July 2012: The Brigadoons are back in the studio working on a new live studio CD. “Our fans have been asking for quite some time for a new release from us, we’re all very excited to record the new CD” said lead singer for The Brigadoons, Denis Carr. The CD should be released by September of this year.
Formed in 1971 by Rob Taylor, The Brigadoons have, through all these years, promoted the Celtic music so popular in Glengarry County. Over the years the band has had many members who epitomized the vast talent present in the county.
Their peppy brand of Celtic music was instantly embraced by the public, young and old. Whether they played to the crowd at the Atlantic Hotel or for a dance at the Bonnie Glen, they played to full houses and they kept the floor full all night. Members changed through the years but the band`s following continued to grow.
Over the years different entertainers added their talent to the band including artists such as Bob Burnie, Gaye Leroux, Jamie Wood, Brian MacDonell, Rick Link, Gerry Lefave, David Wright, Paddy Kelly, Luanne Doyle , Shelley Downing and Bonita Leblanc. The Brigadoons now consist of Denis Carr, Paddy Kelly, Reg Portieous, Ashley MacLeod and Dan Leroux. Their music began to be recognized outside of Glengarry when, under the auspices the Glengarry Club of Ottawa, The Brigadoons with other Glengarry talent performed in many variety shows first presented at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa and also for the Glengarry Club`s New Years Eve dances. They also performed to packed houses at Molly Maquire`s pub in Ottawa and for the troops at the Canadian Forces base in Alert and for a parade in Quebec City sponsored by the Lions Club of Alexandria. Their music had that special undeniable Glengarry flavour.
When Queen Elizabeth II visited Cornwall in 1984, The Brigadoons performed Ken MacRae`s "Ontario" for her. With their success on the rise, the demands for their music increased and was introduced to the world. Because of the international festival in Cornwall and Denis Carr, they performed a week in Florida at Disney World`s Epcot Centre 14 years in a row, doing three performances a day.
To this day they preform annually on Caribbean cruises and have had the pleasure of working with such stars as the Alexander Brothers, Natalie MacMaster, the Barra MacNeils, the Rankin Family, the Tanahill Weevers and the Battlefield Band. One of the highlights for the group is their performances each year at the Friday night Tattoo at the Glengarry Highland Games - a spectacle equal to any in North America. With Denis Carr at the helm they also like to introduce new and younger musicians to the world.
During the years they also took time to make albums, tapes and c.d`s as well as playing for their local fans. When the parish of St.Raphael`s suffered the devastating fire, Rob and his wife, Irene wrote "The Burning of St.Raphaels`" which the group sang at one of the fund raising concerts in the ruins and later included it on the of their first albums. In 1997 members past and present reunited to participate in the fund raising c.d. "The 25th Anniversary-Friends Helping Friends" produced by another native Glengarrian, Neil MacDonell. They received recognition in the form of a bronze plaque at the site of the ruins.
Fortunately for their fans The Brigadoons are still performing that traditional sound. And while new songs are being added to their repertoire, they still perform old favourites such as "The Road to Dalhousie", "Glengarry my Home" and "The Martintown Song" at the request of their loyal fans.
" THE REVIEW "
Did you know the Brigadoons are members of the Glengarry Celtic Music Hall of Fame? Also, Rob and Denis have been recognised by the Quebec Thistle Council for their contribution to traditional Scottish music.
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