Highland duo Càrnan honour John Martyn’s Over the Hill

Highland folk duo Càrnan will release a cover of John Martyn’s homecoming song Over the Hill as a single on Friday May 13. Kintail accordionist Louden Mackay and Isle of Skye guitarist and vocalist Arthur Brook have shared a love of John Martyn’s genius music for many years and after covering the track at numerous gigs they decided to record their own version paying tribute to the legendary singer-songwriter.

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Highland folk duo Càrnan have lovingly covered John Martyn’s homecoming song Over the Hill, and are set to release their version as a single in May.

Kintail accordionist Louden Mackay and Skye guitarist and vocalist Arthur Brook have shared a love of John Martyn’s genius music and lyrics for many years.

After covering Over the Hill at gigs the length and breadth of Scotland, the duo felt compelled to record their own version, paying tribute to the legendary singer songwriter.

The stripped-back track champions the pair’s raw vocals and guitar, with the addition of beautiful accordion melodies and harmonies, making for a thoughtful and sensitive cover.

Louden Mackay said: ‘We recorded this cover to pay tribute to the fantastic music of John Martyn which has been incredibly inspiring and thought provoking for us as musicians over the years. It was crucial for us to keep the integrity of that stripped back sound and we hope people enjoy this cover.’

Arthur Brook added: ‘John Martyn’s back catalogue never fails to delight us and it inspired us to include both songs and tunes in our repertoire as a band. Over the Hill is one of our favourite songs and we hope this newer version of the single encapsulates some of the magic that John Martyn’s original has.’

After playing together for many years, Louden and Arthur joined forces to form Càrnan in 2020, using their incredible synergy to create contemporary tunes that are firmly connected to the music and culture of the Highlands. They arranged this cover in the summer of 2020 while living and working together in Kintail.

Over The Hill was recorded at Wee Studio in Stornoway and produced by Keith Morrison. It will be available to stream on all digital platforms from Friday May 13.