It’s a typical October day, writes our music correspondent Lucy Earley. The mountain behind me has disappeared under dark clouds, and there’s a wind whipping up out there with that kind of misty rain that saturates your clothes within two minutes. Best to stay in.
So I light a spiced orange candle and assemble a chai latte (homemade, I might add), to set about giving Irish Ways ‘Music & Song of Ireland’ double CD a listen. It’s comprised of thirty-four songs of classic and contemporary trad.
With all great technology around today it’s still really hard to compile a list of songs in ITunes or YouTube that you want to listen to repeatedly. I’m not being a Luddite but lazy amongst us want to have perfect musical collection put into our hands. There were barely any songs on this album that I skipped. And there were some really interesting discoveries.
Trad heavyweights Luke Kelly, Liam Clancy, Kila and Sinead O’Connor feature, and while I love their music, I found myself drawn to newer/lesser known artists on CDs.
Damian Mullane’s ‘Emma’s Waltz’ is a truly uplifting piece of music. Maighread Ní Dhomhnaill’s ‘Amhrán Pheadar Breathnach’ is a very dynamic piece of singing. She has a brilliant range, which pulls listener in with nuances of fast-moving song.
The winner, hands down, is Pauline Scanlon’s ‘The Boys of Barr na Sráide’. The beautiful, breathy rendition is perfect in tone, timbre, pitch but most of all that kind of soulful quality that makes Irish music stand out. Unfortunately, I can’t find many Pauline Scanlon links on You Tube, but I will give you an example of what she’s capable, along with some other offerings from CD.
Overall, if you want to get an interesting double CD of eclectic Irish music into your CD collection, I would recommend this album.
Pauline Scanlon singing:
Damian Mullane’s ‘Emma’s Waltz’:
Maighread Ní Dhomhnaill’s ‘Amhrán Pheadar Breathnach’: