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More Cape Breton CDs

Barra MacNeils - All at Once

Updated December 10, 2009

 

Below is a list of additional CDs:  Note that there is also a separate page of additional fiddlrers and CDs.  The CDs below listed this time alphabetically by artist.

CDs:


The Barra MacNeils - All at Once  (Shoreline Records 2005). The Barras have been a Cape Breton treasure for nearly 20 years. And like a fine wine, they keep getting better and better with age. Recently they have been joined by Boyd and Ryan MacNeil, former members of Slainte Mhath (aka "the Baby Barras), and their sound is richer and fuller now. The Barras are sounding very, very good right now. Their instrumentals have the classic drive and lift their fans expect, and will get you out of your seat and dancing around the room in no time. Lucy, Stewart and Kyle have never sounded better on the songs. Lucy's vocals on David Francey's "A Thousand Miles" to the droaning accompaniment of her brothers harmonies is going to be a Barra's classic. This album has a lot of variety from the almost pop sounds of  their song "Haven't Got a Care" to the Gaelic "Gearan Na Maighdinn". I've 20+ new CDs to listen to, but this one keeps creeping back into my CD player. I bet it will do the same in yours. Well done Barras!  (Very highly recommended)

(Time Frame)

The Barra MacNeils - Time Frame (Polygram Records). T The Traditional Album is an entirely instrumental album also has a distinctly Irish feel about it, (Barras' unofficial WWW site)

Celtic Colours - X  (Odyssey Records 2006)  On  the Celtic Colours International Festival's 10th anniversary  the festival decided to celebrate some of the great moments that had occured at the festival.  Whereas the previous Celtic Colours festival CDs had been single CDs of tracks taken from that year's artists' existing CDs, for this year, they decided to issue a double CD composed entirely of live tracks recorded at the festival over the years -- 31 tracks, 134 minutes of live music! The selection of artists on this CD is a who's who of the great ones who have performed at the festival. From Ireland: Sharon Shannon, The Black Family, Liz Doherty, Altan, and Eleanor Shanley; from Scotland: Dougie MacLean, Mairi MaInnes & Karine Polwart, Archie Fisher, Capercaillie, Blazin' Fiddles, Phil Cunningham, Shine, Dòchas, Ishbel MacAskill, and Anna Massie; and then the home team from Cape Breton: The Barra MacNeils, Carl MacKenzie, Beolach, Howie MacDonald, Brenda Stubbert, Troy MacGillivray, The Beaton Family, Doug MacPhee, Kimberley Fraser, David Greenberg, John Allan Cameron, Rita MacNeil and Mary Jane Lamond. Obviously they did not capture all the great moments that have occurred at this festival, and one could come with a list almost as long of artists who did not make it onto these CDs. There is some great stuff on this CD that will appeal to many different tastes. But that's the glory of this music and this festival -- there is an embarassment of musical riches in Cape Breton that causes me and so many others to keep going back. The CD contains excellent liner notes about each artist and set of tunes.  A fine introduction to the variety and quality of the music at this festival for those thinking of attending and great memories for those who were there at some of  these concerts. (Recommended)

Celtic Colours International Festival - Volume VII (Odyssey Records 2003). This great festival has once again produced a superb and varied CD, 17 tracks, one each for a sampling of the great musicians that played at the festival this year. Included are great tracks from Irish group Lúnasa, the Scottish group Bachué, CB fiddler Brenda Stubbert, Mary Jane Lamond, The McDades, The Kane Sisters, CB pianist Mac Morin, Irish guitarist/singer Doyle, John Campbell and Doug MacPhee, English flute/whistle dominated Flook, celtic Baroque with Ferrintosh, Gaelic singer Donnie Murdo MacLeod, the great Irish group bohola, Wendy MacIsaac, Cajun players Christine Balfa and Dirk Powell, Gaelic singer Mairi MacInnes, and lastly Natalie MacMaster. There is clearly something for everyone to like on this

(Celtic Colours 2000)

Celtic Colours - Ceilidh 2000 (Odyssey Records) This year's CD associated with this festival has 18 tracks, including 5 previously unrecorded tracks (*). Included on the CD are the Barra MacNeils, Jerry Holland & piper John MacLean (*), Rita & Mary Rankin, Buddy MacMaster, Cetlic Tide, Tracey Dares & Paul MacNeil, PEI's Celtic Tide, Rod MacNeil doing the gaelic song "Laoidh Chaluin Chille" (*), plus Scots Blazin' Fiddles, Dáimh, Filska, and Irish group Danú, fiddler Brendan Mulvihill (*), and singer Eleanor Shanley. Worthwhile, but not as indispensable as the previous year's CDs, particularly if you already have the Buddy MacMaster & Tracey/Paul CDs as you should! (Recommended)

(Celtic Colours - Forgotten Roots)

Celtic Colours International Festival -- Forgotten Roots (Stephen MacDonald Productions, 1999). This year's CD reflects the musicians that came this year. Highlights as usual come from the locals: Mary Jane Lamond's stunning air "Cha Tig Mór" is breathtakingly beautiful. Also a great fiddle track from Dave MacIsaac and a blast from the young group Slàinte Mhath. Of course, Natalie and Buddy are on the CD with a live track from a Cape Breton dance hall. Also on the album are tracks from Scottish singer Maggie MacInnes, Cherish the Ladies, Alasdair Fraser & Chris Norman, Dougie MacLean, Spanish celtic group Llan de Cubel, Irish accordionist Joe Derrane, Carl MacKenzie, Scottish trad/jazz duo Bachué and Jennifer and Hazel Wrigley. (Recommended)

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Please send me your comments or suggestions: jim@sfcelticmusic.com