About Us Bios Latest News Latest News Music Contact Guestbook Links

2011 News

Hello everyone!

I am posting a big thank you here to BBC Scotland Radio and Robbie Shepherd for sending All Strings Considered a very special dedication that aired February 20th on the BBC program Take The Floor. As many of you know, Sherry and I, along with my daughter Leah visited Scotland last year. On that trip we were in a little town called Kingussie. I wanted to go there to look up some information on one of my Scottish ancestors and while we were walking around the town, I noticed a butcher shop with a big sign over it, “Gow Butchers”. Being an avid fan of the famous Scottish fiddler Neil Gow and having played many of his tunes, as well as his son Nathaniel’s tunes, I was of course curious to know, if the owners of the Butcher Shop had some connection to the musical Gow family.  We entered the butcher shop, which was small, but full of people. As we waited to get in line, a lovely couple came through the door. A very tall, handsome older man, with a derby on his head, and a wee little lady by his side with hair as white as snow.  I had my camera with me, as I had intended to take some pictures of the “villagers”. When this couple came through the door and stood there for a bit, I felt brave, and asked if I could please take their photo. They said, “well..certainly!” So I snapped the photo and said, “Now you might be wondering what I am doing in the butcher shop taking pictures….? Mrs. Pentland said, “Well…yes, it’s a bit curious….”  So, I told her that I just loved Neil Gow, and as soon as those words came out of my mouth,  she was quite delighted to meet me. She said I had excellent taste, and that she too ..”adored the music of Neil Gow…”  As I was conversing with Mrs. Pentland, Sherry was talking with Mr. Pentland and discovered that the couple also had done a fair bit of Scottish Country Dancing.  Then Sherry asked if they had ever heard of a tune called the Pentland Jig. To our astonishment, they said, “…that is our song!!…How do you know about it? You have danced to it in America??!! You have played it on your fiddle??!! This is so amazing!!”  They related to us, the story of how the Pentland Jig came in to being.  Mrs. Pentland had commissioned Mr. Bobbie Crowe to write a tune for their 40th wedding anniversary celebration, and it became known as The Pentland Jig (it also has the title of Edinburgh’s postal code).  So, there we are in this little, crowded Butcher Shop having this wildly enthusiastic discussion with a very precious couple, and not only do they KNOW the Pentland Jig; they ARE the Pentland Jig!! We also received a thorough education about the Pentland Hills near Edinburgh! Talk about serendipity, to be in the right place at the exact right moment to bump in to them, and then asking them, out of everyone in the store, if I could take their picture.

Things like this happened all throughout our trip to Scotland. If you love these kinds of stories, you can add me as your facebook friend or go to Tanya’s Blog on Facebook, and find other similar stories of us running in to other musicians on our trip, and how I came to meet some other very special people.  It gets better!

This year, after writing back and forth via snail mail with Betty Pentland, and teaching some of my students the Pentland Jig and MORE Neil Gow tunes, Betty contacted BBC Scotland Radio and related some of the story of our meeting to Mr. Robbie Shepherd, host of the radio program Take The Floor.  On February 20th, we listened as Robbie dedicated a Nathaniel Gow tune ..”to Tanya and Sherry, our new American friends, and to All Strings Considered…”, and then he related a bit of the story and said the dedication came from none other than Mrs. Betty Pentland!  Now, how sweet is that??!!  Last week, I wrote to Robbie thanking him for airing Betty’s dedication to us, and that we in fact received it across the airwaves! We’re now sending our CD to the station, so perhaps if you are ever in Scotland or listen to BBC Scotland’s Take The Floor, you might end up hearing our music. Below is the nice response that Mr. Shepherd sent me this morning:

Hi Tanya!

I know that Jennifer, my producer has replied to you but I just wanted
to add my appreciation on you getting back to us.

It was kind of Betty to send in the nice wee story on your search for
the Gow Connection in a butcher’s shop.

Continued success with the trio and happy listening.

Aa the best

Robbie S. 


So dear listeners, stay tuned for what is coming next.
We’ll be playing at the WVC Renaissance Fair April 16 and 17, 2011.
Then some private gigs in May. In June, we have been hired to play for the 200th Anniversary
of David Thompson’s river trip in canoes down the Columbia. We are excited about this
huge event and will update you with more information on that later.
Mark June 26th on your calendar, and plan to be at Confluence Park all day long!
Peace and blessings to you in 2011.
Hopefully this will be the year that we produce our 2nd album.
I have written some songs to share with you all!


PS: The owner’s of the butcher shop had no connection to Neil Gow, but upon returning
back to the states, I received a long letter from Betty and she said she has recently
met someone who was a descendant of Neil Gow and actually owned his walking stick!
PSS: Thanks to all of you who have come out year after year to hear us play on Valentine’s
Day, at Inna’s Cuisine on Wenatchee Avenue. Do to your requests, Inna keeps asking us to come