Brìghde Chaimbeul

Winner of the Horizon Award at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2019, Brìghde Chaimbeul is one of Scotland’s fastest rising stars. A native Gaelic speaker, her style is rooted in her indigenous language and culture, but draws inspiration from a variety of piping traditions such as from Cape Breton, Eastern Europe and Ireland. 

Her debut album, The Reeling, has had an extraordinary response since its launch at a sold out Celtic Connections show in 2019. It was named as Folk Album Of The Month by The Guardian, given five star reviews in both fRoots and Songlines, lavished with praise by BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction and listed as one of The Quietus’ Albums Of The Year So Far. The Reeling was voted one of the 20 Scottish Albums Of The Year by the SAY Awards (out of 293 submissions) and secured Brìghde a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award nomination. Musicians as diverse as Colin Stetson, Sam Amidon and Anna von Hausswolff have expressed their love for the record on social media, and Super Furry Animals frontman Gruff Rhys invited Brìghde to collaborate with him and James Yorkston at a special show in Kirkcaldy.

Growing up in a musical family in Sleat on the Isle of Skye, she was no stranger to the sound of the pipes, and indeed the sound of music at home. Hearing Rona play gave Brìghde her initial inspiration to take up piping when she was just four years old (she began studying the instrument three years later.)

Working closely with Aidan O’Rourke (from experimental folk trio Lau, and who also produced The Reeling), Brìghde has devised a completely new way of arranging for pipe music that emphasises the rich textural drones of the smallpipes; the constancy of sound that creates a trance-like quality in the tunes. She has collaborated with many established artists, including Ross Ainslie, John McSherry, Paul Meehan, Carlos Nunez, Martin Green and Allan MacDonald.

 

"Simultaneously ancient and modern, profound and direct." Folk Album of the MonthThe Guardian

"A unique, exciting and forward-looking album that sets the bar very high indeed." The Quietus

“Exciting, unusual and gorgeous.” Songlines