Celtic Connections 2016

Celtic Connections 2016

Another 3 weeks of late nights in January can only mean it’s Celtic Connections 2016.
The festival has grown a little more this year and there has been some wonderful musicians and shows.
Personal highlights being the Afro Celt Sound System & the Peatbog Faeries on the nights that I showed up as a paying customer.

For the rest, it was work.

I’ll start this blog at the finale.
The last act of this year’s festival was the tribute to Bert Jansch with a star studded line up.
It’s quite surreal seeing Robert Plant standing in front of you singing Led Zeppelin songs.

Robert Plant Robert Plant

These photos were much harder to create than needed as we were asked to shoot from the balcony.
Seeing Graham Coxon here was made easier by him being seated. Not having freedom to move made it difficult to create variety in the images.

Graham Coxon Graham Coxon

Jenny Ritter Band Jenny Ritter Band

Jenny Ritter’s band were great to photograph. This photo to me looked almost staged but they were naturally playing off each other.


BDY_PRTS were also a lot of fun to see. They put on a show and the neon day glow outfits make them stand out in a dark venue.

The Secret Goldfish The Secret Goldfish

The Secret Goldfish were a band that I loved in the mid 90’s but never got the chance to go and see. The theme of Celtic Connections 2016 for me has turned out to be getting to see those missed bands.

The Leopards The Leopards

I’ve seen the leopards a few times. They were Lloyd Cole’s backing band in the more recent times.

Wainwright Sisters Wainwright Sisters

Again, in Martha Wainwright we have an artist that I always wanted to see.
This was such a quiet and intimate feeling show and really really really hard to photograph because our movement was restricted.

Eska with Jessie Rae Eska with Jessie Rae

You’re only meant to have 3 songs to photograph and then you’re out. At this gig when Eska introduced Jesse Rae it was song 4 in her set. I totally broke those rules to take this – but this was the story. I’d rather get the story first and deal with consequences later.

Lucinda Williams Lucinda Williams

Lucinda’s band looked so cool. Even the roadies looked the part with big long beards like rock and roll wizards.

Baaba Maal Baaba Maal

I expected more action for Baaba Maal. Thought there’d be more happening onstage rather than the main players being seated and stationary.
It made it a lot easier job.

Errors Errors

We’ll end with my first gig of the festival. Errors.
It’s been a few years since I last saw them and they’ve gained a singer, which adds a focal point.
The lights are always quite hard to work with in this venue – they point to the centre of the stage while everybody is arranged around it.
Somewhere on my left there was a red/orange light that kept appearing. It was possibly an autofocus assist light.
It made a good catch light for me.

Origianlly posted on www.andrewmckenna.net


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