Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Ireland: Art of Sean-Nos
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop
Female Conamara singers: add to your repertoire
John L Murphy | Los Angeles | 07/31/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"While Joe Heaney deservedly takes pride of place among singers from the west of Ireland, female counterparts are harder to find on CD. This album can be found in Ireland or perhaps at Irish import shops--it's on a French label. The two singers, mother and daughter, are from just west of Galway city in Barna, an area now faced with suburbanisation. I hope the Irish-speakers there can continue the tradition that Treasa and Roisin capture so elegantly here, in mainly Gaelic but also some English-language songs, unaccompanied throughout in the "old-style" heavily ornamented singing patterns some have linked to Middle Eastern origins. The take on the familiar "Barbara Allen" for example reveals what this undulating delivery can bring to reinterpret that folk chestnut.
For speculations on sean-nos and its perhaps far-flung origins, see Bob Quinn's controversial book and documentary "Atlantean". Appropriately, Roisin's father's from Egypt. She has a two-song single for sale (including a cover of the Clannad classic Coinleach Ghlas an Fhómair) in Irish shops in Galway, by the way, to help Palestinian refugee children, too.
This record, in its simplicity and directness, puts divas to shame. A good start into a realm of song nearly unknown to many today who fetishise world-beat chanteuses! My only caveat is that the dual-language French-English notes only summarise the contents of the songs, when the lyrics--with translations--could have helped listeners appreciate far more the songs' messages."