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Biography

Martyn Bennett (February 17, 1971 – January 30, 2005) was a Scottish musician who was born in St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada. He was extremely influential in the evolution of modern Celtic Fusion, a blending of traditional Celtic and modern music.

He and his family moved to Kingussie, Speyside, Scotland when he was 10. One of his teachers introduced him to the Great Highland Bagpipe. Within two years Martyn was winning prizes in many of the junior piping competitions around Scotland. He then took up violin, piano and composing at the age of 15 at the City of Edinburgh Music School, continuing his studies at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in 1990.

In 1993, just before graduating, he was diagnosed with testicular cancer, which he related to the suffocating and stressful environment of the Classical world where "enjoyment of the music was out-weighed by the pressure to succeed" . In 1994 he began to spend more time with his first musical love, folk and traditional, and it was not much later that he started to experiment with electronica. He performed at the world premiere party for the film Braveheart.

In 1996, he released his first self-titled album on Eclectic Records. In 1998 he released Bothy Culture, his most successful album. In 2000, just a few months after a highly acclaimed headlining set at the Cambridge Folk Festival, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma.

He died on January 30, 2005, following a long struggle with cancer.

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