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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Irish Rovers, Timeless

    The Irish Rovers will stir you, with their great instramentals, rowdy, and playfull songs.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Re-recordings of Irish Rovers' classics

    Though the Rovers' fame as Irish folk-artists has been eclipsed in the past few decades by The Chieftans, among others, their legacy as an immensely popular act throughout the '60s has allowed them to retain a strong following to this day. Having originally formed in Canada (to which they'd emigrated from various parts of Ireland), they quickly found their way into the folk clubs of the early-1960s USA, where they added Irish roots to the then-booming folk-revival scene. ¶ Most American listeners will know the Rovers only from their 1968 hit single of Shel Silverstein's "The Unicorn," or their early '80s recording of Tom Paxton's "Wasn't That a Party?" But their back catalog is filled with Irish ballads, drinking songs and family stories, accompanied by classic Irish guitar, whistle, accordion and multi-part singing. The Rovers typically avoided political statement (being a mixed band of Protestants and Catholics), though songs like "Orange and Green" do comment obliquely on The Troubles. ¶ This newly recorded release finds the Rovers still in strong voice, and as joyous as ever. Only Will Millar is missing from the original lineup (he left the group in 1995), and new members, John Reynolds, Wallace Hood and Sean O'Driscoll all make strong contributions. These tracks appear to have been recorded in the mid-90s (the liner notes to do not say, but with Millar's absence and Jim Ferguson's presence, and noting that Ferguson passed away in 1997, 1996 seems likely), and revisit many of the Rovers' best-loved songs. ¶ 3-1/2 stars, if allowed fractional ratings.

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