It’s always a joy when I can honestly give a rave review to a record released by a friend. Such is the case with Christa Burch’s new release Love of the Land, her long-anticipated first solo recording. I’m happy to report that it was well worth the wait.
On her new CD, Christa (of Irvine, CA) takes the listener on a sparkling, joyful tour of Scotland and Ireland. Christa’s voice is a magic carpet upon which we fly over castles and lochs, through dewy green glens and cozy warm pubs, and across the restless seas of the Celtic islands.
Her choice of song is exceptional—a harvest obviously honed by her years of collecting and singing at camps and festivals, which is where I first met her. In fact, The Piper and the Maker (below) is a piece I first heard her sing at a late-night session at Lark Camp. I wonder if my personal memory of that magical moment colors my judgement even now? Nah. It stands on its own, bold and mesmerizing.
Dennis Cahill, widely known as the guitarist who tours the world with Irish fiddle master Martin Hayes, produced Love of the Land, and plays guitar, mandolin, and bouzouki here. He is joined by a crack group of players that include John Doyle, John Williams, Liz Knowles, Kieran O’Hare, and Kat Eggleston. With its crisp arrangements, amazing material, and aching emotion, Love of the Land is destined to become a cherished treasure for all aficionados of Celtic song. Fiddlefreak recommended!