The documentary about the making of Calum and Rory’s solo album project The Band From Rockall will be screened by BBC Alba on Christmas night at 9 pm, with a follow up transmission on either the 1st or 2nd of January.
The film follows the writing and the recording of the album and is a rare insight into various aspects of the creative process. Musically the album takes its inspiration from the influence of growing up in the Gaelic speaking Western Isles, in the late 50s/early 60s when rock’n’roll first impacted. It is part video diary, part band performance, with various bits of studio and landscape footage, old cine and archive film, all chronicling the songs and the ethos behind the project.
An extended version of the documentary will be available as a commercial release on DVD from mid January.
More details to follow.
A film following the making of the first solo project of Runrig
brothers Rory and Calum Macdonald is to be screened on Christmas Day.
The Band From Rockall, was inspired by the rock‘n’roll music from
America and Merseyside the pair listened to while growing up in the
Highlands and Islands in the 1960s. The intervening decades saw Rory
and Calum write and literally shelve many of their compositions as
they devoted their efforts to Runrig, the band they helped create and
become a national and international phenomenon. However, over the past
two years, and especially the last 12 months when the band took a
break from touring, the brothers revisited their early work and wrote
fresh material for their own album which was released on Ridge Records
in April to critical acclaim.
The title of the album comes from the rock outcrop which lies in the
Atlantic Ocean, 300 miles west of the Scottish mainland and 200 miles
beyond St Kilda and the Outer Hebrides and the last landfall before
America. The concept even pre-dates Runrig, which was formed in 1973,
but the band’s subsequent success meant there was never time to
develop it further. The Band from Rockall features 12 songs, six of
which have been plucked from their previously un-released back
catalogue, while the others were specially written for the project.
Four are in Gaelic, reflecting the brothers’ cultural background.
A documentary telling the story of the two-year labour of love will be
shown at 8.05 p.m.on BBC ALBA on Christmas Day. “It was a joy to do
the documentary”, said Calum. “The way we approached it was just like
writing another song, albeit a much longer one.”
“It was something we wanted to do for a while, but just didn’t have
the time to fit it in”, said Rory. “But the band’s break gave us the
opportunity and it’s been a fantastic experience. We have always
wanted to look back over our old songs to see if we might find
something and we did. There were hundreds of pieces to consider and
while it took a bit of time it was very rewarding and brought back a
lot of memories. When it’s just the two of you decision making is a
lot easier. We just took our time and did things at our own pace
without a deadline. The result is a record of two halves with older
songs mixed with some new compositions.”
Calum added: “We are delighted we have finally finished the album and
the documentary and feel very satisfied with how it all turned out. It
was a project that meant a great deal to us.”
The documentary follows the pair as they take a musical journey back
through their previous work, some of it long forgotten – Rory
preferring to listen on the original reel-to-reel tapes while Calum
favours digital format – and writing the new material. One melody sits
without lyrics until they are inspired to compose Am Bard Deireannach
(The Last Bard), a eulogy about the last-of-a-generation family
relative, whale fisher and village poet whose death they learn about
in the local paper during recording.
The brothers talk, in both Gaelic and English, about their influences,
from Duane Eddy and Hank Marvin to The Beatles, The Searchers and Gene
Vincent, and about the style of music with which they grew up.
Filming in the familiar landscapes throughout the Highlands and North
Uist, is interspersed with footage of Rory and Calum performing their
songs in their home studios, in Denmark, London and at the Rocket
Science studio in Glasgow.
Rory plays all guitars and most of the keyboards and Calum plays drums
on the album, with his son Donald, also a songwriter and performer,
playing guitar. Joining them are Michael Bannister and Ross Hamilton,
the owners and engineer /musician/producers from Rocket Science; Andy
Thorburn (piano): Euan Burton (double bass): Ryan Quigley (trumpet):
Paul Towndrow (saxophone): Fiona Johnston (strings) and B. J. Cole
(pedal steel guitar). They are accompanied by the acclaimed Gaelic
singer Julie Fowlis, Danish/ Icelandic folk cross-over singer, Sine
Lahm Lauritsen and The Craigie Choir.
The project ended in time for the brothers to rehearse for the latest
Runrig tour in December before starting planning events for the band’s
40th anniversary in 2013.
The Band From Rockall will be screened on BBC ALBA at 8.05 p.m. on 25
December and repeated at 10.30p.m. on 28 December.
Ooooooooh, was bin ich gespannt auf den Film, bzw. Im Januar dann die DVD :D
There's no mountain on earth
can ever outlive your soul.
Die Übertragung auf BBC Alba ist gerade zu Ende.
Schöner, intimer Einblick in die Entstehungsgeschichte der CD.
Folgende "Musikvideos" waren enthalten: The Band From Rockall, There's A Chain, Mairi Bhan, When I Walk Along The Hills, Eval, Luaidh, The Days, Into The Aurora
Ich bin mal gespannt, was bei der Kauf-DVD noch zusätzlich zu sehen sein wird...
Danke für den Tipp, schade, dass das Video woanders nicht zu finden ist. Ich hätte eigentlich erwartet, dass auf der Homepage von Runrig verlinkt zu finden. Das Album habe ich schon länger, es ist mittlerweile eine meiner Lieblingsscheiben.
And I´m still here with the eyes of a child
and the wonder never grows old!