Cairn Valley Song Cycle
You can hear Wendy`s new instrumental composition entitled Ae Spark o Nature`s Fire and her song, May the road, plus several other tracks on a new CD called the Cairn Valley Song Cycle.
Cairn Chorus and Moniaive Festival Village commissioned new material to illustrate what our landscape means to the community, what home means to us and how changes in a rural community affect us. The chosen composers also reflected on migrations of communities through time, from the 18th and 19th centuries when people were cleared from large swathes of Scotland, to the present upheavals around the world.
This is the product of two years work, funded by a Creative Place Award (from Creative Scotland) won by Moniaive and Glencairn in 2015.
The newly commissioned songs and instrumentals involving Cairn Chorus and other local musicians were performed throughout Dumfries and Galloway in 2017 and are now available on CD
Macmath: The Silent page
The Macmath Collective are a group comprising some of Dumfries and Galloway’s top musicians brought together (by Ali Burns) to showcase an almost forgotten archive. The project, nominated in the 2015 Scots Trad Music Awards for 'Community Project of the Year', brings back to life many of the songs collected by William Macmath (1848-1922) and tells the story of this humble Galloway man who was a major contributor to the ‘Child Ballads’, compiled by American song collector and academic Professor Francis Child.
The CD has 13 tracks ranging from new versions of classic ballads such as The Lochmaben Harper to obscure but fascinating gems like The Corbie and the Craw. It features a multi-award winning line up that includes some of the Scotland's finest and most respected instrumentalists and singers.
The Macmath Collective – Aaron Jones, Alison Burns, Claire Mann, Emily Smith, Jamie McClennan, Robyn Stapleton, Wendy Stewart.
A Song among the stones
Wendy weaves harp instrumentals and soundscape ideas around the words of poet and author Kenneth Steven in a recording of poems from his book of the same name, first commissioned by BBC Radio 3's The Verb.
In the sixth century, Celtic Christian monks are thought to have made dangerous and difficult journeys from Scotland’s west coast to seek solitude in Iceland. This evocative, pared down sequence of poems - the imaginary fragments of a lost manuscript - tells their remarkable story, one that is all but forgotten today. Steven's words are accompanied and enhanced with the specially composed and improvised harp music by Wendy.