The team at Arbikie Distillery invited us to perform at their beautiful and unique venue in the North East of Scotland. Like most things in our lives, the invitation snowballed very quickly into our first partnership event with distillery, which we aptly called Drams & Daisies. We recently put on our first event, which was a roaring success! The venue is rurally located on the outskirts of Montrose and boasts an exceptional panoramic overlooking the stunning shores of Lunan Bay; it is definitely one of the grandest venues we have ever had the pleasure of performing in and although opulent in its own way, the wondrous space makes you feel instantly relaxed upon walking in.
We were there, alongside the staff, ready to welcome our guests who were being treated to an evening of food, music, tales and whisky for the very reasonable price of £30; each ticket holder also received a free download of our A Whisky For The Road release, signed lyrics to The Whisky Song and some extra goodies thrown in for good measure. Whilst the guests were settling in, the big guns had already been poured to generate some excitement! Two Highland Rye whiskies were poured for each person who came along, one being their signature pour and the other being their limited edition offering which had been aged in Jamaican rum barrels . . . . . niiiiiiiiiiiiice!
We kicked off the evening with a lighter acoustic set of original and cover material intertwined with some of our favourite whisky-related stories from our travels; it was important for us to get to know the audience as well as allow them to get to know us. Although we were all there for the whisky, the bar was fully stocked with epic choices in produce, which we all became comfortable with quite quickly! Arbikie don't just make whisky either; they are very well known for their groundbreaking gins and have even popped out a climate positive vodka too! The atmosphere very quickly became one of friendship and joy as we navigated the evening together . . . that also included the staff who, too, had a great time! They take such pride in their work and gave everything to ensure their visitors were well looked after and able to indulge in the distillery experience.
After our first set, we joined the audience as it was time for the guided whisky tasting, which was a raucous affair. All manner of jokes and innuendos were heard as we engaged in a fun back and forth with the staff who displayed such an in-depth understanding of the history of their produce and how the local area impacted upon its quality. It was fascinating! The distillery made sure everybody wasn't drinking on an empty stomach by serving up some traditional stovies and oatcakes; the food added another layer of homeliness to our event as well as creating a special space amidst proceedings for the audience to converse more closely with one another. One thing we should definitely mention . . . we ended up with more than two drams each during the tasting, which made for a rather entertaining second set.
Well fed and oiled, we were already to turn the party up a notch! We ramped up the volume of our set getting everybody involved by having them sing along with us; from Scottish favourites, American folk classics and some of our own higher tempo material, we all had an absolute ball! We also managed to tell some more stories from our adventures chasing the perfect dram . . . these included:
being thrown out of a well-known whisky establishment
humiliating ourselves with a blended whisky
waking up with a camera full of pictures we have no recollection of being in
how The Whisky Song came to be
when we unexpectedly bottled our own whisky
how we celebrated our sold out show at Celtic Connections
After we wrapped up our show for the evening, we were able to spend some quality time with everybody who came along; it was brilliant being able to enjoy this kind of time with our guests as we could catch up with those we knew and spend time getting to know people who had never seen one of our performances before. For us, this was an important time in the evening as it created a community and, almost, family feel to the event, which has made it so memorable for us. We'd like to give special thanks to the amazing Lauren Oliver and her team for their attention to detail and for helping to make our first event so successful.
That being said, we are absolutely thrilled to say that we are going to be doing it all over again on the 8th of September and you can now buy your tickets here! If you missed the last one, this is your opportunity to come along and enjoy a very special evening drinking whisky and meeting friends, new and old. If you attended the last event, why not come and join the fun again and, this time, bring somebody new? Either way, everybody is welcome; we'd love to see you!
We really hope you enjoyed reading this blog; if you did, do feel free to share it with other music-loving people you know. We'd also love to hear what you think about this lovely instrument at some point. Thank you very much for your continued love, patience and support. Take care for now and we'll hopefully see you soon!
Lynzy & Vivienne The Coaltown Daisies
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