Archives for October 2011

Shereen: Favourite show of the year

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Shereen Nanjiani Shereen Nanjiani | 12:58 UK time, Monday, 31 October 2011

Today's show was my favourite of the year. The last Sunday in October is always my favourite show of the year- an extra hour in bed!

It seemed to do my panel the world of good too. Severin Carrell, David Torrance, and Lucy Adams started arguing the minute they arrived in the building and didn't stop when we went on air. David Torrance was desperate to talk about the impending Scottish Tory leadership election (isn't he always?) and gave his tip for Friday's winner. Everyone got stuck in to the Occupy protests at St Paul's, debating whether it's hypocritical to call yourself anti-capitalist and get your coffee from Starbucks and whether the church is being hypocritical in wanting to move them on.

Eamonn Holmes's suggestion to a rape victim that she should have got a taxi home got steam coming out of Lucy's ears. There then followed a heated discussion on the mixed messages about rape.

Crime writer Val McDermid was this week's special guest and was great fun talking about her childhood, learning to talk posh, and upsetting the lesbian "sisterhood".

Finally, a lovely moment to end on, the Real life Slum Dog Millionaire talking about how he's going to spend the money he won on the Indian version of Who Wants to be a Millionaire. Heart warming stuff. Enjoy!

Listen to Shereen Sunday at 0900 and available on iPlayer.

Is a Degree Worth the Paper that It is Written On

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 09:29 UK time, Monday, 31 October 2011

In 'Is a Degree worth the Paper It's Written On' sixth year school pupil Robin Drummond is asking what exactly he should expect to get out of university, and whether it will be worth it. Here, Edinburgh University English Student Calum Leslie, who Robin went to for advice on the matter, reflects on what he thinks he's getting out of his degree.

Calum Leslie

Picture the scene. It's a month since you've left university with a degree in English Literature. You're at work in your new job. Your boss asks you to solve a problem for him. You agree. It's unlikely, no matter how good you are at English (unless perhaps you're an English teacher), that you'll be able to do it by analysing a metaphor, a simile or word choice. But that's what you've spent the last four years of your life doing. Fear hits you: your degree is useless in the 'real world.'

I've had this picture painted to me several times since I started studying English at the University of Edinburgh. I've been asked what I think I'll get out of reading books and poems that will help me get on in life once I've completed my four years. In truth the chances are that I'll not be doing much of that textual analysis stuff in the work I want to go in to; but for me it doesn't mean that what I've been doing at university has no use.

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Sunday Morning

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Cathy MacDonald Cathy MacDonald | 07:00 UK time, Sunday, 30 October 2011

I really do have the "perfect" first hour guest on my Sunday Morning Show this week - Mark Nevin from late eighties, Scottish band, Fairground Attraction whose hit song Perfect earned them a Brit award. Now a trained psychotherapist he talks about his faith and explains how that too, changed over the course of his life.

It's National Adoption Week and it was great to hear the remarkable story of Christine Lawson who adopted not one, but three siblings. We hear about the work of the British Association of Adoption and Fostering and one woman who was adopted as a 5 month old baby.

Muslims around the world are celebrating the Hajj - the annual pilgrimage to Mecca and I'll be talking to someone who has made that remarkable journey twice already.

Frank Furedi talks about his latest book - On Tolerance and explains it's relevance in today's increasingly intolerant society

And we hear about the origins of the Glasgow St Mungo singers who celebrate their 40th anniversary this weekend.

Just some of this weeks moral and ethical debates and a great mix of music, that's Sunday Morning with me, Cathy Macdonald, here on BBC Radio Scotland.

MacAulay and Co. Horror Week Highlights

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Simone Byrne Simone Byrne | 17:00 UK time, Friday, 28 October 2011

Listen to Fred's Horror week guide to having a traditional, fun, family Halloween - there are tips on everything from carving pumpkins to writing ghost stories ...and of course your ideas for the weekend are included in the What's on Guide. Happy Halloween!!

Halloween on BBC Radio Scotland

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Take the Floor events guide w/c 28 Oct

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 16:00 UK time, Friday, 28 October 2011


Inverness - Cauldeen School - Inverness Branch of the RSCDC dance featuring Alasdair MacLeod and his band


Perth - Salutation Hotel - Neil Hardie and his Band - 9.00pm

Dundee, Wighton Centre, Dundee Wellgate Library - Harp - 2pm

Neilston, East Renfrewshire - Crofthead Hall - Mary Jean Lewis - Tickets £10

Dundee - Tealing Hall - Angus Reel and Strathspey Society - 7.30pm

Beauly - Phipps Hall - Fergie MacDonald

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Newsweek Scotland: Terrifying Tales

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Derek Bateman Derek Bateman | 16:00 UK time, Friday, 28 October 2011

Are your knees still knocking? Forget Hallowe'en, if you read the Herald and the Scotsman this week you were confronted by a raft of headlines about UK Government lawyers who had discovered that an independent Scotland would be thrown out of the EU and would have to re-apply with appalling consequences. Scotland wouldn't be part of the UK/Ireland free travel zone because we would have to join the Schengen Agreement guaranteeing free movement for all European citizens so border controls would be needed between Scotland and England. (Think the Great Escape) We would be forced into the toxic Euro. Oh, and we are £41billion in debt to London. When you stack it all up you have to wonder if the Scots are a nation of bird brains to vote for Alex Salmond. Clearly WE ARE DOOMED.

Most of this came from legal papers "leaked" to journalists. Who would do such a thing? After all with a quad of ministers meeting weekly to discuss ways of tackling the SNP's referendum, it might look as if they were responsible for leaking government advice, something that shouldn't happen. The apparently uncritical tone of the reporting failed to lift the taint of suspicion. I'm sure we'll get a public statement of clarification from HMG next week.

Anyway in the relentless search for balance Newsweek is speaking to a leading academic with expertise in this field, Professor Michael Keating of Aberdeen University to see if he can shed light on what would really happen to EU membership after an independence vote. We hear from an SNP MEP and challenge him on just how "seamless" EU membership would really be and we get our economics guru Douglas Fraser to explain the £41 BILLION DEFICIT. He's not really a guru, I just can't remember his proper title.

We debate the Scottish Labour leadership...Yes, it's still dragging on and No, I've no idea when it will be over. We look at ethics in the City of London (seriously), Ireland, Italy and Greece and ask Angus Macleod to review the papers. Join me at 8...if your knees have stopped knocking.

It's rare to be alehv

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Ricky Ross Ricky Ross | 14:45 UK time, Thursday, 27 October 2011

So spake the wise St, not that one...Dundee's patron saint. Created by Andy Pell his songs celebrate the greatness of being in the moment and , well....being from Dundee. I tell you all of this by way of introducing the three people who fill my thoughts this week: Ally McErlaine, Steve Earle and Ryan Adams. Steve and Ryan are people who have 'lived a bit' and their own stories will unfold later in the series after I speak to them both this week. Two years ago not even Ally himself or his wife Shelley would have predicted he would be here to talk about his new album.

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BBC Radio Scotland TV Promos

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Alan Braidwood Alan Braidwood | 11:01 UK time, Thursday, 27 October 2011

There are two new BBC Radio Scotland TV promos currently doing the rounds. They are called 'Radio That Speaks With You' and both of them are here to watch.

The Book Cafe - Van Gogh and Million for a Morgue

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Clare English Clare English | 09:35 UK time, Thursday, 27 October 2011

The books stacked on The Book Café shelves this week were, as ever wide-ranging. Poetry was represented by a comprehensive new collection of Sorley MacLean's work in Gaelic and English (NB a whole raft of BBC programmes have been celebrating the centenary of his birth including Out of Doors). We also had poet turned novelist Christine de Luca on the show to explain why she'd just written a novel. (AND THEN FOREVER)

We kicked off with a vast tome of a book detailing the life and times of Van Gogh; it was written by two Pulitzer prize winning authors, Stephen Naifeh and Gregory White Smith. The jacket promises much, with one curator bigging it up as "The definitive biography for decades to come".

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Cook-Off at the Good Food Show

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Alan Braidwood Alan Braidwood | 13:21 UK time, Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Kaye Adams, John Beattie and Gary Robertson took part in a cook-off at the Good Food Show which was judged by Nick Nairn. Watch the video below to discover the winner!

Celtic Connections launch concert

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 21:15 UK time, Tuesday, 25 October 2011

The launch of the 2012 Celtic Connections festival programme took place tonight at BBC Pacific Quay and was broadcast live on Mary Ann Kennedy's Global Gathering programme with guests Donald Shaw, The Ross Ainslie Trio, Rab Noakes, Chasing Owls and Sol i Serena.

Here are a few photos from the event, there is a full gallery available on the BBC Celtic Connections 2012 pages.

Mary Ann Kennedy in conversation with Festival Director Donald Shaw

Mary Ann Kennedy in conversation with Festival Director Donald Shaw

The Ross Ainslie Trio

The Ross Ainslie Trio

Ross Ainslie

Ross Ainslie

Chasing Owls

Chasing Owls

Chasing Owls

Chasing Owls

Rab Noakes

Rab Noakes

Sol i Serena

Sol i Serena

Sol i Serena

Sol i Serena

Tom's Top Tales: from the Roman fort

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Tom Morton Tom Morton | 17:05 UK time, Tuesday, 25 October 2011

A top tale showing you can meet the unlikeliest of people, in the unlikeliest of places...

Good afternoon, Zetlandic zeitgeistmeister of bronchial bravura, and welcome back to the airwaves, from a cloud-capped Newport-on-Tay.

Last week, I spent a few days in Northumberland; I kept seeing signs urging me to convert to an American sect - "Be Amish" - but when I followed them I ended up at a museum!

Anyway, the previous day, I visited some Hadrian's Wall sites, including Housesteads Roman fort.

In case you don't know it, the fort is about a mile up-hill from the car park (Bad planning, Romans!), and when I reached it, I saw a young man with a weird hairstyle. Just as I was thinking how out of place he looked, another youth, similarly coiffed, hove into view. I couldn't resist asking if I could take their photo, and they readily agreed, even posing for me like professionals. It turned out that they were twins from Ireland, called Edward and John.... I wonder if I'll ever hear of them again - I attach some of the photos.



Al Issner

Celtic Connections 2012

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 12:18 UK time, Tuesday, 25 October 2011

I'm just back from the media launch for the 2012 Celtic Connections Festival which sweeps away the post Christmas blues and brightens up January/February. This, the 19th Festival, kicks off on the 19th January and runs until the 5th February.

The official launch of Celtic Connections takes place tonight, here at BBC Pacific Quay and will be broadcast live on Mary Ann Kennedy's Global Gathering with live guests Sol I Serena, Chasing Owls, Rab Noakes and The Ross Ainslie Trio as well as exclusive tracks from Rachel Sermanni and The BBC Radio Scotland Young Trad finalists. We're filming and photographing the event for the BBC Celtic Connections website.

Sol i Serena rehearsing

Sol i Serena rehearsing

Chasing Owls and Ross Ainslie rehearsing for tonight's show.

Chasing Owls and Ross Ainslie rehearsing for tonight's show.

As in previous years BBC Radio Scotland is hosting a number of live shows from Pacific Quay during Celtic Connections, these shows are free but are ticketed:

Tues 24 and 31 January: Mary Ann Kennedy's Global Gathering

Thurs 26 January and 2 February: Travelling Folk

Fri 27 January and 3 February: Another Country with Ricky Ross

Sat 4 February - Take the Floor from the Pearce Institute's MacLeod Hall

Sun 5 February - BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year live from City Halls.

Ricky Ross will also be presenting two shows for BBC Radio 2 on Wednesday 2 and 9 February.

Mary Ann Kennedy will be presenting four Late Night Sessions for BBC Radio 3 broadcasting from the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall's Exibition Hall between Tues 31 January and Fri 2 February.

Finally, for BBC Scotland TV, our annual event recorded at the Old Fruitmarket takes place on the 23 January and will be broadcast at a later date.

Of course there are many many excellent concerts, collaborations and even musical theatre during the course of the three week festival. A few of the highlights include a Woody Guthrie centennial celebration; a tribute to Gerry Rafferty; a 40th anniversary concert marking 40 years since the conclusion of the historic Upper Clyde Shipbuilder Work In; Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, a Big Dish reunion; Transatlantic Sessions...

The full programme is now available on the Celtic Connections website.

We'll be launching our 2012 edition of BBC Celtic Connections shortly with footage from tonight's live Pacific Quay event and come January we'll have video, photographs and reviews from many of the Celtic Connections performances.

Pheasant casserole and spiced pumpkin soup

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 11:00 UK time, Monday, 24 October 2011

Here are the latest recipes from the special BBC Good Food show edition of the Kitchen Cafe, for you to download, print and keep:

Christopher Trotter's pheasant casserole

Tony Singh's spiced pumpkin soup

The Kitchen Cafe, BBC Radio Scotland every Wednesday at 1315.

Take the Floor events guide w/c 24 Oct

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 10:31 UK time, Monday, 24 October 2011


Lanark - Ravenstruther Hotel - Alan Gardiner Trio

Fintry - Fintry Sports Club - David Oswald Scottish Dance Band

St Andrews, SCD Club - live music from Dierdre Adamson on Accordion (learners welcome) - 7:30pm

Carnoustie - Royal British Legion - RSCDS Class

Kilry - Kilry Hall - Social/Old Time/Ceilidh Class - 7.30pm

Glenfarg - The Glenfarg Hotel - Landermason

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Celebrating Live Music

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Ricky Ross Ricky Ross | 20:05 UK time, Friday, 21 October 2011

This Friday we celebrate live music. For the next few months Scotland will host an amazing line-up of visitors with whom the listener to Another Country will be very familiar. First up we need to mention this ensemble.....

Steve Earle is coming to Glasgow next week. On Friday's show we'll bring you some very interesting news about Steve, Glasgow and The AC. Here's the official blurb...

"After many years of touring solo and acoustically worldwide, Earle will be touring in support of the new album with his electric live band, The Dukes (and Duchesses) featuring Allison Moorer."

Also coming to these parts: Ryan Adams (Edinburgh), Glen Campbell (All of Scotland), Alison Krauss (Glasgow), Wilco (Glasgow) and our old friend Diana Jones who is coming in to Glasgow to play at the Fallen Angels Club at the CCA on 29th October. Also we're getting very excited about Other Lives visit to The Captain's Rest next Tuesday...

However, we will also pause to celebrate this album - Highway 61 Revisited is a landmark record in so many ways. Firstly seeks to beautifully upset the delicate balance of Bringing It All Back's home acoustic/electric two sides by dispensing with any attempt to please the folkies. For that reason alone it is worth celebrating Bob Backwards all year. Great folk music listens, adapts and changes. But sadly, in my experience, folk purists often remember the first two rules but forget to change and round on those who do. Rather like the church or the aristocracy, folk music has a habit of pointless resistance to change. At its best of course it is a dynamic force for good but sadly when it comes to poker-faced earnest devotees of folk who harangued Dylan for 'going electric' I'm on the side of Bob every time. So let's go with him and embrace the shock of the new. One of the things I love about this period is that one is often tempted to assume in these God-awful X Factored times that anything massively popular has to be bad. With Highway 61 and Like A Rolling Stone Bob Dylan hit the Zeitgeist perfectly. He made brilliant art and blistering pop music that people bought in droves. It's worth remembering it can be done.

Finally on a Friday when we celebrate so much live music it is hugely significant that this Dylan album hosted three out of fourteen songs Bob played live a couple of weeks ago in Glasgow. Highway 61, Like A Rolling Stone and Desolation Row. Pretty good huh!

Newsweek Scotland: Friendships, dictators, oil and the Union

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Derek Bateman Derek Bateman | 13:50 UK time, Friday, 21 October 2011

There must be an irony in the loss of the Defence Secretary in the same week as the death of Muammar Gaddafi, the man he set out to topple. You have to think it's ironic too that Abdel Basset al Megrahi has, it seems, outlived the Colonel. Such is the serendipity of life and we'll touch on all this with Professor David Anderson and Trevor Royle and ask if the Libyan incursion is another step in what became the Tony Blair doctrine on humanitarian intervention.

At least the Coalition can claim UN backing for a joint NATO operation without boots on the ground - or at least a few that were very light on their feet - AND a successful operation. Meanwhile how is the rest of the Arab spring going along? Tunisia has its first free elections this weekend.

We're also chasing the idea that Liam Fox might be on to something by having his friend and personal adviser close to hand. Put the lack of security clearance and dubious funding to one side and ask if it is so unreasonable to have someone you trust personally - as opposed to professionally, as in the Civil Service - working beside you in what can be a lonely place in politics. Doesn't that help keep you grounded and in the real world rather than the rarefied remoteness of government? Other countries don't seem to have our reservations.

There won't be many reservations about the SNP conference in Inverness, where pretty much everything of importance seems to be going their way. Even the Westminster government handed them a bonus by announcing the closure of the carbon capture project at Longannet on the eve of conference! Then they complain the Nats are always expressing grievance... Alex Salmond couldn't have orchestrated it better what with the BP investment in oil fields west of Shetland promising oil until at least 2050.

We'll discuss politics and ask if devo max which seems to appeal to the majority in Scotland so far, would go down well in England. If the Scots stay in the Union, our cousins in the south are entitled to their tuppence worth and might say: Hang on, Scotland gets all it wants AND the benefits of Union.

All this and Angus Macleod with the papers. Join me tomorrow at 8.

Out of Doors: The works of Sorley MacLean

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Helen Needham | 13:22 UK time, Friday, 21 October 2011

Sorley MacLean is widely regarded as the greatest Gaelic poet of all time. He was born on the island of Raasay into a large family who lived in a tiny house in the village of Oskaig.

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Photographs of BBC Radio Scotland at the Good Food Show

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Alan Braidwood Alan Braidwood | 13:08 UK time, Friday, 21 October 2011

Here's a few pics I snapped at the Good Food Show today during MacAulay And Co.

Clockwise from Top Left: John Beattie, Nick Nairn, Kaye Adams and Gary Robertson take part in the BBC Radio Scotland Cook-Off. Olives and Peppers. Kitchen Cafe presenter Pennie Latin with producer Dan Holland. John Beattie offering the audience the results of his Cook-Off. The Masterchef restaurant. A member of MacAulay and Co's audience gets in the mood! Tasty French breads. Kaye Adams in full Cook-Off stride! Pastries. How do you like your eggs?

Clockwise from Top Left: John Beattie, Nick Nairn, Kaye Adams and Gary Robertson take part in the BBC Radio Scotland Cook-Off. Olives and Peppers. Kitchen Cafe presenter Pennie Latin with producer Dan Holland. John Beattie offering the audience the results of his Cook-Off. The Masterchef restaurant. A member of MacAulay and Co's audience gets in the mood! Tasty French breads. Kaye Adams in full Cook-Off stride! Pastries. How do you like your eggs?

Sunday Morning With Cathy Macdonald

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Cathy MacDonald Cathy MacDonald | 12:30 UK time, Friday, 21 October 2011

My guest in the first hour of this week's Sunday Morning With is an extremely fascinating man; Paul Baker Hernandez. A former Trappist monk, he took his Chilean wife's family name to preserve the bloodline. He spent time in a monastery just outside Edinburgh and is also a gifted musician as well as a human rights and ecological activist. Currently living in Nicaragua, he dedicates his time to causes that are close to his heart. He built his own guitar - which he brought into the studio - and it didn't take much persuasion from me to get him to play it.

Did you know that October was Black History Month? With that in mind we'll be hearing about a new biography on another civil rights activist - the late Martin Luther King Jr.

Margaret Gillies Brown

Margaret Gillies Brown

Listener Margaret Gillies Brown talks about the time she spent as a young wife and mother in Alberta over 50 years ago.... and we're also asking whether the old fashioned art of "courting" is making a comeback, thereby challenging the role that digital technology plays in the dating game.

And with Spiritualism - the eighth largest religion in the world - attracting scepticism and interest in equal measure we hear both sides of the argument.

Just some of this week's moral and ethical debates - and a great mix of music - this Sunday morning. And if you'd like to get in touch, you can email me at

BBC Radio Scotland at the Good Food Show, 2011

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Alan Braidwood Alan Braidwood | 15:48 UK time, Thursday, 20 October 2011

You can expect to hear a number of programmes heading into the SECC in Glasgow over the next few days for the Good Food Show. Some shows and presenters will be broadcasting live from the event or recording bits and pieces to go out over the next few days.

There's a full list below, but if you like your food you may be interested in the BBC Radio Scotland Cook-Off which will start things off. You can hear it on MacAulay And Co (Friday 21 October). The Cook-Off is between Kaye Adams, John Beattie, Fred MacAulay, Gary Robertson and will be conducted under the beady eye of Nick Nairn.

If you haven't come across it before now, there also a big archive of free Kitchen Cafe recipes from some of Scotland's top chefs and they are all available to be downloaded.

Friday 21 October
MacAulay And Co featuring Fred, Kaye, John and Gary in the BBC Radio Scotland Cook-Off.

Saturday 22 October
Off The Ball

Sunday 23 October
The Beechgrove Potting Shed with Theresa Talbot
The Kitchen Cafe

Tuesday 25 October
The Culture Cafe

Good Garden Stuff!

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Richard Cadey Richard Cadey | 13:00 UK time, Thursday, 20 October 2011

It's been a while coming, but at last it is here - the final round-up of my thoughts concerning my foray into the murky, muddy world of gardening.

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Tuna and Mango Salad/ Luxury Fish Pie

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Alan Braidwood Alan Braidwood | 14:46 UK time, Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Here's the latest recipes from The Kitchen Cafe, to be downloaded, kept and printed. You might recognise them from a previous programme, but if not, here's a chance to try them out.

Download Steven Devlin's Tuna and Mango salad recipe

Download Davey Aspin's Luxury Fish Pie recipe

The Kitchen Cafe is on BBC Radio Scotland, every Wednesday 1315-1400.

Introducing the Stephen Duffy Music Collection

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Nick Dempsey Nick Dempsey | 12:44 UK time, Sunday, 16 October 2011

Stephen Duffy's new addition means we now have a trio of Collections in the BBC Music Showcase.

The BBC Music Showcase is a central collection point for the best music coverage from across the BBC. It's currently in Alpha, which means it's even more in a testing phase than if it was a Beta, logically enough. Still, it's quite a groovy way of browsing your way through a selection of clips on the web.

Stephen's reflects his dual personality: jazz presenter by night, BBC SSO publicist by day - and therefore contains a selection of jazz and classical clips.

We'll be adding to all three collections on a regular basis, so stay tuned.

MacAulay and Co. Weekend Events Guide: 14 October 2011

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Simone Byrne Simone Byrne | 14:05 UK time, Friday, 14 October 2011

Listen to a clip of this week's MacAulay and Co. what's on guide, which features your five word weekend suggestions and Fred's list of events.

07 October - 16 October
Cowalfest Walking and Arts Festival - Cowal
Enjoy walks for all ages and abilities across Cowal. A wide range of walks offering something for all ages, all levels of fitness and interests whether you're a hardy hill walker, a heritage buff, a family group, a wildlife fan or someone who likes to be busy and learn new skills on holiday.

13 October -16 October
West Port Book Festival - Edinburgh
A four-day celebration of one of Edinburgh's quirkiest areas and a haven for bibliomaniacs. The programme includes everything from bookbinding workshops to a World War II tea dance, with Gaelic fiction showcases, pub sessions, flash fiction, audio trails, discussions on copyright and plenty of cake along the way.

14 October - 16 October
Scotland's Boat Show - Kip Marina, Inverkip.
Now in its 25th year, the boat show is the biggest yet, There are also 35 trade exhibitors, a car show, continental market, live music and much more.

16 October
Storks Beak School of Historical Swordsmanship - Edinburgh
Techniques based on historical combat manuals from the 15th to early 20th centuries, exploring swordsmanship as a martial discipline (not a sport or part of an historical re-enactment... but there will be tea.)

To search for events in your area, and visit the BBC Things to Do website.

Take the Floor events guide w/c 14 October

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 12:02 UK time, Friday, 14 October 2011

Friday 14th October

Scottish Autism Concert - Bellevue Rendezvous, Bring in the Spirit, Gordeanna McCulloch - £12 - St Andrews In The Square

Weekend School - RSCDS (Hamilton & Clydesdale Branch) - Kinross

Dance - David Cunningham and his Band - Dufftown Scottish Country Dance Club

Ceilidh - Clydebank & District Highland Association - Napier Hall - 7.30 - £5

Foulden - Village Hall - Gordon Clark - 8pm - £5

Aboyne - Victory Hall - Garioch Blend - 8pm - £4

Coalburn - Miners Welfare Club - Willie Macfarlane - 7.30pm

Irvine - Volunteer Rooms - Johnnie Duncan - 7.30 - £7

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Nae Luck

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Ricky Ross Ricky Ross | 15:00 UK time, Thursday, 13 October 2011

Nae Luck

That's what they say when a rival team beats yours up here north of Hadrian's wall. It's the commiseration offered under your breath when the ostentatious Range-Rover-driving neighbour scrapes the chariot off the gate-post and, frankly, it's the best I can offer to all this Friday's artists whose name doesn't start with Ro...and end in immerman.

If you have a new record out this week, good luck. But heck I can only wish for you that it had been a few weeks back when we had Self Portrait, or months ago when we were exploring Saved. Pity for you that it hasn't coincided with Under The Red Sky - we'd have had all the time in the world then. But for the next three weeks we arrive at the reasons why Another Country's year-long pilgrimage would ever take place. Three great landmark albums by the towering figure of modern folk, rock and roots music....let's call it for what it is...Americana. For me Bob Dylan defines the genre and if you ever had any doubt just witness what the ripe trees of Autumn are bestowing upon us: Blonde On Blonde, Highway 61 Revisited and Bringing It All Back Home.

Bob Dylan's Blonde on Blonde, Highway 61 Revisted and Bringing it all Back Home album covers.

This is not just a purple patch of records my friend, this is a man writing a new rule book on popular music. These albums contained the blueprints to songs, styles, attitudes and sonic sculpture bands and artists would try to emulate over the next 40 years. Some would hope the magic would brush off on them if they copied their stylings and titles...the guilty parties know who they are... some would hope to emulate the ambition, but no one in the succeeding decades has come close to the colossal impact of these records. Perhaps it was the times: The Beach Boys were re writing another script, The Beatles were leading a popular art revolution and year on year every thing we thought was right was being turned on its head. Not a bad time to be alive. In the middle of it all a man who had rightly been embraced by the folk community was showing them he no longer wished to be contained. Nothing would be the same again. It's special stuff......and over these next few weeks we'll try to make it feel that way.

But there's always more:

New and wonderful things from Tom Waits, hidden gems from The Dixie Chicks and dark beauty stuff from the album I'm listening to now; Bonnie Prince Billy.

Richard has also found you some great music from Kitty Wells and Loretta Lynn which might well make our good friend Stevie think.....Heck, I've opened my eyes, it is country music and I like it. Decide for yourself on Friday at five past eight on BBC Radio Scotland.

Thanks to everyone who has encouraged continued Blog-Roll.......It carries on unfettered. I am also sitting in for the great Bob Harris on his late Saturday/early Sunday show on BBC Radio 2 for the next 5 weeks. It's such a pleasure and I have some great if you can't sleep Saturday, you know where to find me.

Join me on Friday if you can.

Nicola Benedetti on Classics Unwrapped

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Dominic Jewel | 13:00 UK time, Thursday, 13 October 2011

Dominic Jewel is the Producer of BBC Radio Scotland's Classics Unwrapped.

It's not every international violin superstar who comes into the studio and puts down their half-eaten bacon sandwich to give you a big hug and ask how you are - but Nicola Benedetti is not just any violin superstar. Her immense talent is genuinely matched by a generosity of spirit that certain classical divas could learn a lot from!

Straight out of the GMS studio where she'd been talking live about her work in Raploch, in the middle of a round of quick-fire promotional interviews for her new album, whilst learning new repertoire for a season of concerts and at the same time putting in a visit to her family, Nicola still made the time to give Classics Unwrapped an unhurried hour and a half to chew the fat, play some music, and have a proper catch-up.

Jamie MacDougall was one of the first broadcasters to pick up Nicola's story - long before she won the Young Musician competition - and over the years he and she as you might imagine have got to know each other pretty well, bumping into each other at concert halls and festivals. It had been a couple of years though since they'd talked at length on the programme - so there was a lot to catch up about. In the end I had to actually tell them to stop - they'd have kept going for hours!

The two of them covered everything from the pressures of life at music school to Italian taxi drivers - and I'm sure Nicola's record company will be pleased to hear that they did remember (well, when prompted, anyway) to talk about the new album a bit, too.

By the way Nicola, you forgot to finish your bacon sandwich- but rest assured it found a good home (we have to keep Jamie fed somehow!)

Listen to Nicola Benedetti on Classics Unwrapped on Sunday 16 October at 1705.

Cafe Highlights: Liz Lochhead, Deborah Bull, The Dead Man's Waltz

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Clare English Clare English | 09:20 UK time, Thursday, 13 October 2011

I'm being totally honest - I have yet to leave the studio after presenting an edition of the Book Café feeling underwhelmed by the writers and poets I've just interviewed. Although you can't possibly like all the books and poetry collections equally, you always find something about the subject matter or more often than not, the interviewee, that makes you think that journalism is the perfect profession for an inquisitive type. I heard Jeremy Paxman being interviewed on BBC Five Live the other day and he said he loved working as Newsnight anchor because he got the chance to put questions to the people that matter and learn new things. Hear hear!

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Mary Contini's oven baked lamb chops

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 13:00 UK time, Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Here's the latest recipe from The Kitchen Cafe, by chef Mary Contini, to be downloaded, kept and printed.

Download the recipe.

The Kitchen Cafe is on BBC Radio Scotland every Wednesday, 1315-1400.

Pocket legends from Peggy, Ella, Glenn, Frank and Ray

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 10:30 UK time, Wednesday, 12 October 2011

We've added a few more Pocket Legends to The Jazz House online archive...

Take the Floor events guide w/c 7 October

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 16:16 UK time, Friday, 7 October 2011


Edinburgh - Lauriston Hall - Ceilidh with Ken Gourlay and Willie Fraser


Dundee, Wighton Centre, Dundee Wellgate Library - Harp - 2pm

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Sunday Morning with Cathy Macdonald

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Cathy MacDonald Cathy MacDonald | 15:29 UK time, Friday, 7 October 2011

Good to be back with you for Sunday Morning With Cathy Macdonald, where this week I'm delighted to be spending the first hour of the show in discussion with fellow Lewisman and former Principal of the Free Church College in Edinburgh - Professor Donald MacLeod.

A year on from the tragic death of aid worker Linda Norgrove we'll be hearing about how the work of the Foundation which was established in her memory has been helping the women and children of Afghanistan

With Quaker Week drawing to a close, Anna Magnusson has been finding out how one Scottish Quaker family has been taking their responsibility towards the environment to challenging lengths, by trying to live a low-carbon, sustainable life

Blair Robertson gives us his take on the outdoor production of The Passion Play in Glasgow's George Square, and ahead of her Gospel Outreach Tour, sixties singing sensation Helen Shapiro - remember Walking Back to Happiness" - tells me what it was like to have The Beatles supporting HER on tour in the early days. All "With a Little Help From My Friends"!!

All this and some great music, hope you can join me.

MacAulay and Co. Weekend Events Guide: 07 October 2011

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Simone Byrne Simone Byrne | 14:30 UK time, Friday, 7 October 2011

If you're weekend diary isn't quite full yet, then Fred offers a few suggestions to fill it up over the weekend... and if you're still stuck why not check out the BBC Things to Do website.

O8 October
Myths and Legends Walk
Be amazed at the fascinating natural world that lies within the estate. Join Ranger Chris on this two hour guided walk and discover the folklore associated with the local flora and fauna.

09 October
Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championships 2011
Scottish Highland village of Carrbridge plays host to this annual porridge making event, a sure fire way to start your day...

01 October - 16 October
Highland Archaeology Festival
A fortnight of investigations into Scotland's ancient past, including walks, practical demonstrations, insights into recent research, historical talks, a weekend conference for experts and enthusiasts and plenty of chances for visitors to get their hands dirty.

08 October - 15 October
Crieff and Strathearn Drovers' Tryst
Annual festival, marking the historical journey made by generations of Scots to bring their cattle to Michaelmas trading fair in Crieff. Opportunities to scale the local Munros, a creepy crawly trail, plus social and arts events, exhibitions and the Hairy Coo mountain bike challenge.

09 October
Making Memories Workshop, National Museum of Scotland
Join Tales of Things at the Museum to celebrate Scotland's history through archive films as part of a new series on BBC2 - Reel History of Britain.

There's gold in them hills

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Ricky Ross Ricky Ross | 11:10 UK time, Friday, 7 October 2011

What's your heart's desire?

I'm sitting writing this on a wind torn Wednesday night listening to my guest for this Friday, Israel Nash Gripka. I like Israel's music a lot and I realise I really didn't know much about him. But over the last few years I've read lots of artists stories that have followed similar themes. In Israel's case it's the Catskill mountains but in others there's a back ground of snow, or mountains or woods. Many favourites we've played have 'holed up in a cabin' or a basement or a barn......and come out with an album. I can think of Bon Iver, Grizzly Bear and ....well, add some more.

Heart's desire? When I read about Israel retreating to the big old barn in the Catskills I did have the first sproutings of the horns of jealousy. Maybe it's age, maybe it's remembering the excitement of early recording sessions but there is an attractive romance about being lost in the woods and making music.

We'll hear more from Israel about that magical month on Friday. He's going to be live in studio one only an hour or so before he plays his gig at Glasgow Americana Festival. Exciting huh?

Bob Dylan - John Wesley Harding

We'll also be listening to John Wesley Harding and working out where Bob Dylan's head was in 1967.......Looking for some comments on the facebook page too.

We will also be playing the music of this man.

Jim Lauderdale

Jim Lauderdale

And yes, you're's about time we welcomed Jim Lauderdale. He'll be in Scotland soon too and his new album sounds very good from what I've heard so far.

Willy Vlautin mentioned Tom Russell and we thought it was about time we gave Tom's music a spin. Not least because he and Ry Cooder are asking some big American questions. We'll also have some comment from the pen of Woody Guthrie and his grand daughter Sarah Lee. It all connects you know. And it all starts on Friday at five past eight on BBC Radio Scotland. Join me if you can.

Sundays continue but without me for a while. The wonderful Cathy Macdonald is your host for the next couple of months and I'll be joining in come Christmas. I have no idea if anyone is reading this blog any more so perhaps you'd be good enough to let me know here or on Facebook if it's important to you or not.

A sly smoke...

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Tom Morton Tom Morton | 16:31 UK time, Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Nipping outside for a happens everywhere. But in Belgium, there are plans to make government employees clock in and out when they head off for a wee puff. On Wednesday's Tom Morton Show, people were fuming about the cigarette break...including Lockie from Edinburgh and Stuart from Da Auld Rock (Shetland).
Said Lockie: "Tom, staff who nipped out into the car park of a large Edinburgh Police Station which incorporated a large cell-block were banished to one corner. They happily chatted about matters both trivial and legal, and often about very confidential evidence, even about prisoners in the cells. It was discovered that almost syllable could be heard through the air vents and windows in the cells just feet away. Oh dear!"

And according to Stuart: "Many moons ago I worked in a furniture shop in Edinburgh. A collegue was enjoying a fly-fag in the back office, when footsteps coming up the stairs interupted him. He flicked the ciggie out the window and watched it bounce 'innocently' down the roof and out of sight. Unbeknown to him, the porters were carrying a sofa out the back doors, and loaded it on to the delivery van. They got as far as Corstorphine, before the van was reduced to an inferno! Suffice to say, the customer never got her sofa, and my workmate never owned up or was blamed."

Venison salad, butternut squash boats and street food

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 13:00 UK time, Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Here are the latest recipes from The Kitchen Cafe, to be downloaded, kept and printed.

Ghillie Basan's smoked venison salad: Download the recipe.

Sally Butcher's Butternut Squash Boats: Download the recipe.

Sally Butcher's Egyptian Street Food: Download the recipe.

The Kitchen Cafe is on BBC Radio Scotland every Wednesday, 1315-1400.

Cafe highlights Nigel Havers and Nicola Benedetti

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Clare English Clare English | 11:50 UK time, Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Gazing at the schedule for this week's Culture Café, I spotted TWO theatrical items. Something odd there, I thought. Two slots in one show? In the end I needn't have worried as my producer Amraine really was straddling opposite ends of the dramatic spectrum. It all started with a jaunty chat with the ultimate smoothy, Nigel Havers - a household name thanks to numerous appearances on TV plays and shows (memorably in Corrie as a male escort!) Now he's the leading man in a play on in Aberdeen all week called BASKET CASE. It involves an ailing pooch and its owners who have divorced - before you get too misty eyed, this is a comedy. Mr Havers says he's having a ball being back on stage where he's hooked up with old friends and generally terrifies himself before each performance. Perhaps, I mused, TV was less stressful. Did he prefer that? Actually he wasn't so sure and explained that when he's in front of a live audience there is an added advantage - no director can interrupt him! It's in the theatrical domain that he has total control of the character and how to play him. As for telly appearances, fear not Havers fans, he's slap bang in the midst of filming, and its not just ANY old show. Around Christmas, he joins the ranks of the multi award winning ITV drama, Downton Abbey. That means strapping on stiff Edwardian collars (and matching stiff upper lip) for scenes shared with the likes of Hugh Bonneville and the very wonderful Dame Maggie Smith (a mate apparently, - as is another Dame, Judi Dench. Name dropper.. and why not?) You get the sense that acting is a bit of a lark for Nigel Havers - he makes it sounds as if he stumbles in and blunders his way through the lines, not quite believing he's managed to get away with it for so long. Frankly, it takes a huge amount of talent to make acting look and sound that effortless. Yes, he is most definitely, a bona fide smoothy.

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Pocket Legends: Count Basie and Dexter Gordon

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Karen Miller Karen Miller | 12:41 UK time, Monday, 3 October 2011

This week we've added two more Jazz House Pocket Legends.

Last week's Jazz House featured American tenor saxophonist and award-winning actor Dexter Gordon....

And, from the archive, it's the bandleader and pianist Count Basie, widely considered one of the most important bandleaders of the swing era.

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