Here’s hoping this week is much ‘better’ than last week. Last week at this time Boston had just recently been bombed, of course, and then over the next few days the fertilizer plant in West, Texas blew up and, closer to home, the house where one of my best friends’ parents lived burned to the ground. And, with ~2 feet of new snow on the ground all week, it was not possible to escape the bad news by going for a nice long walk, either. This week once again we have a snow storm which has dropped a few new inches of snow today, but with luck it will go away soon. In the meantime, here is the playlist I put together last weekend, before the Boston Marathon bombing derailed my blogging plans. One nice thing about lists of great songs is that they don’t spoil or grow stale if kept in storage for a week.
1. Pale Blue Jak – “Let Em In” – The Celtic Thunder singers are once more at home, having spent a few days in New York last week, so hopefully now Neil Byrne can get back to work on the next Pale Blue Jak album. I’d love to see a live Pale Blue Jak show, streaming online from an Irish venue or actually touring here. This stuff is a lot closer to the music Neil was involved with making as part of Hipple Street, so if I can’t see the no-longer-existent Hipple Street, Pale Blue Jak would be a decent alternative.
2. The High Kings – “Irish Pub Song” – This fantastic song has been on youtube for a while, so it was high time it made its way onto spotify where I could add it to my lists.
3. Catriona Watt – “A’ Bhean Eudach” – I’ve heard a few different artists’ renditions of this song, and this is one of the better ones.
4. Paolo Nutini – “No Other Way”
5. Ramones – “We’re A Happy Family” – For all those folks who, like me, had a dysfunctional family that tried very hard to look normal on the surface. One of the lads who performs at the Avogadro’s Number open mics a lot fits more into this genre of music, which is not so common at that open mic, so more of this stuff is creeping back into my playlists lately.
6. Toby Keith – “You Shouldn’t Kiss Me Like This”
7. Soweto Gospel Choir – “Kae Le Kae”
8. Josh Groban – “Let Me Fall”
9. Bearfoot – “Deep River Blues”
10. Rising Appalachia – “I’ll Fly Away” – A creepier, more haunting arrangement of this gorgeous classic folk song.
11. Sarah Slean – “Ogoni Star”
12. Cherryholmes – “Mansker Spree/O’Caughlin’s Reel”
13. Ed Sheeran – “Fall” – Another of the regulars at the local open mic is a huge Ed Sheeran fan (& he’s not a teenage girl OR gay) so I had to check out some of Ed Sheeran’s songs eventually. I actually do like this one.
14. Celtic Thunder, Colm Keegan – “Katie” – Colm Keegan was not meant to have been integrated into Celtic Thunder as rapidly as he was- the plan had been that he would accompany the ensemble for the first portion of their last US tour to act as back-up in case Ryan Kelly couldn’t perform some nights. But, as the Thunderheads had already adopted Colm as one of their lads, and wanted to see him on the stage with the rest of the show, he performed on stage along with the other 5 singers for the whole tour. This song is the only solo he has so far on spotify, though there are other songs which feature him, and there is another of his solos on the second CD of the Mythology set, which is not on spotify.
15. Ross Crean – “The Hounds” – Actually in this respect it isn’t so bad that I had to delay posting this list by a week because in addition to all the terrible things that happened last week, I also found out that Ross Crean has finished recording his new project, which I will be reviewing on this blog quite soon. More music from this fellow is always great news, and from a quick first-listen I can say for sure that his new album will be at least on par with his earlier releases. I still have a soft spot for his Blackwater album (I came across Ross’s music while looking for recordings of songs from an 1800’s Irish folk music songbook, after all, and fell for his Irish music first) but his non-Irish music is also rather addictive.
16. The Wailin’ Jennys – “Trick Rider”
17. R.E.M. – “Everybody Hurts”
18. Rhydian – “Fe Ddof I Adre’n Ol”
19. Olabelle – “Saints”
20. Hothouse Flowers – “The End of the Road”