Ever-so-creepy yet eminently personable singer-songwriter, Kathryn Joseph, has teamed up with 30 musicians from Tinderbox Collective to offer rich and vibrant new orchestral versions of work from across her discography, which includes tracks such as ‘Weight’. This EP marks the coming together of two very different musical spheres within the Scottish music scene, and is out on 29th January, alongside a Celtic Connections concert.
What can we look forward to from The Blood, The Weight, The Weary?
So basically, the Tinderbox is making them better. It’s as simple as that. Making them beautiful.
I’ve played with some of the orchestra before, but I’ve never played with the full orchestra, and just to be working with them and have that amount of noise, and for my music to suddenly sound like music or written down as music is just amazing for me. And they are all just the most beautifullest humans, and they are genius musicians.
Listening to ‘Weight’ earlier today, with that fleshed out percussion and those gorgeous strings, I felt they added a very different sound and changed the overall vibe. How do you personally feel about this version?
Yeah, I love it. When it first got sent to me the noise wasn’t on it properly, so it was quite weird. But to not even be in control of the piano part anymore, for it not to be on it, I was originally a bit frightened of it. But now I am just like, oh my, I love it so much, maybe I should do it all like this.
Sam Irvine, who arranged it, is one of those beautiful humans. I know his mum as well, who played in an orchestra too (and is also a perfect people genius human). It’s a total privilege to have my songs changed by them, but just made into these other creatures that I love more. You’ve worked with the Tinderbox Collective before – it’s not your first time working with these young musicians.
What is it about what they do that makes you enjoy that collaborative work?
I just think their joy in it; they just absolutely love playing. They are all separately brilliant, but it’s so beautiful to see people loving what they are part of, and that’s really important, that they are showing that when they are playing –they are looking at each other and their reactions to one another.
When you hear them all play individually, you think it’s the best thing you’ve ever heard, and Jack [Nissan, Tinderbox musical director] just has this way of bringing all of them together. And the fact that they are doing other things for young people, you know, going into schools and running workshops, all of that is just so, so important. All of the things I wish I was a good enough person to do, they’re doing it. So I am clutching to that as much as I can.
And we can expect some live performances around this EP?
Yes, I hope so. Definitely the Celtic Connections gig, which is the same time as when it’s being released. We have nothing else planned at the moment, but I hope to. I love it; the last one we did was in Leith Theatre and it was absolutely gorgeous. It felt amazing, looked amazing. I just feel so lucky to be part of this, and I want to do as much as I’m allowed to.
The Blood, The Weight, The Weary is out on 29th January 2022, with a Celtic Connections performance that evening
Main image credit: Chris Scott