Celtic Fiddle Guru
Can I Ask You A Question?
Have you worked out what you want to do in life?
For some of us, this can take most of our lives.
For myself, Colin MacLeod, although I did not realise this at the age of seven, it was to play the violin and inspire people to have fun and join in a Celtic Music session anywhere in the world.
Imagine a seven year old child, sticking up his hand in a classroom full of fellow pupils, when the music teacher asked,’ Who would like to learn to play the violin?’
Well, that is what I did!
I marvelled at how music could bring people together and even change moods, within a few minutes!
An example of this was the school orchestra and the first piece of music I ever played in an orchestra setting was a song by Abba, ‘Save Your Kisses For Me’.
The Teenage Years
Well, the years went by and during my school years, I learnt both Classical violin and Celtic fiddle styles at the same time.
Classical violin would provide the opportunity to learn the techniques of the instrument and Celtic fiddle music would provide an opportunity to apply the techniques to real life tunes!
Oh, and there was also a bit of adventure and travel with the music around Scotland and abroad to Germany.
The element of music and travel really showed me what was possible when different interests were combined together.
Do you have any hobbies or interests from your teenage years which you have carried on into later life or indeed are looking to start again.
If this is Celtic fiddle, please get in contact with me at [email protected]
Looking back on my time in Edinburgh in my twenties, this was a time when I would be out almost every night of the week playing Celtic fiddle at one of the Celtic music sessions in the city.
It was very powerful to hear musicians gather and play together until the small hours of the following morning.
Sometimes a lot of music was played and sometimes there was a lot of talking. And there was always music in the air!
During this time, music helped to balance the lifestyle of working long hours behind a desk and the time of travelling backwards and forwards to the places of work, which could be close to Edinburgh or on the outskirts of Glasgow.
During our lifetimes, there is the opportunity to make some really great friendships.
I am sure this will be the same for you.
Well, after a lot of studying and work contracts, a couple of friends invited me over to Australia for a holiday.
I took my friends up on the offer and so began the relationship with Australia.
Have you ever flown from one side of the world to the other in twenty seven hours?
Well, up until then in my life, I had not had the opportunity to do that.
And let me tell you, there were some magical adventures in Australia.
Here are some of them
– Crossing the Snowy River in bare feet in the Australian winter and happily cross country skiing in very refreshingly low temperatures
– Scuba diving on the Great Barrier Reef
– Experiencing the magic of Fraser Island, one of the largest sand islands in the world
– Taking a road trip from Sydney to Cairns which was over five thousand kilometres of a journey
– Purchasing my first violin abroad so that an occasional Scottish flavour could be added to the social buzz!
A Life Changing Experience
My trip to Australia was a life changing experience to say the least!
And the impact of this was to find myself in Cape Town, South Africa about three months after returning to the UK!
Again, I went out and purchased a violin!
The addition of music to the social repertoire created opportunities I would never have dreamed of, like recording my first CD, joining in a local music session in a coffee shop and playing in a Heavy Metal pub!
Did all this really happen? Yes, it did!
If you are still thinking about taking up Celtic fiddle or a new hobby, there is no time like the present!
In 2004, I officially emigrated from Scotland to Australia and this time took a violin, well, more than one with me!
Music provided an opportunity to meet people, as well as settle in a new country with a culture similar to the UK and yet different.
Over the last few years, there have been several CDs made, some as solo albums and others as part of bands or groups.
Included in the adventures have been major tours of Australian Celtic music festivals, setting up a fiddle festival in Scotland with a couple of friends, teaching Celtic fiddle workshops around Australia and the occasional trip abroad!
So What Are You Doing Now?
Well, I have left my job as a chartered accountant to go full time with my new business venture, which is taking music back into the workplace and the community to show what is possible when inspiration, teamwork, community and harmony come together.
And yes, I still teach Celtic fiddle!
Would You Like To Follow Me On My Adventures?
All the best
Celtic Fiddle Guru