Congratulations to Simon Howie Scottish Dance Band who have been nominated in Dance band of the Year sponsored by National Association of Accordion and Fiddle Clubs in the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards 2015. Vote now!
We asked Simon Howie of Simon Howie Scottish Dance Band the following questions.
Tell us about yourself
Traditional Scottish Dance Band, started 30 years ago, been broadcasting on Take the Floor and other shows since I was 18 year old. Playing gigs mostly in Scotland, seem to get a lot of the Highland Reel Parties and Balls, Caledonian Ball London, Borders Ball, Angus Ball, Perth ball etc. This spawns lots of private house parties and weddings as well as village hall dances. Brilliant bunch of musicians help me make the band sound as it does. Alison Smith, Jim Lindsay, Robert Black and Davie Scott. Alison took over from Ron Kerr who played with us for 28 years on fiddle. Still loving the music, not as many gigs as the old days. Tw CD’s and an LP been don over the years. A number of Live broadcasts for BBC 2 and Classic FM (Hogmanay special). 15 trips abroad over the past 20 years, South Korea, HK, Dubai etc
Why are you involved in Scottish music?
Introduced to the Ian Powrie band and the Jim Johnstone band in the 1960’s and 1970’s and was then totally hooked. Dad was a musing lover and all his friends were the top musicians of the day. Jimmy Blue, Mickie Ainsworth, Bill Black, Andrew Rankine etc. Ian Powrie was married to dads cousin. I went to lessons at the age of 7. Both my brothers played (Box and Piano). Music was our passion, our social life and our main focus outwith the farming life at Dunning Perthshire. I’m involved with it because I cant remember not being immersed in music. My pals are musicians.
Any particular career highlights?
First Broadcast BBC 1986
Trip to Japan with Vale of Athol pipe Band 1989. What fun we had.(we played for Dances)
Dubai 2000.. St Andrews Night.
Hogmanay 1997 for Classic FM from St Andrews, Live broadcast with Bill McCue.
Playing for the Queen, Caledonian Ball , Grosvenor House London…700 people
What are your plans for the future?
Keep playing, improve my the bad repertoire, try to swerve playing at 6 hour reel-party gigs.
Keep the playing technique and arrangements moving on…
Make more recordings, spend more time in the studio.
Write more tunes.
Read more about Simon Howie Scottish Dance Band
If you would like to come along to the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards in Dundee’s Caird Hall call the Caird Hall box office on (01382) 434940 or buy online.