After recovering from some health problems and a six years hiatus from his previous album, multi-awarded fiddler Ryan Young releases Just a Second. As the title suggests, this is his second solo effort; in this case he is joined by guitarist Craig Irving and renowned producer Jesse Lewis for an individual exploration of mainly traditional material from the British Isles.
Alternating between old favourites and lesser known tunes, Young provides his own version of foot-tapping reels, like on The Bird’s Nest / ’S Iomadh Rud a’ Chunnaic Mi, and slow or moderate paced tunes, like on the opening track Woo’en Married an ’A / Fingal’s Cave or the airy The Rock and Wee Pickle Tow. The album also includes a remarkable set of jigs, namely Nathaniel Gow’s / The Sailor’s Wife, and the diverse medley The Fox / Flora MacDonald’s / Little Donald in the Pigpen.
As on his first release, his fiddle playing is easily recognisable, both for the lightness of touch and for the quite individual use of embellishments, particularly slides, as shown in Willie Macrae’s Jig / The Monday Morning Reel. It is in this natural blending of traditional structure and expressive freedom that one can find the core of his idiosyncratic sound.
With Just a Second Young takes a step forward on the journey that started with his eponymous release. This unpretentious and yet beautifully delivered selection of tunes confirms his well-deserved status as one of the most acclaimed fiddlers in Britain.Michele Mele
Self-released digitally on October 2023. Produced by Jesse Lewis.
1. Woo’en Married An A’ / Fingal’s Cave
2. Willie Macrae’s Jig / The Monday Morning Reel
3. The Bird’s Nest / ’S Iomadh Rudh a’ Chunnaic Mi
4. Ben Lomond / Mrs. MacGlashan’s Jig
5. The Fox / Flora MacDonald’s / Little Donald in the Pigpen
6. The Rock and Wee Pickle Tow
7. Nathaniel Gow’s / The Sailor’s Wife
8. Bang Your Frog on the Sofa / Mrs. MacGugan’s Rant / Knit the Pocky
9. The Mortgage Burn