In design, the theme of the whole album is "Air Island Fragments" . Under the warm orange-coloured space appearance, there are hidden inner pages composed of different colours and different shapes, symbolising each dream, which is accumulated by small things. The wider album side back allows the album owner to freely bookmark his favourite photos, cards, postcards and record his life. And each album has its own number on the back, just like everyone dreams are unique.
In music, the album "Air Island" describes many: unstoppable parting, unrealised dreams that never give up, shimmer in black holes, a person who is considered a monster but still insists on kindness.
When a multi-award winning writer and producer, whose credits include Celine Dion, Cher, Diana Ross, Michael Ball, Katherine Jenkins and Westlife, describes someone as 'the best singer I have worked with in a long while, who combines a naturally beautiful voice with great feel, sensitivity and knowledge of music' the world takes notice. Twice an Ivor Novello Award winner, Andy Hill was enthusing about a phenomenally talented Irish singer, Aisling, whose debut album Hold My Dream was recorded and produced by him at his Suffolk studio in 2013.
Aisling was born and brought up in the small rural village of Ballycanew in County Wexford near to the South East Coast of Ireland. Surrounded by rustic countryside and close to the beach it has inspired her writing and is still the place she goes to relax and be with her family. Music has been a constant part of her life and background, whether it was listening to pop, rock and classical records on the radio during the 1990's, her father playing the button accordion at family get-togethers or listening to her sister Deirdre sing as one of The Irish Sopranos and her work embraces the many styles that she's absorbed.
On her first ever studio album, Hold My Dream, Aisling co-wrote six of the ten tracks and she is deeply flattered by the comparisons of her sound and style to those of the multi-million selling Enya and Clannad. She also sang all the backing vocals which adds to the spirituality, depth and very personal feel of the sound.
This line-up is fresh and exciting. With great depth of feeling in their songs and enhanced by they're driving rhythm section of bouzouki and bodhrán, these musicians have produced a sound that reflects subtleties of light and shade, with a mixture of powerful and emotive contemporary Irish, Scottish and English music and song, as well as some newly composed material. Their style combines depth, texture and energy, which both drives the band and is exhilarating to experience live.
This tight, polished and energetic sound is created by Emily Spiers: Vocals; Colman Connolly: low whistle, uilleann pipes, flute and whistles; Tobias Kurig: bouzouki; Franziska Urton: fiddle and backing vocals; Tina Terrahe: fiddle and backing vocals; Michaela Gruß: bodhrán and backing vocals.
The expressive singing of native Irish Ann Grealy forms the heart of the six-piece Irish/German band Déirin Dé. The wide range of tunes performed by the Dublin-born lead vocalist extends from soulful melancholic ballads to humorous and spirited songs, accompanied by the band's virtuous instrumentalists.
The five musicians, create a drive and tastefully arranged Irish dances such as jigs, reels, hornpipes and polkas. Beautiful waltzes and airs, moodfully laid back compositions and sometimes extraordinary interpretations of currently heard tunes round off the their program.
The love of traditional music combined with the joy of playing together leads to the unique, compact and authentic sound of Déirin Dé which inspires people and makes them dance.
This debut album uses the Celtic harp as a strong melody instrument over extensive backing. Irish and Scottish tunes are mixed with recently composed melodies and influences from around the globe. It features Colman Connolly on flute, Tim Dowd on uilleann pipes, Geoff Pollitt on fiddle, Dave Henderson and Kevan Roberts on guitar, Xin Wu on xiao (Chinese bamboo flute), Anna NicRaith on Scots Gaelic vocals and Peter O'Brien on bodhrán.
Karen is well embedded into the traditional Irish scene in London. A founder member of the London Lasses and Pete Quinn, she teaches, judges and also organises the Return to Camden Festival.
The CD starts with a real swing with three duets from fiddle and piano; reels followed by jigs, then hornpipes, showcasing Karen's vigorous fiddle playing and Pete Quinn's excellent accompaniment and the opening track is certainly strong enough to pull anybody into wanting to hear more. The slow air, the song tune Sliabh Geal cCua, learned from Kerryman Seamus Begley, is beautiful and tender, and not overworked demonstrating Karen's sense of musical integrity. The CD finished very strongly with a final set of reels from fiddle and piano.
It is obvious Karen and Pete enjoy the music and have the depth of skill to let the music speak for itself. The music is always centre stage and is just gorgeous for that. It takes a lot of sensitivity and understanding to take old tunes like Miss McLeod's and make then sound new and vital. Karen deserves a lot of credit for the way the choice of tunes on this record reinforce the impression that this is a few friends playing for an intimate circle.
Emily Spiers & The Tunesmiths step out with Irish trad and soulful folk-fusion from the glorious Emily Spiers on vocals and flute; the wonderful Steph West on harp and vocals and the incomparable Colman Connolly on uillean pipes, flute and whistles. Exploring a love of Irish dance tunes, song and funk, the Tunesmiths are an Oxford / London band, created out of the mists of a late night house session in Aug 2011.... the shared love of trad tunes and funk took over....
Marian Gill's Port Mór Armagh exchange The year began with a bang as members of our branch welcomed visitors from the Port Mor branch in Armagh as part of an annual exchange, organised by Marian Gill. Marian and her students combined with Port Mór to put on a superb concert of music, song and dance and the event was well-supported. Port Mór members have been so generous in the past looking after us in Ireland and Marian's troupe certainly repaid the complement. The icing on the cake was the launch of a double CD by Port Mór and West London, celebrating our links. It is aptly entitled "A few tunes amongst friends" and was made and produced locally including the art work - by the members and friends of Port Mór and Marian's group. They funded the project themselves and can be justly proud of their joint work. In the sleeve notes Vince Jordan, Chairman of Comhaltas in Britain, congratulates them all. The full production run of 500 CD's have gone. Marian said "Such an achievement and such a shock! It's gone all over the world, from America to Australia, New Zealand and even Serbia. The best thing of all is the positive feedback we've had. Everyone has loved it and said how nice it is to hear some good, old-fashioned traditional music. It was even played on Shannonside radio. We're putting West London on the map."
Helen Roche - Shake the Blossom Early is a collection of love songs from the Irish tradition, many of them from the north of Ireland, including songs from Paddy Tunney, Geordie Hanna, Joe Holmes and others.
Helen grew up in England and Mid Wales, and inherited her singing from her father Jules and grandfather Bill, both of Liverpool. Eclectic musical tastes led to a spell performing as a singer-songwriter, and as bass player in a rock band. She also pursued an interest in the Bosnian, Sephardic and Yiddish song traditions, before returning to her roots in the Irish tradition. Her performances have enthralled session audiences, including those at the Ennis Trad Festival, Willie Clancy Week in Miltown Malbay, and the Liverpool Irish Festival, as well as sessions around London, where she now lives.
Hardcore in America fueled the skate scene from bowl to backyard ramp in the 80's, it was part and parcel of the make up of American youth culture. Bands that fronted this scene included the likes of Black Flag, Minor Threat, Bad Brains, D.I, The Germs, Circle Jerks, 7 Seconds, Suicidal Tendencies, JFA and so many more.
This brash sound made up of hard up, bored kids traveled across the world on skate video soundtracks and those involved left a legacy that will probably never be repeated again to such an extent.
his scene can still be found breeding in backstreets all over the World and one particular UK based hardcore band that has been on the Crossfire radar is D.S.A from Reading, fronted by a Scottish skater who is still flying the flag left behind by the Stupids.
"The 30 tracks on Sarah's stunning album cover all genres of wedding songs and music including: Classical, Irish Traditional, Modern/Contemporary, Sacred Hymns and oldies alike, providing couples with the perfect musical starting point for their important day." Limerick Independent
The attention paid to this new CD by Sarah O'Kennedy was worth it. A selection of 30 tracks, sung and produced by the professional O'Kennedy, has brought together, and quite brilliantly, all the music you need for a unique and intimate ceremony." The Limerick Post
Musicians featured on the album include Harp by Grammy award winning Dr. Janet Harbison, Pipe Organ by Bernadette Kiely Limerick School of Music, Piano by Dawn Kenny currently working with U2, Violin by Oonagh Keogh from The Irish Chamber Orchestra, Digital Organ by Jean O'Brien and Dr. Michael O'Brien, Irish Flute, Tin Whistle and Uilleann Pipes by Colman Connolly and Guitar by classical guitarist Michael O'Toole.
Fiddle player, singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer and award winning musical innovator, Imogen Gunner?s musical journey began at a tender age in the UK and South Africa. She has since encountered and embraced a wealth of musical styles, blazing a trail that includes collaborations with the likes of UK?s John Spires (Bellowhead), Neil Halstead (Mohave 3), producer Martin Rushent (Human League) Ireland?s Micheal O'Suilleabhain, Sean Óg Graham of Beoga, Ariel Dance Company, Fidget Feet, song writer Sean Millar and USA?s jazz fiddler Matt Glaser and Bluegrass fiend John McCann. Such eclectic origins and have fed a driving musical source that remains original, unpredictable yet timelessly musical.
Slim is Andy Black - singer-songwriter living in Hackney, East London, released his new folk-rock LP 'Gallows Tree Tales'. It's a barn-storming folk-rock romp through tales of love, loss, booze and madness. With big productions, there's everything from americana rock, celtic folk, country balladeering, and even a gospel choir thrown in for good measure. There was a triumphant launch gig at Proud Galleries in Camden Market, and from now there'll be a full band tour, gigs-aplenty, and of course, a fair few 'Gallows Tree Tales' to tell.
The bodhrán, fascinating to the music world because of its versatility of sound. The aim of this collaboration by these two exceptional musicians is to demonstrate the extensive possibilities of the instrument. "Bodhrán Insight" comprises of 18 tracks from various recordings which featured Guido or Rolf. However, it does also include previously unreleased tracks which feature the bodhrán as a solo instrument. Despite the large following and lovers of this drum, there has been to date very few productions dedicated solely to the bodhrán.