Songs of Separation – Good to Go!

Songs of Separation

I am really excited to tell you about a new piece of work – Songs of Separation – that will bring together ten of the UK’s celebrated female folk musicians, to rehearse, arrange and record an album of traditional songs which touch on this complex and fascinating theme. The project […] Read more »

Celter Schmelter – Lights, Camera, ACTION!

Back in the summer of 2014, Scottish Klezmer trio Celter Schmelter, got together at the newly built Eigg Studio on the Isle of Eigg, to record an album of traditional Jewish music, along with some self-penned klezmer material, which will go under the name of ‘Hen’s Khasene – The Eigg […] Read more »

Jelly and Icecream for the Jellyman’s Daughter?

A while ago I had the great pleasure of recording on the Jellyman’s Daughter’s first album. This young duo, comprising the compositional and songwriting skills of Graham Coe (‘cello and voice) and Emily Kelly (guitar and voice) impressed the socks off me when I first heard them. In places bluegrass […] Read more »

Metta magic – reviewing the reviews

Back in June, ‘Damian Helliwell’s Metta’ released their debut album. We received a huge amount of support from the Scottish music press, with inspiring reviews in the Scotsman & Scotland on Sunday, Sunday Herald, Living Tradition and more. Songlines (the magazine that all musicians hope to do well in!) said […] Read more »


Just recovering from a fantastic week of studio work with Gica and Fin Loening, two thirds of the celebrated Scottish Klezmer ensemble, Celter Schmelter. Over its ten year history, Celter Schmelter has followed the path of the true klezmorim – playing everywhere we’ve been asked! – from high brow concerts, […] Read more »

Damian Helliwell’s Metta – making the band visible

The music industry has changed hugely in the last ten years. Bands now not only need to put out great albums, but also need to have a handle on the ‘visual’ element, marketing their work online, being resourceful about ‘increasing their reach’ and getting to the people most likely to […] Read more »

Working with Singer Songwriters

I really do love working with good singer songwriters. It’s my all-time-favourite type of music making and there’s nothing quite like a late night session with a good lyricist, where the lines just flow from your fingers, in response to the theme and the words of the song. When the […] Read more »

May You Also…. have a day as special as this!

Yesterday was a great day… one of those days you know you’ll never forget. Here’s the story… For a few years now, I’ve been playing with the very talented and lovely Rory Butler. Rory is a remarkable songwriter and a beautiful guitar player – think John Martyn meets Nick Drake […] Read more »

Life in the Highlands and Islands

Hello from a very cold, wet and inhospitable Isle of Eigg! So, this winter, I’m doing an experiment, whereby I’m located up this way, when I’m not in Edinburgh or running around the UK with my bass in tow. The idea was that it would be a restful time, allowing […] Read more »