Another Celtic Connections gig, this time it was John Grant. John Grant might have been a left field booking for a festival of Celtic heritage but he stated that his middle name was “William”, which in turn allowed him to feature, as that surely made him Celtic. And I’m glad he did. With his charm, wit and musical genius, he kept the crowd buzzing all the way through the gig. The gig took place at The Royal Concert Hall and this was my first visit there. The advantages of it being primarily a music venue meant the sound was incredible. Moreover, the layout ensured that no matter where you are the same pitch could be heard throughout the venue.
We got in on time to see Rachel Sermanni and her band play their brand of folk music, playing tracks from her albums “Tied to The Moon” and “Under Mountains“. Her sound fitted well with the Celtic Connections vibe and set the tone nicely for the anticipation of John Grant.
We then witnesses the charismatic John Grant strolling onto stage and play a mix songs from all three of his albums, with his charm coming through in the soundbites between songs, as well a mutual love between him and the crowd. His performance was exceptional, better than I expected, as this was the first time I had seen him live. The only other time I ever saw him, was on Jool’s, performing “Pale Green Ghosts“. That song was one of the stand out tracks of the night, along with “Disappointing” and “Queen of Denmark“. The latter included John Grant conducting a partial sing-a-long from the crowd. He closed his encore with “Outer Space“, which went down well with the crowd, a crowd who headed home into the night knowing they had been truly entertained.
Now onto gig number 5…