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Episode 38b: Doug Protsik (part 2)

In the second part of the Doug Protsik episode, Neil and Doug discuss the power of music to transcend cultural and political differences as Doug shares his experiences playing traditional music in central Asia, eastern Europe, the middle east and Africa. Doug also shares the story of Maine Fiddle Camp and what he has done to build it into a powerhouse of traditional arts in Maine. Music in this episode: Opening is "Ida (sweet as apple cider)" Closing is "The Tajik Two-Step" [by Doug Protsik...


Episode 38a: Doug Protsik (part 1)

The first in a two part episode featuring Doug Protsik, director of Maine Fiddle Camp and passionate supporter of the traditions of Maine and surrounding regions. In this episode Doug shares his early journey with music from quitting the piano as a child to rediscovering it while living in a $500 log cabin in Maine, and talks about the intertwined histories of American folk music, Jazz, fiddling and foxtrots.


Episode 37: Kevin Henderson

Shetland fiddling wizard Kevin Henderson talks about growing up in the Shetland Islands, where Scottish and Scandinavian culture collide and many fiddle tunes are written by the mysterious and magical Trows. Kevin opens up about the experience of making music and touring with Boys of the Lough, Fiddlers' Bid, Nordic Fiddlers Bloc and Session A9 and discusses the challenges and rewards of balancing new musical projects with fatherhood.


Episode 36: Andrea Beaton

Fiddler, pianist and tune writer Andrea Beaton caught up with Neil just before playing a dance at the Canadian American Club in Watertown, MA. She talks about growing up in Cape Breton as the child of Kinnon and Betty Lou Beaton, two giants of traditional music on the island and how her relationship with music changed from being embarrassed to be associated with the fiddle to recording her own albums and writing some of the most popular contemporary tunes.


Episode 35: Hanz Araki

Hanz Araki is a long established Irish flute player and singer from the Pacific Northwest now based in Maine; but he is also a master of the Japanese Shakuhachi flute. He shares his wide-ranging musical journey from moving to Japan and practicing Shakuhachi 6 hrs a day with his father to touring 200 days a year across Canada playing the Irish flute.


Episode 34: Don Roy

Franco-American fiddler Don Roy has been a central figure in Maine fiddling for decades. He joins Neil for the first episode of Season 4 to talk about learning music from his uncle (and Maine fiddling legend) Lucien Mathieu, the connections between Maine French fiddling and traditional music from New Brunswick and Cape Breton and his own creative work writing new tunes and leading the massive fiddle group Fiddlicious.


Episode 33: Kevin Doyle

Irish-American dancer Kevin Doyle joins Neil this episode to share his story of growing up in a strong Irish community in Providence, RI, learning to dance from his mother who emigrated from Ireland. He also tells Neil about the connections between American tap dance and Irish step dance and talks about what it was like to get the phone call saying that he was being named a National Heritage Fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts.


Episode 32: Corey DiMario

Bassist of Crooked Still and CEO of Concert Window, Corey DiMario joins Neil to share his journey from completely dropping music after his sophomore year at Eastman School of Music to rediscovering his passion through the traditional music scene in Boston, going back to music school and founding one of the most distinctive bands in American folk music.


Episode 31: Frank Ferrel

Master Downeast fiddler Frank Ferrel is a fixture in the New England traditional music scene. He shares his musical journey with Neil: from playing banjo in Pacific Northwest bluegrass bands to falling in love with the fiddling of Gerry Robichaud and following that trail to the nexus of New England and Canadian fiddling that is Boston. Along the way he shares stories about discovering little known home-made 78's of the great Franco-American fiddler Tommy Doucet and his compatriots.


Episode 30: Allan Henderson

One of the foremost exponents of Scottish Highland music and Gaelic culture around today, Allan Henderson sat down with Neil while on a solo tour of storytelling and fiddling in the Northeast US. Listen in as they discuss the current state of Gaelic, Allan's years as a member of Blazin' Fiddles and how much of an invasive species the piano accordion has been in that part of the world.


Episode 29: Emerald Rae

Boston based fiddler, stepdancer, singer and tune/songwriter Emerald Rae connects with Neil over their common experiences growing up around the Boston Scottish/Cape Breton scene of the 1990's and early 2000's and they delve into what it really means to become part of a culture--does one actually need to have the heritage in order to have a place in the community?


Episode 28: Hanneke Cassel

A driving force of the Scottish fiddling scene in the United States, Hanneke Cassel shares her story from discovering fiddle music through local competitions to travelling the world performing and teaching her own iconic compositions, which fuse Scottish and Cape Breton traditions with a sound all her own. She and Neil also chat about her tune writing process and what influence her travels to China and Africa have had on her music.


Episode 27: Lamine Touré

One of the top traditional musicians of Senegal, Lamine Touré shares his depth of knowledge as the latest in a 1000+ year line of tradition bearers in his family. Lamine sits down with Neil to discuss how he ended up living and teaching in the Boston area while travelling the world sharing his sabar drumming, singing and dancing. [music in the episode: Jang (meaning "study") which speaks about the importance of studying hard in order to have a good life; and Donald Willie and his Dog,...


Episode 26: Hadith Bani-Adam

Somali peace and de-radicalization activist Hadith Bani-Adam shares his relationship with Somali traditional music and his mission to promote inclusivity, understanding and positive life choices in his community. He discusses the role Somali traditional music plays in his own original songs, his style of Oud playing and some similarities between the music of Somalia, Sudan and Ethiopia and the music of Western Europe.


Episode 25: Alasdair Fraser

Master Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser kicks off Season 3 of TradCafe, sitting down with Neil for a wide ranging conversation about the variety of approaches he has taken over the years to playing traditional Scottish music and the new horizons he is looking towards, exploring new music styles and traditions.


Episode 24: Kinan Idnawi

Season 2 finale episode features Neil's conversation with Syrian Oud player Kinan Idnawi. Kinan talks about growing up in a musical family in Syria, pursuing the Oud at conservatory in Damascus and travelling around the world exploring the ways in which the Oud can fit in to so many different traditions and genres and building bridges between people through music.


Episode 23: Mariel Vandersteel

Fiddler and graphic designer Mariel Vandersteel joins Neil for episode 23 to share her artistic journey so far, from quitting the violin in 8th grade to discovering Irish and Scottish fiddle music, touring internationally with several bands, studying Hardanger Fiddle in Norway and her latest endeavor: going back to school for a new degree while practicing her graphic design work and still somehow making room for music. [Music: Return From Helsinki, by Ian Stephenson]


Episode 22: Stash Wyslouch

Guitarist and singer Stash Wyslouch is this week's featured guest. He talks with Neil about his eclectic musical journey, from the Colombian music his mother played for him growing up, to his love of heavy metal, to diving deep into old-school bluegrass and old-time recordings and finally ending up with an amalgamation of all of it in his own band. Along the way, Stash and Neil find common ground in their drive to create music that comes from their various disparate influences and Stash...


Episode 21: Owen Marshall

One of New England's finest guitarists, Owen Marshall joins Neil to talk about teaching himself Irish guitar while being homeschooled in Vermont, and all the places music has taken him, from local community contradances to jamming with Tuvan throat singers at a festival in Belgium.


Episode 20: Greg Boardman

Greg Boardman is the founder of Maine Fiddle Camp and a captivating performer and teacher whose influence on traditional music in Maine cannot be overstated. For the twentieth episode of TradCafe, Neil and Greg met in the Trinity Church of Lewiston, Maine to talk about the search for personal identity through music, how musicians are uniquely suited to build community and Greg's cross-cultural explorations with the Somali immigrant community in town.


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