ON 2nd June the Swallow Theatre audience was privileged with an appearance by Archie Fisher, the legendary Scottish folk singer and song writer.
One of Scotland’s national treasures, he taps into the richness of traditional music blending it with fine contemporary lyrics and writing. With easy relaxation and style, he ranged from love songs to political and social comment with wit and comedy and a fund of stories and anecdotes and related to the audience as though in intimate conversation in the kitchen.
For 27 years Archie presented Travelling Folk on Radio Scotland and stands as a lynchpin between past and modern and between Celtic and American folk-song traditions. Well known in U.S. and Canada he has collected material in Nova Scotia and met and performed with many renowned singers and musicians and he played their material to us, as well as his own.
Son of a Vatersay mother and Glaswegian father, he was introduced to a range of music early in his life and began in a skiffle group, discovering the political and protest work of Woodie Guthrie and Pete Seeger. An only brother among six singing sisters, he commented that he was a ‘New Age Man’ at the age of seven. He first recorded with his late sister, Ray, and together they won widespread popularity with T.V. appearances on the current-affairs show, Here and Now. Archie was one of the earliest steel-strung guitar players in British folk music and his innovative tunings and inventive picking style has influenced generations. As well as running a club in Howff in the early 1960s he was Director of the Edinburgh Folk Festival from 1988-92. His contribution is large and widely acclaimed.
The performance at Ravenstone was warmly received by a very appreciative and well informed audience, many of whom had travelled far to see him and enjoyed an unusual and seldom heard programme of songs. Not surprisingly it was another full house with all seats taken. For further information Swallow programme tel: 01988 850368 or see www.swallowtheatre.com