Troy MacGillivray & Shane Cook
I wonder if traditional instrumentalists silently curse Antigonish native Troy MacGillivray under their breath for his talent on both keyboard & fiddle, his composing abilities & the fact that the size of his ego seems inversely proportional to the weight of his abilities. S. Cooke, Halifax Herald
WINNER - 2009 East Coast Music Awards Roots / Traditional Group Recording of the Year
** Nominated for 2008 Canadian Folk Music Awards (Traditional Album of the Year / Instrumental Group of the Year) **
** Voted Favourite Traditional Recording of the Year in 2008 by the Halifax Herald **
"Just when I think Ive heard every possible variation on the Celtic fiddle sound, along come two world-class musicians from two similar, but disparate styles to challenge each other and raise the bar even higher." (Stephen Cooke, Halifax Herald)
When Here Meets There is an exciting new collaboration between two young Canadian fiddlers at the top of their game. Shane Cook of Dorchester, Ontario is one of Canadas most highly awarded old-time fiddlers: 3-time Canadian Open Fiddle champion, 3-time Canadian Grand Masters Fiddle Champion, Grand North American Fiddle Champion, and the only Canadian to win the US Grand National Fiddle Championship. Troy MacGillivray of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, is an accomplished fiddler, pianist and step dancer; he most recently won the 2008 East Coast Music Award for Instrumental Album of the Year. The album provides an astonishing breadth of styles, tunes, and arrangements. While each fiddler has several opportunities to shine on solo sets that emphasize his particular strengths, my favourite sets on the album are those that Shane and Troy play together. Theres an obvious excitement and spark between the two players and their ensemble that is infectious. Their combined lift and rhythmic drive propel the music forward.
While each fiddler brings to the album a flavour of his own, the contrast between their playing is nothing but complementary. A popular tune on the album is Archie Menzies. After playing the tune through in unison, well-matched in style, tone, variations, and ornaments, and yet not erasing the unique sound of either, each fiddler plays the tune through by himself, each version excellent, and each version very different. There can be no mistake that Troy, gritty and strongly rhythmic, plays the tune through first and Shane, slightly smoother, with unique melodic variations, plays second. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear how two of the top players in their respective traditions shape the tune to make it their own. Shane has a considerable reputation amongst fiddlers for his individual, unique style that is not always predictable, but almost always recognizable for its daring, yet ever tasteful, melodic and rhythmic adventures. Troy demonstrates a similar inclination to flirt with stylistic boundaries, most notably in a number of original tunes included on the album. Some will challenge the listener; all will please.
Although the tunes are obviously very carefully arranged, they still manage to sound fresh and inspired, with a spark and energy that is easiest to capture before they have been endlessly rehearsed. Several of the transitions between tunes, in particular, are quite unusual and grab the listeners attention. The play with textures, both between the two fiddlers and with the ensemble, is also especially effective. Techniques such as soloing, doubling of the melody by back-up musicians, harmonizing both whole tunes and short phrases here and there, and playing in different octaves all serve to highlight the talents of the individual musicians, as well as create an remarkable listening experience.
In short, this album provides something for everyone for those who like the old standards and those who like the cutting edge. For those who are familiar with the playing of Shane Cook and Troy MacGillivray as individuals, their collaboration will surprise and delight. When Here Meets There, when Ontario meets Nova Scotia, when Canadian old-time, Antigonish Co. , Cape Breton, French-Canadian, Orkney, Texas and other styles and tunes from a variety of traditions meet on this album, the result is truly magical.
For more information on Troy or Shane, please visit:
When Here Meets There
Artist: Troy MacGillivray & Shane Cook
Running time: 76:28
Release Date: April 2008
1. The New Tunemakers
3. Ward Allens Two-Step
4. The Glasgow Session
5. La Belle Époque
6. Being Jerry Holland
7. Bovaglies Plaid
8. Ti-Jean Carignans
9. For Nuala
10. The Talisker High Bass Set
11. Piano Jigs
13. Foolin Around
14. Not For Radio Set
15. The Reprobate
Produced by Troy MacGillivray & Shane Cook
Engineered and edited by Ray Legere
Mixed and Mastered by Chad Irschick, Inception Sound Studios, Toronto, Ontario
Show performance is 2 x 50 minutes for concert and can be adapted to any festival stage time limit.
Show consists of music from the recent release, When Here Meets There, which is a mix of Old time, Celtic (Scottish and Irish) and new compositions of both Troy's and Shane's.