Harp graphic


Dance Bands




Folk Groups




Back to:

Who's Who


Traditional Music

Traditional Music >> Performers >> Scottish Folk Groups >> Avalon


Avalon started in the 1970s as The Medium Wave Band, including Erne Parkin, Les Cockburn, Steve Moss and Richard Chernes. They were from Edinburgh and were popular around Scotland. The second incarnation of the band in the early 1980s welcomed Billy Milne and Roy Martin, changed their name to Avalon and released a single in 1984. The first of four albums was released in 1985, heralding a successful period of touring in Europe. In 1992 keyboardist John O'Rourke and later in the nineties Sheila McWhirter replaced Parkin on vocals and Stuart Borland beefed up the songwriting.

Stuart Borland told me that Avalon finally split after the Lorient festival in 2002. Stuart and Sheila Mcwhirter acontinued as Orain, performing round the folk clubs and one or two festivals for about a year or so to great reviews. Roy Martin and John O'Rourke helped fill in on some of the bigger gigs. After a year Orain bit the dust.


Roy still plays the Edinburgh pub scene with Cranachan. Likewise John and Les with Absent Friends. Stuart has been playing the odd gig and Burns Night, concentrating, instead, on the day job and family commitments. Professor Dr Steve Moss has a chair at UCL. Don't know what has happened to Billy - possibly domestic bliss. Sheila? What a voice, should be a star. Still miss the guys, we had great times.
Any further information about this band would be greatly appreciated - email me.



Rocky Roads

Rocky Roads (Lismore Folk LIFL 7013, 1986)

Side One: Overture; Jack in Irons; A Travellers Tale; Greenpeace; Bruntsfield Link
Side Two: Leith Link; Ballrooms of Romance; Blue Highways; Road to Dingwall/Arran More; Another Encore

All songs composed by Moss/Parkin

Roy Martin (bass, vocal), Les Cockburn (fiddle, mandolin, vocals), Steve Moss (guitar, vocals), Billy Milne (drums, percussion), Erne Parkin (guitar, vocals)
with Richard Chernes (keyboard, Kurzwell)

Rocky Roads

Heavy Hearts (Lismore Folk LIFL 7015, 1987)

Side One: Litany (Moss/Parkin); Anton the Fox (Avalon); Heavy Hearts (R Martin); On the Fields of Broken Dreams (S Moss); Candy Row (L Cockburn); Sea Link (R Martin)
Side Two: The Knerbs of Bettur Medley: Sound of Mull (trad)/Flotterstone Jig (L Cockburn)/Dode's Reel (L Cockburn); So Still the Scene (L Cockburn); Silver and Steel (Martin/Parkin); Just Between Friends (L Cockburn); Sandgate Lass (Moss/Parkin)

All lyrics by Erne Parkin

Roy Martin (bass, piano), Les Cockburn (fiddle, mandolin, keyboards), Steve Moss (lead guitar), Billy Milne (drums, percussion), Erne Parkin (rhythm guitar, vocals)
with Richard Chernes (keyboard, Kurzwell)

Higher Ground (Iona Records IRC 017, 1992)

The Lion of the North; Sons of the Sea; The Last Gasp Medley; Into the Mists; A Soldiers Dream; The Barloch Reels; Palais de Dance; Stretch the Bow; The Wild Cherry Tree; Ellis Isle


Second Sight (MWR Records MWBCD2001, 1998)

The Alchemist; Shipwreck; Salmon Run; Stepping Stones; Tom Rakewell; Missing You; Songs of Stone; Skylark and the Rose; The Astor Set; Gypsy