Calendar of weekly gigs


Admission is usually ...
£10 (general), £7 (members), £5 (students)
... unless stated otherwise.
All gigs start at 8pm; doors/bar open from 7:30pm


Previous events

Jun29

The last night of our 2021-2022 season, and a very odd and curious season it's been as well. COVID-induced cancellations blanked out January while February had to be re-programmed at the last minute! Excitement? Not 'arf!

However, here we are with the second of our 'experimental' ceilidh dance nights.

Once again, the band is "Young Francis Gardner" led by EFC's own resident compere - Dave Francis - who has many years of experience playing in dance bands (and numerous other music-related activities) and calling the dances as well. Jenny Gardner (fiddle, viola, vocals, bass, guitar) is another vastly experienced musician who was a member of Salsa Celtica, Rock Salt and Nails, The Poozies and Eat the Seats. And then last but by no means least John Young on bass to drive it all along.

Young Francis Gardner are one half of the long-established Bella McNab's Dance Band, a swingy, string-driven sound (no accordion or percussion) which dancers love. Dave Francis is one of Scotland's most experienced callers with a mix of favourite, familiar and less-familiar dances.

Another crackingly enjoyable knees up of an evening with which to end the season!

OK then, at the time of writing (mid-March 2022) we don't know how the first dance will go but we're sticking our necks out and stating here and now, with this band and the EFC membership leaping about in full hooley mode, it will be an interesting event with which to end the season!

£10

A fave act at Edinburgh FC, Wendy was last with us at our Burns' Supper in "Oor Rabbie" and is most welcome back with her band tonight (they should have been during lockdown!). Wendy's wide musical interests have led her to sing and play at folk and jazz events worldwide. She has composed music for theatre and film and has vast recording experience as a guest on albums ranging from The Complete Songs of Robert Burns, and The Complete Songs of Robert Tannahill to The Pearlfishers' Sky Meadows.

Her own CD's: A Breath on the Cold Glass, Two Loves (Lochshore) and A Shirt of Silk or Snow (Fellside) show her love of song as well as instrumental work; she was nominated in the Scots Trad Awards 2010 as Traditional Singer of the Year. Her commissions for Celtic Connections, Daybreak on the World's Edge, poems of William Soutar set for cello quartet and three male voices, and a large scale work based on Lewis Grassic Gibbon's Sunset Song feature some of the best traditional musicians in Scotland.

Theatre productions include Bill Bryden's 'The Ship' and 'The Big Picnic'; John Betts' adaptations of Burns, The Jolly Beggars and Para Handy, and Wee Stories award-winning production 'Arthur, The Story of a King'. Wendy has composed, performed and directed music for Wee Stories, Lung Ha Theatre Company, Foolish Notion, Storyteller Scotland and Mull Theatre, and currently works regularly with Andy Cannon, one of Scotland's most highly regarded storytellers.

Wendy continues to guest with musicians of many styles the cello being well suited to the dark realms of the singer/songwriter to teach at workshops and festivals and, of course, perform with the Wendy Weatherby Band!

THE BAND Sandy Brechin, from Edinburgh, is one of the greatest exponents of the Scottish accordion. He is well known throughout the world, having toured and recorded extensively with Bùrach, Seelyhoo, The Sandy Brechin Band and his incredibly popular ceilidh band, The Sensational Jimi Shandrix Experience. Theatre shows include Mull Theatres The Accidental Death of an Accordionist and The Mini-atures for the Highland Festival.

Stevie Lawrence was initially involved in rock bands from his school days and was active in the Glasgow pub rock scene before turning to acoustic and roots music in the early eighties. He worked with Cruachan for six years, playing festivals and folk clubs all over Scotland before joining Iron Horse, recording three albums with the band as well as touring all over the UK, Europe, Russia and Egypt. After leaving Iron Horse, Stevie carved a career as a session musician and producer.

Scottish fiddler Fiona Cuthill from Glasgow was classically trained by Bill Baxter (who played with the famous Halle Orchestra) and then discovered the world of folk music after leaving school. Since then, she has been involved primarily in the ceilidh scene, playing all over the country with a variety of ceilidh bands. Along with The Wendy Weatherby Band, Fiona also plays with Rallion, and as a duo with Stevie Lawrence. Fiona teaches fiddle at Glasgow Fiddle Workshop.

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Lovely to welcome back Jez to Edinburgh FC after the pandemic forced postponement of our earlier plans. A double nomination in the 2015 BBC Folk Awards for Best Singer and Best New Song was a timely reminder of Jez Lowes standing in the UK folk and acoustic music scene. Not only he is one of the busiest live performers in the country, but his songs are among the most widely sung by other performers, whether by long-established acts like Fairport Convention, The Dubliners and Bob Fox, or by the new breed of stars like The Unthanks, The Young Uns and The Duhks.

£12, £8 (members), £5 (students)

Jigs, reels, airs and beautiful songs from the Scots tradition by three of Scotland's finest musicians. BrÒg features legendary piper Gary West on pipes, whistles, vocals and guitar, virtuoso fiddler Greg Borland on fiddle and bass, and the sensational Sandy Brechin on accordion. Gary plays with the famous Atholl Highlanders, is the presenter of BBC Radio Scotland's "Pipeline", ex-Ceolbeg, Caledon and Clan Alba. Greg plays with Other Roads, Burach, ex-Caledon and Kathryn Tickell Band. Sandy plays with The Jimi Shandrix Experience, The Sandy Brechin Band, Burach, and a host of other bands.

£12, £8 (members), £5 (students)

Hailed by the late John Renbourn as the best Celtic guitarist in the world, Tony McManus has been listed as one of 50 transcendental guitarists of all time by Guitar Player Magazine.

Julia Toaspern, from Berlin, combines classical violin and voice training with an interest in jazz, baroque and traditional music. She has released two albums of original songs and performed both as a classical player and as a singer/songwriter on both sides of the Atlantic. Her skills as a guitarist are prodigious and make a very exciting fit with Tonys work.

The duos guitar treatments of traditional music is unique exploring the harmonic possibilities of these old, and sometimes not so old, tunes. Flat-picking or finger-picking at the highest level they are always at the service of the music rather than simply displaying technical prowess - although that is very evident as well. Julia's violin effortlessly morphs into a fiddle as she weaves from Italian madrigal to Scottish reel. Julias songs go to the heart of love and loss, hope and survival and are infused with a musical input from wide and eclectic experience of musical life.

Tony's music is beyond beautiful, it's perfect. (Tommy Emmanuel)

Julia's bell-like voice and her fiddle playing are thrilling. She moves effortlessly from fiddle to guitar, her solo is impressive. (Salon Festival, France)

£13, £9 (members), £5 (students)

EFC is very pleased to welcome back to the club Pete Morton who was last with us in May 2017 (his 2020 gig was cancelled). Pete is a dynamo, a folk singer and a songwriter with a wealth of great self-penned songs and a remarkable singing voice. Pete is a compelling and energetic performer whose songs have been described as an unruly mix of humour, politics, love and social comment (w)rapping their way around the folk tradition. Songs like Another Train (popularised in no small part by The Poozies) and When We Sing Together (great chorus!) have become deservedly modern folk standards and Pete's performances of them, and many others, are a joy to behold.

Not only impressive but a revelation (Guardian).

A writer who manages to express everything, from the highly personal to the truly international (R2 magazine).

An independent spirit, an old school troubadour, he continues his merry niche (fRoots Magazine).

Pete is probably best known for writing Another Train but that is just the very tip of the iceberg (FATEA Magazine).

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman have long established themselves as one of the UK folk scenes most rewardingly enduring partnerships. Duos come and duos go And some nurture and fine tune their art and watch it grow into something totally original, captivating and award-winning.

Bonded by an unseen alchemy, Kathryn Roberts and Sean Lakeman have entwined their professional and personal relationship into an enviable class act of imaginative songwriting and musicianship.

Over two decades of performance they have never been trapped in a groove always bold and innovative, mixing traditional song arrangements with their self-penned material which reels from the bitter to the sweet, the wry to the sad, the political to the passive.

£15, £10 (members), £5 (students)

Born in Glasgow in 1941, Alastair emigrated to Australia with his family at the age of eight & while growing up there in the outback, developed an interest in "home made" entertainment. Four years later he returned to Scotland just in time to be excited by the emerging pop scene & in particular skiffle music, a fusion of American folk song and jazz, spearheaded by Lonnie Donegan. With a variety of local groups, Alastair played in hospitals, old folks' homes, churches, ceilidhs & even back court concerts for political campaigns. For many of his young years he was a leading tenor banjo player in the jazz scene of the period (winner of the award for best banjo player Elgin Jazz Festival 1962!).

As the years passed, Alastairs musical horizons extended and in 1973 he was invited to co-host a new TV show of Scottish music entitled "Songs of Scotland" in the company of baritone Peter Morrison. After only a few screenings, the viewing public responded so positively that the series continued year upon year, taking Alastairs music into variety shows, pantomimes and plays throughout Scotland and the world.

Alastair`s commitment has always been to entertain, but he has fought to do so on terms he believes to be valuable. "Give them what they want ..." is a maxim he finds quite unacceptable and he strives instead to offer what he considers to be wholesome, helpful, uplifting, cautionary, loving and entertaining - "Filling time for an audience and not just passing it!", he says.

Since 1970 Alastair has been a professional performer and has built a successful career not only at home in Scotland but in America, Canada, Germany, Denmark, Israel, Thailand, East Africa and the Arab Emirates. Never one to be easily pigeon-holed he is probably best known as "... the folk singing jazz banjo-player from Scotland..." except for those areas in which he's known as "...the Scottish jazz banjo-playing folk singer!"

Alastair's radio & TV credits are too numerous to list. Likewise his record & tape releases, but even without these, the fact that he was invited twice within the space of three years to front a coast to coast touring show across Canada and the United States (except in Hawaii & Alaska) speaks for itself. His concert programme varies from a Scottish historical ballad to a humorous music hall ditty, from a Gaelic lament to a hand clapping American negro gospel song. This is not versatility merely for its own sake, but a genuine desire to share some of the very best at an entertaining and contextual level.

In his book, "One Singer - One Song", writer, singer and storyteller Ewan McVicar describes Alastair as having "...sung with the Scottish Radio Orchestra, played banjo in countless jazz bands, accompanied traditional Gaelic singers and performed as a pantomime dame ...". Ewan goes on to muse that perhaps it's that very versatility that brings him under fire from self appointed purists that seem to have difficulty doing one thing well. Interesting thought, Ewan!

Having enjoyed over the years the company and respect of established figures like Josh McRae, Dominic Behan, Morris Blythman, Matt McGinn, Billy Connelly, Hamish Imlach, The Stewarts of Blair et al, Alastair continues to perform mainly in Scotland, although through the '90s he made frequent appearances at jazz festivals in Denmark where his banjo and vocals have been received enthusiastically by Danes blissfully undiverted by dancing centipedes or Glencoe massacres (!). Speaking of which, it seems Alastair has the rare ability of lifting a song directly from the written page and into the hearts and minds of the listening public, as the repertoires of more than a few of his fellow performers will reveal.

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Apr13

We've not done this before. That is, we've not put ceilidh dancing into the EFC programme of events. Why's that? No-one really knows why not - unsuitable past venues perhaps, but we think it's simply not crossed the collective consciousness of earlier EFC committees. So, anyway, we thought we'd give it a try (or two - there's a second on Wednesday 29 June 2022, the last event of our current season). PLUS we've also got an opening act tonight ... Malcolm MacWatt!

The band is "Young Francis Gardner" led by EFC's own resident compere - Dave Francis - who has many years of experience playing in dance bands (and numerous other music-related activities) and calling the dances as well. Jenny Gardner (fiddle, viola, vocals, bass, guitar) is another vastly experienced musician who was a member of Salsa Celtica, Rock Salt and Nails, The Poozies and Eat the Seats. And then last but by no means least John Young on bass to drive it all along.

Young Francis Gardner are one half of the long-established Bella McNab's Dance Band, a swingy, string-driven sound (no accordion or percussion) which dancers love. Dave Francis is one of Scotland's most experienced callers with a mix of favourite, familiar and less-familiar dances.

At the very least it will be an interesting event but we think it will be a crackingly enjoyable knees up of an evening!

£10

For more than 40 years Bob Fox has been regarded as one of the iconic voices of British folk song. Deeply influenced by the working class culture and industrial folk song prevalent in his native County Durham he has become a first rate exponent of storytelling through song.

A career that began during the vibrant folk revival of the 60s and 70s in England led Bob into regular and extensive touring throughout the UK, Europe, USA, Australia and New Zealand. Bob first appeared in EFC's cellar venue in George Square with fellow Geordie Tom McConville. After that Bob worked very successfully with another fellow North Easterner, Stu Luckley, in their groundbreaking acoustic duo and then alongside such musical heavyweights as Ralph McTell, Richard Thompson, Jethro Tull and Fairport Convention.

In 1978 the Bob Fox & Stu Luckley's debut album - Nowt So Good'll Pass - became the Melody Maker Folk Album of the Year and in 2000 Bob's solo CD - Dreams Never Leave You - was voted The Daily Telegraph's Album of the Year.

Bob's masterful interpretation of traditional and contemporary song combined with an outstanding guitar technique has also earned him countless nominations in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards over the years. He has long been a favourite on the live circuit both as a solo artist and in his many highly successful collaborations which include a duo with Billy Mitchell (Lindisfarne), the BBC's New Radio Ballads series, and The Pitmen Poets (with Jez Lowe, Billy Mitchell and Benny Graham).

Bob was invited by John Tams to play the role of Songman, the folksinger/storyteller, in The English National Theatre's multi-award winning production of Warhorse in London's West End (2011-2013), and subsequently in the highly acclaimed and record breaking UK, Ireland and South Africa touring version 2013-2015 and the 10th Anniversary UK tour 2017-2019.

So, don't miss this chance to experience once again at EFC, Bob's warm, rich voice, virtuoso guitar style and newly acquired melodeon playing skill. Expect to hear songs of love, joy, work and humour as he performs material from WarHorse, newly written songs from the New Radio Ballad series and old favourites from his many recordings.

£12, £8 (members), £5 (students)

Four top class local musicians tonight. George well-regarded as one of our best singer/guitarists; Kevin (on mandolin, bouzouki) has a fund of tunes; John Martin, seriously good, highly experienced fiddle player and ex-Ossian and ex-Tannahill Weavers; and Mike Katz (USA but long-time local resident) piper extraordinaire and ex-Battlefield Band. What a line up to pull together at such short notice to replace Tommy Sands. They are absolutely superb!

£12, £8 (members), £5 (students)

New to Edinburgh FC is Westward The Light, a remarkable new band which is a collaboration between piano and fiddle duo Charlie Grey and Joseph Peach (BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award Finalists 2017), fiddle and viola player Sally Simpson (Catriona Hawksworth and Sally Simpson, Heisk) and guitarist and vocalist Owen Sinclair (Tanara, Inyal). On fiddle, viola, vocals, piano and guitar, this enormously talented young quartet creates a sound reflective of upbringings immersed in the nature and landscapes of Scotland. Elements of melodies are highlighted and explored by a varied instrumentation, and audiences are taken on an aural journey of Scottish sentiment, weather, culture and modernity. The band's approach produces dynamic, powerful results, which have been met with great acclaim by audiences across Scotland and beyond.

"This band flat-out cooks" (Divide and Conquer)

Opening act - George Murphy

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

This year, Edinburgh Folk Club's annual celebration of a' things Irish, features Cathal McConnell (flute, whistle) who is actually from Ireland, and his great friend the Scottish piper Allan MacDonald. With these two musical luminaries we're in for a power-house of great folk music on the night.

£12, £8 (members), £5 (students)

Canadian roots/swing duo Over The Moon's Suzanne Levesque and Craig Bignell are award-winning multi-instrumentalists/vocalists who met, fell in love, got married and discovered their voices blend so well together that people often tear up upon hearing them sing.

Living on a ranch in the foothills of Alberta's Rocky Mountains, it's inevitable there will be a strong sense of place and the rhythms of the land when you start to make music. When Suzanne and Craig released their debut album, "Moondancer", the resonances were there for all to hear reflecting the pulse of lives lived in a territory that is both dirt-hard rugged and beautiful.

Over The Moon's music is a wild ride from 1940's-sounding western swing and Appalachian old-time, to cowboy blues. Simple and sweet, all of their material has a common thread that speaks of the Canadian west and on the album's UK release, reviews were glowing. American Roots UK saying it was "exceptional" and Country Music People adding "There's so much to enjoy here." The editor of Maverick Magazine told readers "You will love this" Elmore Magazine, New York said "We knew we were on to something special"

Since their meeting and teaming up (and getting married as well), they have been getting rave reviews and gaining new friends and fans wherever they perform. Their first CD "Moondancer", was released in 2017 and reflects the beautiful two-part harmony style that they are known for and the wide array of acoustic instruments that they play. Most of the songs are original and tell stories of life lived in Southern Alberta's ranching country. The title song "Moondancer" was given to them by their artist/ranching neighbour Ian Tyson (remember him? One half of "Ian and Sylvia" and the well-known songs, like the now-classic, Four Strong Winds and You Were On My Mind.)!

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Glasgow-based folksinger, songwriter and ukulele player Claire Hastings has made a name for herself on the folk scene since winning BBC Young Traditional Musician of the Year in 2015.

Since then she has toured extensively both as a solo artist and with her band, has shared stages with the likes of Lulu, Jamie Cullum and the Scottish Symphony Orchestra, appeared at internationally renowned folk festivals including Celtic Connections and Festival Interceltique de Lorient and performed at BBC Proms in the Park and on BBC’s Hogmanay 2021.

Claire has a strong ability to portray a story through song, and is known for her varied repertoire of traditional, contemporary and original songs as demonstrated in highly regarded albums ‘Between River and Railway’ (Exquisite Songlines) and ‘Those Who Roam’ (Highly engaging The Scotsman).

Claire also shares her passion for music and songwriting through various teaching projects and has recently worked with Fèis Rois, Survivor Arts, Live Music Now Scotland and Scottish Culture and Traditions amongst others.

Claire will be accompanied by Jenn Butterworth tonight who, as we all know at Edinburgh FC, is a mightily talented lass in her own right as she demonstrated earlier this year in October when she had her own headline gig at EFC and it sold out!

A remarkably talented singer-songwriter SONGLINES A compelling storyteller STIRRINGS A unique and original talent MAVERICK

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Scots Trad Music Awards 'Up And Coming artist of the year', fiddle player Ryan Young brings new and exciting ideas to traditional Scottish music. He recorded his debut album with triple GRAMMY winner, Jesse Lewis, who has worked with the likes of Yo-Yo Ma and Bela Fleck. Ryan holds both a first class honours and a Masters degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, as well as being a twice in finalist in both the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Awards and the BBC Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year.

Ryan launched his debut album at Feakle Traditional Music Festival in County Clare, Ireland where he was accompanied by renowned guitarist, Dennis Cahill (Martin Hayes; The Gloaming). He was nominated for the Horizon Award at the 2018 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and was the winner of Folking.com's Best Musician for 2018.

Ryan focuses mainly on Scottish music, bringing new life to very old, often forgotten tunes by playing them in his own unique way. He is very influenced by the fiddle playing of County Clare, Ireland and has been fascinated by the playing of renowned fiddlers such as Bobby Casey, Paddy Canny, PJ and Martin Hayes and Tommy Potts from Dublin.

Ryan's fiddle playing is brimming with fresh melodic ideas, an uplifting rhythmic drive and a great depth of dynamics and precision.

Ryan's sound is very distinctive and he always manages to take the listener on an adventurous and emotional journey in any performance.

Ryan is accompanied by Scottish guitar player Chris Amer who is slowly but surely establishing a reputation for his tasteful, distinctive, musically intelligent playing style. Over the past few years Chris has developed an original sound that utilises space, texture and carefully chosen notes: an ethos that informs both his musical voice as a guitarist and his work as a composer.

Chris was born and raised in Edinburgh, and developed a keen interest in music whilst in high school. Throughout his teenage years he studied with renowned Edinburgh guitarist, Kevin Mackenzie, and moved to Glasgow in 2012 after gaining a place on the prestigious Jazz program at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. As well as Jazz, Chris is equally at home playing traditional Scottish music. He personifies, in his playing, the ever blurring lines between the genres.

'....leading the 'New Wave' of traditional Scottish fiddlers, virtuoso Ryan Young' - BBC World on 3 (August 2017)

'...Young's playing is so richly expressive, channelling such deep emotion, that it feels like a dramatic performance in a theatre...one feels that here we have a potential heir to Duncan Chisholm for sheer emotional intensity. It's a remarkably mature debut album from one so young.' – Paul Matheson, Folk Roots 2017

'Uniquely graceful and expressive playing. A future star of the Scottish fiddle world' - Aidan O'Rourke (Lau)

'....His self-titled debut album simply brims over with originality and talent' - www.folking.com (August 2017)

‘.....they complement Ryan’s inventive and inspiring violin mastery so that the wonderful sound just takes flight, soars and swoops' – Folk Wales Magazine July 2017

'...the man makes the fiddle articulate the widest range of emotions and illustrations – and listening to him play you realise he is surely in possession of a magnificent gift' - FolkWords July 2017

“…a force of nature” ***** The Scotsman

'Nuance, wit, risk-taking, contrast and above all a real sense of joy in making music were all there in abundance and Young’s solo feature, where he appeared to have been truly possessed by the melodies, was as exciting as it was uplifting' - Rob Adams, The Herald

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Andy Chung was born in Kirkcaldy, in the Kingdom of Fife, Scotland, his family having emigrated from Hong Kong and settling there in the early sixties.

Showing a talent for the creative arts in his childhood, Andy went on to study, first at Edinburgh's Telford College and then, at the Glasgow School of Art.

However, with a growing interest in music, he found himself playing guitar and fronting various bands before securing weekly solo residencies in a number of renowned Edinburgh folk music bars including the Royal Oak, the Hebrides Bar, the Scotsman Lounge and Sandy Bell's.

Still travelling the highways and byways of his beloved Scotland, Andy is as ever, in popular demand as a consummate musician and entertainer.

"Chung would alternate between ballads and bawdy tavern songs to entertain us. It's rare to find a performer of Burns that can perform his songs so genuinely and beautifully that can bring the audience to tears" BROADWAY BABY REVIEW (Edinburgh Festival Fringe).

£10, £7 (members), £5 (students)

Other events / info


Sat 12 Nov 2022 at 12:30pm (doors 12:00pm) until approx 1:30pm
Annual Hamish Henderson Lecture

Venue: Scottish Storytelling Centre (Theatre), High Street, Edinburgh.
Admission free but ticketed.

Guest lecturer: tba


Wed 19 Jan and 18 May 2022 at 8pm (doors/bar 7:30pm)
Singers / Open Mic nights - all welcome

Ukrainian Community Centre
Admission £5 'on the door' only (not available through our online box office) to cover room hire costs