Eddi Reader MBE is a Scottish singer, known both for her work with Fairground Attraction and for an enduring solo career, which in 2003 saw her showcase the works of Scotland’s national poet, Robert Burns.
Reader grew up in Glasgow and Irvine, Scotland and it was in those towns that she learned to use music as a vehicle for communicating with others through busking and performing at the local folk clubs, then in the early 1980s around Europe (where she also worked with circus and performance artists).
Back in Scotland, she joined the punk band Gang Of Four as a backing singer which led to her first US tour. After leaving the band she started working as a session vocalist in London, singing with such acts as Eurythmics, Alison Moyet and Language.
Through these years Eddi based herself in London, but in 2001 she decided to move home to Glasgow where she recorded the classic ‘Songs Of Robert Burns’ album released to international acclaim in 2003. Awarded the MBE in 2006 for services to singing, she took her Burns songs on tour all over the world and found connections to the bard everywhere from Kolkata, India to Sydney, Australia.
From the traditional to the contemporary, Eddi brings joyous life to all forms of song. Her taste in co-writers, writers, songs and players is impeccable and anything with her name on it is guaranteed musical treasure. Whilst the perfection of her technique is widely acknowledged, what sets Reader apart is the depth and quality of the emotional performance; her ability not only to move the listener but to connect her experience to that of her audience. Her passion and instinct move people in a way reminiscent of those who have influenced her work. Her rare blend of meltingly true vocals and towering romanticism combine with an astute and pragmatic nature to make her a unique and powerful figure in contemporary British music. She has effortlessly developed into one of popular music’s most thrilling and affecting performers.