Here it is the end of the year and yet there remains a pile of great folk recordings on my desk, all from 2010, just begging to be reviewed. One of the best of these is Abocurragh from legendary Irish folk singer Andy Irvine. Produced by his ex-Planxty bandmate Donal Lunny, it’s his first solo record since 1999 and features the stellar talents of Liam O’Flynn, Máirtín O’Connor, Annbjørg Lien, Lillebjørn Nilsen, Nikola Parov, Bruce Molsky, and others. As before, Andy’s influences range from Depression-era Americana to the rhythms of Bulgaria, with plenty of Ireland mixed into his traditional and original songs. Fiddlefreak recommended!
LISTEN: James Magee (MP3)
LISTEN: The Demon Lover (MP3)
On a related note–Andy’s historic duo recording with Paul Brady, made in 1976, is now finally available in digital format. I’ll say this record has withstood the test of time and remains one of the best recordings of Irish folk music ever made. Some memories from Andy:
“Lough Erne Shore” though was one that came together in the studio. I recorded three different drones on the hurdy gurdy and we cross faded them on the mix to fit the chords. It’s very subtle and you may not hear it but I thought it gave it a great feeling. The another memory I have is of Paul spending a morning trying to get “Arthur McBride and the Sergeant” recorded to his liking. He recorded one nearly perfect take but when we listened back to it, we heard him sing “Says Arthur we wouldn’t be froud of your clothes”….! Nowadays that could easily be corrected but not in those far off days, and he had to do the whole song again!