Award winning Gaelic singer

Maeve on the Janice Forsyth Show


Celtic Connections 2018 has kicked off today and Maeve is delighted to have been invited onto the Janice Forsyth show on BBC Radio Scotland on Monday 22 January. Maeve and the lads will be performing live tracks from the new album, Strì and also chatting to Janice about the new album.

Maeve is joined in the studio by Ross Martin (guitar), Brian McAlpine (piano, keyboard) and Duncan Lyall (bass, Synths). Tune into the JF show and send in your tweets!


New Album News


Following a 2 year hiatus from her solo career- during which she has been touring internationally with The Stepcrew and other shows- Maeve’s third studio album, Strì, comes out in early 2018.

Produced by the award-winning producer and bassist Duncan Lyall, the album explores themes of work and exile, whilst being firmly centred on her love of Gaelic waulking songs, in a fresh modern setting.
Regular accompanists Ross Martin and Brian McAlpine appear on the album as well as guests Patsy Reid, Jarlath Henderson, Kathleen MacInnes, Martin O’Neill, Ali Hutton, Alyn Cosker and Ewen Henderson and Maeve’s brother Ian Mackinnon.

Maeve is currently taking pre-orders for the album. For independent artists operating without finance from a big label or crowd-funding, any pre-orders taken prior to the album release will directly contribute to manufacturing costs and album promotion.

To order your copy of the album please visit



In addition to recording, Maeve has been very busy working on a project called The Maryhill Songbook, a collaboration between Maeve, her regular community choir project Maryhill Heritage Choir and The Maryhill Burgh Halls, who have commissioned Maeve to compose melodies and settings for 19th Century poetry from the Maryhill area. The choir are currently very busy learning up the arrangements and the Songbook is being launched on 9 Dec 2017 at Maryhill Burgh Halls. Copies of the book will be available for purchase from the Maryhill Burgh Halls website.

Patrick Grady, MP for Glasgow North has kindly endorsed the project with this statement:

“The Maryhill Songbook, put together by the volunteers in the Maryhill Heritage Choir, provides a pathway back in time. With poems originally published in newspapers and newsletters such as the Dumbarton Herald and the Old Maryhill Dinner Scrapbook preserved in their original 19th century Scots dialect, the songbook provides outstanding insight into the Scots language and Victorian life in Maryhill. The music perfectly complements the Burgh Halls’ heritage collection, making it accessible and enjoyable to a wider audience. The Maryhill Songbook has been recognised as helping to promote health and wellbeing in the community through creative activity and expression. I’m sure that the local community will get right behind this excellent project and show their support for the Maryhill Heritage Choir at their future performances”

– Patrick Grady MP, Glasgow North



Maeve is delighted to be launching her third solo album Strì – ‘to strive’ – at Celtic Connections Festival on 4 Feb 2018. Celtic Connections says, “Award-winning Glasgow singer Maeve Mackinnon launches her third solo album Strí – ‘to strive’ – exploring themes of work and exile, centred on her love of Gaelic waulking songs. She’s joined by A-list accompanists Brian McAlpine, Patsy Reid, Martin O’Neill, Ross Martin, Duncan Lyall, Ali Hutton and Alyn Cosker.”
To book tickets for this show please visit:

Further dates for 2018 coming soon…

September News

Photo: Leila Angus 2015
Photo: Leila Angus 2015

Summer Touring

Well folks, it was a whirlwind of a summer. I barely had time to catch my breath after the Stepcrew US tour before I was straight back into gigging, this time for the Salsa Celtica Big Band. Always a thrill. Particular highlights were playing to a packed Glasgow crowd at the Oran Mòr, a sold-out Edinburgh gig and of course HebCelt Festival on the Isle of Lewis. My thanks always to Toby Shippey and crew for having me and also Caroline MacLennan and everybody at HebCelt for really looking after us.

Royal Edinburgh Tattoo
Royal Edinburgh Tattoo

Royal Edinburgh Tattoo

For the month of August I had the privilege of joining the Royal Edinburgh Tattoo for 23 nights in a row. Playing to 5000 people a night with the incredible Edinburgh Castle as a backdrop was quite a surreal experience and the show was filmed and broadcast on BBC 1 during primetime viewing, reaching over 6,000,000 people in the UK alone. Particular highlights for this were meeting Scottish First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, among many others. Many thanks to John Smith from the BBC, David Alfrey and the rest of the Tattoo team for having me.


Bereavement in the Family

I have taken a breather from work commitments in the last 4 weeks, due to a tragic death in the family. I am so grateful for all the love and support my family have received in the last 6 months, and I’m so very grateful to our wonderful NHS and to all the staff at the Southern General Hospital in Glasgow for their incredible compassion and care during the darkest hours. Tributes have been pouring in from far and wide and my father will be loved and missed by many.


New Album

Two very positive developments are on the horizon. I am delighted to announce I begin rehearsals for my third studio album soon. I am delighted to be teaming up again with Duncan Lyall, co-producer of my very first album. Duncan and I haven’t worked together since 2007 and he is kept very busy these days between producing high profile albums and touring with Treacherous Orchestra and the Kate Rusby Band, so we are excited to be working together again. The album will feature friends and long-term collaborators Ross Martin (guitar), Brian McAlpine (piano and accordian), and a host of exciting guest musicians.


Last but not least I am most grateful to Tasgadh Small Grants Awards, a grants strand through Fèisean nan Gàidheal, with whom I have strong ties. I have been awarded funding to undertake professional development at the Bel Canto School of Singing in Dublin in October this year. Bel Canto prides itself on teaching to utilise the natural voice to its best of one’s ability, and boasts an array of high profile former students, such as Sinead O’Connor and Damien Dempsey. I thoroughly look forward to the course and I am so grateful for the generosity of Tasgadh for this opportunity.

M x


Spring News Roundup!

The StepcrewSummer’s on its way and as the song goes “and the trees are sweetly blooming” here in Glasgow. I’ve only been back home for a day, returning from a gruelling but incredible 6 week US tour with The Stepcrew, dance show extraordinaire. We started in Michigan and ended in Wisconsin, by way of Ohio, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Colorado (back to Nebraska), South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota! 5000 miles down, so many laughs, adventures and interesting dinner options along the way! I was particularly pleased to catch sight of some unusual wildlife sightings for a Scottish girl- In Mount Rushmore, the hills were definitely alive with all those famous faces carved into the rock. I also spotted a wild elk (in a field) and two racoons raiding a bin shelter. I was also delighted to catch up with several friends from Glasgow along the way, including two gym pals from home and an old school friend who is running her own highly successful Yoga business in Colorado! Check out Julia’s highly tempting yoga retreats:
Next on the agenda, after a spot of filming for BBC Alba, is a fundraiser I am helping to run with the charity Spirit Aid, run by the actor David Hayman. The concert will be raising funds for Spirit Aid’s medical aid project in Bethlehem, and it is a cause of vital vital importance to me. We have an awesome lineup for the event itself, including Karen Matheson and Donald Shaw (Capercaillie) and Kathleen MacInnes (aka the haunting voice in the Robin Hood soundtrack) and SO many more. The concert takes place at the Oran Mòr Glasgow on Sun 7th June, doors at 6.30 and it is NOT TO BE MISSED! Please see ticketweb or the Oran Mòr website for further details and to book tickets.

Many thanks and more updates to follow, M x


Austria Tour 2014
Austria Tour 2014

Bliadhna mhath ùr dhuibh uile! 2014 has been a year full of amazing opportunities and travel, but also marred by family illness. I’m very grateful to my lovely friends and colleagues for all the support given to me and my family over the last 6 months.
After a busy summer with the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, I headed off with Brian McAlpine and Ross Martin to join the mighty Breabach in Austria, Switzerland and Italy. We had a fantastic tour, playing to sold out audiences in beautiful venues, with some fine weather, food and wine thrown in. Vielen dank Dietmar and Renate Haslinger for an amazing tour! And Breabach were, as ever, on brilliant form. Many thanks also to Creative Scotland for their generous support of the tour.
A spot of filming for BBC Alba’s Stoidhle (Style) ensued, a Gaelic mother-daughter show with my fab mammy. We had some great laughs dressing up, chatting to the fab Sandra and even we got our hair and makeup done. The series will be going out around April 2015, so look out for that. A big thanks to Kenny, Iain Finlay and co for making us feel so welcome.
I will be hitting the ground running in 2015, with shows at Celtic Connections sandwiched on either side of an American tour. First up is a gig on January 17th at the CCA in Glasgow with fab regular NASC collaborators Grainne Holland, Donal O’Connor and Ross Martin. I am also delighted to announce that a brilliant group of teenage Gaelic singers who I work with in Perth, Glè Seniors, will be doing a Flashmob performance for the audience prior to the gig. I head off to the States on 18th January to join dance show extraordinaire The Stepcrew. It is the start of several tours with the band in 2015 and I am delighted to be part of it. Check out for more details. West Palm Beach, Florida is our first stop on January 18th, finishing up in Nashville on 29th. As my father would say, “call this work?” 🙂 For my sins I’m coming back to Glasgow for two more slots at Celtic Connections festival. 31st January is a tribute gig to Glasgow political folksinger Arthur Johnstone. I’ve long been an admirer of Arthur’s and am really looking forward to the gig.
On 1st February I am delighted to be judging at the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year award. This award was a springboard for launching my own career and I am delighted to be able to join the panel this year. As always I’m sure it will be a tough call, as the standard of young musicians gets better and better every year!
Also in February the Songs of the Trades choir resumes for another term. The choir is in great voice, with swelling numbers, and a number of excellent shows throughout the year, including at the Commonwealth Games! Anybody interested in joining or hiring the choir should contact for more information!
For now, wishing everybody health and happiness for 2015!
Leis gach deagh dhùrachd – With Love
M x

Don’t Sing Lovesongs to be re-released!


Due to popular demand, “Don’t Sing Lovesongs”, Maeve’s debut album is to be re-released for purchase.

This website will be offering the album in repackaged dikipak design with a special purchase deal including some freebies. And with Christmas only round the corner too… :)

Originally released in 2007 on Footstompin Records, this album was recognised in the Classic Albums series in 2008 as well as receiving several five star reviews and led to an award at the Scots Trad Music Awards 2007.

Summer 2013

74678_422219621225973_1846175636_n-300x224I’m just back from Ireland via the Isle of Lewis and a whistlestop tour of gigs, negotiating airports, sunbathing (in Scotland. Yes, really) and excellent company! Mòran taing/ Go raibh mile maith agaibh do Hebridean Celtic Festival, Soma Festival and especially the mighty Nasc. Also a big thanks to Innes Watson for doing a stellar job depping on guitar for 
June was an incredibly busy start to the summer what with a mountain of choral projects, including my teenage Gaelic choir, “Glè”, based in Horsecross in Perth. The girls pulled off 2 mighty performances at the end of June and we are looking for new recruits for starting back in August. Also performing were another of my singing groups, “East End Voices”, who did a cracking job at Big Day Oot in Tollcross (in blistering heat I might add.)
Also at the end of June I had my acting debut in Iain Finlay MacLeod’s play, “Hallaig”, joining the fabulous director Kath Burlison, and the amazing Màiri Morrison and Martin MacIntyre, performing at The Tron in Glasgow. I enjoyed the whole experience immensely and we hope to revisit the project again very soon.
Next on the agenda for me is teaching at Tinto Adults’ Summerschool, 2-5 August. If the weather holds up it is going to be a cracking weekend of good company, good songs and good weather (fingers crossed!) For further info and booking, please visit
I’ve got a wee break towards the end of August before the gigs start up again. Coming up in September include another visit to Ireland (further details coming soon) and also Colonsay Folk Festival on 13-15 Sept. Really looking forward to Colonsay as I’ve never been on the island before and I hear rave reports of the place and the festival. Also some great acts appearing including the Tannahill Weavers so it’s a festival not to be missed!
Several exciting projects in the pipeline just now. Currently under construction is my aforementioned theatre/music show for National Theatre Scotland. It’s all top secret at the moment but I hope to share it with you very soon.
Secondly there are whisperings of a Nasc album afoot. After a number of great gigs and terrific fun, we figured it’s about time to commit to a recording. More info to follow very soon… In the meantime check out our Facebook page,

Slàinte M x

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter all and a huge thanks to my Canadian agency Near North Music, as well as to Creative Scotland for their kind financial assistance and all the fab venues, promoters, and festival organisers for having the trio over in Canada last month. We had a highly successful tour, played to some amazing full-capacity audiences in even more amazing locations (see the Facebook page for photographic evidence of some great gigs and even some off-road driving in The Yukon!).


We also got some great newspaper and radio publicity. Click here to see a wee article written by Tom Murray from the Edmonton Journal:


The heroic lads (Beard and Ross) left for Scotland last week while I went off researching in Washington and North Carolina on behalf of National Theatre Scotland. Happy Holidays 🙂