Classical guitarist David Russell has won accolades for his technique and superb musicianship from critics and audience members alike. In 1997, he was named a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, in recognition of his great talent. Born in Glasgow in 1953, he moved with his parents to the Spanish island of Menorca while still a young boy, where he began his training on the guitar. He has won virtually every major guitar competition and many composers have dedicated works to him. His previous recordings on Telarc have been music of the Hispanic composers Barrios, Torroba, and Rodrigo.
Most of the arrangements on this collection of Celtic music are by Russell himself, including "The Bucks of Oranmore," "Spatter the Dew," "Cherish the Ladies," "Morag," "Whiskey, You're the Devil," "The Bonnie, Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond," "The Bride's Reel," "Skye Boat Song" and many others.
The traditional dance forms represented on this album include the jig (a fast dance in 6/8 [single or double] or 9/8 [slip jig]), the reel (a fast dance in duple meter for couples), hornpipe (similar to a reel, but played more slowly) and strathspey (a dance in moderate quadruple meter with characteristic snappy rhythms, said to have originated in the valley, or "strath," of the River Spey in the Scottish highlands).
Also featured on the disc are recent works by Ron Moore and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, as well as concert pieces based on Scottish themes by the nineteenth-century guitarist-composers Fernando Sor and Mauro Giuliani.