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May Club Night Report

 The Highland Club met for the final meeting of the season in the usual venue and once again the large crowd was treated to another superb evening of top quality entertainment.

Graham Wilson had fought off various bugs and other things to take his place on the stage. With drummer John Brander from Elgin behind him, Graham started proceedings with some lively tunes.

Hamish Macdougall followed Graham and had Jacquie Macdonald at the keyboards and Mike Smith at the drums. Hamish has been associated with the Highland Club for many, many years and is standing down from the committee at the AGM in June. Terrific servant to the club and really good to know that his playing skills will still be heard in seasons to come. Although relinquishing his committee duties, Hamish intends to keep visiting and playing. Good decision Hamish, and thanks for all your help over all these years.

Donnie West has been a regular in the front row of the hall for many moons now and had taken in a 3 row button box which he had not played for almost as long as he has been using that seat. He asked Fraser Maclean if he would give it a blast and Fraser duly obliged. Fraser had Mike Smith at the drums, Callum Mackaskill on guitar and Jacquie Macdonald on keyboards. Huge smiles of pleasure from Donnie as the master of the three row did the box credit.

Alex Mackenzie from Garve completed the line up of local players for the first half and played a couple of very lively sets. He was accompanied by John Brander on drums, Jacquie Macdonald on keyboards and Callum Mackaskill on the guitar.

Time for the guests now and Iain Cathcart and his band filled the spot with a display of high quality musicianship. The timing was impeccable and hugely entertaining.

Iain had Jennifer Cruickshank on keyboards, her husband Brian Cruickshank on fiddle andDuncan Christie on drums.

Iain and the band took us up to a very welcome half time cuppa.

After the break Susie Simpson led a quartet with good friend Jock Fraser on second box, Jacquie Macdonald on keyboards and Bob Wares on the drums.

All sing a long stuff from Susie and she is a great favourite with the Highland faithful.

Susie moved over to the keyboards and allowed Jock Fraser to take the lead and Heather Fraser joined them on the drums.

The quality of our local players at the moment is exceptionally high and any one of them could hold down a guest spot on their own merits. Such a treat to have them all on board and attending faithfully almost every club night. Thanks guys.

Disappointing to see one of our local players has sadly suffered a broken shoulder whilst tplaying football. We wish Colin Donaldson a speedy recovery and sincerely hope it won’t have an adverse effect on his box playing skills. We look forward to having you back amongst us Colin.

Back to the guests now to bring the evening and indeed the season to a climax.

Iain Cathcart and the band maintained the quality and precision of the first half and even found time for a fiddle solo from Brian and a tune on the box from Jennifer. All highly entertaining from a really fine bunch of people who certainly know their way in the Scottish Dance Band scene.

A huge thank you must go to all the players who have joined us on stage over the season just finished and also to the many fine musicians who have joined us as guests.

Lastly a huge thank you also to the audience at the Highland Club, because without them we really don’t have a show worth putting on.

The end of a fabulous season for the Highland Club and we look forward to seeing you back with us on the third Monday of the month from September onwards.

Enjoy your summer break.