“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

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News

2015

AT HOME – BEING PRODUCTIVE (IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE!) (24.11.2015)

Well our current series of gigs ended up in some style – the banqueting hall of Cardiff Castle – the product of the fevered imagination of William Burgess coupled with the spending power of Europe’s wealthiest young man – the third Marquess of Bute. This was all the result of the band being booked to perform and provide the Welsh content for Australian company Capstone Financial Planning and their biennial “off-shore” conference. It was a great evening and we look forward to being booked to provide the entertainment at their next conference on their home-ground, Melbourne, Australia!

Before that we had enjoyed a terrific run of gigs in Germany and Luxembourg. We started by performing for the wonderful Niko Markin and Folk Initiative Oldenburg in a very modern church in that city. The warmth of the welcome that night set the seal for the rest of the week. We then spent a very happy few days hosted by our German agent Frank & Gerda and Frank2 & Ilona. The gig in Syke was somewhat rain affected but still a huge amount of fun. We then moved south to our first ever concert in Hanover. Here our promoter, the wonderful Mic Hale, brought us together with a packed house all desperate to enjoy themselves. We knew from the reaction to the first number that we were in for a great night – and so it proved!

It definitely goes into the list of best AYYF gigs ever! Pausing only for some band van trouble en route to near Backnang we were able to rehearse some new material whilst taking advantage of some relaxation time. Plus we had the opportunity to meet up and have a meal with our very good friend Thomas Roth and his wife Ingrid. This was before playing a joint concert with his band Roth on the Friday night near Spiegelberg. This was one of the gigs where you wonder where all the people have come from as it is fair to say that the Jux Gemiende Hall isn’t exactly in a town centre location! Anyway the place was packed out – standing room only – and our set went down a storm before Thomas and his excellent band took the stage. During his set a few members of AYYF couldn’t resist joining in on sets both parties have recorded in the past – suffice to say that The Rough Crossing & Sea Sick Sailors nearly accomplished audience lift-off!

We then commenced our drive northwards and into Luxembourg. Here another great friend of the band, Jackie Fleming, together with other Welsh expats, had worked hard to provide us with a most enjoyable last concert of the all too brief tour. Amazingly, because of the time difference, we even managed to catch the end of the famous RWC victory by Wales against England in Twickers! All in all a wonderful tour –thanks goes from all band members to all the promoters and hosts and, of course, to our brilliant sound engineer and tour driver – Rob Jones and our master of all trades (including rigger and photographer) Darren Frohawk.

Now we are back at home and concentrating on our developing our new material, arranging the tunes sets and songs and beginning the process of recording for our first album as the sextet and, coincidentally, our sixth as a band! It won’t be hibernation exactly, but we won’t be gigging now until the spring of 2016. It also happens that our lead singer Catrin together with husband Darren will be concentrating on a very special production of their own – their first child! We all wish them well!

We will be posting updates via Twitter and Facebook as the winter proceeds and letting you all know how things are shaping up. Do follow us on these platforms too!

Lastly if you want to book the concert or twmpath band (* we’re great at celebrating your weddings or birthdays!) please get in touch now with Geoff > Geoff@ayyf.co.uk / 01495 240371 / 07973 850289.

Thanks for all your support.

THE ROAD BECKONS! (17.09.2015)

It is somewhat embarrassing when you look at your own website and see that the last news update was posted way back in April...

However, since that was posted the band has really enjoyed the festivals it has been fortunate to perform at this year. First up was our return to the wonderful Tredegar House Folk Festival in Newport. We were proud to play our part in the Saturday night concert, sharing the stage with Vicky Swan & Johnny Dyer (great to work with them again) and the super-charged Geordie MacKeeman & his Rhythm Boys from Canada. There was a great reaction to our set, which was particularly rewarding for our new members Catrin & Alan.

Next up in May we were delighted to be invited to play at a new event for us – Merthyr Tydfil Global Village. This was a friendly event and we were also delighted to share a concert on the Saturday night in Redhouse with Czech musician and singer Jana Vebrova. Jana made a great impression on the audience and us as a band. A name to look out for!

June saw our return to the Llangollen International Eisteddfod and in July we were thrilled to return to the Village Pump Stage of the Village Pump Folk Festival (on the only dry sunny day of the weekend!) plus to play for a family twmpath dawns/ceilidh early that evening.

More recently we have just played a fundraiser for a new venture in Newport – the Cwtsh Arts Centre, in the splendid surroundings of St.John’s Church. That was swiftly followed by our return to the excellent Bromyard Folk Festival in Herefordshire. At Bromyard we were pleased to present a “meet the band slot” followed by opening the Saturday evening concert to a packed marquee.

The great reaction to our performances this last weekend has put us all in great cheer as we head off once more to Germany and Luxembourg. We are so pleased to have this opportunity to take the new line-up to Europe and to play concerts to a mixture of previously visited towns and to break new ground. One concert that we are particularly looking forward to is a joint concert with the band’s great friend and wonderful nickel-harpa player, Thomas Roth. Between us and his new band we aim to rock the Spiegelberg Gemeinde Halle on Friday 25th September. If you have friends or relatives in Germany or Luxembourg – please send them our way!

When we return from our continental jaunts we aim to start concentrating on the new material which we intend will become the focus of our new album. We will keep you posted.

In the meantime if you saw us this year at any event and have spotted that your local festival has yet to book us – please do put in a word for us! We are also keen to take bookings for our work as a Twmpath Dawns band – so whether you’re getting married, celebrating a special birthday or just have a flimsy excuse for a knees up – do get in touch now so that we can have a great 2016!

Thanks for all your support.

SPRING UPDATE APRIL 2015 (30.04.2015)

Well it has been a long time since we last updated you all on our progress as the new band. Since we last wrote winter has definitely turned into spring and the new sextet is definitely well into the “forming” stage of development!

The band has made a couple of low-key appearances on the Glanfa Stage of the Wales Millennium Centre plus has performed at two wedding twmpath dawns at two of our favourite venues – Brynich Barn near Brecon and Lyde Court near Hereford.

Mainly our time together has been spent on working up new material, re-visiting some old favourite songs and tunes, plus recording some demos which show the new line-up in action. We now have a three track demo CD which we are sending off to radio stations, concert and festival bookers and key supporters of the band.

In February we all met on a chilly Sunday at the fabulous Penpont house near Brecon in order for photographer Darren Griffiths-Warner to get some great pictures of as – as you now see adorning the refreshed website and will also see soon on new posters and flyers. Later that same day we started work in Alan’s home studio on recording our demos.

In March we were thrilled to have the opportunity to make our first festival appearance of the year in the splendid and dramatic location of Inis Mor, the Aran Isles off the coast of Ireland. The Arainn Ceilteach festival had some terrific music from our Irish musical heroes such as Donal Lunny with his new trio and box whizz Mairtin O’Connor. Apart from ourselves Lleuwen Steffan and Derek Smith’s new band Glasnant were there flying the flag for Wales. The welcome was equal to any we have ever experienced in Ireland, the craic was mighty and the response to our music truly heartening.

Now we are poised to play our first festivals in Wales. We are really excited to return to the Tredegar House Folk Festival on Saturday 9th May, where we shall be sharing the stage with Meg Cox and her band and the Canadian outfit Gordie MacKeeman and his Rhythym Boys – it’s going to be a great night! Next up we shall perform at the Global Village Festival in Merthyr Tydfil. Full information on all of our gigs can be found on this website (click here...).

You will be able to catch us later in the summer at Llangollen International Eisteddfod and the Village Pump Folk Festival in Westbury Wiltshire and our festival appearances in the UK this year conclude with our return to Bromyard Folk Festival in September.

The band are available to book for your event and also to provide you with a Twmpath Dawns for your birthday, wedding or other special occasion – just contact geoff@ayyf.co.uk to start the process.

We look forward to seeing you soon!