Tiree Music Festival 2018

Tiree Music Festival’s 9th celebration began on Friday the 13th July with beautiful sunny warm weather – an excellent way to kick off the weekends festivities.

While the main events taking place at An Talla attracted around 2,000 individuals from across the globe, it wasn’t only the festival grounds that were bustling with activity. Everyone at Taigh a Rudha were thrilled on Sunday afternoon when some of the artists generously took the time to visit and play for both the residents and the staff.

Although the sun had eventually dissappeared behind a humid mist on Saturday, the atmosphere around the festival site was buzzing with positivity and the attendees were full of enthusiasm and energy despite the weather.

While TMF gives visitors a reason to visit the island for such an expansive event, it also presents opportunities to the locals that they previously may not have had the chance to experience. It was Clare Jones’ first visit to TMF since it debuted nine years ago and she was impressed by the family friendly atmosphere of the event. Rachel Gwilym, a regular to the festival, was able to seize an opportunity to test out her idea for the Tiree Story Tent and had plenty of positive comments regarding the festival in general;

“I think TMF brings musicians to the island that the young people here perhaps wouldn’t hear normally. It gives the local children a chance to engage in an event that’s really happening here, so they can sort of showcase their own environment somehow and I think it’s a safe place to have a holiday at home. I come because the children really love it and I like the music; this year I’ve really enjoyed having this opportunity with the story tent to develop my own skills at home, in my own setting. My favourite thing so far this year is been having the tent; it’s given me an opportunity to engage with the children and quite a lot of the adults. I’ve had a lot of people in. I’ve really enjoyed doing the meditation; it’s created this very grounding experience.”

Despite being exposed to the outdoor elements, the wonderful entertainment lined up for the ‘Elevate stage’ was organised by Jamie MacDonald who said,

“I had a great opportunity in programming the elevate stage. Getting to work at an event of this scale has helped to further my music career.”

It provided Catriona Spink a chance to sell her Whalesong products. “It’s been good,” she started, taking a chance to move her stall outside with the sunny break in the weather, “It’s lovely to come down to meet previous customers who bought merchandise the year before. When I walk in, it’s all smiling faces, great music and a casual atmosphere.”

Inside the Big Top tent, in the audience and enjoying the performance on stage, Chalky said,

“It’s great. Despite the weather everyone’s enjoying themselves; it’s great to see so many of the islanders at the event. Tiree Song Book was brilliant – my first time hearing them. It’s great to see Tiree bands on stage each day and the food has been amazing.”

Mido and Dave had travelled all the way from Saudi Arabia to visit Scotland, and were making use of the campsite provided by TMF and said,

“This is our fourth time on Tiree, and TMF is the only music festival we visit. The beaches are amazing and the locals here are very kind. The festival has a great family atmosphere.”

After performing on stage earlier in the day, Eilidh MacFadyen said,

“It’s a nice experience to come home to play to familiar faces; both locals and the regular visitors to TMF.”

TMF gave Cúram the chance to raise funds with two separate raffles; they raised £541 from the raffle for the 1 Gallon of Whisky kindly donated by the Scarinish Hotel, which went to A. Mitchell, Milton while ‘Tiree Ted’, an enthusiastic teddy bear whose favourite band is Trail West, raised a total of £129 and found a loving home with Martha Campbell.

From the displays of the impressive fire show by the Delighters from Edinburgh, the circus skill workshops with Polly and Duncan and a variety of food stands, Tiree Music Festival 2018 may have finished in a downpour of rain but its high spirits and organisation offered a range of positive and unforgettable experiences to the islanders, our regular visitors and newcomers.

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