New Album Out:Simple Pleasures by Poitín

New Album Out:Simple Pleasures by Poitín

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Poitín are:

Jaroslav Macháček – fiddle and founder member

Jeremy King – bodhrán, vocals, Brighton-born

Jakub Siegl – guitar, vocals

Jan Brabec – bouzouki, banjo, whistles

Sasha Marešová – whistles, flutes

Tomáš Pergler – concertina, whistles

It is the start of Autumn and we got an auspicious release from Czech-based Celtic band Poitín. Simple Pleasure is the new album and it marks the continuation of their exploration into Celtic styles while retaining their distinctive sound.This is also their sixth studio album, spanning sixteen years of recording history.

Simple Pleasures has thirteen tracks (my lucky number) and you can hear instrumental as well as vocal tracks driven by their punchy and elegant delivery. The Jolly Beggarman, the opening track tells us what to expect in the album in terms of the overall atmosphere. Introduced by Jakub Siegl’s acoustic guitar strumming, the song was recorded by Planxty in 1973(other bands also recorded the song). And although I forgot the Planxty style, I love this version and arrangement. There’s the banjo extravaganza (featuring Jan Brabec) of Brendan’s Reels, the John Martyn pinned Spencer the Rover and many more.

Every band member has a moment. Last Beautiful Loneliness highlights the playing of Sasha Marešová and Jaroslav Macháček. O’puss No. 7 ( is one of my favorite tracks) features amazing variations and Tomáš Pergler’s concertina. Pleasant Month of May is perhaps Jeremy King’s most beautiful vocal performance. I wish it were longer though. Twenty Candles on Poitín’s Cake  is the right tune to wrap up the album because it goes out with a bang.

Everything you can expect with the group is in this album: attention to detail, excellent playing and great post-production technique. Sonically it is their slickest album to date. I also love the album liner notes featuring the photography of Vladislav Škach.

It is always an occasion for The Celtic Music Fan when a new Poitín album is out. It is a pleasure to watch their every release and that they continue to be a musical force as a band.

Band bio:

Poitín formed twenty years ago in Pilsen in the Czech Republic and have toured in Poland, France, Italy and Germany. All the members are Czech apart from the singer and bodhrán player who is originally from Brighton in the south of England. Their latest album Simple Pleasures (out September 2016) is Poitín’s sixth studio album. The 13 tracks are a mix of traditional Irish, English and Scottish songs, jigs and reels, but many of the sets also feature original tunes by the band. Poitín play concertina, bouzouki, banjo, guitar, fiddle, whistles, flutes and bodhrán, and former band member and sax player Helena Marková returns as a special guest to add another interesting twist to this new album.

 

Dick Savage Remix of Hot Days by Poitin.

Dick Savage Remix of Hot Days by Poitin.

It is past 4 a.am. I am listening to the  amazing remix of Hot Days by Dick Savage. If you are not aware yet, Hot Days is the third album by Poitin. It was released in 2006. It has a more ‘pop’ appeal, focusing more on vocal harmonies and ‘tunes you can sing along.’poitin5

The remixed version contains many surprising things. Think of Sonic Youth meets Nine Inch Nails doing Dubstep but with the soothing sound of Afro Celts. I like the difference. It is good to step out of one’s creative environment once in a while. Just to avoid being pigeonholed I guess. Listening to the remix album of Hot Days gives me a different perspective of Poitin. They are not afraid to experiment with different sounds. My favorite track is Crazy Man Michael for its amazing soundscape.

 

Dick Savage has an eclectic taste. He fronts a band by the name of Cold Feet. Their music is more post-punk/gothic-oriented, incorporating good melodies. You should check his/their work out through my other blog Sphere Music. I posted their youtube video about a song inspired by author Neil Gaiman.

It’s really a good thing listening to this type of music at 4 a.m. while multitasking with work.

My work starts at 8 but it is nice to get some things done early. Thanks to Poitin and the amazing talent of Dick Savage. You can download the album for free using this link: http://dicksavage.cz/dspi/music/dspi_the_poitin_remixes.zip

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Dick Savage

Wish by Poitin Introduces Fresh Sound and New Artistic Approach.

Wish by Poitin Introduces Fresh Sound and New Artistic Approach.

Poitin-Wish

“Fresh” pretty much sums up the sound of the new album by Poitin called Wish. I have listened again and again and I am definitely aware of the new recording approach in this album compared to their past efforts. Even their musical style has evolved. This is not to say that this is better than their past albums. All of their albums including my favorite Hot Days are still worth the spin. But this has a more refined sound in terms of capturing the soft edges of the sound( amplifying the nuances) while getting rid of the rough spots.

The music in general has a more ‘soft jazz’ appeal. I think this is due to the fine tuning that they have done with their sound and it is true they are masters of syncopation and polyrhythms.  Poitin has always taken the ‘aggressive trad’ style in their recordings. Their sound has never been modest. It’s a force of nature that renders you enable to prepare yourself for some melodic impact. But listening to the opening track Toffee Jigs surprised me. For this is the new Poitin. This reminds me of recordings by Altan and Lunasa.

You can also note the wispy mix they introduced to their acoustic guitar sounds as in the case of the Broomfield Wager. Vocally, Jeremy King has beautifully covered traditional songs with his fine pipes in this album. And it just gets better and better as you climb your way into the track-listing. Rookery is a devilish charmer of a tune. It is a seductive instrumental with beautiful fiddle, flute and guitar parts.

Farewell Waltzes is elegant in its pace. The instruments weave seamlessly like curtains tangling and untangling in the breeze. I think Autumn Song is the best ballad they have ever recorded as a band. The poignant song about relationships like seasons speak with sheer honesty. If this song doesn’t move you then you are not a human being. There’s no weak track here. Wish is like a novel with chapters working together to form a beautiful story. A musical story. Blue Bear Polkas is just one of the many gems you will find if you listen to Wish.

You can really tell that a lot of love, hard work and passion went to the recording of this album. If this is the new Poitin then all the more reason for me to look forward to their next album!

Buy the album from the following:

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/poitin8

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/wish/id850213695

 

 

Two Available tracks from Wish by Poitin, via Soundcloud.

Two Available tracks from Wish by Poitin, via Soundcloud.

 

Yes you heard it right. The new album Wish by Poitin is finished. The main reason to rejoice.

Just when the thought the seas have calmed, Poitin brings out a new album called Wish. I am not sure about the details of the album yet, but I know the band have worked in recording tracks around Autumn last year. They uploaded two track via soundcloud: The Broomfield Wager and Toffee Jigs. The former is a vocal track showcasing the versatility of Jeremy King’s voice. It is also an acoustic and bodhran driven song. The latter is an instrumental collection of traditional tunes.

Like I said, I have not listened to the whole album yet, but I can tell this is something new. The poitin flavor is still there. But there is that slick and superb texture that I noticed in these two tracks. It is easy to judge that the album will sound this way. And this is an exciting release!

The album will be available everywhere and I will tell you more about it in my future post about the guys of Poitin.

The Baxteria Podcast #14

The Baxteria Podcast #14

The episode 14 of my show is up. Yes despite the terrible week I am experiencing the show must go on.
Tracklisting:
Luke Kelly-The Auld Triangle
Finnegan’s Hell-Drunken Christmas
Caliorne-Scottish Purple
Samuel Smith-The Agony
Samuel Smith-The Ballad of Oisin
Poitin-The Congress Reel
Ashley MacIsaac-Lay Me Down
Declan Sinnott-Orbit
Mickey Harte-Unstappable Train
Mark Handley and the Bone Idols-Peace and Joy
Garrett Wall Band-Terra Firma
Enya-Last Time by Moonlight

The Baxteria Podcast #11

The Baxteria Podcast #11

 

Glad to be back on air! I have cut my show shorter because it is hard to upload such a big file. But if you tune in for the rest of Saturdays on www.radiohappy.eu then I will be playing music all day.

Program:

Auto Dj feat, Alan Stivell and Tri Yann
Tri Yann-Les Filles Des Forges
Alan Stivell-Y’s
Tri Yann-La Vierge A La Fontaine
Alan Stivell-Reves(Hunvreou)
Tri Yann-Pastourelle De Saint Julien Maraichine
Alan Stivell-Elis Iza
Tri Yann-Tri Martolod
Alan Stivell-Skoit N’Treid
Tri Yann-Before Ireland Can Go Free ( Peom by Sean O’Casey
Tri Yann-Les Filles D’Escoublac

Celtic Music Hour

Poitin-Step it Out
Lunasa-Donogh and Mike’s
Eimear Quinn-Hunted
Old Blind Dogs-To the beginnin’ I will go
Samuel Smith-Gimme the Law
Luke Kelly-The Auld Triangle

Indie Variety

Fleet Foxes-Drops in the River
Gregory Alan Isakov-Saint Valentine
Active Child-Wilderness
Mary Fahl-Exiles
Gregory Alan Isakov-She’ll Always Take it Back
Tiger Darrow-Sunrise

 

Celtic Music Fan Podcast #2

Celtic Music Fan Podcast #2

1.Caru Pum Merch by Jamie Smith’s Mabon from Windblown album:www.jamiesmithsmabon.com/windblown/

2.Méav: The Calling ‘The Calling’ out on August 26th…www.meav.ie/

3.Sadhbh Ni Bhruinneallaigh – Liam O Maonlai from the Highland Sessions:www.musicscotland.com/cd/The-Highlan…-Sessions.html

4. The Dublin Minstrel by John Breen from his first album (JOHN BREEN)www.facebook.com/JohnBreen2u and www.atlantamusicgroup.com

5. Hornpipes for Uncle Joe by Maxim Cormier from the debut self-titled instrumental album.maximcormier.com/

6, The Congress Reel by Poitín, also a name for a traditional Irish distilled, highly alcoholic beverage. www.amazon.co.uk/Poitan/dp/B007N8…-3902860-7902456

7. The Draw by Nua taken from their four-track EP. trionua.bandcamp.com/

8.Whiskey Tonight by the Indulgers taken from the album of the same title.www.reverbnation.com/theindulgersirishband

9: Derriere Chez Moi(Y A Un Etang) by Chai ha Dichal from” The Gathering”www.ynchruinnaght.com/cd/

10. Cliffs of Baccalieu By Allison Crowe from The Newfoundland Vinyl:www.allisoncrowe.com/music.html

11. The Home Coming by Cornish violinist Sue Aston from the ‘Inspirational Journey’ .www.sueaston.com/

Visit www.celticmusicfan.com

Elle Marie O Dwyer, Orriel Smith And More Soundcloud Tunes

Elle Marie O Dwyer, Orriel Smith And More Soundcloud Tunes

Elle Marie O Dwyer

Elle Marie O Dwyer

Elle Marie O Dwyer has a kind of voice I would describe as crystal clear and bright.  Her music is mellow. It’s the kind that would you would be looking for after a hard day’s work. The kind of sound to listen to when you are reclining and letting the evening breeze take you to the land of imagination. The arrangement is more minimalistic. She does have songs that are comprise of strings but most are her clear soprano embellished by nothing but the piano.

This is the title track of Elle Marie O Dwyer’s first album “Where the Allow Waters Flow”. The 12-track album includes songs like “The Cottage With the Roses Round the Door”, “The Land of the Gael”, “Brosna Town” and “My Bonny Labouring Boy”. The album can be purchased on Claddagh Records at http://claddaghrecords.com/WWW/catalo…
Like the facebook page http://www.facebook.com/ElleMarieODwyer to keep up to date with all events and gigs for Elle Marie

http://www.ellemarieodwyer.com/

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Orriel Smith

Orriel Smith

Orriel Smith

Her soprano voice is recognizable. She has the ‘it’ in operatic singing. Yet she also possesses the kind of quality that appeals to the wider audience. Most singers with operatic background aren’t easy to listen to because the style is targeted to specific venues and moods in listening. But Orriel Smith promises to delight even those that are not into classical singing.

Danny Boy is a traditional Irish song covered by many. But it is not often you come across an artist who can nail it with precision and true sentiments the way she does. It is a beautiful haunting track marked by her crystal clear voice.May she get discovered by more enthusiastic ears so that she can record more tracks with exquisite beauty attributed to the gods!

http://www.orrielsmith.com/

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Here is my other soundcloud account. Like what I mentioned in my earlier issue there are tracks here that are Celtic and non Celtic. This is due to me running another site called www.spheremusic.wordpress.com  So just enjoy the music regardless of the genre because they are all amazing music. I mean seriously, when have I given you bad recommendation huh? Hahahaha ok enjoy!

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Huzzah!

Hello everyone. Welcome to our Friday edition of the Celtic Music Fan. In my part of the world which is the Philippines, it is the start of summer. You can feel it as the heat stings your skin. It is like this deep low drone of  uilleann pipes followed by the sharp wail of the bagpipes. It is hard to ignore because it is really saying ” I am here.”

It is an exciting month because big bands like Solas and Lunasa are giving everyone lovely music.

Kevin O’Donnell

Deep Is The Well by Kevin O’Donnell

Those who are based in Chicago should follow Ceolwind Productions. So what’s cooking? According to owner Noah Smulkis:

I have an early copy of a new release due out this May from Irish folk singer-songwriter Kevin O’Donnell. It’s practically more American folk than Irish and it tells the story of descendants of Irish immigrants in America from the late 1800s to present day. I think you’ll like it and may be interested in featuring it prior to the release. Produced by Maurice Lennon and featuring many Irish and American folk music guests including Maurice, John Williams, Kathleen Keane, Finbar Furey just to name a few.

Ceolwind Productions is owned by Noah Smulkis whose friendship with The Celtic Music Fan go as far back as 2009. And yes this is prior to the creation of Ceolwind Productions. Check out http://www.deepisthewell.com/ for a sneak peek.

For a sneak-peek: www.deepisthewell.com

Jeremy King

Click to go to the Poitin page.

Poitin lead man Jeremy King made the moment epic with his vocal rendition.It is  a rare treat because he is first and foremost and instrumentalist. But here he shows he has such golden pipes! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLaElv4FXcs&list=PLB43F7C6C3626BC92&index=1 You can also check more of the pics from last night’s session here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151315040436431.1073741830.105492236430&type=1

Local Kyle Burghout playing some Irish music in an extremely fine fashion. Thank to Irish Music Ottawa for introducing this fine artist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HZrvTiPdFMM&feature=share

Dom Duff

Dom Duff

Breton Celtic rocker Dom Duff has a new video Dom DufF – Buan Yann Buan: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8D6cT9Kuf8&list=PLD3AA89794FE71CB2&index=1

Buan Yann Buan is a track driven by instruments like the mandolin acoustic guitar, harmonica and fiddle. The only difference between this song and his other works is the emphasis on lush instruments . The explosive salvo of sounds feel like a rush of a big wave. There is also something optimistic and an adventurous atmosphere throughout the song which lasts 3:38.

Patrick D'Arcy and Quincy Jones

Patrick D’Arcy and Quincy Jones

The picture above tells a thousand stories. Yes that is our very own Irish piper Patrick D’Arcy sharing a cool moment with Jazzman Quincy Jones. According to D’Arcy:  ” Quincy Jones and myself enjoying a few Black Velvet’s, courtesy of Bono, for his birthday party at his house tonight. Q loves the uilleann pipes. Beautiful experience and a really lovely family. We can all only wish to be this elegant at 80!”

Aside from working on this site I also give my blogging talents to several sites. So just to give an idea , here are the following:

Garrett Hacking  of Photography G was introduced to me by Damien McCarron of the Indulgers and The Mile High Celtic hour. http://americanmadeinsider.com/2013/03/14/photography-g-capturing-the-spirit-of-the-moment/

For those who love Celtic inspired wood carvings, here one from Celtic Woodworks: http://americanmadeinsider.com/2013/03/22/interesting-wood-decorations-from-celtic-woodworks/

Garrett Hacking of Photography G

Garrett Hacking of Photography G

And finally my music posts via Expats Post once in a while featuring Fraser Fifield and the Nordanians: http://expatspost.com/entertainment/videos/the-nordanians-featuring-fraser-fifield-daraa/

While watering the plants, I was playing this Celtic band from France called Caliorne. These guys play Breton inspired tunes led by the bagpipes of Francois. Teens decided drop by. Then one of them could not resist it. He asked what I am playing. I told him. More of the music of Caliorne here: http://soundcloud.com/caliorne

Happy Birthday to Jacob McCauley! Wishing you more music to make and more bodhrans to beat.

In case I miss something in this edition, The next one will be this Sunday 🙂

Eamon Doorley : The Bouzouki You’ve Heard Before

Plus: Manau, Jeremy King,The Levellers,Dead Can Dance New Album Anastasis,Rachael Mccormack, Dom Duff and the spirit of the Olympics!

Be ignited or be gone

-Mary Oliver

Life is about passion. It is inspiring to see people doing something again and again despite being ignored. There are those who do art because for them it is an outlet-or a sickness however you want to see it 😀

folkbyfarr.co.uk

Today, CMF highlight’s the talent of bouzouki player Eamon Doorley. Those who own records of Danu and Julie Fowlis already recognize his name in liner notes. His sound is warm, luminous with the delicate playing style that is his own.

Hearing him play is like listening to a pouring water.  Eamon Doorley and Julie Fowlis had little Aoibhe born on Christmas eve last 2009. 2012 is a good year for the couple. After taking part in the big  animation The Brave, they are back on stage for more musical performances.

More of his bouzouki here: http://www.myspace.com/eamondoorley

Here is a video by Julie Fowlis. The song was used in the movie The Brave. This time, Eamon Doorley gave his bouzouki a rest in favour of a guitar.

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New album by Manau

Fans of Celtic rap artist Martial Tricoche who created  Manau have the reason to celebrate. This year is the release of the new album Panique Celtique. It has been a while since the release of their last album that spawned the hit La Tribu de Dana. That song features a sampling of Tri Martolod by Breton harpist Alan Stivell.

The video of the carrier single La Rumeur  is medieval by design, inspired by the burning of heretics. The new video  is a follow up single called  Le curé et les loups  is now available for viewing. I don’t know if it is just me or the theme of the video La Rumeur borders on S&M?!! Anyway I am glad the Breton rapper is back. It has been years and he is surely missed by fans.

More here: http://www.manauofficiel.com/

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Today in pictures

Happy Birthday Jeremy King of Poitin. May you have more birthdays to come. May you always touch listeners with your music and also inspire young bands to do more and be the best. Slainte!

Listen to The Congress Reel by Poitín

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Flashback: The Levellers

Remember the good old 90’s and this band? We are back to Doc Martens and of course the Celtic folk/rock band  The Levellers. I think I got into their sound at the same time I got into The Paperboys. Back then, Celtic rock was new to me- having been exposed to New Age  music and traditional folk. Great tune. Nice memories.

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Dead Can Dance Are Back!

Dead Can Dance isn’t exclusively Celtic, but they blend Celtic elements to their Gothic/Medieval inspired World Music. I bought my first DCD  album on cassette tape in the early 90’s following Everybody Else is Doing it So Why Can’t We by Cranberries and Banba by Clannad. What can I say? The early 90’s was cool for Irish music and everything unique. After listening to insipid and forgettable music of my high school years, college was an exciting stage in everything  musical.  Dead Can Dance made a huge wave in my musical taste.  How can one forget the haunting quality of Lisa Gerrard’s vocals as she delivered”The Wind that Shakes the Barley”? I think Brendan Perry’s “I Am Stretched on Your Grave “ is still my favorite Halloween music.

I really jumped with joy when I heard that they are now touring and has released a new album called  Anastasis  after 16 years! Wow 16 years. A child born after The Spirit Chaser would already have relationship issues by now! Or a dog would be so old it would have passed away by this time. 16 years….Did you know that they have a track available for free download? All you need to do is  sign up for their newsletter through their official website.

Tracklisting for Anastasis
01 – Children Of The Sun
02 – Anabasis
03 – Agape
04 – Amnesia
05 – Kiko
06 – Opium
07 – Return Of The She-King
08 – All In Good Time

More news here: http://deadcandance.com/

https://www.facebook.com/DeadCanDanceOfficial

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Fresh Tunes from Dublin Rocker Rachael Maccormack

 “I can think as far back as 6yrs of age when I’d be tugging at my mams jumper saying I want a guitar, or I’d make one out of a shoe box and shoe laces hahahaha. So Dublin to me is one big song with many choruses. Let’s face it, us Irish know how to party, so adding the music element is like water from a tap: It comes naturally I guess,we’re a nation of storytellers and the songs are there to guide us along the way”.

Taken from her essay Welcome to the Musical Dublin

You can listen to new tunes by Rachael Mccormack here http://breakingtunes.com/rachaelmccormack

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Influential Breton Rocker Dom Duff

Checking what our pal is up to lately.

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The Spirit of Olympics!

Now the link isn’t about Celtic music but it has been getting a lot of shares from my network. . Hmmm  you be the judge who wins XD  http://thefw.com/olympic-diving-funny-faces/

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The Celtic Music Fan mourns for the passing away of someone close to a dear friend. He is flying to Scotland  for the funeral of his  grandmother. He helped me make this site what it is now. My heart goes to him and his family.

Robots, bagpipes and Celtic music

 

This entry originally appeared in The Celtic Music Magazine . I have Marc Gunn’s permission to re post it here. I think this is an interesting essay about how Celtic music found a home in the Czech Republic. I remember the first time I went online(after discovering the Internet), I met a couple of friends from over there. They are from a band called WMV Trio. After 2000, life took over  and we all drifted apart. But memories are precious and I still recall the great times we had sharing music, poetry and everyday things.

Robots, bagpipes and Celtic music

by Jeremy King

Here’s a little quiz for you. What do the following have in common? Skoda cars, robots, pistols, and Vaclav Havel. Got it? They’re all Czech. Really? Mr.Havel and Skoda cars, sure, but robots and pistols? Both are Czech words which have been completely assimilated into the English language.  Now, if I were to add to this list of things Czech ‘bagpipes’ and ‘Celtic music’ you might start to question my state of mind. Too much strong Czech beer, perhaps. Nope, not at all. Bagpipes have been used in the Czech lands since time immemorial and Celtic music, well, the pipes and Celtic music are inseparable aren’t they? Find more about Czech bagpipes here And, unlike those Czech words which have been assimilated into the English language, Celtic music hasn’t been assimilated into Czech culture; it’s always been here.

Central Europe has long been known to have nurtured the Celtic tribes which later migrated across the rest of Europe, taking their bagpipes with them, to end up in the Atlantic coastal areas of Spain, France, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, and then finally, much, much later, in emigrant ships to America and Australia. Of course the music and culture and the bagpipes of the Celts changed, adapted and diversified as the tribes spread out on their millennia-long journey, taking on influences from the tribes and lands that they passed through and inhabited. So here we come back to the idea of assimilation. It’s always been a two-way thing, this cultural exchange between peoples living in close proximity. It’s something us humans do well. It’s a way of showing off, but it’s also a way of making friends. Let’s take a modern example-just think about that song by Aerosmith and RUN DMC- ‘Walk This Way’.

 

You may not like it, or you may love it. That’s not the point. The point is that it’s a great example of how two vastly different styles of music (metal and hip hop) played by musicians from very different musical scenes got together and had a load of fun creating a great piece of music. I’m sure you can think of lots more examples in Celtic music. One springs straight to mind; the Afro-Celt Sound System . There’s another example of how very different musical styles meld together and create something exhilarating.

This is all quite a long way from the Czech Republic and Celtic music, though. When people listen to our music they are usually surprised to find out that we’re from the Czech Republic.

Poitín

For those of you whose geography is a bit fuzzy, I should say that the country has Germany and Poland on its left and right, and below it on the map you’ll find Austria and Italy.  Naturally, people quite justifiably want to know how it is that we are playing this style at all. The first thing we usually say to these inquisitive souls is that we like it, which should go without saying, really. So then they ask, but how did you get into Celtic music in the first place? And for the majority of the band it is the same answer: via Czech folk music. So here we are again. We’ve come around full circle. So what is it about Czech folk music that connects with Celtic music? Bagpipes for one thing.

But there’s more than that, of course. Czech folk music still resounds with the echoes of the music of the ancient Celtic tribes that once lived here. And some musicians aren’t content with regurgitating fossilized folk tunes. They want to move on and create something new, whilst respecting the traditions from which they have grown. Music schools in the Czech Republic have a great and well-deserved reputation. Many parents send their kids to after-school classes to learn the violin, piano, and even traditional folk dance too. My son goes twice a week to a very patient and lovely music teacher to learn the accordion- he’s going to play with us one day. And in these classes they naturally learn to play Czech folk music. Our bouzouki/banjo player Honza and guitarist Kuba both went to Folk dance and music classes – they have fond memories of attending folk festivals around Europe when they were children and where they were treated like stars. But for some, Czech folk music is just a starting point or a stepping stone to something else. Many children don’t carry on with music at all when they get older, but those who do either continue with their Czech folk music and play in wedding bands and so on, or else move on to other musical genres. And it is this last group which we’re most interested in, as a lot of these musicians seem to gravitate towards the very broad genre known as Celtic music.

Next time I’ll be looking in more detail at Celtic music and culture in the Czech Republic, from the traditional to the experimental; from bands which sing traditional Irish songs translated into Czech, to bands which have given a modern twist to traditional Czech music; bands which have gone into Celtic rock, punk and metal; I’ll also look at some Scottish and Irish dance companies based in the Czech Republic which compete in international competitions. There is a lot to discover here in one of the world’s oldest Celtic countries and I’m looking forward to sharing it with you.

Oh, and here’s a Czech robot.

About Jeremy King

Jeremy King sings and plays bodhran in the award-winning Celtic band Poitín. He is also a member of the country and bluegrass band Lignit and writes songs for doom-death-heavy-speed-gothic-celtic-pagan-metal band Mortal Destiny . Jeremy lectures at the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen, Czech Republic.

Keep up to date with news from Jeremy and Poitín on Twitter, FaceBook and ReverbNation .
Purchase Poitín’s award-winning music on CDBaby , Amazon and iTunes

Poitin and Sliotar performed together at Zach’s Pub earlier this week. It was an amazing musical event. Here is one video taken by the flutist of  ” Cheers!” Kateřina Hofmanová.

 

Sliotar and Poitín Session @ Zach’s Pub The Czech Republic

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What a hangover!!!

To fans in other countries, here are the videos and pictures from July 17 at Zach’s Pub. Just to give you the taste of what’s Celtic music like in the Czech Republic. Everyone had a great time. The guys were up until 4am playing great Celtic tunes. For musicians out there who are traveling to the Czech Republic, you now have an idea how fun it is to be a Celtic musician at this time. Cheers!

For those wondering where Zach’s Pub is, check this out: https://www.facebook.com/notificationsf

Sliotar at Zach’s Pub Pilsen, Czech Republic on their Summer tour of Europe 2012
http://www.sliotarmusic.com/
After 16 years, 5 albums and over 2000 concerts, Sliotar is an institution. It all started on Paddy’s day in The Porterhouse, Dublin in 1996 when three guys were asked to play music for the day. This led to a residency that is still going strong. Sliotar has toured Europe extensively and continues to do so on a regular basis. They have played in hundreds of venues, brought their mix of Irish folk music from Finland to Italy, from County Clare to Bratislava and everywhere in between.

After Sliotar’s gig at Zach’s Pub in Pilsen, Czech Republic Sliotar and Poitín got together for a bit of a session. Much fun was had by all.
Sliotar http://www.sliotarmusic.com
Poitin http://www.reverbnation.com/poitin

All videos, pics and captions by Jeremy King.

Celtic Music Heaven in AccuRadio

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http://www.accuradio.com

Listening to this right now. This is a great online station with all the traditional songs that will help you through the night(and day). Artists like Delia Keane, Eileen Ivers and so much more. It is Celtic music heaven !

Thanks to Jeremy Poitin for the tip. His band Poitin and Sliotar are playing together at Zach’s Pub Czech Republic. Don’t miss this wonderful event.

For all Celtic stations in AccuRadio, click here:

http://www.accuradio.com/#!/world/radiocelt/

Interview with Pavel of “Cheers!”

Interview with Pavel of “Cheers!”

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Meet Pafka Steidl, also called by the name Pavel. He is the lead vocalist of “Cheers!” They are one of the new bands that bring something exciting to the music scene in the Czech Republic. His sense of humor shows between their live performances. Vocally, think of The Pogues and Horslips rolled into one.

The band has an energetic sound. There are elements of punk, folk and that distinctive Czech way of interpreting Irish music. It becomes a new sound altogether. Everything about their music is precise. The execution is tight. The result is a musical identity that is something to watch out for in years to come, and see how it develops.

Why the chosen name for the band and what do you think makes your band stand out from the rest? 

I’m sorry, it’s quarter to three in CZ right now [:D] well, the name just came up pretty simple – we were sitting in a pub with our fiddler Filip and questioned ourselves “how?”. But the answer showed up suddenly with another beer and that’s it. The rest of the band liked it and we are Cheers!

“What do you think makes your band stand out from the rest?” – There are many bands around the world that play the same kind of stuff and each of them are different and special in a way. Do we stand out from the mainstream? – definitely. Do we stand out from the group of other Celtic-folk-punk bands? – No, not really. Personally I think what makes a difference is that we play our songs and try not to “interpret very hard.. or be a covers only band”. And that makes it easier to answer the question. We don’t stand out, we keep the row with other original folk-punk bands no matter how lousy we might sound.

I listened to a few tracks off your bandzone page. There is this noticeable  fusion of folk, blues and punk – interesting combination. You don’t get to hear blues and Celtic in the same sound often. Anything you can say about this interesting combination? 

Really? I didn’t notice [:D] Blues, ok, you’re probably talking about Tea Cup. The song is a bit different than the rest as I wrote it some time ago and not for the band but we managed to fit it in. But the blues practically is a folk music. That spirit of whining about unfortunate love or lose fate is common to blues, punk and Irish poems. And music is still about feelings (thank goodness).

    I spoke to Jeremy King (of Poitin) and he thinks your band is going places. I am glad I got this interview based on his suggestion as he is the authority in current bands in your country. Have you collaborated with Poitin already? And if you did, how was the experience? 

Yeah, Jeremy does a lot for our band and we kind of admire that guy. We used to attend Poitín’s concerts and dreamed about how awesome would be to can play Irish music. Who could of imagine, that a few years later we’ll meet each other on the same stage. Jeremy King is also the godfather of our first single CD, by the way. We’ve collaborate with them officially twice for now, but I’m sure that more’ll be coming, as the Poitín is one of the few bands in Czech Republic playing trad Irish so traditionally. And it’s always nice to play a gig with them. It gives us the right feeling we are on the right place if you know what I mean…

Yes I see what you mean. So in terms of news or about an EP (or an Album), what can we expect from your band soon? 

For now, we skimp money and look for a studio, which’ll have the capacity to record live. Our first experience with today’s way of recording wasn’t very good. The mood of songs just disappeared. But during autumn, we’ll probably make a full CD and let you know, of course. I’m really happy that Jeremy told you about us and you’re interested. Maybe there’ll be someone to hear the future album after all [:D]

Tell us something about your band mates. 

There are seven of us:

Honza (Jenda) – he’s our el. guitar player with an attitude. Man got a kid already but still didn’t grow up from being a kid himself. He’s an important part of our spirit.

Káťa (Kate) – she’s the girl with a flute, soft singing and my soulmate. We started to play together a few years ago in another band. She’s also into Irish music and stout.

Filip – I met him on archaeological studies. He plays fiddle and likes to fiddle with people around him. There are a few rumors about him that came up pretty naturally. He’s the funny man.

Jára (Fredy) – accordionist, young man, dreamer and goody two-shoes. If something needs someone’s sacrifice for a greater good, he’s the volunteer. He never missed a session as well.

Pája (Paulitta) – Girl that shakes with other men’s hearts. She’s our bass and my schoolmate. Her second name “Veselá” means “cheerful” in Czech and she keeps it.

Přéma (Popeye) – “He’s strong to the finich ’cause he eats his spinach” If you need a calm sensitive precise player who is able to listen others, look no further. Přéma’s got a family and that’s his number one in his life. And I think we fill the rest very well :0)

Pavel (Pafka) – That’s me playing acoustic guitar and singing and I’ve already had my moment. But still, I want to say A BIG THANK YOU for your effort, guys!

Cheers! is paying live all over Pilsen. Pavel always makes a good craic regardless of the situation and I am sure Cheers! Will gain more  and more followers in a matter of time.

Find them in facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cheers/104821386271093

http://bandzone.cz/cheers

http://www.kapelacheers.cz

 http://bandzone.cz/fisher

Poitin and Sliotar Zach’s Pub Gig!

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Two great Celtic bands are performing together. I have reviewed their excellent albums here. In terms of technique and stage presence, these guys are the best. Please don’t forget to watch them live together. I am talking about Poitin and Sliotar. They will be at Zach’s Pub, July 17,2012 Czech Republic! More info here: http://www.sliotarmusic.com/?page_id=10

Please don’t forget to read this amazing  review of Bofiguifluki from Celtic Music Magazine. http://celticmp3s.com/2012/bofiguifluki-by-poitin/

Cheers! in Rock Café Prague Plus Our Poitín SlideShow

 

My friend Pafka Steidl and his band Cheers jamming in Rock Café Prague. He will appear in our interview soon. It will be amazing! Pafka is witty, friendly and he takes his career in Celtic music seriously! Please watch out for that interview because there will be two great tracks  that will be available for download.

The band’s fb page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cheers/104821386271093

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Poitín and Friends! Session 28 June 2012

With Lucie Šmahelová, Alexandra Šantorová, Ladislav Veselý, Obludný Neználek, Tomáš Pergler, Jan Brabec, Jaroslav Macháček and Veronika Perglerová at Bar Klub U Svatého Rocha.

www.reverbnation.com/poitin

www.poitin.cz www.myspace.com/poitinkapela
www.soundclick.com/poitin

Hot Days (Album review) and Appalachian Still

Hot Days (2006)

Always expect energy when you listen to a Poitin album.  These guys always deliver goods with gusto. Hot Days is an album that looks the way it sounds (note the chili pepper red cover that screams hot hot hot!). The introduction of the didgeridoo and the soprano sax are pleasant surprises.  The album has everything that jumps and grabs you from behind.

Step It Out has Jeremy King’s superb vocals. Precision and tight musicianship are the things the band is known for.

For to Free. Wowwowow! The didgeridoo addition here is something I truly dig.  It is the right ingredient to the track! It makes you feel like you are in Australia, wearing a kilt and jumping with kangaroos. It begins with this ambient sound of an old vinyl record    being touched by a needle.

Who Are You is a fast traditional song. Every nuance is captured in the recording. The crisp vocals and resonant fiddle jive together with the fiery guitar strums. This song makes me feel like a young man ready for action.

Springtime Frolics is a track I can sum up in one word: stunning. These guys record their albums live. Such precision is not easy to master. I read somewhere that they would do it over again if ever something goes wrong. It’s like me writing this review, having a lot of re-editing to do when the grammar goes wrong wink wink.

Crazy Man Michael starts a capella and then blossoms with a guitar. It is a great title track. It sings about a tragic incident. You know, I read that if you have some Irish in you, then you will understand that the more painful the song is, the more the singing gets better. With its bare arrangement, the vocals gain the dramatic effect making it one of the most memorable singing styles I have heard in years.

Hot Days is a track which begins with both the high and low whistles fencing each other tenderly. The mournful notes progress into a beautiful track with rich arrangements and incandescent beauty which calls to mind a phoenix rising from its ashes. The second half of the track jumps into a jig with an explosive chorus of other instruments.

Midsomer is an energetic traditional track that won’t let you stop tapping your feet.

A Bucket Full of Mountain Dew is another traditional track with fast singing.  There are amazing vocal harmonies and a beautiful melody.

March Flowers is a jazzy jig which begins with the acoustic guitar, then the whistle and then other instruments join in. It has this swaying rhythm to it. It makes you think of seaside and relaxing afternoons. I noticed that there is a consistency of clean recordings all throughout the album.

For to Free really frolics into your mood and into your subconscious.

I Was A Young Man is a fast ballad about coming of age. There is great bodhran playing on top of the fiddling. The didgeridoo encapsulates the track like fine moth’s wings. It’s awesome!

Saxet is a jazzy traditional track with a vibe that smells of beer and chips. It is also a sexy track.

Curragh of Kildare ends the track with its amazing fiddling. Hot Days is an album that makes you realize that some very talented Irish music players are also found in the Czech Republic. This is world music at its finest. You can buy Hot Days here: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/poitin5


Sources:

www.reverbnation.com/poitin

www.poitin.czwww.myspace.com/poitinkapela

www.soundclick.com/poitin

***

Get to know Appalachian Still

Guys who are into Bluegrass and anything Americana might want to get themselves ensnared by the music of these six guys bringing you nothing but the freshness of homegrown freshly brewed American music. The  good vibes of Bluegrass and Country music have made their way into my chest and now my head is moving back and forth while listening to tracks like Deep Ellum Blues and I Know You Rider. The band, Appalachian Still, is from Northampton Massachusetts and they have been around since 2005. Bring on the croissants, this is going to be a great day! Just give them a chance and who knows? You might get hooked, head over feet.

Members

Andrew Woodland: Clawhammer Banjo, Vocals & Management
Jared Libby: Guitar, Vocals, Recording & Engineering
Sean Mallari Upright Bass
Sam Barnes: Fiddle
Ivan Ussach: Drums/Percussion
Peter Nabut: Sound-Man

Sources:

http://www.myspace.com/appalachianstill

http://www.appalachianstill.com/

https://www.facebook.com/appalachianstill

De La Basse Bretagne-Poitín

De La BasseBretagneis an album by Poitin, a Celtic band based in the CzechRepublic. Since the release of their first album in 2000, the band have gained a steady cult following around Europe and the UK. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, people don’t have to wait for music to get into their music store. They can just search the web and discover the kind of music they want.

De La Basse Bretagne is a fine example of a musicianship that has grown ripe with challenges, time and passion. The opening track  J’ai Une Bonne Amie a Quimperle defines the kind of consistency you can find in the album. The strong and at times silky delivery of the female vocals and also the tight execution of instruments  make you hope that there is a follow-up to this Breton flavored album.

They have other releases dealing with other styles around the seven Celtic nations. But what makes this one great for me personally is the dedication to the kind of music that are associated around the geographical the area. And not only  do they give justice to tracks like De La Basse  and Marv Pontkalleg with  mouth-watering instrumental execution but also because of the sensitivity that Jeremy King and the rest of the band  put to this recording. I have to say when you reach track 11 of this album called Son Ar Sistr, you would be rolling your eyes  and tapping your feet to the exquisite beat of the bodhran!

I learned that Poitin make their recording in a live way and  have to do it all over again when there is even a slight mistake. Now that is hard to see in current bands with all the comforts of studio layering and sound engineering. And this makes them the best live band ever.

Members:

Jaroslav “Oto” Machácheck – fiddle ; Jakub Siegl – guitars; Jan Brabets – bouzouki, banjo, tin whistle, backing vocals; Jeremy Marc King – lead vocals, bodhran; Sasha Shantorova- flute and whistles; Dick Savage- Didgeridoo, spoons, egg, backing vocals.

Tracks
1. J’ai Une Bonne Amie a Quimperle 4:11
2. Kan Bale an A.R.B. 4:16
3. Gavotte Des Montagnes
4. File La Laine 3:40
5. Ma Jument Hippoline
6. De La Basse Bretagne
7. La Blanche Biche 6:35
8. Le Loup 2:34
9. La Jument De Michao
10. Marv Pontkalleg 5:14
11. Son Ar Sistr 6:18
12. Lída, Lidunka 4:00

Amazon sells their album now: http://www.amazon.com/De-La-Basse-Bretagne/dp/B007Q1IXNC/ref=sr_1_9?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1337494578&sr=1-9

Also, check out http://www.reverbnation.com/poitin

Sounds New!3

Marc Gunn,Lignit and FIMM

Hi friends. I am subscribed to both Marc Gunn and Poitin so I am always updated when there are releases from them. I am quoting from Marc Gunn’s newsletter :

Greetings Gunn Runners! Mage Records (my label), in conjunction with the Irish & Celtic Music Podcast, is proud to release a brand new CD of Irish Celtic Music. In fact, that is the name of this amazing album.

The CD is released under the name Marc Gunn’s Irish & Celtic Music Podcast. It is a new compilation to promote my hit podcast. However, the album also features the incredible music of two of the podcast’s incredible bands: Poitin and FIMM.

I can’t say enough great things about these two bands. They have some absolutely brilliant music! Neither is signed to a record label. Neither are from the U.S.. Poitin is an awesome, award-winning group from the Czech Republic. FIMM is an all-female group from Rome, Italy.

Who are these indie Celtic musicians?

If you’ve never heard of these two amazing and obscure Celtic group, I won’t hold it against you. Neither has a big budget to promote their music. Poitin is fairly active online. I’ve followed their career for many years now. FIMM is currently on hiatus. I’m hoping we can change that.

But you won’t see them on PBS, like Celtic Thunder or Celtic Woman. You won’t hear them playing for a smash hit show like Riverdance.  In fact, you can’t even buy FIMM’s album at all…right now.

I’m hoping we can change all of that with the power of social networking and YOU!

I love these bands and I want you to fall in love with them too. So I want you to buy this CD… but NOT YET.

I need your help to Top The Celtic Top 10

On Wednesday, May 23, we are going to rocket this album up the charts on iTunes and Amazon.

Here’s how it works. On May 23rd, I will ask you to buy the song , “Memories of Ireland” on one of those two sites. You will tell all your friends to do the same. Then we will sit back and watch as Irish Celtic Music gets the attention it deserves.

It will skyrocket up the charts. That will offer it more visibility, which will in turn equal more sales, which will ultimately offer more visibility for the podcast, Poitin, FIMM, and all of the other amazing indie Celtic music groups online.

But to make that happen. I need your help.  Here’s how:

  1. Go to http://www.celticmusicpodcast.com/topthecharts/ and sign up to the mailing list so I can send you a few notices on the 23rd. Yes. I will be sending several emails that day and as we approach that day. So be ready.
  2. Share this post with your friends. Start talking about the compilation, this initiative and your plan to help.

Thank you so much for all your help! I look forward to seeing a smashing successful Top the Celtic Charts initiative.

Oh! Wanna listen to some of the album. I featured it in show Pub Songs Podcast #101 – Irish Celtic Music.

IMM live al Mama’s Ravenna 12 dicembre 2009.
FIMM: Katia Onofri flauto traverso e voce flute and vocals, Francesca Romana Fabris Chicca chitarra e voce, Chiara Cavalli violino, fiddle, backing vocals, Lucrezia Testa Iannilli percussioni bodhràn e darabbukka.
http://www.myspace.com/fimm
http://www.fimm-folk.com
http://www.mamasclub.it

Lignit is another project by Jeremy ( Poitin). You might be interested to know that they play really good Bluegrass music. And they are based in Czech Republic where most of the interesting Celtic bands are coming from these days.

http://bandzone.cz/lignit