Celtic music duo back in Hillsboro
When musicians Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas first met, they read traditional Scottish music under redwood trees in California.
Haas attended Fraser's music school as a student in Los Angeles for a cello class when she was young, she said.
"That was the beginning of me discovering traditional music, Scottish music in particular, and I fell in love with it," Haas said.
Fraser always wanted to pair up with a cello player to accompany his fiddle music to bring back Scottish dance music.
Eighteen years later, the two have collaborated on six albums and toured all over the word.
The duo returns to Hillsboro on Friday, Nov. 9 at the Glenn & Viola Walters Cultural Arts Center at 7:30 p.m.
Fraser has been performing Scottish fiddle music for more than 30 years and is an inductee in the Scottish Traditional Music Hall of Fame. His music has been included in several movie soundtracks including "Titanic" and "Last of the Mohicans."
Haas is a graduate of Juilliard School of Music and has performed with several artists.
During their Hillsboro concert, Fraser and Haas plan to play material from their latest album, "Ports of Call," based on the musical traditions found in countries they've visited together, including Spain, France, Scandinavian nations and the United States, Haas said.
The duo have played in Hillsboro a few times in the past and are excited to connect with the audience once again.
"There are a lot of kindred spirits there," Fraser said. "There is great acoustics, we couldn't ask for more really. It is a community we resonate with."
Traveling the world and meeting new musicians has created some of the best memories, Haas said. When asked about fond memories on tour, the pair said it is "hard to pick just one."
"It just happens every night," Fraser said. "We're privileged to do it. The fiddle and the music we play, it is a great way to communicate with the audience. It is wild, it is fun, it is freeing. It is a powerful way to meet and gather."
The common thread between it all, he said, is watching people gather from all walks of life under one roof when they are on stage, Fraser said.
"It is lively, intimate and connecting the centuries," Fraser said. "It is new, questioning. I think it is a different place to go in the time we live in. It puts a spring in people's step when they leave the venue."
Their sound isn't limited to tradition and they love to see people interact while they play, the pair said.
"These instruments are found in chamber music, but that isn't what we are about," Haas said. "We have an intimate conversation between the two instruments, and it has a groove and is intended for dancing."
Tickets for their show can be purchased online at brownpapertickets.com or by calling 503-615-3485, or in person at the Walters, 527 E. Main St., in Hillsboro, for $30. At the door, tickets cost $35.
By Janae Easlon
Forest Grove News-Times and Hillsboro Tribune971-762-1166
Follow Janae at @Janae_Easlon
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