I’ve loved this song since exploring my dad’s record collection (incl. The Incredible String Band) as a teenager. I spent some time working up a version in Rule of Three with John Somerville and Ali Hutton – it was brilliant, but this isn’t it. This version is a bit quieter and more contemplative and has formed part of the backdrop to my experience of the natural surroundings in the Yarrow valley. Nature is all-pervasive in that it effects and embodies the inner workings of our minds, psyches and emotions – Williamson has this nailed.
Isn’t autumn just stunningly beautiful though? There’s beauty and elegance in decay, as well as in renewal.
Song by Robin Williamson
Arranged by Lori Watson and Duncan Lyall
Vocals by Lori Watson
Guitar by Steven Byrnes
Wurlitzer by Duncan Lyall
Recorded and mixed by Duncan Lyall
Mastered by Nick Cooke
Birds by Jennifer Austin
Dark and brooding, windswept, contoured, joyful, turbulent, sparse: Yarrow is an evolving collection of traditional and original songs and new music by Lori Watson.
Yarrow is an exploration of human connections to nature and one another, through time, inspired by the Yarrow valley in the Scottish Borders. The project centres on the development of a contemporary album that carries these themes beyond conventional folk sounds, and as part of the exploration a series of acoustic singles will be released (Yarrow Acoustic Sessions).
“With Yarrow taking place over a couple of years, I can give more time and space to allowing the music to develop towards the final album and share the experience as we go in the monthly acoustic singles: so yeah there’s an element of risk in that I don’t quite know what’s going to evolve.”
“I’m interested in unfinished works and fragments, whether traditional or original. They’ve always been inspiring starting points for me. In Yarrow I’m creating and interpreting fragments; crafting something that expresses the connections between us and our environment spanning hundreds of years: and then it’s filtered by what inspires and resonates with me right now.”
Scots Singer of the Year, Lori Watson is a fiddle player, singer and composer. She has drawn on the rich tradition of the Scottish Borders throughout her artistic life, including experimental works and a PhD thesis and creative folio exploring innovation and contemporary traditional music practice.
A folk musician with considerable pedigree, Lori is touring and recording with Boreas, Iain Morrison and a range of other solo and collaborative projects, and has six albums in circulation, including two critically acclaimed albums with her trio Rule of Three. But this is Lori’s first significant song work and she aims to let us in on the process as well as the finished products.