September 24, 2008 § Leave a Comment
September 23, 2008 § Leave a Comment
September 23, 2008 § Leave a Comment
Was pleased to run into the Wilson Tan guys while J & I were knocking back some Elijah Craigs at a nice bar dedicated to my favourite poet on Friday night. It had been a while and happily led to a bit of gig booking today. More on that soon.
Wilson Tan are Glasgow’s pioneers of country-dub! Their sound sits somewhere between the Handsome Family on Prozac, Jim White‘s experimental Southern Country and that of dub-rooted slacker music. Wilson Tan make music for Saturday night and Sunday morning.
The way out west of Glasgow is where you’ll find Wilson Tan, pioneers of Psychedelic Country! And they’re cooking up a strange brew in there home studio, writing, recording and producing music linked somewhere between Hank Williams and the Youngbloods. Their love of twisting sound around bittersweet songs of lonely truckers, heartbreak and shaking hands with death have put them in field of their own. The ‘Tan’ have a knack of slipping into simple yet infectious instrumentals which feature the now 6 strong band in a blissed out bluegrass lockdown…Described by more than one of their followers as the Grateful Dead gone wrong. Take the sound of Bakersfield ’69 put it into an illegal still in the Ozark Mountains, let it ferment till now then put it in a dingy bar in Glasgow, and you have Wilson Tan.
You can download their single Big Dog via iTunes, the first release on promising new Glasgow independent El Rancho Records. Meantime listen up on their MySpace
September 21, 2008 § Leave a Comment
Belated happy 60th John…
UPDATE: John Martyn is on tour in November. Glasgow folk can catch him on the 17th at the Royal Concert Hall. Tickets bought, cheers J!
September 16, 2008 § Leave a Comment
Following an extensive series of meetings, The Scottish Crofting Foundation has sent a summary of its members’ views on the Shucksmith Report to the Minister for crofting Michael Russell MSP.
SCF Chair Neil MacLeod said:
“it is projected that the Minister will make his response to the Shucksmith Final Report at the beginning of October so we have consulted with our membership widely in order to get views to the minister to help him to give an informed response. The most important thing is that there has to be fair pay for work done. It is said again and again that no matter what regulations are in place a crofter can not croft unless there is a fair return. A crofter’s first responsibility is to provide a livelihood for the family. We all want to see new entrants into crofting but they, like existing crofters, need to pay their bills.”
“The report is a very comprehensive and valuable reference document and there are many good recommendations that will be able to form the basis of crofting reform. But there are some recommendations in the report that will not be acceptable, such as a ‘real burden’ on croft houses and the abolition of the crofters commission. We have told the minister that these can not work and he is listening. We have also passed on the members’ opposition to the proposed ‘localisation’ of regulation and development. It is a very complicated way of addressing the real problems and we feel that the existing structure of Area Assessors, that the SCF were instrumental in saving from disbanding, can do a great job if supported appropriately, feeding into an elected, accountable crofting commission.”“There have been rumours deliberately spread that it is a case of ‘accept all or nothing’ and ‘there will be no consultation prior to legislation’. These are of course absolutely untrue. There are hard negotiations ahead to achieve a future for crofting and I strongly urge crofters to stand together on this.”
September 11, 2008 § 1 Comment
My Granny will be pleased to hear I’ve invested in a new pair of jeans!
The old pair served me well for 3+ years of heavy duty wear. The knees have holes, the pockets have holes, they’re just falling off me…
The old pair were replicas of the 1955 501 jeans. They have a quintessential 50′s shape – more anti fit in the seat area and a slightly fuller and straighter leg shape giving them a boxier silhouette. Around this time, teenagers began to use the term ‘jeans’ instead of ‘overalls’. This was the first 501 jeans to bear a leather-like Two Horse patch. The familiar levi’s capital ‘E’ Red Tab, zinc button fly and copper rivets remain standard issue. Xx 50 Cone fabric / 14oz red selvage denim / 3X1 RHT construction / First 501 jeans to bear the ‘leather-like’ two horse patch / Belt loops / Double sided big ‘E’ red tab / Zinc button fly / Hidden rivets on back pockets.
The new ones are replica’s of the Levi1933 501 jean featuring a cinch-back, in addition to belt loops and a button fly. The overalls also had a real leather Two Horse patch and hand applied rivets. XX20 Cone Fabric / 12.50oz after wash red selvage denim / Ring ring, pure indigo, 3×1 RHT construction / Loose fit with plenty of anti-fit in the seat area / Original red selvage jean / Crotch rivet, cinch and belt loops / Two Horse leather patch / Simple Arcuate (without center triangle).
Looking forward to wearing them to death
September 7, 2008 § 1 Comment
The Very Good Taste Blog have a recent “100″ listing.
What you do is:
1) Copy the list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
10. Baba ghanoush
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
47. Chicken tikka masala
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
60. Carob chips
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
79. Lapsang souchong
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
Nothing I wouldn’t eat.
So there ya go!
September 7, 2008 § 3 Comments
Good job sir!
With a name meaning ‘taste’ or ‘relish’ in Gaelic, Blas proudly offers tastes of the Highlands and Islands in produce such as Stornoway black pudding, Ullapool smoked salmon and Dingwall haggis. Fittingly, it’s situated close to many of the city’s watering holes favoured by those from the far north and north-west, and occupies a prime position opposite Kelvingrove Art Gallery. The theme is extended with subtlety inside, with the occasional heather or thistle detail amid the dark walls and solid tables. The mood is relaxed and the service smooth and genuinely warm. Those taken by any of the menu’s carefully sourced ingredients can now pick some up at the new Blas store on Hyndland Street.
While I’m here I might as well give props to the wonderful Cafe Gandolfi (AND Bar Gandolfi AND Gandolfi Fish) owned by Barra boy Seamus MacInnes. I’ve been eating in his establishments for over 10 years and they rarely disappoint.
Here’s a review of Gandolfi Fish by some chap called Barry Shelby
Over on Lewis there are also a fair few good places to eat. Here are some links to some but do you know any more?
The Park, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis
Sulair, Port Of Ness, Isle Of Lewis
Ardhasaig, Ardhasaig, Harris
Bonaventure Aird Uig, Isle Of Lewis
Digby Chick, Stornoway, Isle of Lewis
PS: I’d also like to recommend the Church Street Chip Shop, home to the legendary Cheeky Chips and the award winning Sweeny Codd in Ness!
UPDATE: Apparently Bonaventure is now Gallan Head, under new owners and the Bonaventure’s folk are at the Boatshed Restaurant in Royal Hotel, Stornoway.
September 7, 2008 § 5 Comments
Abhainn a’Ghlinne Dhuibh, Newmarket, Isle of Lewis. Via Islandboy
Production has started at a distillery near Uig on the Atlantic coast of Lewis, 164 years since the last legal distillery in the Western Isles closed.
Island businessman Mark Tayburn has set up Abhainn Dearg distillery (Red River in Gaelic) on the site of a former salmon hatchery. Casking has begun and the first bottles of single malt will be ready by 2011, when the Royal National Mod returns to the islands.
The business is run on environmentally friendly lines, with a small hydroelectric scheme planned.
Mr Tayburn, who also runs a recycling business in Lewis, said 10,000 litres would be produced this year, and up to 25,000 litres by 2009-10.
He has based his distillery on an illicit still working on the islands until the 1950s, using copper stills and American oak bourbon barrels.
Meanwhile, a second distillery may open in the islands shortly. Uisge Beatha nan Eilean Ltd (the Island Whisky Company) plans to produce 25,000 litres a year in Barra, where the film Whisky Galore was made.
With the dark nights drawing in, it’s almost time to buy the first bottle of the season! Last year it was Ardbeg’s Ten Year Old, this year who knows….
PS Hopefully the Abhainn Dearg folks will be doing cask purchases when they get going. If so I’ll be game for going in for one (and reaping the rewards ten years hence) with a few other like minded folk if anyone else cared to chip in?