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​​Local artist of the week – Adwaith

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11924306_1633605270224410_2827830900035981505_n(1)THE HERALD spoke with the delightful all-girl Welsh-medium band Adwaith from Carmarthen this week.

Adwaith’s sound is a mixture of folk, indie and alternative with harmonies being a key element throughout their songs. The band’s main influences lyrically are The Staves, but they tell us that they take a lot of inspiration from Fleet Foxes and First Aid Kit too.

Their live shows are very chilled and relaxed, which makes them quite different from the many Welsh rock bands in the area.

The girls from Adwaith all grew up playing instruments or singing, but it was the Welsh music scene which sparked their interest in music.

“The Welsh music scene has become more popular in recent years because of events such as Maes B and Gwyl Crug Mawr. I think that’s what has really inspired us to get this band together.”

Gwenllian, Hollie and Chelsea started creating music together as a three piece last August, but the girls found their drummer, Heledd, at the first gig they played soon after.

Starting off as a three piece, Adwaith played folk instruments such as the guitar and mandolin, but they have slowly introduced some electric guitar and bass into their music over the last couple of months.

They told us that the added drums has taken their music “to the next level” and boosted their sound, too.

“We’re just having fun experimenting and finding our sound,” they said.

We asked the girls how they fit into the west Wales music scene, to which they replied: “There aren’t many bands with our sound in the area and very few all-girl bands. So I believe people are very intrigued to see what we have to offer.”

We went on to discuss the male-dominated music industry and the girls spoke about what it is like to be an all-girl band in such a heavily male field.

“We’ve had a tonne of messages saying how great it is to see an all-girl band. It’s something different that people seem to have a lot of interest in!”

We then spoke about the benefits and drawbacks of being in a Welsh-medium band.

“The Welsh music scene is very small compared to the English music scene but everyone knows each other! It sounds cliché but it’s one big community and everyone supports each other.

“The downfall is that there aren’t as many gigs because of the lack of Welsh speakers in the area but we hope by introducing Welsh music, we can change that!”

Adwaith advise that we should also be listening to Ffug, Ysgol Sul, Mellt and Cpt. Smith, who are all from west Wales.

“What’s the best advice you have been given so far?” we asked.

“The best advice we’ve been given is to not change our sound for anyone. We need to keep the originality and not lose our quirkiness or naivety.”

They added that the advice they would give to someone thinking of creating their own music would be to “do it!”

“It’s not a massive money maker and it takes a lot of your time, but it’s worth it when you get praised for your music and when you meet a load of new, awesome people.”

When we went on to ask what the most memorable response to their music has been, Adwaith said: “I guess being asked to play in Clwb Ifor Bach at the end of this month when we’ve only just started off. The response has been really great and we hope it continues to grow.”

Adwaith are playing a gig at The Parrot on Friday (Jan 15) and then they will play at Clwb Ifor Bach in Cardiff on January 30.

They said that they are hoping to get some demos recorded soon and they may release an EP later in the year.

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Cllr Kevin Madge elected as new county council Chairman

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THE new chair of Carmarthenshire County Council said he will work tirelessly during his term of office.

Cllr Kevin Madge, member for Garnant, takes the chain of office whilst celebrating 40 years as a councillor.

Taking the chair, Cllr Madge paid tribute to outgoing chairman Cllr Mansel Charles, member for Llanegwad, saying he had fulfilled his duties with passion.

Cllr Madge will chair the council for the next 12 months, with Cllr Ieuan Davies, member for Llanybydder, as his vice chair, and his wife Catrin as his consort.

“I’m very much looking forward to the year ahead, I will do my best for everyone. I will work tirelessly,” he said.

Cllr Madge has chosen the Trussell Trust, which supports a nationwide network of food banks and emergency food provision for people in crisis, as his Chairman’s Charity of the Year.

The Chair is the first citizen of Carmarthenshire County Council, and is elected at the Annual General Meeting.

Duties include chairing full meetings of the council, representing the council at formal and ceremonial occasions, welcoming visitors to the county, and attending and supporting events organised by local people and organisations.

Cllr Madge has been a county councillor since 1996, and a member of Cwmaman Town Council since 1979.

He also serves as chairman of the Royal British Legion Garnant branch, Garnant Family Centre and Cwmaman Meals on Wheels, and is a member of Amman Valley League of Friends.

He represents the county council on the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, and the Mynydd y Betws Wind Farm Community Fund, and is on the governing body of Ysgol Y Bedol.

A former pupil of Amman Valley School, Cllr Madge has worked in the Amman Valley throughout his life, most recently as agent and researcher to Dr Alan Williams MP until 2001.

A keen football supporter, he has served as chair and president of Cwmaman Football Club and spent 25 years as a Welsh League and Neath and District football referee.

He is married with two children and three grandchildren.

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‘UK Government should work with the Welsh Labour Government on Tata’

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LOCAL Assembly Member Lee Waters and Nia Griffith MP have called on the UK Government to work with the Welsh Labour Government to come up with a deal to protect steel making at Trostre, and across Wales and the UK.

Lee Waters AM met with representatives from Tata Steel on Wednesday to discuss the future for steel making at the plant following the reported collapse of the proposed joint venture with Thyssenkrupp.

During the meeting he stressed the need to protect the entire steel supply chain in Wales, including the high quality jobs at Trostre, and those that depend on its presence in Llanelli.

Lee Waters AM said “It’s clear that the support Welsh Government provided during the crisis of 2016 has been critical in getting extra investment into Port Talbot which will secure the works for years to come. However, Tata is a company run from India, and we simply don’t know what the board will decide about its future strategy. They may well be looking for a new joint venture partner, so we’ll have to vigilant about the implications for our local plants.”

“Tata has said it intends to continue with its existing business plan, and honor commitments made to the Trade Unions, so Nia and I will be keeping a close eye to make sure that happens.”

Welsh Government has been in active discussions with Tata steel following the collapse of the merger with Thyssenkrupp. In a written statement and during questions on Wednesday, the Welsh Government committed to invest in Welsh steel to protect its future and is looking at a range of measures to assist on energy costs, business rates and procurement of steel for public sector contracts.

Lee Waters AM said “The Welsh Government have given significant support to the steel industry here but it can’t do everything, and we now need the UK Government to work with them to ensure a future for skilled work in the steel industry in Llanelli and elsewhere in Wales.”

Nia Griffith AM said ““This latest news from Tata means yet more uncertainty for steelworkers. Their announcement about keeping Port Talbot is a start, but now we need real commitment from Tata on Trostre.

“We also need close cooperation from the company with the Trade Unions. Lee Waters AM and I will be urging the UK Government to follow Welsh Government in doing everything possible to secure the future of our steel industry.”

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MP and AM call for Trostre certainty after merger fails

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LOCAL ASSEMBLY MEMBER Lee Waters and Nia Griffith MP have called on the UK Government to work with the Welsh Labour Government to come up with a deal to protect steel making at Trostre, and across Wales and the UK.

Lee Waters AM met with representatives from Tata Steel on Wednesday to discuss the future for steel making at the plant following the reported collapse of the proposed joint venture with Thyssenkrupp.

During the meeting he stressed the need to protect the entire steel supply chain in Wales, including the high quality jobs at Trostre, and those that depend on its presence in Llanelli.

Lee Waters AM said “It’s clear that the support Welsh Government provided during the crisis of 2016 has been critical in getting extra investment into Port Talbot which will secure the works for years to come. However, Tata is a company run from India, and we simply don’t know what the board will decide about its future strategy. They may well be looking for a new joint venture partner, so we’ll have to vigilant about the implications for our local plants.”

“Tata has said it intends to continue with its existing business plan, and honor commitments made to the Trade Unions, so Nia and I will be keeping a close eye to make sure that happens.”

Welsh Government has been in active discussions with Tata steel following the collapse of the merger with Thyssenkrupp. In a written statement and during questions on Wednesday, the Welsh Government committed to invest in Welsh steel to protect its future and is looking at a range of measures to assist on energy costs, business rates and procurement of steel for public sector contracts.

Lee Waters AM said “The Welsh Government have given significant support to the steel industry here but it can’t do everything, and we now need the UK Government to work with them to ensure a future for skilled work in the steel industry in Llanelli and elsewhere in Wales.”

Nia Griffith AM said “This latest news from Tata means yet more uncertainty for steelworkers. Their announcement about keeping Port Talbot is a start, but now we need real commitment from Tata on Trostre.

“We also need close cooperation from the company with the Trade Unions. Lee Waters AM and I will be urging the UK Government to follow Welsh Government in doing everything possible to secure the future of our steel industry.”

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