Celticsprite’s Blog

Suggested Albums: "Bare Foot Folk" – Ange Hardy – 2013
May 14, 2013, 1:21 pm
Filed under: Reviews, Suggested Albums

I am pleased to share with you this new album review from Ange Hardy…She is  a folk singing songwriting mum of two who loves all things creative, arty and musical. 
She performs in Somerset · http://www.angehardy.com 

This, her second studio album, was chosen as album of the week this coming week!

So don’t forget to listen all this week either online on http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcsomerset/on-air or on 95.5FM or 1566AM.

This is her own perspective of her new work. All rights reserved by the author.

I have been busy rehearsing for my studio sessions next week where I will be recording my new album “Bare Foot Folk” for release in late May 2013. It will have a mix of some of the songs written for writing challenges such as 50/90 and FAWM on it and also some songs written in the exploration of my ‘Folk Roots’ with a number of songs which have not yet left the kitchen table!
‘Bare Foot Folk’ will be a ‘true’ representation of me as an artist, my roots. It will be just me and my guitar with a warm layer of vocal harmonies so that I can recreate each song live with my looping machine when on tour. No tricks. No ‘fluff’ just me…a folk singer songwriter, sharing my story. I’ve pre-recorded a demo and it sounds beautiful, I’m really very excited to see how much more amazing it will sound once my technician Olly has had his hands in it 🙂
I am relying totally on pre-orders for the funding of this album, so if you think you will be buying a copy…please pre-order it now by clicking on the picture of the album cover above.
Ange x

Posted by Ange Hardy on March 6th 2013

Suggested Albums: John McSherry, Tyler Duncan & Michael Shimmin- "the olllam" – 2012
November 29, 2012, 3:02 am
Filed under: Suggested Albums

Glad to share with you this updated Official Press from these outstanding musicians… Enjoy!

The exciting new album from John McSherry, Tyler Duncan & Michael Shimmin- the olllam – is now available on Compass Records worlwide 

New Album – New Band!

The exciting new album from John McSherry, Tyler Duncan & Michael Shimmin – ‘the olllam’ – is now available from theolllam.com / johnmcsherry.com 

/ iTunes / Amazon

the olllam – An Introduction 

–> Stream the album and drop a line on facebook!

Check out what some of the media is saying:

“… imagine The Bothy Band plugged into some celestial Lucy In The Sky with Diamonds vibe and you might get a sense of the creativeness of the recording.”Tradconnect.com

“If Lúnasa set the gold standard for traditional acoustic music, these guys are bucking for platinum.” – Irish Music Magazine

“… an exquisite combination of virtuosic acoustic music with electric instruments. ‘the olllam’ is an extraordinary Irish fusion album by three masters happily at work.” – World Music Central

About the olllam: 

Belfast-born uilleann piper John McSherry and Detroit natives Tyler Duncan (uilleann pipes, whistles, guitar, Rhodes) and Michael Shimmin (drums and percussion) have been dreaming of “.the olllam.” for the last decade. With a name inspired by the king’s own ollam bards of Irish lore, the trio wanted an ensemble that naturally represented their combined experiences in a multiplicity of styles. McSherry, one of the best uilleann pipers in the world and a founding member of legendary Irish group Lúnasa, has been dubbed “a true master” by Irish Music Magazine and has performed and written with a wide variety of artists, from Ornette Coleman to Nanci Griffith. Duncan and Shimmin, both holding degrees in jazz performance, have also been busy with their award-winning Irish-jazz crossover group Millish, Duncan doing double-duty in the dance-rock group My Dear Disco/Ella Riot.

In February 2012 the trio finally wrote and recorded an original album together, overcoming the Atlantic divide by means of the Internet. The result, their eponymous debut .the olllam., released Sept. 25 on Compass Records, is lush with trance-like melodies, stunning instrumental virtuosity and a magical marriage of tradition and technology, finding the listener somewhere between Radiohead and Planxty with the ambient emotionalism of Nick Drake or Explosions in the Sky. McSherry, Duncan and Shimmin have discovered a synergy within their diverse musical backgrounds – introducing a new Irish crossover group rife with creative brilliance and progressive appeal.

Visit www.theolllam.com for more info news, music, videos, and the touring schedule!

Copyright © 2012 the olllam, All rights reserved.
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Suggested Albums : Robin Williamson – "Love Will Remain" (2012)
July 3, 2012, 7:17 pm
Filed under: Robin Williamson, Suggested Albums

“Robin Williamson” – Love Will Remain / New Release 180 Gram Vinyl LP + CD insert + booklet (Official Press)

After “Just Like The River And Other Songs With Guitar”, his last album with Quadrant Records, “Love Will Remain” is the second instalment from Robin Williamson, who offers his songs with the simple format of voice, acoustic guitar and other instruments played by himself. Williamson, an icon of British folk-rock, since in the sixties he revolutionized the scene as co-leader of the unique “The Incredible String Band”, now presents, in addition to ten songs on vinyl and CD, an approach to his paintings and a series of texts that includes both his thoughts and explanations on the creation of these paintings. Ten songs, seven of his own compositions and three covers among which we find The Band and Syd Barrett, making up the repertoire of this album, a work that is very personal, which largely takes us back to the personal and restless composer, closer to the aesthetics of the years immediately following the String Band than the deepened facet of traditional music in which the group plunged into after its split.

“Love Will Remain” kindly invites us to enter the universe of a singular and extremely unique artist, an artist whose influence has been openly acknowledged by some of the most important musicians of recent decades. The edition includes 180-gram vinyl, CD insert and booklet with large paintings and texts from this contemporary bard whose work continues to remain latent and timeless.

Feel free to listen some sample tracks on the Reverbnation Official Page

Suggested Albums: Altan "Gleann Nimhe – The Poison Glen" (2012)
March 6, 2012, 5:23 pm
Filed under: Influential Musicians, Suggested Albums

Loreena McKennitt: "Troubadours on the Rhine" (a trio performance) – 2012 –
February 17, 2012, 4:07 pm
Filed under: Loreena McKennitt, Suggested Albums

Suggested Albums: Christy Moore – ‘Folk Tale’
December 14, 2011, 4:43 pm
Filed under: Suggested Albums
Hi to all… 2011 is now ending with this fine album from the legendary Irish Folk singer/songwriter Christy Moore. Produced by Declan Sinnott, Folk Tale is the latest result of Christy and Declan’s unique musical alliance.  Christy Moore has a universal fan base and still continues to entertain, cementing him as an Irish icon and helped to create and develop a faithful following that quite frankly alludes most other artists. 
I am Glad to share with you this review written by my blogger partner Mike Wilson. (All rights reserved by the author and published under his kind permission.)

It’s quite possible that there couldn’t be a more fitting title for this album, and not just because it’s the title of one of the songs contained therein. Christy can legitimately lay claim to being the epitome of the living, breathing folk ‘process’; indeed, one of the most rewarding aspects of following his career is the way in which his material morphs and reinvents to suit the occasion, be it the musicians he’s playing with, the audience to which he is playing on any given night, or the more substantial reordering that arises from the growing wisdom and perception that is amassed as the years pass by. It’s this very aspect that distinguishes Folk Tale as something that little bit more special: it’s a snapshot of where Christy is right now, the continued story of the songs he’s carried along with him, alongside the new chapters that reinvigorate and fortify his voyage.
Two particular highlights find Christy furnishing songs of tragedy with a genuine compassion, whilst avoiding any hint of mawkish sentimentality. Kevin Littlewood’s “On Morecambe Bay” thoughtfully observes the fate of illegal immigrant cockle pickers, lost to the deadly tides. The narrative is remarkably evocative for placing the workers firmly amongst the local community, with the writer seemingly expressing a sense of collective guilt for being aware of their plight, but failing to intervene and warn of the treacherous dangers out on the sands. “Haiti” takes a more global view, with it’s clarion call to a nation to rise up and “smile again” in the wake of the harrowing earthquake that decimated the country. The contemplative manner with which Christy approaches these songs probably gives voice and emotion to many who witnessed these events from afar.
Several pieces from Christy’s 1996 album, Graffiti Tongue, receive a more circumspect reworking, seemingly holding at bay some of the anger that permeated the original recordings in favour of more considered readings that are no less disarming. In particular “God Woman” basks in a genuine feeling of warmth, whilst the title track benefits from a more reserved, melodic approach that somehow makes the romance of the story much more compelling.
Folk Tale also reminds us of Christy’s keen sense of humour. “My Little Honda 50” is a light-hearted ditty, on the face of it a quirky tribute to a an even quirkier form of transport, yet dig beneath the skin and it’s a fond recollection of simple times and simpler pleasures. “Weekend In Amsterdam” is a more raucous affair, with some lyrics that I daren’t even repeat within these pages!
Harking back to his days with Planxty, “Farmer Michael Hayes” is recast in a more sparse arrangement, delivered at a slightly more measured pace, proving more reflective than the hearty rebelliousness of the original Planxty recording, largely owing to the greater depth and maturity that age has bestowed on Christy’s voice.
Drawing together the disparate threads of artistry that inspire and nourish his life, Folk Tale draws from a rich palette taking in poetry, politics, humour and tragedy. It’s a collection that is no doubt richer for the accomplished production skills and sympathetic musicianship of the doggedly talented Declan Sinnott, but it’s most certainly Christy’s heart that beats strong throughout.
Track List
  • 1. Tyrone Boys
  • 2. Folk Tale
  • 3. My Little Honda 50
  • 4. Easter Snow
  • 5. Farmer Michael Hayes
  • 6. On Morecambe Bay
  • 7. Tiles and Slabs
  • 8. Haiti
  • 9. Weekend in Amsterdam
  • 10. Ballydine
  • 11. God Woman

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Suggested Albums : Mary Black – ‘Stories From The Steeples’ (2011)
November 30, 2011, 4:44 pm
Filed under: Suggested Albums