Original Irish Tenors: The Legendary Voices of Celtic Song

Original Irish Tenors: The Legendary Voices of Celtic Song

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In the early days of the popular music industry, several Irish tenors -- or, at least, tenors of Irish descent who were born in or moved to the United States -- enjoyed considerable success with sentimental patriotic
ationalistic songs, and romantic tunes with Irish themes. Here are 21 such recordings, done between 1921 and 1953 by seven different artists,

Overview

In the early days of the popular music industry, several Irish tenors -- or, at least, tenors of Irish descent who were born in or moved to the United States -- enjoyed considerable success with sentimental patriotic
ationalistic songs, and romantic tunes with Irish themes. Here are 21 such recordings, done between 1921 and 1953 by seven different artists, Morton Downey (father of talk show host Morton Downey, Jr.) and John McCormack being the most renowned. While these singers sometimes recorded songs with Irish traditional folk origins, this isn't folk music by any stretch of the imagination. Instead, it consists of various combinations of Irish folk music, Tin Pan Alley pop, and vaudeville, with some operatic influence, cinematic soundtrack flavor, and military march rhythms for good measure. As such, the arrangements will feel dated to many listeners, and the vocal delivery far more sentimental than anyone would deliver with a straight face nowadays. Still, the singers do have a supple power, and skillfully tap into the archetypal mixture of unabashedly dramatic merriment and melancholy that many associate with Irish music (and culture). It's a highly commercialized form of Irish authenticity, but one that carries considerable idiosyncratically Irish character nonetheless.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/21/2006
Label:
Rca
UPC:
0828767592220
catalogNumber:
75922

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