Tag: Scotland

Letham Nights Comes of Age!

Saturday 19th November will be

Letham Nights #21…

Letham Nights has come of age!  And we have in store for you our first proper SUPERGROUP, the amazing Sandford City Rockers.

The Sandford City Rockers are no ordinary band but a coming together of some of Scotland’s finest musicians from some of our greatest rock and pop bands of the 80’s and 90’s.  They are:  Ken McCluskey and David McCluskey of The Bluebells and The McCluskey Brothers, Douglas MacIntyre of Love and Money (and CEO of Indy Label, Creeping Bent), Campbell Owens of Aztec Camera and The Leopards, Andy Alston of del Amitri and Mick Slaven of Deacon Blue, del Amitri and the Leopards.

Formed after a marathon 19 hour jam session in an illicit shebeen in the village of Sandford, Lanarkshire, The Sandford City Rockers initially came into being to raise money for charity. ‘We need to help the kids, man’ said founder member Douglas MacIntyre. The other members agreed, and the ones who couldn’t talk raised a thumb to show that they were down with this plan. The SCR were ready for action!

The band have now done several gigs to raise money for research into Downs Syndrome and proceeds from the event will go to Downs Syndrome International.

The band will be supported on the night by Doonwatter Bros.  Prepare to be rocked!

This is no ordinary gig so in keeping with the stature of the musicians, tickets will be £10/ £7.50 concessions.  To book see contact details opposite.

A Right Royale Bevvy at letham Nights

A Right Royale Bevvy

Despite the fact that the nation was gripped by a wee wedding somewhere in London town and that the Bevvy Sisters second visit to Letham Nights had been postponed due to weather (once) and the unfortunate illness to Kaela Rowan (get well soon wishes from all Letham Nighters) a sell out crowd attended the rearranged show. The Bevvy Sisters arranged a fantastic replacement in Roberta Pia – aka Banana Bevvy, vocalist with the Banana Sessions band. David MacGregor was easily persuaded to provide support. We had attended a benefit gig for the Haiti appeal in Dunshalt and were hugely impressed by his virtuosity, humour and Dreadlocks. David, from Dunfermline, had been living in the Jazz quarter of Paris until recently and had recently cut off the Dreads much to our surprise when he turned up to the sound check.

As this Letham Nights was, for the first time ever, held on a Friday, all hands were on deck to get the hall turned into the atmospheric, welcoming and classy venue that people are now coming to expect. No warm cans of Tennents, folding Formica topped tables and strip lights for our discerning punters. Craft Scotland’s Emma Walker set up a POP UP SHOP promoting Scottish makers wares: jeweller, Jane Gowans, ceramicist, Cosima Sempill and textile designer, Claire Heminsley had a display, in the bar, of their gorgeous pieces. Sales were made during the breaks in the music.

Geoff Stevenson, once again providing superb sound on the night, ran through the sound check. The lights were dimmed and background music filtered through, it was time to open the doors. Around 110 people flooded through the doors, found tables, sorted out refreshments from the “Clap and Tipple Bar” ready for David MacGregor’s solo performance. Mike started the whole thing off with a wee chat about our venture, the way we came across the musicians, the ethos of Letham Nights, the POP UP SHOP and thanking every one for their continued support.

David then took the stage and the crowd were treated to a set of Jazz classics along with some self penned numbers, some of which were inspired by his stay in Paris. The audience sat listening intently to the mesmerising music emanating from his guitar. Huge skill and an ear for melody shone through and he was applauded Letham Nights style i.e. uproarious cheers and whoops at the end of his set. David thanked the crowd, reminded them that CD’s were available for sale as well as letting us know that he is available for one-on-one guitar lessons. Now there’s an offer all you budding guitarists out there…David’s set list is as follows, Improv intro into Summer time, Georgia on my mind, Danny Boy, DayDream, Red House,  La  Belle vie into Windy and Warm and finishing off with On Green Dolphin St.

During the short break, the Clap and Tipple Bar was under siege, selling a tempting range of mainly organic, locally produced and locally sourced wines, beers, ciders and soft drinks at reasonable prices.

The lights went up and The Bevvy sisters kicked off their first set with “Littlest Bird”, ”Cow Cow”, and more from the St James Session CD as well as a few new numbers, “Whirlepool”, “Cock a Doodle”, “and “Mary Don’t You Weep No More”. Banana Bevvy sang some of her own songs, “You You You”, “Just add Hot Water” and lead vocals on Aretha Franklin’s “Baby I love you”. I think that I said, in the review of the first Bevvy Sisters Letham Nights, that there couldn’t be three voices that were so meant to sing together. With the introduction of Roberta’s voice I realised the very high bench mark Kaela had set, within the trio of superb vocalists, had been reached. No disrespect to Kaela, loads to Roberta.

The second set started with “Your Cheatin’ Heart”, “Lovesick Blues” and continued to entertain with classics, “It Aint What You Do”, ”Baby I Love You” dipping into genre’s such as the Phil Spector sound, Trad Country, Swing, Jazz, Gospel and TV adverts (McEwans is the best buy). Guitarist David Donnelly and drummer James Mackintosh let the sisters shine but have a huge influence in the “Bevvy Sound” such is their virtuosity and musicianship. The encore, “Aint No Grave” slipped into the theme tune for “Are you being served” which was a fabulous way of letting the crowd know that there was merchandising available, CD’s badges and a first for Letham Nights……..PANTS, yes, PANTS, Knickers, underwear……which were in fine demand as soon as the band left the stage, sales went very well. To quote Heather Bevvy “We’ve had a run on our pants” Ooh err missus! Cue Mr Humphries…

A huge thank you to the Bevvy Sisters and to David McGregor for treating us to yet another very special Letham Nights and we look forward to seeing you back soon!

A pop-up with (wedding) bells on!

The craft shop will be back with (wedding) bells on! Following a successful pop-up at the November 2010 Letham Nights, craftscotland are presenting a range of gifts fit for any wedding pressie list. There will be rings from Jane Gowans who recently completed a year long artist-in-residency at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee. Local lass Claire Heminsley’s tea towels, which are designed in Letham, hand printed in Edinburgh and each have their own story printed on the label, will be available to buy on the night. We will also be introducing ceramicist Cosima Sempill. Cosima’s work is featured in the current edition of Real Life Weddings magazine after she created 150 ceramic favours for her brothers wedding last year.

25% of all sales go towards the running costs of craftscotland, the national agency which promotes Scottish craft, and 25% of all sales are donated to Letham Nights. So whether you are looking for a wedding present or feel like treating yourself to something handmade in Scotland, make sure you bring cash to the pop-up shop as it’s cash only sales.

For more information on craftscotland visit craftscotland.org

The Bevvy Sisters Return – By Royale Appointment!

29th April – A very special day!  Why?  Well, dontcha know?  The Bevvy Sisters are coming to Letham Nights by Royale Appointment for a Right Royale Bevvy!

The Bevvy Sisters: Powerhouse harmony trio. Radio-era chic, now retro cool.
Three sassy lassies. Reinventing the genre and covering all the exits.

Mixing classy original songs, vibrant vintage folk and artful contemporary covers into the headiest of musical cocktails, Scottish harmony outfit The Bevvy Sisters unites the richly seasoned voices of Heather Macleod, Lindsey Black and Roberta Pia, with Shooglenifty percussionist James Mackintosh and David Donnelly (ex-Salsa Celtica/Finlay Quaye) on guitar, mandolin and backing vocals. With sell-out shows at Glasgow’s world-famous Celtic Connections festival for the past two years, they have won a string of glowing reviews and extensive UK radio play. Check out songs from their album The St James Sessions.

And take a look at what the experts think:

‘I feel it’s my calling to be an understudy Bevvy Sister’ Eddi Reader

‘Luscious. Lovely. Tuneful. The Bevvy Sisters can mix the dirtiest martini in town, then sing it.’ Eliza Carthy

‘The only thing better than getting to listen to The Bevvy Sisters, is getting to sing with them’ Dick Gaughan

David McGregor, who we first met at a Haiti benefit gig in Dunbog, is a virtuoso jazz guitarist with a huge talent – and he has agreed to open for the Sisters.  His intricate and delicate picking on his own compositions and some classic jazz covers, is captivating.  After many years living in Scotland working in bands, recording and tutoring guitar, David is now living in Paris in the heart of the European jazz scene  …but he was not going to miss the chance of playing at Letham Nights with the Bevvy Sisters! Have a listen at http://www.myspace.com/davidmacgregorjazz

Still a few tickets left for a Christmas Bevvy!

yes, there are still some tickets left.  Get your reservations in quick.  Contact details on this page.

here is how we hope the Fife Herald will report on our Christmas Bevvy

The next Letham Nights – the music venue in the Howe of Fife claiming to put on ‘The best small gigs in the world’ –  is on the 18th December, featuring the return of the fantastic Bevvy Sisters. The Bevvy Sisters played Letham Nights back in May. Such a fabulous night was had by the sell out crowd and the sisters that they suggested a “Christmas Bevvy” we couldn’t refuse. Click here to see a review of the show.

The Bevvy’s have appeared and wowed the audiences at Glasgow’s Celtic Connections festival and all over Scotland. They have collaborated or appeared with the likes of Eliza Carthy, Bert Jansch, Kathryn Williams, Cara Dillon, Michael Marra, Tam White, Capercaillie, and Juliet Turner to name a few. All their shows have been rapturously received and Letham Nights is delighted to feature in their pre Christmas show schedule.

Supporting The Bevvy Sisters will be Dundee’s jazz guitarist extraordinaire, David McGregor, he will treat us to a spell-binding set of his own tunes and jazz covers.

I hope a feature in the Fife Herald will let more local people into the Letham Nights experience. We should have online ticket sales set up in a day or so, at this link https://letham.org.uk/lethamnights/.  If not, people can still make a reservation using this page.

This show will be our 15th since December 2008, each one has been incredibly well received by our band of loyal supporters and many new faces. Over a thousand happy punters have paid to see some incredible talent. We hope to continue to bring you fantastic music and a relaxed atmosphere next year and for many more.

Time for Daisies and Moonzies!

The excitement is building for our first Letham Night since the Loveliest Night of the Year way back in June.  Saturday will kick off with the wonderful Coaltown Daisies aka Vivienne Bern and Lynzy Moutter, followed by the band who helped to launch Letham Nights way back in December 2008, The magnificent Moonzie Allstars.  What is really exciting is that both sets of artists have been rehearsing together and so I think we are in for some very special musical fireworks!

The Daisies have only been performing and recording together for a short time but there is already a delightful chemistry between them as their very individual voices and the crisp, clean acoustic guitar strokes, blend together into a powerful spine-tingling mix of melody and harmony.   Listen to this and weep!

The magnificent Moonzies performed a barnstorming set of world-folk fusion the last time they played and since then they have gone from strength to strength, playing gigs in the four corners of Scotland at venues and festivals, honing their sound and developing an even greater diversity of world influences.  Recent gigs include sessions at Eddy’s Acoustic Nights in Kirkcaldy courtesy of Acoustic Music in Fife as well as opening for a previous Letham Nights star, Chloe Hall, at the Byre Theatre in St Andrews.  They are soon to release their new album ‘Hypnagogic’.  By the end of the night they will have the joint jumping again for sure!  Listen to this:

The Hippophant [audio:http://www.moonzieallstars.com/mp3s/hippophant.mp3]

Bokespok [audio:http://www.moonzieallstars.com/mp3s/bokespok.mp3]

Revenge of The Armann [audio:http://www.moonzieallstars.com/mp3s/revenge.mp3]

La Vie Est Courte [audio:http://www.moonzieallstars.com/mp3s/lavieestcourte.mp3]

There are still a some tickets left but it is going to be a busy old night.  If you still have not reserved yours please send me a quick email to lethamnights@btinternet.com


Want to perform? Create a new piece of theatre with drama and music professionals?

Letham Nights, with support from Celebrating Fife 2010, will be offering an all-day, free drama and music workshop for 12-21 year olds called ‘Do it in a Day’ on Sat 19 June 2010. The participants will kick off Letham Nights with the performance they have co-written and rehearsed that day, followed by local organic food provided by Pillars of Hercules, an open mic set compered by comedian Bruce Devlin and, to finish off the evening, a set from highly-acclaimed Dundee band Luva Anna.
About the workshop

Starting at 10am, with theatre skills, music and your imagination, you will devise a piece of theatre that you will perform at 7pm the same day! If you have an instrument bring it. If you don’t play an instrument and love music this is for you too.

* No Experience Necessary
* 12 to 21 year olds
This workshop is FREE

What will you do in the day…

10am to 12.30pm: workshops…
1.30pm to 5pm: workshops and rehearsals…
7pm: performance… to kick off…

Letham Nights special celebration, the ‘Loveliest Night of the Year’!
Workshop leaders…

Fiona Miller, Director & Theatre Practitioner
Fiona is a highly experienced and versatile artistic director, who designs and devises new drama projects across the UK. She is also: Artistic Director, Tricky Hat Productions / Creative Partner & Lead Artist, National Theatre of Scotland / Associate Artist, Cumbernauld Theatre.

Mick Slaven, Musician
A talented and versatile musician with a wealth of experience in composing, teaching, recording and performing.He has also performed and recorded with: Deacon Blue, Justin Curry, Del Amitri, Leopards, Eddi Reader and many more.

To book your free place please complete this form or contact Michael at the usual address (Top righthand corner)

Letham Nights would like to thank Fife Council for the generous support from Celebrating Fife 2010

Letham Nights 12

Only a month to go and over 30 people already booked their place. In other words, get a move on!!! Just reply to this email or phone/ send a text to one of the numbers below and we will reserve a seat.

Things are hotting up for the next great Letham Nights adventure…

… the return of the Black Oil Brothers on Saturday 22nd May!!!

We will have a poster out as soon as possible but just to put you in the picture…

The Black Oil Brothers were one of the first bands to play Letham Nights last May in 2009. They are 3 highly talented and very cool young musicians from Chicago with a lust for life and who play a wonderful brand of acoustic southern delta blues. Their last tour of the UK was a year ago and kicked off at Letham. They went down a storm and had such a brilliant time that when we invited them to come back, they jumped at the chance and organised another UK tour, this time making Letham their Grande Finale!

They would be delighted for you to follow their progress as the prepare then go on tour at

And just to add to the fun we welcome Ladybank acoustic covers band Skin and Bones for their first Letham Night in support. Have a listen to them at http://www.myspace.com/521117844

I know we always say it is unmissable, but really this one is…. unmissable!

Only a month to go and over 30 people have already booked their place. In other words, get a move on!!! Just reply to this email or phone/ send a text to one of the numbers below and we will reserve a seat.

All Help Welcome
We would be happy to accept any help with setting up, staffing the bar and clearing up on Saturday night and Sunday morning. Set up usually begins at about 4pm on Saturday.

This time we are also looking for B&B accommodation in the area for friends of the band as they are bringing a contingent of friends and relatives – some from Chicago, some from Northern Ireland. If anyone local is interested in providing this please let me know.

Letham Nights #13 – Sneak Preview….
An extra, extra special midsummer Letham Nights with a difference will be taking place on Saturday June 19th 2010 to celebrate the Loveliest Night of the Year. More details will follow but just to give you a wee sneak preview, we are hoping to have an open mic session, a bit of drama and comedy AND the return of another Letham Nights favourite band. Look out for more information soon and join the Letham Nights Facebook group or check out the LN blog and listings to get it first. We are taking bookings for this event now. Don’t be disappointed – get in quick!

Autumn Programme
After the June event, Letham Nights will, as usual, take a long summer break. Before this however, Letham Nights favourites, the Chloe Hall Trio are returning to Scotland on Friday 27th August to play the Byre Theatre in St Andrews. If anyone is interested in a Letham Nights outing to see Chloe and the boys, let me know. It could be worthwhile getting Sandy to take us in the bus!

We hope to return on 18th September with one of Scotland’s foremost folk bands. Confirmation soon. We are also currently sorting out bookings for a long list of other artists for the rest of the year and beyond.

All the best,


Three things I need to tell you:

1.  Chloe Hall’s new album ‘Outside’ has just had a 4 star review in Scotland on Sunday from Norman Chalmers.  More evidence that you really need to book your ticket for Saturday.
2. On this occasion, the Transition Tavern is unable to be there in its usual form but, just for you, we have arranged a new bar called ‘The Clap & Tipple’.  This will be organised on broadly the same local principles with a few modifications and will bring you beer from Luckie Ales, a selection of French wines from Luvians and most of your usual favourites.
3. There is a wee error in our pre-publicity for the next gig – Spanky’s Heroes from Dundee will be playing Letham Nights on Saturday 17th October and NOT on Sunday 18th.  Apologies to them for this mistake.  Once we get the next poster done it will come out correctly.
Thanks for your patience and continuing support.  Now get your tickets booked for Saturday.  It really is unmissable this time!