A  Visit  to  Ireland

Painting by Liam Daly

This is a collection of songs and instrumentals which trace my musical history to date. While each song tells a personal story, evokes a particular scene, a time, a set of memories, I would prefer to see this album collection as a tribute to the musical giants on whose shoulders we other musicians and singers stand.

People like Liam Clancy who made “Red is the Rose” and “Go Lassie Go” famous back in the ’70’s while I was exploring chords and melodies. People like the Dubliners who breathed new life and pride back into Irish folk songs. The Clancy’s sang “Galway Bay”; Barney McKenna of The Dubliners made “Someone to Love Me” his signature song. People like Pete St. John who gave us the wonderful “Dublin in the Rare Old Times”. And then there are the more modern musical giants…to name but a few: Johnny McEvoy, Jimmy McCarthy, Paul Brady, Christy Moore, Tommy Makem, Thom Moore. I pay tribute to all my above teachers. They have given me years of joy and pleasure and while playing their music, I've been happily lead into the company of a wonderful bunch of musicians and appreciative audiences throughout Ireland and the world.

My love of Irish instrumental music comes from the Gaeltacht (An Ceathrú Rua, Connemara and Gort a’Choirce, Gaoth Domhair – where I spent summers as a youngster) and doubtless my association with the Fahy family of Ballinakill, Loughrea. Through them, I met and played with countless traditional players around Portumna and Terryglass, east Galway, Clare and north Tipperary, to the extent that music had suddenly occupied a large part of who I was then and am now.

This recording is an evolution, a learning process... and it has allowed me the opportunity to re-arrange, re-imagine many of my favourite songs and melodies and interpret them in a new way. Fashion and trends seem to have a 30-year cycle or so and as such, some of the songs presented here have fallen from singers repertoires due to initial over-popularity. It is my hope to find more of these time-honoured songs and melodies and reimagine them for the 21st century. Hence, hopefully, A Visit to Ireland  - Collection 2, should follow soon.

Tá súil agam go mbainfidh sibh taitneamh agus tairbhe as mo chuid ceoil.