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No Wind at the Window: Celtic and Gaelic Sacred Melodies - Catherine Strutt

Celtic and Gaelic Sacred Melodies

Catherine Strutt piano
with special guest Chris Duncan Scottish fiddle

There is a quality in the music of the Celtic and Gaelic people that touches something deep inside us. It could be the home-spun folk rhythms that speak of good times with close friends. It could be the sound of a people who have been defined by dispossession, a sense of yearning for a homeland that can never be theirs. Or perhaps it is purely musical, a tradition whose core notes resound with the sound of the human spirit.

Catherine Struttexplores these themes on her new album No Wind at the Window. The tracks range from well-known pieces like ‘Amazing Grace’, ‘Abide With Me’ and ‘Morning Has Broken’, to obscure tunes from a small Gaelic hymnbook from 1935, called simply An Laoidheadair (The Hymnal), given to Catherine by a friend as she embarked on this incredibly personal journey.

“For as long I can remember,” says Catherine, “My mother has played the harmonium at the local Anglican church. It was there that I encountered the great tunes of the Welsh and English hymn writers, and from this first early exposure, the hymns tunes have been stored deep inside my memory, and never forgotten.”

Catherine is considered to be one of the finest piano players of traditional Scottish dance music in the world today. She is well respected as an innovative and sensitive natural dance and concert musician and is a grapheme synaesthete, an individual who experiences numbers and letters in colour.

Using this phenomenon as a tool, Catherine plays and records entirely by ear. Her intuitive sense of rhythm and colour are incomparable and she continues to be an inspiration, teacher and mentor to many of Australia’s Scottish-style pianists.

TRACKLISTING

1     All Through the Night (Ar hyd y nos)

2     I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say (Kingsfold)

3     How Are Thy Servants Blest, O Lord (Kilmarnock)

4     No Wind at the Window (Columcille)

5     There Is Sweet Rejoicing on the Hill of Paradise (Bearnaraidh) /

       Sion Sings with Sheer Sweetness (Sion)

6     Oh, This is the Story That Will Gladden My Heart (So an sgeul)

7     Lord, Hear My Praying (Lara)

8     Country Carol (The Oxen)

9     God Is Love, Let Heaven Adore Him (Abbot’s Leigh)

10   Morning Has Broken (Bunessan)

11   Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise (Llanfair)

12   O Crucified Redeemer (Llangloffan)

13   Christ Be My Leader by Night as by Day (Bonnie George Campbell)

14   Abide with Me (Eventide)

15   Sussex Carol

16   Love Divine, All Loves Excelling (Blaenwern)

17   Precious Is Your Grace to Us (Tigh-an-Easa)

18   God of Jeremiah (Kelvin Grove)

19   Amazing Grace (New Britain)

20   O for a Closer Walk with God (Caithness)

Catherine Strutt piano

with special guest

Chris Duncan Scottish fiddle
(Tracks 5, 11, 15, 17)

Release
Music can change lives. For almost 20 years, the Hush Foundation has been working with renowned Australian artists to create music of joy and calm – originally to support children in hospital, and now enjoyed everywhere from concert halls to living rooms. In this latest offering from the Hush series, pianist Tony Gould and guitarist Peter Petrucci present music that can bring optimism even in the toughest times.The Hush Foundation, under the inspirational leadership of physician Professor Catherine Crock AM, transforms the healthcare experience for patients, families and staff through music and the performing arts. It has produced 17 albums, bringing some of Australia’s finest performers and composers together in collaborative partnerships that engage with the lived experience of people in the health system and other stressful environments. Hush albums are played not only in hospitals, but also in aged care, palliative care and childcare facilities to reduce stress and anxiety. Community and international orchestras also play music composed for Hush. In 2014, Hush’s contribution to Australian music was acknowledged with the APRA/AMCOS Award for Excellence.Gathering of Kindness recognises the power of the small acts of kindness and respect that build trust and create a sense of safety and security in difficult and challenging situations. ‘When we ask patients, their families and those working in healthcare “What matters to you?”’ says Professor Crock, ‘the single word at the top of the list is kindness.’Tony Gould and Peter Petrucci wrote the music on this album with the Hush ‘family’ firmly in mind. ‘We hope they serve at least one of music’s purposes in life, and that is to help calm our fellow humans in times when things aren’t going so well. Music can do this superbly. It can also give us joy, can foster kindness and a sense that, ultimately, everything will be all right.’ This latest album has been named after the healthcare events Hush has hosted since 2016. The Gathering of Kindness bring people working in health and aged care together to talk about ways kindness can flourish in their organisations and services. These events are being hosted throughout November at metro, regional and rural healthcare organisations across Victoria, and include live performances of Hush plays and music, healthcare book launches and panels, narrative and a range of self-care workshops, as well as updates on new research being undertaken. Hush is also hosting a ticketed event at KPMG in Melbourne on Thursday 14 November.›Pianist / composer / critic / author / academic / educator Tony Gould has been involved in music in Australia for over half a century. A prolific performer, composer and recording artist across several musical genres of art music, Tony has composed and performed alongside other renowned musicians Australia-wide and internationally. His numerous accolades include membership of the Order of Australia (AM) in recognition of his contribution to music.Peter Petrucci is one of Australia’s leading jazz guitarists, recognised for his virtuosity and lyricism in improvisations and artful compositions. He has released eight albums – the latest, They Know That We Know, in August 2019. Peter has performed locally and internationally supporting distinguished musicians and has appeared at numerous international jazz festivals, in the US, Canada, Germany, Italy, the Melbourne International Jazz Festival and the Wangaratta, Stonnington and Queensland Jazz Festivals. TRACKLISTING 1 All Things Good2 Anthem3 Calm4 Autumn Lullaby5 Quiet6 Spring Town7 It’s Up to You8 A Little Folk Song9 Essence10 Truth and Beauty11 The Softness of Air12 The Smile Peter Petrucci guitar – Tony Gould piano Tks 1-3, 5, 8, 10-12 composed by Tony Gould.Tks 4, 6, 7 and 9 composed by Peter Petrucci.