a true pleasure
- Fiddler Magazine
traditional yet innovative
- Irish Music Magazine
tradition taken in a new direction
- Halifax Presents
brings Cape Breton to the world, and vice versa
- Celtic Life Magazine
Reviews and Interviews:
Recent highlights include:
(North America, Mexico, Russia, Latvia 2019-2020)
Danny Kyle Stage (Glasgow, Scotland, 2019, 2020)
Ryan Cook and his touring Hank Williams show (2018)
Silkroad Ensemble's Global Musician Workshop
(Indiana, USA, 2017, 2018)
Canadian Grand Masters Fiddling Competition (2016, 2017)
CD REVIEW - Fiddler Magazine, Summer 2021
Brad Reid - NEW Scotland
Reid takes the rules and standards of Cape Breton fiddling and puts them into different situations with this disc. He definitely knows his stuff on the fiddle, and mixes that knowledge with backing rhythms and instrumentation from jazz, modern acoustic pop, and even a bit of Afro-Cuban stylings. An excellent example is the opening cut, “Trip to Peggy’s Cove,” in which Reid works the Scottish fiddle with congas and syncopated rhythm guitar. “Glasgow Gate” moves in that same direction, with the fiddle working a recognizable pattern against varied time signatures. However, he never wants to lose his fan base, and sticks to more traditional arrangements with “King George” and “Hills of Glenorchy.” The overall production is full-sounding with sparse instrumentation. This is a true pleasure album for anyone wanting to hear someone “fiddling around a bit” with traditional Cape Breton music. – Matt Merta
CD REVIEW - Irish Music Magazine
Own Label, 15 Tracks, 55 Minutes www.bradreid.ca
Nova Scotia based multi-instrumentalist and in particular on this album a fiddle and bass player, Brad Reid celebrates ancestral Scottish music in New Scotland, an album of tunes, songs and lilting, his sound primarily rooted in the Scottish tradition with lots of other influences allowed in.
Reid’s unique, modern day interpretation of music that originated with Scottish highland clearances, other migratory patterns and waves of Scottish settlements in Canada is a happy bounce, enabled by strong musicianship and arrangements. There’s a rich panoply of rhythmic dance tunes, timely playing, excellent in pitch and phrasing. From a geographically close, culturally similar region, Northumberland Shores is a delightful tune, hints of nostalgia in the soft melody. Hills of Glenorchy is a rouser, with Brad foremost on fiddle, Dave Mac Isaac’s guitar superbly rhythmic, a compelling dance tune, the Braes of Dunvegan also a lively evocation to dance and Glasgow Gate traditional yet innovative.
This culturally significant recording which connects the tangled paths of his emigrant ancestors to his own passion for their music is a fine harmonic soundscape, great variety and a few surprises, like the rare treat in a contemporary CD, a lilting track. Reid lilts two reels, the very popular Irish tune Lucy Campbell’s followed by Sandy Cameron’s. With very effective foot-tapping percussion, his vocal ornamentation is excellent, his range well suited. This is a unique album, traditional Scottish with a good dollop of jazz, classical, modern music and a stellar line up of accompanists; solid guitar and double bass backing by Mac Isaac and Jamie Gatti, adding great depth, as does the steady pulse of Tom Roach’s congas.
Seamus Heaney said ‘the love of place and lamentation against exile from a cherished territory is a typical strain in the Celtic sensibility’, applicable to the impetus behind and journey motifs Brad Reid chose for this fine album.
Anne Marie Kennedy