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The Easy Club

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The Easy Club was formed by four musicians who had been playing together in Edinburgh’s legendary folk pub, Sandy Bell’s Bar, in 1982. The band was originally named The Bogey Brothers, but this was changed to The Easy Club, the name coming from an eighteenth century Edinburgh drinking club which had been opposed to the union between Scotland and England.

Singer Rod Paterson and guitarist Jack Evans (plus original member Norman Chalmers, who was replaced by fiddler John Martin) were members of another band, Jock Tamson’s Bairns, who played in a more traditional manner. Jim Sutherland, who played cittern and bodhran, had recently arrived from Thurso, in the far north of Scotland, where he had played with a local folk group called Mirk.

The idea of The Easy Club was to explore new possibilities in Scottish music, by bringing in influences from more modern music such as jazz. The band saw that traditional musicians could not play music which was not influenced in some way by the culture of their own era. The Easy Club were happy to embrace modern styles and ideas, because that was the way that traditions developed naturally. It was actually unnatural, in their opinion, to play music in a ‘historical’ manner, as this produced a fossilised ‘heritage’ culture instead of one that is living and breathing.

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