About Mairi Campbell
Mairi’s reputation as an influential Scottish musician has grown steadily throughout her career. Mairi digs deep, reflecting Scotland’s dynamic energy in her songs and soundings. Whether it’s the rugged beauty of a Highland tune, an improvised audience ‘sounding’ over mesmeric viola and voice, or ballads and songs, Mairi draws on her deep well of Celtic ancestry to find music that is both ancient and new.
In recent years she has been awarded ‘Scots Singer of The Year’ and ‘Tutor of The Year’ at the MG Alba Scots Trad Music Awards. In 2008 she won the Live Ireland Music Award for ‘Best Female Musician of the Year’, as well as the award for ‘Best Composition of the Year’.
Her voice was heard worldwide when, in 2008, her version of Auld Lang Syne (with David Francis) was used in the pivotal scene for blockbuster movie ‘Sex and The City’.
Freeland Barbour writes “Mairi is without question one of Scotland’s most all-encompassing musicians. She works and performs in many fields and the list is breathtaking.”
Mairi is pushing the boundaries of the Scottish traditional music scene with her soundings and improvisations. One of Mairi’s unique qualities is her fluency in celtic tradition, free improvisation and classical music idioms. She plays regularly with the Occasionals – a Scottish dance band, viola with McFalls Chamber, baroque fiddle with Caledonia Concerto and most recently voice and viola with Mike Vass’s new project, Dead Stations. She has always been interested in pulse though and the story of this show is about her seeking pulse in music and where that journey took her.
Mairi is a skilled and experienced free improviser who has continuously developed her practice and found collaborators and mentors in this field. Most recently working with Kath Burlinson (Authentic Artist Collective), Paul Oertel and Nancy Spanier. She originally studied at the Guildhall on Peter Wiegold and Peter Renshaw’s pioneering course ‘Music Performance and Communication Skills’ in 1985. This course was ahead of its time in recognizing and investigating the skills, creative processes, and aesthetic approaches needed for young musicians emerging into the plural culture of today’s workplace. Other influences are InterPlay, Benno Plassmann (The Working Party), and Sahaja Yoga.