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North of Argyll A Time Before CD Celtic Music

A Time before

This CD represents a compilation of songs that were crafted during the band's early stages as they forged their distinctive and unparalleled sound. At that time, the band was undergoing a transformation, shifting from their traditional roots to the vibrant and contemporary Celtic fusion style we know today.

Immigrant:

"Immigrant," one of the band's early songs, was penned by Paul in 2016 while residing in Florida, USA. Having made the decision to permanently relocate to the US in 1987, Paul vividly recalls a poignant memory from the month he departed the UK. Prior to his departure, he visited the picturesque Cheviot Hills on the Scottish border, where snow still covered the ground during the months of February and March. Paul vividly describes standing there, determined to etch the breathtaking scenery into his memory indefinitely. The magnificent view of Scotland from the hills became something he wished to carry with him to the US, ensuring he would never forget the beauty of his homeland.

Even after many years, Paul can still conjure that same view in his mind's eye. "Immigrant" serves as an ode to his journey to the US and serves as a reminder that, whenever he closes his eyes, Scotland remains vividly alive within him.

Over the Hills:

"Over the Hills and Far Away" is an ancient British song that has roots dating back to the late 17th century. Various versions of the song have been published in different works, such as Thomas D'Urfey's Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy, and George Farquhar's play The Recruiting Officer from 1706.

This traditional tune gained further recognition as the theme song for the television series 'Sharp's Rifles.'

The lyrics in this particular rendition were penned by John Tams, an English musician and poet.

The song tells the story of a British soldier fighting under the Duke of Wellington against Napoleon Bonaparte during the Napoleonic Wars, which took place from May 18, 1803, to November 20, 1815.

  Highland Home:

During a band trip through Georgia, USA, we composed a melody that would later become this tune. As we traversed the state, our ideas took shape, and by the time we reached the Florida border, the song was fully written.

The lyrics tell the tale of a Scottish soldier who participated in the 1745 Scottish rebellion but was compelled to leave his homeland. The song portrays his life in a foreign land, where he yearns for the Scottish glens and his beloved Highland home. This narrative was common during that era, as numerous Scottish families were expelled from their ancestral lands and sent abroad, forever separated from Scotland.

   Barefoot O'er Your Braes:

During the Covid Pandemic, a time that instilled fear in everyone's hearts, this song came to life. Paul, feeling the weight of uncertainty, penned it in just 5 minutes within the confines of his living room. His lyrics vividly narrate the grip of anxiety, evoking the worry of never setting eyes on Scotland again. Pouring his emotions onto paper, Paul's raw expression became the essence of this song. To elevate its power, he collaborated with the remarkable Violinist 'Erin Oh,' who gracefully added her mesmerizing violin melodies. This song holds a special place in Paul's heart, as it resonates with pure and unadulterated emotion.

   Journey:

Journey is a composition that embodies the essence of life, particularly Paul's personal journey. It encompasses his migration from Scotland to the USA and his profound connection to his homeland. The song symbolizes the cyclical nature of life and the transformative stages encountered by every individual, from youth to old age. It encapsulates the amalgamation of our life experiences, knowledge gained, and the profound relationships we form along the way.

     Destiny:

Destiny, the poignant melody, encompasses the themes of dreams and fate. It begins with a seasoned gentleman finding solace on a childhood haunt, a serene beach nestled in the Western Highlands of Scotland, his gaze fixed upon the enchanting Isle of Skye. He reflects upon the course of his life and contemplates the divergent paths it could have taken, lamenting that had he known his true calling, his destiny, the trajectory of his existence might have been altered forever.

     An Baohban Sith:

This song narrates the tale of a Scottish Vampire known as the Baobhan Sith, referred to as the bavenshee in English translation. Legends claim that the bavenshee dwells within the Scottish forests, appearing as an enchanting woman to unsuspecting humans. With their mesmerizing spell, they compel their victims to dance until they are exhausted. Subsequently, they ruthlessly attack and slay their prey, consuming their life-giving blood. This song recounts the encounter of a man who crosses paths with a bavenshee and miraculously survives.

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