“If Welsh music is perennially considered the poor relation in the Celtic tradition, Allan Yn Y Fan are moving mountains to change all that.”

“...So look out Scotland and Ireland, a new Celtic Tiger is prowling...”

Deio I Dywyn & Scot Erin Reel

Video filmed and produced by "on-Par Productions" on location at Barry Island.

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NADOLIG 2013 / CHRISTMAS 2013 (18.12.2013)

It is the time of year when a pause for reflection on the preceding 12 months is prevalent in every form of media. Same too for Geoff, Chris, Meriel, Linda and Kate of Allan Yn Y Fan.

We look back on this year with great fondness as it has provided us with so many great performance memories. Starting the year off in Glasgow for Celtic Connections is a terrific way to start any year, and we are proud to be one of just a couple of Welsh acts invited to play this most prestigious of festivals twice! The Tron theatre audience and Robin & Bina Williamson, with whom we were sharing the stage - all made us really welcome - and we got a great review from Celtic Music Radio too! February was our chance to perform for the first time in Bangor for Pontio and there we had a great night with Moishe's Bagel.

The highlight of the summer festival season had to be our first appearance at the justly famed Beverley Folk Festival - it really felt that we were breaking new territory and the responses to our "Meet the band", main stage and late night concert slots was overwhelmingly positive.

Other than festival appearances our August and September were taken up by successfully applying to Arts Council of Wales to enable us to produce a new marketing pack, refresh this website (including offering elements in Welsh, French and German) and to commission some new band videos plus a photo shoot. All of this was done to allow us to make the most of WOMEX coming to the UK for just the second time in its history and be right on our doorstep in Cardiff. Geoff, Kate and Linda were our WOMEX delegates - pounding the floor of the Motorpoint arena "selling" us and our music to international and UK agents, talking to the media and also to potential new end users of our music. In November Geoff & Linda took all this new promotional material to the Association of Festival Organisers conference near Nottingham to see if we could gain a few new English festivals for 2014 - time will tell.

As well as pausing for reflection it is also the time of year to thank the people who work with us throughout the year supporting our efforts to entertain from the stages we play. Therefore a huge thanks to Rob Jones who engineers our live sound, to Hayley Jenney of Jenney Creative who designs our posters, marketing pack and much else besides; Garry White and Co of Ebbw Vale who ensure the figures all add up, to Rhian Griffiths our new Welsh language caller, Gwerfyl Jones our superb Welsh translator; to Toby Cameron of On Par Productions for the video shoot and to Darren Warner our photographer of choice for the past several years! We also have to thank the terrifically talented Donal Whelan of Hafod Mastering and Dylan Fowler of Stiwdio Felin Fach Abergavenny. In radio we wish to thanks for their unwavering support Genevieve Tudor of BBC Radio Shropshire, Frank Hennessy of BBC Radio Wales, Johnny Coppin of BBC Radio Gloucestershire and especially this year Idris Morris Jones of BBC Radio Cymru. All these people are terrific creatives and we benefit from their input throughout the year.

Lastly we would like to thank you all - our audiences - without whom there wouldn't be much point to our endeavours! This was really brought home to us in spectacular fashion just a couple of weeks ago when we performed at the Great British Folk Festival in Butlin's Skegness. We will all remember for many a day the wonderful approbation afforded us by an audience of over 1200 people - we're still buzzing! All that plus a record-breaking merch stall sale!

Looking ahead to 2014 we shall be releasing a new Allan Yn Y Fan collection - entitled "Cool, Calm & Collected" this is our selected history from our decade of recordings - 13 tracks chosen from our four albums and one EP. This new collection will be released early in March - once we know the exact date we'll put it up here on the website. It was fascinating to listen again to our entire recorded output - 55 tracks in total (!) and whittle it down to what we believe works well as a collection whilst demonstrating the musical growth in the band over this decade! We hope you all like it and will order copies for your friends too!

So - looking forward now to our final gigs of 2013 on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd December at the Wales Millennium Centre, we thought we would put you all in the mood by making available our brand new video for "Deio i Dywyn/Scot Erin Reel" - produced by the wonderfully talented On Par productions - just click here! We hope you enjoy this as much as we had fun making it in the scorching heat of Barrybados! In October!!!

If you would like to book us for your special event in 2014 please do get in touch soon.

In the meantime :- "Nadolig Llawen Iawn a Blwyddyn Newydd Dda i chi gyd/Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to You All!"


Well since we last wrote it really has been heads down for the band - it's not only the playing of music life in a band , you know! With the imminent arrival of the #WOMEX caravan in Cardiff we applied and were successful in getting a grant from Arts Council of Wales to allow us to up our promotional game. This will be reflected in some great changes in this very website soon as we add pages in German, French and Welsh! Plus we got the very talented Darren Griffiths-Warner to take some new photos of us.

The funding has also enabled us to commission two new music videos with the really talented team of Toby & Rich - On-Par Productions. We spent a fantastic day with these guys filming at the Muni Pontypridd in the morning before enjoying the near tropical sunshine of Barry Island in the afternoon. These new videos, plus what we already have on this site are making up the DVD part of a whole new promo pack for the band complete with an audio CD. It's great that ACW are helping us with these essential materials to continue to enhance our profile in the international and home markets.

Geoff, Linda and Kate have all got their delegate passes for WOMEX (www.cerddcymru.com/cardiff-womex-2013) and are looking forward to renewing some acquaintances, making new friends as well as enjoying a whole raft of fantastic music from around the globe!

When we were not working on all of the above, we have been busy producing our new compilation Steam Pie CD > "Cool, Calm & Collected" - a carefully selected trip through our recorded output of the past decade. In this we have been greatly assisted by our good friend and the mastering engineer of choice Donal Whelan of Hafod Mastering. Darren has once again taken the photos and this time also designed our first digipack CD. It's all looking and sounding great and will be released early in the New Year. As soon as the release date is confirmed we will let you know here and on our Facebook pages as well as via Twitter (do follow us on @AllanYnYFan).

Then when we were not working on all of the above we found, somehow, time to rehearse and work on some new material - which has been a complete joy! We have given a public airing to a couple of new pieces and we hope to add more in when we play Usk Memorial Hall for the lovely team at Tredegar House Folk Festival and return to the Village Pump Folk Club in Trowbridge next month. Hope that some of you can make these dates or - if a twmpath is more of your thing - please do come and support us performing for our great supporters at the Barn Brynich near Brecon and help raise a heap of money for the Brecon Mountain Rescue team!

Lastly we have just announced that our final concert dates for 2013 will once again be courtesy of the Wales Millennium Centre on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd December - 6.15 p.m. on both dates. Please check our gig dates here and get in touch now if you would like us to play for you in 2014!

BAND UPDATE (21.07.2013)

So last Saturday in the splendid surroundings of Abbey Mill Tintern we managed to stay cool (!) and play our last 45 minute concert set of the summer - we all really enjoyed Folk on the Lawn and it was great to see some old friends there. Nice too to be all done and dusted and on the way home well before dark - if a trifle strange!

When we last updated the website we were enthusing about all of the festivals ahead of us and we certainly had a wonderful mix of events to perform at. We all thoroughly enjoyed our first ever visit to the Fishguard Folk Festival and it was a pleasure headlining the Saturday evening concert in Theatr Gwaun with the very talented husband and wife team Haddo in support. Good to see family and some old friends in the audience too.

Fire in the Mountain near Aberystwyth, was another new Welsh event for us to perform at deep in the heart of the Cambrian mountains centred on a great old Welsh farmhouse. Although June might not be remembered for entirely sunny summer weather, our Sunday here was certainly blessed with warm sunshine. We graced a stage that put some of us in mind of the fabulous Nordlingen festival in Bavaria and Linda ruefully admitting that Pontardawe could never build and have passed by the H&S lovelies something approaching its quirky homespun charm! Anyway - the welcome was great and the team there are doing some wonderful stuff - more power to their collective elbows!

Our highlight of the summer season has undoubtedly to be the famed Beverley Festival in east Yorkshire. The festival was in its 30th edition and it was the first centred on their new site of Beverley Racecourse. We had three slots during the day - a meet the band session at lunchtime where we not only shared our music but some of our Welsh food and drink heritage too. That seemed to go down well and set us up for our evening main stage concert slot where we shared the bill with another husband and wife duo Megson and the legendary Show of Hands. It was a great night - a packed marquee and a terrific response. We rounded off the night with a late night slot in the Top of the Wold marquee - a really in your face crowd and a wondrous atmosphere - they needed little encouragement to get on their feet, dance, clap and sign along! It seemed like a little bit of Yorkshire was Welsh for the night! All in all it was a terrific festival and a great experience for us and we hope we can return to the people's republic of Yorkshire soon!

That weekend certainly helped us overcome our disappointment at not getting selected for any of the WOMEX related slots we had applied for.

The last few months have also allowed us to share in the fun and frolics for a large number of people as we have turned to our twmpath band persona for a great Inter-Celtic hoolie at the Swansea Industrial & Maritime Museum (where amongst the dancers was Duncan McGillivray's, -late of Battlefield Band-, son); a wonderful wedding celebration at Treowen House (where we failed to get Welsh comic Elis James dancing); and a lovely wedding near Llandeilo for Nick &..... In fact we are looking forward to some great sweaty fun at celebrations throughout late July and August - if you wish to book us for your celebration do get in touch now.

Otherwise the band is looking to prepare some new material for our Autumn concert dates and we are already looking forward to dates at Chapel Arts Centre Bath, Borough Theatre Abergavenny, Usk Memorial Hall and the Village Pump Folk Club in Trowbridge. We also aim to reflect our decade as a recording and touring band on these dates too - so do come along and see what we have chosen to premiere or revive!

Stay cool!

BAND UPDATE (21.04.2013)

So much for the New Year resolution of being better at updating the website this year then!

What have we been doing you may well ask? Well the year started with a lovely invitation from our friends at Wales Millennium Centre to film an Insight piece for them - and that is the version of Tra Bo Dau which we added to the front of our website a couple of months ago. The shoot was very easy and relaxed and we all think that you the viewer see it captured in the performance.

In terms of live work the great thrill at the start of this year was to be able to return to the brilliant Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow. We were pleased to share the stage with fellow Wales' residents Robin & Bina Williamson at the super Tron Theatre in the Merchant City. We had a great reaction from the audience and this smashing review from Celtic Music Radio. Later that night we all enjoyed the fab session and craic engendered by the members of Breabach and friends in a great bar just off Sauchiehall Street. This festival gig was followed by a wonderful night for Pontio at Neuadd Powis Bangor sharing the stage with Moishe's Bagel. It was one of the best nights we've ever had in Wales and there was a truly wonderful reception for the music of both bands. Diolch yn fawr iawn i Dyfan!

This we followed with a smashing evening at one of the band's favourite venues - Wyeside Arts Centre in Builth Wells. It was great to have the chance to play a full evening's concert and we were pleased by the great reaction our music provoked.

Now we have also been preparing a special show to celebrate some of the great stories and characters of our Valleys home - in this we owe a debt to Kate, Gill and Michelle. We premiere this show at a special tourism conference in Margam Abbey on Tuesday 23rd April. At this stage we don't know yet if it will have a future - but we do hope so and we'll tell you all about it here.

At the end of April we get to play a special Twmpath Dawns for the delegates at the Celtic Media Festival being hosted in the City of Swansea. We're looking forward to hopefully opening up our contacts book and getting the nod to provide television and film scores soon!

The band is also thrilled to be performing at a clutch of Festivals this year. We get the opportunity to play for the first time at Fishguard Folk Festival at the end of May. We shall be appearing with Haddo in Theatr Gwaun on Saturday 25th May. The following weekend we travel west again for the Fire in the Mountain event near Aberystwyth and later in June we are greatly looking forward to sharing the main stage at the renowned Beverley Folk Festival with our good friends Show of Hands. Details of all our festival and other gigs are here!

We have also just awoken to the realisation that it is now a decade since we released our first album "Off The Map" to an astonished world!! If there is one thing all the members of the band can now agree on, a decade of hard work, the support of some key promoters, journalists and programme makers and our growing band of supporters encourage us to think that Allan Yn Y Fan and the music we make and the Welsh traditional music we celebrate are much more ON The Map!

We hope we see you soon! If you want to book the band for your festival, concert or special celebration for a Twmpath Dawns - get in touch now!