Brandon and his band are touring Ireland in April

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Brandon McPhee: “It will definitely be great to come back and bring Scottish culture to Ireland.” Photo: John Baikie

Caithness artist Brandon McPhee is looking forward to visiting Ireland for the first time since the pandemic began as he and his band prepare for a four-night tour of the Emerald Isle this spring.

Brandon (25) recalled how Ireland had started to feel almost like a second home to them until Covid-19 caused all live dates to be cancelled.

The five-piece band returned to the stage for a number of gigs in the run-up to Christmas, traveling to the Isle of Skye, Aboyne and Oldmeldrum and playing venues in Caithness and Ross-shire.

Now they are preparing for a trip across the Irish Sea for appearances at Cavan (County Cavan), Mitchelstown (County Cork), Moate (County Westmeath) and Granshaw Presbyterian Church, near Belfast , on successive nights from April 6 to 9.

“It will be great to come back after so long,” Brandon said this week. “We are always very well received in Ireland – it has almost become a second home, we were there so much.

“It will certainly be great to go back and bring Scottish culture to Ireland. It will be a variety of songs and accordion tunes in different styles.”

The talented accordionist and singer and his backing musicians seize the opportunity to tour again after the Covid disruption which began in 2020.

“It would have been the busiest year we’ve ever had, and overnight everything was canceled,” Brandon said.

He and the band focused on recording album tracks and playing virtual concerts when arranging live performances was impossible.

A six-date Scottish tour, originally scheduled for February this year, has been postponed to June 22-27 due to uncertainty over Covid restrictions.

The Brandon McPhee Experience will now be staged at the Eden Court Theater in Inverness on Wednesday June 22, followed by dates in Stirling, Brechin, Langholm and Musselburgh over the next four nights before concluding at the Tivoli Theater in Aberdeen on Monday, June 27.

Details are at www.brandonmcphee.com

Brandon added: “We just can’t wait to get back. It’s been a long, hard year, but we just want to get there.

Brandon presents his TV program on Spotlight (Sky 365, Freesat 500). It comes out Thursdays at 4 p.m. and Wednesdays at 3 p.m.

His latest album, Heedrum Hodrum, was released in November on Pan Records.

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