The first of Swindon Borough Council's Summer Bowl Concerts took place on Saturday 16 June, writes Nicola Western.
Launching the season was top traditional Folk sextet, Dervish. They sprang from a group of five musicians, Liam Kelly, Shane Mitchell, Martin McGinley, Brian McDonagh and Michael Holmes. They called themselves Dervish because it related to 'any group of poor but spiritual people who become enraptured by music'. In 1991, Roscommon born singer Cathy Jordan and all Ireland champion Shane McAleer joined the band giving them the right balance to produce the first Dervish album, "Harmony Hill" (1992). It wasn't long before the impact of the album became apparent, as it won widespread critical acclaim and was described by many as, 'a landmark Irish traditional album'.
The impact of the recording was immediate. Its artistry, musicianship and maturity won outstanding praise from the media, placing Dervish to the forefront of the working with traditional Irish music. Substantial TV and radio exposure for the band and the album began to open all kind of doors. Dervish soon became one of the most sought after acts on the live music circuit and have continued to remain so over the years.
Now, twelve years since first coming together and with four of the original members still at the helm, Dervish are more in demand than ever. Their colourful career has taken them to every corner of the globe and has seen them share centre stage with such names as James Brown, The Buena Vista Social Club, Oasis, Sting, REM, Beck and many more. 'Decade', is not just a compilation of their finest works to date; it is a celebration of Irish music and a band that have been instrumental in bringing it to a worldwide audience.
The bowl concerts continue with:
Future Bowl Concerts:
Nucleus Roots. Saturday 30 June
Classical Bowl Concert. The City of London Sinfonia. Saturday 7 July
Baka Beyond. Saturday 14 July
Lembher Hussainpuri. Saturday 28 July
Alex Wilson Salsa Orchestra. Saturday 11 August
Tickets from 01793 530328
or for tickets, call Swindon Arts Centre on 01793 614837 or the Tourist Information Centre 01793 530328 .