Mark Radcliffe hailed her voice and songs as “enchanting, beguiling and as fascinating as songs by Kate Bush and Björk” and KT Tunstall described her voice as “formidable and amazingly rhythmic”. The elfin figure they are describing is Julie Fowlis, a talented singer and instrumentalist from North Uist.

She is the BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer of the Year 2008 and in a few short years has taken the music scene by storm. In 2007 she was invited to appear on “Later…with Jools Holland” and was a special guest on the critically acclaimed “Transatlantic Sessions” series and has entertained millions of radio listeners around the world with her engaging live sessions and live performances.

However she is somewhat of an enigma as she sings in Gaelic, a language only understood by around 60,000 people – approximately 1% of the population of Scotland. She sings and spends her time touring around the world bringing ancient songs from the Hebrides to new audiences. She is an accomplished musician as well, playing  bagpipes, smallpipes, whistles, oboe & cor anglais and three waltzes on the one row melodeon.

Recently Julie has delved a little into broadcasting, and has had the opportunity to present two flagship music programmes on BBC Scotland – the traditional music programme “Travelling Folk” and the world music show “Global Gathering”. A one hour documentary on Julie and her musical travels, entitled “Bliadhna Julie/Julie’s Year” was also broadcast by the BBC in 2007. She was publicly voted Gaelic Singer of the Year 2007 at the Scots Trad Music Awards and her album “cuilidh“, was voted “Album of the Year” at the same awards. She has a clutch of other awards, including BBC Radio 2 Horizon Award 2006 for Best Emerging Artist (the first ever Gaelic Artist to be nominated for such an award) and was also voted Gaelic Singer of the Year 2005 at the Scots Trad Music Awards. She remains the only singer to have won this prestigious award twice. 

Bringing centuries old songs from the windswept islands of the Hebrides to a modern audience, Julie remains steadfastly true to her roots in North Uist. If you haven’t heard her before, be prepared to be surprised by her music and her “breathtaking vocal power” (Folking.com).

This is true Gaelic music. Come have a listen.

 

“traditional music at its most seductive.” DAILY TELEGRAPH

“sings with mesmerising beauty and passion.” WORD MAGAZINE

“Sings the songs of the Outer Hebrides with coolest grace” SONGLINES

“Fowlis could be the first Scottish Gaelic crossover star in the making” DAILY TELEGRAPH

 

AWARDS and NOMINATIONS

  • BBC Radio 2 Folk Music Awards 2008 Winner – Folk Singer Of The Year
  • Scots Trad Music Awards 2008 Winner – Album Of The Year (Cuilidh)
  • Scots Trad Music Awards 2008 Winner – Gaelic Singer Of The Year
  • BBC Radio 2 Folk Singer of the Year 2007 – Nomination
  • Best Folk Band (Dòchas) Scots Trad Music Awards 2006 – Nomination
  • BBC Radio 2 Horizon Award 2006 – Winner
  • Gaelic Singer of the Year Scots Trad Music Awards 2005 – Winner
  • Best Up & Coming Artist (Dòchas) Scots Trad Music Awards 2004 – Winners
  • Gaelic Singer of the Year Scots Trad Music Awards 2004 – Nomination
  • Traditional Singer of the Year Pan Celtic Nations Festival 2003
  • La Trophe La Bolee de Corrigans – Festival Interceltique de Lorient, 2000