James Graham, Voice
Sabine Stoffer, Violin
Pierre-Augustin Lay, Cello
Edin Karamazov, Romantic Guitar
Masako Art, Single-Action Pedal Harp
The Poker Club Band is an ensemble of early music specialists and a traditional singer, focusing on the repertoire from the time of the Enlightenment to the romanticism.
There have been
numerous recordings and performances of Haydn's Scottish songs
arrangements with the standard piano trio and classical singers. However, many
publications of Scottish traditional repertoire around 1800
indeed suggest to be accompanied by harp or fortepiano, often
harp mentioned before piano. Our ambition is to achieve the
historical crossover that was likely to be happening at the
time the songs were published, through the Gaelic singer James
Graham, with his distinctively 'natural' Scottish timbre and
intonation that embodies the sentiment of the songs; and
through the instrumentalists trained in historical performance
practice and playing on period instruments. It is not only
breathtakingly beautiful music and interesting experiment in
historical performance practice, but also very entertaining.
The harp used in the project deserves a mention: it is a single-action pedal harp built in February 1809 at Erard's workshop in London; it was by chance shipped to Wood & Co., Edinburgh (the music shop Muir, Wood & Co. on Leith Street), almost certainly used in Edinburgh salon music scene at the time.