Traditional Music Forum Launches First Comprehensive Directory of Traditional Musicians in Scotland

(Photo above: Maeve Mackinnon – photo by Paul McNally)

The Traditional Music Forum (TMF) and TRACS (Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland) proudly present Scotland Online: A Directory of Musicians, the only comprehensive online resource of its kind, promoting traditional musicians working and recording in Scotland. To celebrate the launch of the directory, TMF have invited three bands to showcase their talent during a pre-recorded performance and live Q&A, as part of this year’s Edinburgh Tradfest, Friday 7th May at 8pm on Crowdcast.

The new website supports Scottish performers by providing a directory profile, which signposts where their music is available to buy and listen to, whilst helping users to navigate and find artists’ websites, Bandcamp, Spotify, and Apple Music pages. It is an ever-expanding resource which allows people to browse, enjoy and discover new music along the way.

Lori Watson, Chair of the Traditional Music Forum, said, ‘The Traditional Music Forum is delighted to offer this support to musicians to get their music heard, especially in the light of the miserable year we’ve just had. We hope it’ll lead to people investigating new artists and finding new music to listen to.’

To showcase a snippet of the fantastic talent Scotland and the directory has to offer, TMF and TRACS are hosting an evening of pre-recorded performances by Maeve Mackinnon (with Ali Levack & Luc McNally), Rachel Hair & Ron Jappy and David Foley & Jack Smedley (with Jenn Butterworth). The launch event is part of Edinburgh Tradfest’s online programme, which runs from 30 April to 10 May 2021 and is managed by The Soundhouse Organisation.

Rachel Hair & Ron Jappy – photo by Samuel Hurt

Douglas Robertson and Jane-Ann Purdy, co-producers of Edinburgh Tradfest said: ‘Taking the Festival online this year was a difficult decision for us. However, we couldn’t be more delighted with how this year’s programme is shaping up, and with all the support we have received from artists, funders and partners keen to see Tradfest stay on the map. The Trad Music Directory will help Scotland’s trad artists to reach a wider, international audience who might not have experienced our festival before, and we hope that when they can, they will join us in in Edinburgh for future Tradfests.’

Musician Jack Smedley (RURA, Staran, David Foley & Jack Smedley) explains: ‘Being included in the new directory means so much to Scottish musicians whose livelihoods have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. A fantastic initiative to increase the visibility of Scottish musicians and help us to generate more income from the music we have spent our lives making. Thank you to the Traditional Music Forum for creating such a valuable resource.’

David Foley & Jack Smedley – photo by Samuel Hurt

Any recorded trad musicians that are based in Scotland but have not been listed on the directory page once it has launched, are encouraged to check the listing criteria and get in touch via the ‘Contact Us’ form on the website. Scotland Online: A Directory of Musicians will go live on Friday 7th May, followed by a launch event on Crowdcast at 8pm as part of Edinburgh Tradfest, with donation-based tickets available on the Scottish Storytelling Centre website and an option for replay for a limited time afterwards.


Listing information:

Scotland Online: A Directory of Musicians
8pm (1.5hrs) | Crowdcast Online | By Donation


Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland (SCIO, SC043009) is a collaborative alliance designed to improve the knowledge, practice, development and advocacy of Scotland’s traditional arts in a contemporary world. TRACS brings together three forums: Scottish Storytelling Forum (SC020891), Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland (SC045085) and Traditional Music Forum (SC042867). Supported by Creative Scotland and The City of Edinburgh Council.

Traditional Music Forum is a network of over 100 organisations and individuals. TMF’s role includes advocating the economic and cultural case for Traditional Music and its importance to Scotland’s culture, supporting trad musicians and music-making. It commissioned the ‘Working as a Traditional Musician’ survey with the aim of generating evidence and insights to inform policy, support and best practice in the Traditional Music sector and community.

Tradfest was originally launched in 2013 as a festival showcasing the very best in traditional arts. The festival was previously organised by TRACS (Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland), who are based at the Scottish Storytelling Centre, Edinburgh. The Festival came under new direction from The Soundhouse Organisation in 2019.

The Soundhouse Organisation is a charitable body that promotes independent music. Since 2016, The Soundhouse Organisation has programmed music concerts at Edinburgh Tradfest and took over management of the whole Festival in 2019. In previous years The Soundhouse Organisation has programmed music at the Traverse Bar in Edinburgh regularly on a Monday night. The organisation is run on a day-to-day basis by Douglas Robertson and Jane-Ann Purdy and is backed by a group of trustees who are passionate about live music, many of them musicians themselves.