Emma Kate Tobia & George Murphy duet: A Fairy Tale


A duet with


Performing the iconic Pogues Christmas song

Way back the same month last year I reviewed Emma Kate Tobia‘s album. Earlier than that (around October 26) I also featured George Murphy’s The Ballad of Archie Thompson. Who would have thought that these two notable vocalists would eventually record a song together? So what do they have in common? My answer …..(rolling drums and trumpets!): powerful vocals and amazing charisma.

Emma Kate Tobia’s classically trained soprano and George Murphy’s Dublin howl can tackle arena style venues . So you might think this is another one of those operatic renditions that calls to mind classical crossover performance. Yes and wrong. Miss Tobia’s voice maybe suited for powerful performances, yet in delivery, she is dubbed as Ireland’s angelic soprano. I have observed time and time again how she skillfully switches her singing,  from Sean-nós  to operatic, with an ease of a giselle. Together, the two singers created a magical song that is indeed a fairy tale for the season.

From the onset of the piano chords comes George Murphy’s strong (but this time wood- meets- whiskey-slick)vocals. It’s  a gradual track that picks up pace as Emma Kate Tobia’s part comes in. The prominent tin whistle and guitars evoke that acoustic folk feel.  According to the info :

The original song was written and released in 1987 by Irish rock band, The Pogues, it was a duet between lead singer Shane McGowan and Kirsty MacColl. The song swiftly became a hit, reaching #1 in the Irish charts. It is frequently voted the Number One Best Christmas song of all time in various television, radio and magazine related polls in Ireland and the UK. This new version was recorded in Dublin at Ashtown Studios this past fall with an amzing group of musicians including Dave Brown on guitar and mandolin (he holds the Guinness World Book of Records for most consecutive hours playing guitar!) and traditional players from Chicago, Johnny and Cormac McCarthy on whistles and piano respectively.

Fairytale of New York is available for download at iTunes and at http://www.cdbaby.com

Here’s the direct link to download:


Thanks to Anita Daly  for the exclusive preview of this wonderful track.




Celtic Ambience

My friend Paula O’Brien(http://www.myspace.com/paulaobrienuk)  from the UK whom I had a pleasure meeting and befriending in facebook shared two beautiful tracks with me. Paula is half Irish and she is known for her elecro music. These  two tunes are relaxing and I want to share it to you my readers, hoping you get that reflective feel of the season as it starts to kick in.

The first track is called Carousel by Troy Donockley (born 30 May 1964) who  is an English composer and multi-instrumentalist most known for his playing of uillean pipes. It’s from his album “The Unseen Stream“(1998 remastered in 2005).

The second track is called “Seoladh Na Ngamhna” by The Dirk Campbell Band from the compilation album “Celtic Ambience”.


2 thoughts on “Emma Kate Tobia & George Murphy duet: A Fairy Tale

  1. Love Emma kate and George’s take on the song. I really loved the Pogues version too. The Ui;;can pipes in both songs were beautiful and more than a bit haunting in their way of sharing the last song. Lovely!


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