The Lasses Trust In Providence CD comes in a plastic-free cardboard case with an accompanying 20-page booklet. Stunning Shetland landscape photography forms the backdrop to written stories behind all thirteen tracks, and a glossary of over 300 Shetland words helps with lyric translation.
Stream, download or order a physical copy of the album below.
C.John Edwards, The Living Tradition
What a fun CD cover; reminds me of John Hassall's 1926 poster, 'Skegness Is So Bracing'. The music from Claire (fiddle) and Robbie (guitar) however, is not so much bracing as insightful, sensitively written, played and recorded, most of it self-penned.
Claire says she learned much of her warm and bright playing from Tom Anderson, whilst Robbie, with roots in the northernmost isles, also learned the fiddle and his accompanying style shows he understands this instrument. Claire says that the songs are written in the main to emphasise the 'she' in Shetland. She pays particular tribute to a gifted artisan, Peanuts, who emanates positivity and creativity whilst living with cancer. Da Hennie, another song, celebrates the togetherness of a Shetland women's group, whereas Da Fateful Tale O' Marion Pardone recounts the execution of a local woman, branded a witch, in 1644. If you know about the Shetland Bus (almost a saga in itself) then Hands Across The Hills will ring a thoughtful note about local heroes supporting free Norway in WW2. I particularly warmed to the traditional Minnie O Shirva's Cradle Song and Da Delting Spinning Sang.
I must not forget Robbie's contributions. His Quarff Lodge Newlyweds tune is a lively token of support for Claire and husband, Michael's wedding, and his Eclipse Waltz a tribute to his dad: lovely tunes.
Altogether a very pleasing CD; a project if you like and worth repeated listenings. A fulsome glossary will help those who haven't visited Shetland, to ken the dialect.
Adam Guest, The Shetland Times
With the winter weather hammering at the windows, Claire White’s Lasses Trust In Providence is an inviting escape from the cold.
White’s collection of Shetland songs and tunes, written and performed with Robbie Leask, starts off with Da Fateful Tale O Marion Pardone - the story of a Shetland witch executed in 1644 for drowning four fishing boat passengers while disguised as a porpoise opens the album.
Immediately the listener is pulled into the intriguing tale as White’s delicate vocal delivers the lines tinged with dialect, and her warming fiddle melodies interject the verses with aplomb.
Leask’s acoustic guitar accompaniments are subtle and understated, none more so than in the hypnotic Da Norrowa Wheel.
Clearly White and Leask have a strong musical understanding. And White has crafted and weaved the lyrical that run through the record, much like the impressive knitwear both are sporting on the album sleeve.
White’s travels and observations closer to home really make you appreciate the whole work.
Da Hennie is a lightsome celebration of friendship, written for a group of women who have been meeting for supper for almost 60 years. The melodies are memorable and strong and push the stories to the fore.
Hands Across the Hills gathers pace from Leask’s minimal opening, recounting the epic tale of a bullet-wounded Jan Baalsrud who survived the icy water after an attack during a Shetland Bus operation, escaping to Sweden.
Chatting with White over coffee prior to the release of Lasses Trust In Providence it was obvious a huge amount of research has gone into the collection of Shetland songs and tunes.
You can hear the waves and the sea’s song between the glorious fiddle tune Eclipse Waltz, penned by Leask, as it melds into the lullaby-esque Minnie O’ Shriva’s Cradle Sang.
Peanuts’ Shed, written for Jeanette Nowak, paints the pictures of a magical place in Yell, with darker tones in Song of Aud the Deep-Minded, an atmospheric Viking tune that adds to the intricate verses.
After a number of years in the isles, I’m tuned into the Shetland dialect, but for those less familiar White includes a glossary.
Her native tongue adds to the delivery and honesty of the recordings, providing another layer to the listener.
Thanks Mam is heartfelt and tender and a thank you many folk can relate to, with mention of oatcakes, a copy of The Shetland Times in the post and having a personal taxi driver.
Mick Tems, FolkWales Magazine
Many moons ago, Blyde Lassies (fiddler Claire White and concertina player Frances Wilkins) travelled down from Shetland and really captivated the Llantrisant Folk Club audience; Lerwick-born Claire, accompanied by guitarist Robbie Leask, has recorded an absolutely delightful album of written and traditional songs and tunes emphasising the Shetland female viewpoint and called Lasses Trust In Providence (QUARFF101) and enhanced by some elegant bowing. She skilfully weaves ‘Da Fateful Tale O Marion Pardone’, ‘Da Hennie’ and ‘Betty Mouat’s Sang’, and there’s even a Shetland dialect glossary for good measure.
Geraldine T, Amazon.co.uk
I really love this CD as it unearths old - maybe even forgotten?- stories of mostly women from Shetland. 'Lasses Trust in Providence' contains poetry, tradition, and fresh interpretation. It cherishes our roots in history and past stories but celebrates the life of 'now' just as much. Beautiful interplay between fiddle, singing, and guitar.