Classic Celtic Music from Smithsonian Folkways, the 20th album in the popular Classic Series, is now available in CD and digital download format. Few genres carry such a rich and deep history as Celtic music, which reflects centuries of culture of Ireland and the British Isles, as well as their North American inheritors.
Compiled by musician, historian and folklorist Richard Carlin, Classic Celtic Music delves into this diverse world of musical traditions. Carlin has compiled a wide spectrum of 23 tracks that contrast the better-known early recordings with some of the best contemporary interpreters. Styles ranging from Sligo fiddle tunes to Northumbrian piping to sean nós singing are represented in this enjoyable introduction to the Celtic music riches of the Smithsonian Folkways archives. 58 minutes, 40-page booklet with photos.
Some of the selections, like Margaret Dirrane’s “’Twas Early, Early in the Spring” and Joe Heaney’s “The Rocks of Bawn,” date to the mid-1950s, while others were recorded in the latter part of the 20th century. The tracklist includes a hearty sample of field recordings as well as a previously unissued tune, “Derry Hornpipe, recorded at the 1983 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, DC.
As with every compilation in the Smithsonian Folkways Classic Series, Classic Celtic Music explores the breadth and depth of a genre while the liner notes offer insight into the cultural and historical contexts of each selection. During the last 10 years, Smithsonian Folkways has released critically acclaimed “Classic” compilations of bluegrass, folk, blues, maritime, old-time, and mountain music, among others.
Classic Celtic Music Tracklist:
pThe Pearl Wedding / Nancy Taylor - Joe Shannon and John McGreevy 4:23