Fife is my spiritual home ...

Eddi Reader
Eddi Reader

Having found fame back in the 1980s as lead singer of Fairground Attraction, Eddi Reader continues to pursue a solo music career after all these years.

And she returns to Fife this weekend, with a gig at Rothes Halls in Glenrothes on Sunday evening.

The Kingdom is a part of Scotland she’s familiar with and her last appearance here was back in 2013, when she performed in Dunfermline.

Taking time out this week to speak to the Press, she said she’s looking forward to being back in the region as she has a special connection to the place.

Eddi explained: “I love coming back to Fife.

“It’s my spiritual home. My great great great grandfather was born in Dysart.

I don’t have a set list – I just decide in the moment what’s next!

Eddi Reader

“I have got a real connection with Fife.

“I really like Dysart and I’m really thrilled about re-tracing some of those footsteps.

“My great great great grandfather was a musical instrument maker who lived in Dysart.

“He was some kind of musical genius.

“Glenrothes is the capital of Fife really and I understand it gets missed out a lot with touring artists.

“When people tour, they miss it out and go to Edinburgh or up to Dundee.

“But the more music places the better, for me.

“I’ve been there (Rothes Halls) a couple of times now.

“It’s great, as there are people who come that maybe wouldn’t if they had to travel outside of Fife.

“I love playing any where.”

Eddi said she looks forward to the more intimate setting of somewhere like Rothes Halls.

She continued: “In smaller venues, people are a bit more subdued sometimes.

“It can often feel like the concert hall is dominating and it kind of takes over the atmosphere.

“But in places like Glenrothes, you get a real sense the community owns the place, so it doesn’t dominate.

“It is almost like a family party atmosphere.

“ I like it when everyone is relaxed.

“Venues can dictate how you see things.

“You could see someone play in the London Royal Festival Hall and then see them the next night in a pub and it’s a totally different feel.”

With a career that’s spanned many years, Eddi has enjoyed a range of musical styles that she has made her own.

And the audience attending her latest tour are likely to experience a flavour of all she has to offer.

So what can people expect from Sunday evening’s concert?

“I do my thing,” she said, “in which I tell people about songs I love and sing them to them.

“I explain kind of where they came from, why they came towards me and why I end up standing there and singing it for them.

“I don’t have a set list.

“I just decide in the moment what’s next.”

Although her tour of English and Scottish venues only started last week, Eddi has already played several dates in Ireland this year.

She told the Press: “It was great; people really love the Scottish in Ireland.

“I’m talking about the music and culture.

“In the Republic of Ireland, they just adore the connections we have in our music.

“They love Robert Burns. I get to sing all that with them.”

Over the years, Eddi has seen many different people in the audiences at her gigs and they have spanned all the ages.

She said: “I can be singing to 20-25 year olds who will have no connection to Fairground Attraction, which was 26 years ago.

“Then there are people who connect with the Burns stuff I’ve done and those that will enjoy some from my recent work.

“There are also a lot of people my age too that have done the journey with me.

“And there are people coming up to me who are maybe in their 50s and say ‘I have never heard of you’ but they are at the concerts and that means I’m doing the thing I’m meant to do.”

With 2015 still in its early stages, what does Eddi have planned for the remainder of the year?

She added: “These few gigs in Scotland.

“During the year, I have got to record and try to relax.

“I’m planning on doing a celebration of Scotland with Tommy Smith, the jazz guy.

“I’m trying to get older tunes that haven’t really been done before or in that way.

“I think at Easter I have got to go to Ireland and then we’re talking about Australia.

“I’m hoping to get to Australia when it’s warm.

“And there are all these other bits of music I want to get recorded.”

Eddi explained she’s always keeping busy and working on new music.

She added: “It doesn’t matter if you’re number one or not, you still have to find a way of expressing yourself in that musical landscape.

“Not knowing where it’s going to lead.

“The worst thing is to feel that you’ve got the idea but no means to express it.

“I’m hoping that whatever I have will lead to people liking it and I can keep doing this.”

Eddi Reader is at Rothes Halls, Glenrothes on Sunday, March 29.