Fuzzy Friday 2

Each week we offer you five great things, sites, events, people or projects which we think are Bella-isimo.

Robert Burns1. Come and Have a Go if you Think Your Bard Enough. Tomorrow night there’s the Neu Reekie Burns Supper in the Dissection Room of Summerhall (presumably a vast haggis to be cut up wi’ ready sleight, trenching gushing entrails …). Lineup includes Bella’s own Kevin Williamson doing Tam O’ Shanter, Jackie Kay, The Bum-Clocks, a punk-fusion band with a Burns twist – with Malcolm Ross (Orange Juice, Josef K) and and gypsy-jazzish sounds from Emelle.

If you can’t make it follow the SPL on Twitter at: @ByLeavesWeLive who are tweeting Burns all day. Or read the Makar’s tribute  to get you in the mood here.

Or if you’re hamming up on your Burns for a rendition over the weekend – download this free app to help you. It has 558 of his poems and love songs, a searchable database of every poem written by Burns, a summary of facts about the poet’s life and a guide to hosting a Burns Supper. Here at Open i tunes.

tumblr_mg1c6ew1wy1qe31lco1_2502. On Saturday, Glasgow music-bloggers Aye Tunes (check their Friday Freebie here) and Peenko return for their monthly showcase ‘Scottish Fiction Presents’ getting started with pop-rockers The Yawns. The 13th Note says: “ First up are Plastic Animals who are a Edinburgh five piece who are responsible for a wonderful EP called ‘Automaton’ released earlier this year. Also heading along the M8 from Edinburgh is King Post Kitsch, for what I believe will be his maiden Glasgow gig. Equipped with his band expect a glorious array of fast paced garage rock and songs from new EP ‘Repulsive Sunsets’. Headlining are four boys and one girl who call themselves The Yawns. Nothing yawn inducing about their self titled début album, for which the band are touring to promote the physical release. The album has earned it’s place as one of our favourites of 2013, and a live rendition is not to be missed. 8pm, 6 pounds.” Follow them at: @official13thnot

3. Also on Saturday the award-winning The Man Who Planted Trees returns to Scotland after another dizzying world tour. This adaptation of Jean Giono’s environmental classic tells the inspiring story of a shepherd who plants a forest, acorn by acorn, transforming a barren wasteland. A hilarious puppet show, The Man Who Planted Trees shows us the difference one man (and his dog!) can make to the world.

It’s at the Macrobert, Stirling, this Saturday at 2.30 pm. Details are here.

tumblr_meo7ppn9Z41r1oc3y4. Running Man. NVA’s Creative Director Angus Farquhar has been running for 13 years (not continuously, that would be tiring). His own experiences of training for a marathon led him to question why he ran and put his thoughts onto paper for his 2009 book, The Speed of Light.

We love his ‘Grim Runner’ blog from Japan here:

“Japan takes you by surprise, as if you have been dropped in to spend time with another species, reminding you just what a tough patch we are living through in Britain. It isn’t just that everything is cleaner, brighter, better designed and looked after. It is the way strangers acknowledge each other in public. Centuries of exposure to Buddhist and Shinto philosophy has inculcated a certain level of selflessness in the general population, expressed most clearly as a dedication to public service.”

9e8090394a1695b282ed5e7af89944ad5. Or if January is making you moody, catch From Death to Death and Other Small Tales at Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art: As you might expect in a show dealing with the pleasures, neuroses and agonies of the flesh, sex and death weigh heavily. Notably present is the abject aspect of bodily functions and pleasures, making for a deliciously visceral treat for those with a strong stomach and an open mind…” (The Skinny)


Send us your suggestions for next week’s Fuzzy Friday to bellasletters (at) yahoo.co.uk


Comments (10)

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  1. Albalha says:

    Great top image, who is behind it? Perhaps I’m showing my ignorance by not knowing, but hey ho. And Happy Burns nicht to you all, 5 now?

    1. Albalha says:

      And Happy Murray beats Federer in a Grand Slam for the first time Day.

  2. bellacaledonia says:

    It’s by Calum Colvin …

    Colvin has painted the head of Robert Burns (1759-96), based on the drawing by Archibald Skirving (1749-1819), based in turn on the famous portrait by Alexander Nasmyth (1758-1840) onto the landscape of Blind Ossian. The work contains references to Burns’s poems – red roses, green rushes, a red heart -all scattered in a wasteland, like personal effects scattered through the dust and rubble of a bomb site, testimony to a life and to a culture destroyed.
    Burns, the national bard, is present as the son and heir of Ossian, because of his romantic sensibility. The notion of Burns as an uncultivated, ‘natural’ poet – and thus the eighteenth-century equivalent of Ossian – was propagated during his lifetime. His contemporary, Henry Mackenzie, called him ‘the Heaven-taught ploughman.’ Inevitably, a mythology grows up around such a remarkable product of nature and heaven, and there are differing perceptions of Burns. Which is the real Burns? The republican who applauded the French Revolution, or the sentimental Jacobite of his best-loved songs. Ossian, it has been suggested, provided Burns with ‘a literary pose, in which he could express his feelings of pride, ambition and sensitivity without giving himself away directly.’ ( David Daiches).

    1. Albalha says:


  3. ich bin ein burdiehouser says:

    I’ll skip over the image, the other events and get to the final piece: People really, really need to stop quoting the Skinny as though its some sort of authority. It’s nothing more than a promotional newsletter, staffed by unpaid creatives who are so compliant and fearful that anything less than a puff piece means the sack.

    Perhaps I’m naive, but this kind of circle jerk oddysey of back scratching – the skinny gets a mention, so then the skinny gives people a mention, seems really, really unhealthy.

    What’s it in tandem with here though ?

    If you know anything about the big Edinburgh Arts institutions – you’ll know they are desperately seeking corporate funding to the point of sticking their grandmothers in the window of cash generator. That’s because the scottish public are extremely unlikely to fund arts organisations that bar them from taking senior posts, or even at the lower level actually allow them to study.

    The modern art gallery is dumbing down here, hoping the hip, youth oriented marketing will have those young uns flooding in and therefore attract corporate sponsorship.

    You see the great conceptual impulse at play here ? No, I don’t either and neither will that target demographic.
    Will you see them address identity, independence and the like – the things that are actually going on ? Not really.

    This and the woeful forthcoming exhibition in august, which will turn the gallery into something resembling edinburgh dungeon …..that’s the amount of debate and consideration they think young people are worthy of.

    It is a veritable piece of piss to actually put on an exhibition that would entice, I mean – really quite easy – only an organisation marinated in the finest of public school tweeds could really fail here. A shocking exhibition whose promotional graphic is completely inoffensive ? An epic fail by any standard.

    How these guys must miss Pastor Jack Glass turning up outside to publicise their events.

    But why should this bother anyone ? Who cares that the Scots are served by institutions that are run by craven, bumbling fuckwits ? What does that matter to us ? Who cares that the Scotsman has turned into a pile of shite and the skinny, a free newsletter that don’t pay the vast majority of their staff is the new metric, even on Bella Caledonia ?

    1. bellacaledonia says:

      We were just quoting The Skinny to give people an idea of what the exhibition was about.

    2. Albalha says:

      Is everyone at the Skinny volunteers? Not very up on them, certainly their website currently advertising for volunteers to give out their mag during the Glasgow Film Festival ……. itself a place which keeps going because of volunteers. Of course most online sites like BC are run by volunteers. Are you angry at all of it or just the Skinny’s use of volunteers, not sure I’m getting it, if you look at the broader current media landscape ……how long ago, would you say, is it since the Scotsman, with it’s paid staff, has been any good?

  4. bellacaledonia says:

    The halcyon days of professional journalists are over. This hasn’t just been caused by newspaper cutbacks but by a fundamental sea-change in the way people create and consume information. Professional journalism as a trade has no future. Its going the way of coal mining. Adapt and thrive.


  5. @Ich Bein-
    ‘…they are desperately seeking corporate funding to the point of sticking their grandmothers in the window of cash generator’
    Stoatir. Seriously. I made the mistake of reading that while imbibing a fairly large gobful of Lambrini, nearly sprayed it all over the keyboard via the nostrils.
    Reminded me of a sketch which I’ve never seen, but someone should’ve done – the guy in the shop with his granny/mother-in-law/missus, pointing to the sign which says ‘£20 For Your Old Boiler’.

  6. ich bin ein burdiehouser says:

    Hi Alba – the Skinny makes money, it couldn’t survive otherwise.
    It’s unsavoury to not pay your staff, or some of them – just because the miners lost doesn’t mean we have to shut up shop and go home either.
    Ach weel, thatcher beat the miners so she did so ah guess its all richt whitever they high heid yins dae……..I seem to remember we built a parliament ? That’s meant to er…do stuff other than serve as a tourist backdrop ?
    I’m voting yes because i’d quite like Scotland to wipe the slate clean of all that nonsense. Not that im particularly bothered by the Skinny …..its that unquestioning acceptance of the still advancing thatcherite undead that bothers me.

    Also, adaptation and forming a cargo cult are not the same thing.
    Transplanting the American corporate funding model over here isn’t going to work, that why you get 100 artists writing to creative scotland.

    I await some home counties progeny popping along to sound very reasonable, make vague comments about tight ships, expenses and the currently in vogue ‘negativity’ – there were plenty folk carrying Tony Robbins books in cardboard boxes out the doors of Lehmans – anyway, heres some choice words from the master himself:

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