The Pictish Trail says:
"I’m doing a tour in January, around Ireland and Scotland, with two of my favourite songwriters, Withered Hand and James Yorkston. It’s one of those tours where we’re on stage with each other the whole time, joining in on one another’s songs. I’ve done a few tours like this before, most recently with Sweet Baboo, and they’re always really good fun and messy. To promote the tour we’ve done a few session videos, directed by Richie Morgan. The first song is ‘Until Now’, a Pictish Trail tune that’s going to feature on the upcoming album. The album version is a lot poppier – in my head it kinda sounds like ‘No Scrubs’ by TLC. Which, I’m sure you’ll agree, is one of the greatest records ever. This session version, however, is a bit more Mulligan & O’Hare. Probably because it’s been recorded outdoors.
The video has three different outdoor locations, all in Edinburgh. We spent a frosty November morning taking it in turns to perform a song in each setting. Richie was given the unenviable task of stitching them together. You can tell by the third location, in the park with the dog rolling about, that we were getting tired – hence the song is slightly slower in that bit. I really like Yorkston's clarinet’n’shades combo. In the coming months there’ll be a video with a Withered Hand song, and one from James Yorkston too.”
For aaages, we've been wanting to start our own run of sessions. The live side of things has always been as important as the records we've put out, and we wanted to try and find some way of capturing that. Not just by simply filming the gig, but by putting on something secret, something a bit hidden, so that there'd be footage for those in attendance to enjoy after the event, that they might not have seen. Past events we've put on have had great sessions captured by folk such as the Detour Scotland, the BBC, Song By Toad and others ... but every time we've tried to do something ourselves, it's always been too much of an after-thought. I'm always frantically running around, failing to keep the main event to schedule, and Kate Canaveral is too busy working her third consecutive shift behind the bar.
Back in April, we took a trip to the Penicuik Town Hall, to scope it out for our first Howlin' Fringe event. It's a really great venue - an upstairs hall, decked out with a full PA and lighting rig, perfect for a Lost Map all-dayer. Downstairs there was another space, slightly smaller, but with it's own stage. This was it. This hall was where we would film our first sessions.
Our loose theme for the event was 'bad hair', and the following week, at a Lost Map high heid-yins pow-wow (in a pub, it's always in a pub) we discussed all our different ideas for the prospective sessions. We'd create a pop-up barbershop! We'd have haircuts! We'd have musicians having their haircut whilst performing! We'd have audience members get their hair cut whilst musicians were performing! We'd have a spinning wheel of fortune that would dictate the terrible haircut that would be administered during the session! SPIN ... "Extreme fringe!" ... SPIN ... "The Monk Cut" ... SPIN ... "The Pat Sharp", etc. Many pints of booze were consumed during that meeting.
Predictably, our drunken plans didn't come to full fruition ... the sessions did happen, though! We set up a barber-shop, at least. And Neil Supermoon's mum, a Penicuk resident, agreed to do the hair cuts in return for donations to a local charity. We got the barbershop chair and other paraphernalia from our pals at Titan Props in Glasgow; our good pal Reuben Taylor captured the audio; and the whole thing was filmed by Richie Morgan and co, from CutScene Media.
The first of these sessions is, er, me. Which is good, cos i was in dire need of a trim anyway. I chose to do a cover of the Beck song 'Asshole', because I thought it was fitting. We're premiering this first session with The Skinny, and the rest will be up on our Lost Map website from tomorrow.
And, thus, the Lost Map sessions have begun ...