The blog of photographer Kim Ayres

The Geese

The Geese are a local 3-piece “Indy-folk” band, with Alan on lead vocals and guitar (usually), Michelle on fiddle (mostly), and Harry on banjo (pretty much always).

Alan is one of these people I kept sort of half meeting on and off over a few years. Enough times to think, “he looks familiar” when our paths crossed, but not quite enough to remember his name.

A little over a year ago, I started seeing his band playing here and there, and discovered he was working on placement as a teacher at my daughter’s school, so thought I should make more effort to properly establish a connection. I consciously started making a point of saying hello when we were in the same places and loitering nearby in the hope of someone mentioning his name out loud.

Eventually it paid off and I felt quite pleased the first time I was able to say, “Hi Alan,” as my opening words to him.

Earlier this year when I realised I needed faces to photograph for my Staring Back exhibition, I asked him if I could do some shots of him and the band and in return, if any of them worked out, they could use them for publicity.

I took quite a few, although eventually the stand-out shot for me was one of Michelle, Alan’s wife and fiddle player of the trio. This found its way into the exhibition and, more recently, on to the cover of Prole magazine.

However, the other shots didn’t go to waste, and this month The Geese have brought out a 5 track EP on CD called, Cursory Rhymes One of my photos adorns the sleeve, with another on the back and the CD label.

My favourite track is the first one, Ariel, which opens with the wonderful line, "It was a dark and stormy night. I’m sorry, but it was." Alan is also a Storyteller and poet, so his attention to lyrics construction always makes for fun listening.

I did ask if it’s possible to buy the CD online, but at the point of writing the only options are to either turn up to one of their gigs with £5 at the ready, or to contact him through his MySpace page and in return for a cheque he’ll post one out to you.

Here’s a version of their track, Undiscovered Scotland, which will give you a bit of a flavour of their music, although Michelle is running a piece of pipe over a ridged metal thing rather than playing the fiddle.

I'm not sure if this will work in all browsers - I've just cut and pasted the code from MySpace.

However, more about The Geese and their music can be found here:


Pat said...

It worked for me. I looked up the photo in my book- is Alan the one with specs?

Kim Ayres said...

Pat - Alan wasn't in the exhibition in the end, it was his wife, Michelle, who made it into the book - the red-headed fiddle player. On the CD sleeve, Alan's the one on our left - tall guy :)

Anonymous said...

Before reading the comments while listening to "Undiscovered Scotland" I imagined the tall guy singing. Great voice and wonderful photographs. I know I'm early but I'd like to wish you and family a Happy Holiday. I'll be very busy the next couple of weeks.

Jayne Martin said...

I love their music. It's so happy. I can see myself at a Scottish pub, drinking brew and dancing about making a total fool of myself and not giving a damn. Couldn't see the photos as I'm on the crappy Firefox browser. I'll try to remember to come back when I'm on Chrome.

litzi said...

Hi Kim,
Listening to this song by The Geese makes me want to don a kilt and eat some haggis (not really).

Congratulations on having more of your magnificent photography published.

Happy Holi-Daze!

Pat said...

But but but Alan is in the book in a small photo on Michelle's page.
Sorry to be pedantic. No I'm not :)

Kim Ayres said...

Allen - and very happy holidays to you and yours too :)

Jayne - sounds like you would fit in very well :)

Litzi - as they say, a kilt is an item of clothing worn by Scots in America and by Americans in Scotland :)

Pat - you are right. In fact that small B&W photo is taken from the same one as the CD cover. My apologies for ever doubting you - it will never happen again.

Sandy's witterings said...

Can't say I've heard of the Geese but maybe I'll keep my eyes open for them. Out here on the ocean the computer doesn't want to play the clips - they do actually make one appearance on youtube (but the sound quality isn't great) and lots of appearances by another band called the Geese.

Ron said...

Excellent photo Kim! I am consistently impressed by your natural talent. I am jealous.

Kim Ayres said...

Sandy - With the competition, I don't think they'll be able to get the domain

Ron - thank you :)

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