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Celtic Spectacular
     

A Celtic Spectacular

by Erich Kunzel
 

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The pungent wailing of uillean pipes and the plaintive sighs of a pennywhistle had become frequently overused Hollywood clichés by the time this album of Irish-themed symphonic "pops" came out -- and naturally, you'll find plenty of those sounds here. Though the CD opens in a manner most unlike an Erich Kunzel/Cincinnati Pops album --

Overview

The pungent wailing of uillean pipes and the plaintive sighs of a pennywhistle had become frequently overused Hollywood clichés by the time this album of Irish-themed symphonic "pops" came out -- and naturally, you'll find plenty of those sounds here. Though the CD opens in a manner most unlike an Erich Kunzel/Cincinnati Pops album -- with a Carlos Santana-like guitar solo from Ted Karas on "Celtic Dream" from Lord of the Dance -- soon everyone gets down to business with a selection of native tunes and Irish-flavored film and show music cushioned with symphonic upholstery. On one track apiece, the specialty instruments have celebrity performers. Sir James Galway mans the pennywhistle (and also his flute) on a mist-shrouded, elaborate arrangement of "Simple Gifts" -- which he stoically overdubbed in New York City on the day of the 9/11 attacks. On "Chasing the Fox," the team is the Irish superstar band the Chieftains (also recorded separately, in Dublin), combining with the Pops in a muddled din of a track. However, uileann pipes/whistleplayer Kieran O'Hare, fiddler Liz Knowles, and the Celtic band Silver Arm take care of most of the folk sounds with equal expertise -- and the advantage of recording with the orchestra in the same place. There is also one bona fide Irish tenor (actually he's from Canada, but no matter), John McDermott, performing "A Little Bit of Heaven," "Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ra/Galway Bay," and, of course, "Danny Boy." Intriguingly and gratifyingly, the album ends with a flashback as to how earlier generations experienced Irish nights at the "pops" -- two sumptuously played movements from Leroy Anderson's "Irish Suite," expertly crafted with dignity and humor. But why just two? There is more than enough room left on the SACD and CD for the rest of the suite.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/30/2002
Label:
Telarc
UPC:
0089408057106
catalogNumber:
60571

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Erich Kunzel   Primary Artist,Conductor
Chieftains   Ensemble
James Galway   Flute,Human Whistle
John McDermott   Tenor (Vocal),Track Performer
Cincinnati Pops Orchestra   Performing Ensemble,Track Performer
Ted Karas   Guitar
Kieran O'Hare   Human Whistle,uillean pipes
Liz Knowles   Fiddle,Violin
John McDermott   Tenor Saxophone,Tenor (Vocal)
James Bunte   Saxophone
Richard Desberg   Vocals
Joseph Hardiman   Vocals
Judy McConnell   Vocals
Howard Meyer   Vocals
Silver Arm   Group,Ensemble
Timothy Lees   Violin

Technical Credits

Leroy Anderson   Arranger
Michael Bishop   Producer,Engineer
Jack Everly   Arranger
Gary Gray   Producer,Engineer
Randy Harper   Engineer,Engineering
Paddy Moloney   Producer
Brian Masterson   Engineer
Loreena McKennitt   Composer
Joseph Price   Arranger
Bill Whelan   Composer
Robert Woods   Producer,Executive Producer
Paul Winter Consort   Arranger
Anilda Carrasquillo   Art Direction
John Windt   Engineer
Richard E. Rodda   Liner Notes,Author
James Royce Shannon   Composer
Arthur Colahan   Lyricist
Courtney Davis   Cover Illustration
Steven R. Reineke   Arranger
Ed Meitner   Engineer
J. Keirn Brennan   Lyricist
Arthur Coleman   Composer
Arthur Colahan   Lyricist

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