thing, he said.
“You’d go into one room and there’d be a guy singing Bob Dylan songs with a guitar and there would be a lot of people sitting around and then in another room there would be a guy from the highlands reciting poetry with an equal number of people,” he said. “So it was quite popular.”
John and Joyce’s daughter Emma used to be a member of Celtic Chaos, and on their previous CD, Pretty Fair Maid, she won Young Performer of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. She now lives in Boston and sings lead with modern string band Joy Kills Sorrow.
Joe Spinelli has joined Celtic Chaos on double bass.
The Beatons and Barta are very much involved in the local music scene and organize a number of community musical events and activities including the monthly Qualicum Acoustic Cafe, House Concerts at the Beaton’s home, and Oceanside Jammers classes among others.
The CD release party is an all ages event and takes place at the Rotary Hall in Qualicum Beach, at the corner of Fern and Beach roads. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. Following the group’s performance there will be a dance with a caller. Tickets are $20 and must be purchased in advance at the Vintage Candy Store in Qualicum Beach. Tea, coffee, soft drinks and dessert will be included in the ticket price.
The new CD will be available at reduced price of $10.