Celtic Connections’ New Voices series gives young musicians the chance to expand their sound with a special set at the festival, and Carrbridge singer-songwriter Rachel Sermanni is a shining example of how it can act as a platform for bigger things.
She has this week released the highly anticipated Black Currents EP (watch her perform first track Breathe Easy here), and seems set for bigger things still. So what did she get up to since last year’s festival?
Rachel told STV: “Since last year’s Celtic Connections I spent the summer doing festivals and did my first solo tour about Scotland.
“After the summer I supported Fink on a European tour, and we did that for two months over October and November.
“And I’ve missed out things like other tours – I did support tours across Britain with a bunch of different musicians. Favourites including Ron Sexsmith, who was great fun.”
She added: “Christmas and New Year was spent in India doing a collaboration with two Indian musicians. And so I’ve been catapulted into the New Year, haven’t yet been home – I look forward to that.
“This past two weeks, we arrived back from India and was straight away taken to Ardgour, which is straight across the water from Fort William, and recorded an album. It’s halfway recorded, lots of production needed.”
Talking about the new EP Black Currents, which was released on Monday, Rachel explained: “We recorded it in Ardgour as well, with a bunch of my good friends and good musicians.”
This evening Rachel performs at St Andrew's in the Square, the same venue in which she last year supported acclaimed singer-songwriter John Grant, in that sense marking her progress over the course of the year.
Rachel said of the show: “I’m really excited about that gig. Beautiful venue, haven’t been there since, and we’ll have the full band again – and we’ll be a little extra rehearsed, because we’ve had a couple of gigs now, so yeah, I’m really excited.”
She added: “I loved the New Voices gig last year, because we had the freedom to make it what it was – it was a simple concept of just making it comfortable. I’m really excited about applying that to this concert as well, making it feel nice and cosy.”
- For more details about Rachel visit rachelsermanni.net, and for information about this evening’s show visit celticconnections.com.
RACHEL SERMANNI ON STV
- Rachel Sermanni performs Breathe Easy from Black Currents EP for STV
- More on Rachel Sermanni on recording debut album, and travelling to Indian for special collaboration
- From 2011: Rachel Sermanni performs Humming Home for STV
- From 2011: Rising Scottish star Rachel Sermanni on being Celtic Connections New Voice