Grant and Emma booked up Jiggered Ceilidh Band for their wedding at the stunning Drumtochty Castle- access for the band uniquely was via a window! The couple had done their homework before choosing Jiggered and Grant had followed our regular post-gig blogs and assured us that we wouldn't be disappointed by the buffet (he'd noticed a thread running through them, and wanted to avoid getting slammed like the now infamous Vegi-gate). The bacon rolls and cake were excellent, Grant and Emma. Thanks!
The night went well- the massive room allowed us to really crank up the volume and blast out the mix of ceilidh tunes, Scottish songs and specific covers that Grant and Emma had requested. At half time, we were treated to a performance from a mini pipe band, featuring among others Grant, his dad and his brother!
It was a friendly crowd- a few chatted to us at various points. One youngster, who attends Macduff Primary, made my night when she told me that her favourite subject at school is Maths.
Highlight of the journey home was our conversation with a minibus driver. Roll window down. Look in disgust. Roll window up. Feel free to use this technique to diffuse obnoxious, unwarranted road rage. Works a charm.
Well done to Emma who, like a true trooper, put on a great show despite feeling rough and sleeping through the entire journey to and from the castle. Hats off to you Emma.
Merry Christmas to all Jiggered friends and fans :)
Posted at 9:28 on 22nd December 2013 by Chris Smith
Jiggered Ceilidh Band like our annual visit to Galston to play at the Church Fete Christmas Ceilidh in Hogg Hall. The food is always great. The crowd really love our blend of Scottish music, ceilidh dances and covers. With it being a local one for me, I always bump into familiar faces...this year I chatted to Fraser and Sarah who I went to school with, some former customers I used to serve in my part time job at the local petrol station and Mr and Mrs Smith from Kilmarnock whose son I teach. However, most of the break was spent with new friends: the current Galston minister and his wife and then Karen, a enthusiastic nutter who turned out to be a Maths teacher- we had lots to discuss!
The big changes this year? Jiggered didn't scoop any prizes in the raffle. And Santa wasn't able to make his usual appearance.
Still, a fantastic night. Lots of laughs.
Posted at 7:38 on 8th December 2013 by Chris Smith
A ceilidh that starts with dinner at Susan's is always off to a flier. Yum.
Edna's 60th birthday celebrations were held at Calderwood Baptist Church and she'd booked up Jiggered for her party. After arriving and getting set up, we had a chance to have a wee chat. Ewan quizzed Susan on her recent spa visit, earlier that day: "Did you enjoy your spa? Do you find it leaves your hair kind of matted?". Classic*
The evening featured some photos of Edna over the last 60 years, some excellent ceilidh music and cracking food enjoyed by Edna's friends and family. It was nice, too, to be performing in front of a couple of couples who are having Jiggered at their 2014 weddings!
*it should be noted that these questions were fed to Ewan by the more mischevious Jiggered members :)
Posted at 8:25 on 1st December 2013 by Chris Smith
For the last three years, Jiggered Ceilidh Band have played for Kilmarnock Portland FC at Hurlford Bowling Club. And with us booked up for 2014 and 2015 already, we're looking forward to strengthening our links with the club. Every year their St Andrews' Night ceilidh gets better and better.
The evening started off with a sticky situation for Ewan (crisis avoided, thankfully). The crowds started to arrive just before 8pm so we were all set to start our mix of ceilidh/Scottish tunes/modern covers. Emma worked hard all night, explaining dances expertly and singing loads of songs to the appreciative crowd.
Chippy at the break, amazing. We didn't manage to win any raffle prizes (the Rowans scooped almost all the prizes this year)!
Off to play at East Kilbride tonight. Happy St Andrews' Day, Jiggered fans!
Posted at 9:33 on 30th November 2013 by Chris Smith
Bath Street, Glasgow: busy, bustling, vibrant. Over the years, Jiggered Ceilidh Band have often rolled up at Adelaide's ready to ceilidh. Tonight was another really fun night, with the Stirling sisters providing tasty treats (muffins and "15s").
Other highlights included: Ewan nearly securing a gym-buddy, Susan's nail-shattering revelation, Chris almost persuaded to cha-cha, Emma sticking to her guns with the pronunciation of "military".
Double ceilidh next weekend...can't wait!
Posted at 23:47 on 23rd November 2013 by Chris Smith
Alex and Susan had their wedding reception at the super-classy Supper Club at 29 Royal Exchange Square. Jiggered Ceilidh Band were their band of choice and we had a great time at the wedding. Getting to the venue proved a bit of an adventure though. Driving in Glasgow can be tough with heavy traffic, weird party-goers jumping in and out of cars, annoying one way systems and lights at every corner...add to that a drive along the highly pedestrianised Buchanan Street and you've got the recipe for some frustrating journeying!
Jenny was filling in for Emma, who was at her Gran's 80th birthday party. It was nice to catch up and perform with our old buddy!
Posted at 20:16 on 17th November 2013 by Chris Smith
Last night, Jiggered Ceilidh Band were performing at Edinburgh's Marriott Hotel for 160 Mathematicians from 55 different countries. They had gathered to set questions for the Kangourou Sans Frontieres- a tough Maths competition taken by 4 million students across Europe. With only a few Scots (including local Maths legends Prof Adam McBride OBE and Mary Theresa Fyfe) there to demonstrate the ceilidh dances, Emma had her work cut out but it was an excellent evening. Loads of enthusiasm and appreaciation from a superb crowd. We were even given wee medalions at the end of the night...
No-one mentioned the fact I was wearing my "Pi" TShirt!
Thanks to the UKMT's Rachel Greenhalgh for booking us up and to Kitty Kilday for the recommendation.
Posted at 11:13 on 2nd November 2013 by Chris Smith
Stuart (my brother-in-law) and Jen (who I went to school with) got married recently at the sumptious Lochside House Hotel, in what Stu described as "the wedding of the century"! It was, to be fair, an excellent day. From the wedding ceremony (expertly conducted by Willie Smith) to the epic meal, from the entertaining speeches to the trusted ceilidh entertainment from Jiggered...the whole day was fantastic.
Wishing the new Mr and Mrs Gibb all the best. Thanks for letting us play on your special day!
Posted at 11:00 on 1st November 2013 by Chris Smith
Peter and Louise, like many couples who get married in exotic locations, wanted to have a post-wedding party for friends and families who hadn't made it to their big day. The venue was Calderwood Baptist Church (East Kilbride) and mother-of-the-groom Dorothy was pulling all the strings as she organised the caterers, band (including King Ewan of Ceilidhland) etc.
Susan treated us to pre-gig fajitas.Mmmmm. Nice to see Isla, Ciara and the man they'll always call "Alan"!
Fun night. And the clocks went back. Bonus :)
Posted at 14:03 on 27th October 2013 by Chris Smith
A particularly busy weekend for Jiggered with two excellent ceilidhs. The second was Scott and Lorna's wedding. Their reception was at Lochside House Hotel, a stunning venue we've played at a number of times...In fact we're there next week!
Scott and Lorna had made a few specific requests: to kick off with a Dashing White Sergeant, for us to play some Mumford and Sons (we threw "I will wait" into a ceilidh dance) and for us to indulge everyone's cheesy guilty pleasure by playing "Love is All Around" by Wet Wet Wet. And I have a slight hunch we might do that final one again (how do I know? Well, I feel it in my fingers, I feel it in my toes).
Raymie was on fine form, as ever, and it was a brilliant end to a fun weekend!
Posted at 19:26 on 21st October 2013 by Chris Smith
Every two years, the BOPA Symposium is held in Scotland. It's the "most important onchology pharmacy meeting" of the year and Jiggered Ceilidh Band are their band of choice for the Saturday night entertainment! The venue was the amazing Edinburgh International Conference Centre- it's fantastic.
We had a great time and the floor was bouncing with some dancing that would grab all the headlines on "Strictly"...As my mum used to tell me, if you're going to do something make sure you throw everything you've got into it. That advice was taken literally by one dancer!
In between our sets we managed to nip out for a meal- the bill had a helpful breakdown for the four of us (and Mathematically saved us 1p!).
It was such a good night. I wanted to get home to tell my wife all about it- I could hardly contain myself :)
Thanks to our host Alex, who looked after us very well on the night!
Posted at 19:16 on 20th October 2013 by Chris Smith
Mar Hall is the current base for the Scotland football team as they prepare for Tuesday's final qualifying match at Hampden. A few of the squad were milling about (or worryingly hobbling in the case of one big name). As boss Gordon Strachan passed by with Mark McGhee in my head I prepared to say "Hi, Gordon. How's the training going? Have you decided on a formation for Tuesday yet?". What actually came out was a squeaky, star-struck "Hello". Wee Strachan understandably dinghyed me.
In the marquee we got chatting to Craig and Eva, the wedding photographers for the day who we'd met a couple of years ago and who are a really friendly talented pair. Craig managed to slip into conversation casually about the time he photographed Claudia Schiffer (he assures us that he had her permission!).
A lively crowd, who loved our cover sets and filled the floor for the ceilidh action!
Posted at 9:03 on 13th October 2013 by Chris Smith
From time to time, Jiggered Ceilidh Band are asked about a last minute ceilidh. This was the case for Jacqueline's 50th birthday party, held at Toryglen Community Hall. A few close friends and family had been gathered together for the ocassion...to enjoy some excellent food and some excellent music, courtesy of one of Scotland's favourite ceilidh bands!
We provided a jam-packed 2 hour set of music and it went down a storm.
If you're looking for letter-drafting to improve relations with your neighbours, ask Ewan. If you're looking for advice on cooking with cauliflower, ask Emma. If you're looking to get delicate clothes hand washed, ask Susan. And if you're looking for a superb ceilidh at short notice, ask Jiggered Ceilidh Band!
Posted at 6:23 on 6th October 2013 by Chris Smith
Tonight was quite different for Jiggered Ceilidh Band! We headed off to Milngavie to play at a fundraiser organised by the PTA of Milngavie Primary School. The ceilidh had a true family feel about it with hordes of kids running about and showing off all the ceilidh moves they'd been learning but also introducing us to some they'd invented themselves!
A great night: raffle, games, Dominos pizza, fun, dancing...and if you're not convinced read this short testimonial from Meirion who had booked us and emailed after to say:
"Chris, Can I just say a huge thank you for this evening you guys were fantastic and understanding of our "younger" dancers. Without exception everyone had a great night and how fab you guys were."
Another satisfied customer :)
Posted at 22:50 on 4th October 2013 by Chris Smith
Over the 11 years Jiggered Ceilidh Band have been helping out in whatever way we can to make the clients' events as special as possible. Last night, we played at the Lynnhurst Hotel, Renfrew which is really lovely. Bride Lorraine had asked if we'd be able to do One Direction's "Little Things" for their first dance. We obliged and I think it went really well (maybe that was because I'd almost lost my voice so it was mainly Emma everyone heard)!
The evening went well with great ceilidh action (including a generous sprinkling of free-style and improv!), pakora at the buffet and lots of smiles!
At the break, the band managed to get serious heart-to-heart chat. I learned lots and it was emotional. But listen to me, I'm gushing...
Posted at 7:13 on 22nd September 2013 by Chris Smith
I'm just going to say it. Jiggered Ceilidh Band were the ideal band for Joanne's 21st at Stirling Rugby Football Club. The energetic, young, enthusiastic crowd filled the floor all night...they bounced around to covers, jigged every ceilidh dance...it was great.
Joanne's friends/families had written short, fun, touching speeches. They'd baked 21 (yes, twenty-one) birthday cakes. And there was a full roast pig on a spit. Now, Jiggered have a reputation of tucking into buffets at events, and we certainly went the whole hog tonight!
Lots of business cards dished out at the end of the night so hopefully we'll get to play for some of this crowd again!
Posted at 0:21 on 21st September 2013 by Chris Smith
Jiggered Ceilidh Band's fab four stepped into the eight footprints of another popular musical quartet last night. We were playing at Auchen Castle (near Moffat) which is not only one of the finest castles we've played at but also hosted The Beatles back in the 1960s!
David and Catherine had booked us up for their wedding having heard us at a 50th birthday party. It was lovely to be invited to play at the wedding-an intimate affair with just 30 privileged guests.
After playing "Caledonia" for the bride and groom's first dance we performed two sets of 1 hour- a real mixture of Scottish tunes, ceilidh, covers...we even briefly indulged the persistent requests for "a bit of Westlife".
In the same week Gareth Bale's transfer smashed the world record paid for a male footballer, Team Jiggered made a near-world-record-breaking offer to recruit a talented female footballer.
All the best to David and Catherine from your grateful ceilidh band, Jiggered!
Posted at 8:59 on 7th September 2013 by Chris Smith
Last night Jiggered Ceilidh Band rolled up at Glasgow University for a regular event in our calendar of gigs. Adrian Bowman from the Statistics Department there organises a training event for postgraduate students from all over the place and we're the band he always chooses to guide this international bunch of students through the ceilidh dances.
A highlight of the night is always the break...because that's when the talented Stats crew reveal their other abilities. On display last night was group Greek style dancing, magic, a solo Indian dance performance, a self-penned song and Adrian's version of Red Red Rose.
Emma had her work cut out calling every dance but did a brilliant job. At the end we were told that next year's event will be in Oxford so Adrian's tartan waistcoat will be in hibernation until 2015 when we hope to play for this fanstatic lot once again!
Posted at 6:48 on 6th September 2013 by Chris Smith
The 5* Marcliffe Hotel was the location for Jiggered Ceilidh Band's latest Aberdeen domination! We've been playing lots up Aberdeen way. This wedding was another cracker. If I'm being honest alarm bells began ringing when the English best man announced "Not too sure about these skirts but I'm looking forward to the barn dance later"...Thankfully those in skirts (i.e. kilts) were not the only ones really up for an evening of barn dance (ceilidh). The floor was packed with guys and girls all night!
The first dance was performed by a young guest with a really cute voice.
Nice to see one or two unexpectedly familiar faces in the crowd (expecially the Bryces!). And I was even asked for my autograph. That's a first.The buffet (choice of stovies or fish and chips) was amazing and we were over the moon that the ice cream stall was set up right next to the band. Yum!!
At special request from the bride and groom we threw in a wee bit of Mumford and Son's "I will wait" into the Eightsome Reel. Hopefully it will become a more regular part of the Jiggered repertoire!
Home by 3am. Easy :)
Posted at 17:07 on 1st September 2013 by Chris Smith
Why should Scotland get exclusivity on Jiggered Ceilidh Band's music?! This weekend we went on a roadtrip down to Norfolk for James and Janine's wedding. We were playing in The Red Barn which is a fantastic venue that has belonged to owner Richard's family for decades but in recent time has been transformed from a storage facility for machinery to an exclusive wedding venue.
Earlier in 2013, we played at Elaine and Alan's wedding way up in Aberdeen (incidentally, the prize from our amazing competition from that wedding has still to be won). Elaine and Janine are sisters and it was lovely to be able to play at both their weddings in the same year! And the family have looked after us incredibly at both events.
The road trip down was fun. Weird conversations (about food families and neon fashion to name just two). Stand in fiddler Claire appeared to suffer from food tourettes but this appeared to be a temporary condition. We were treated to a three course meal when we arrived at the venue...yum. The ceilidh was brilliant- the crowd were loving it and we had a blast. Oooh la la.
I got my photo taken with Dick from "Dick and Dom". Actually this guest was just a taller lookalike but the resemblance was striking!
Glad to say we survived our evening in Spalding afterwards (Ewan, in particular, was excited that there was a "Gap" store right next to our Travel Lodge!). The journey home was smooth as Emma"I can sleep through anything" Brockett will testify.
Apologies to the band who will have been expecting some Norfolk punnery. I chickened out.
Posted at 19:38 on 25th August 2013 by Chris Smith