The Chieftains Collection: The Very Best of the Claddagh Years

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Mark Schwartz
Before they became synonymous with Irish traditional music, the Chieftains were an affable bunch of part-timers, occasionally banding together under the sway of Uilleann piper Paddy Moloney and composer Sean O'Riada. Well, sort of. The Chieftains were actually a fairly serious lot back in the late '60s and into the early '70s; they were among the first Irish bands to delve into the Celtic roots of traditional tunes, investing them with an ancient power while unleashing the innate lightness and swing of their material and instruments. Collecting tracks from 13 albums released on Claddagh Records, the label founded by Moloney for the preservation of Irish roots music and...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Mark Schwartz
Before they became synonymous with Irish traditional music, the Chieftains were an affable bunch of part-timers, occasionally banding together under the sway of Uilleann piper Paddy Moloney and composer Sean O'Riada. Well, sort of. The Chieftains were actually a fairly serious lot back in the late '60s and into the early '70s; they were among the first Irish bands to delve into the Celtic roots of traditional tunes, investing them with an ancient power while unleashing the innate lightness and swing of their material and instruments. Collecting tracks from 13 albums released on Claddagh Records, the label founded by Moloney for the preservation of Irish roots music and poetry, this set hearkens back to the group's formative years. It should be a perfect tonic for those who have wondered where the Chieftains are headed, as every new album brings a collaboration with artists from all over the globe. It doesn't get any more Irish than these vintage cuts, bona fide classics like "The Morning Dew" and "Planxty George Brabazon," from way back in 1969. Although much of the Chieftains' early output has seen U.S. release on Shanachie, this is the Claddagh label's first American release in its 40-year history.
All Music Guide - Rick Anderson
Before they signed to Columbia and became an international sensation and long before they ever recorded a concert album in China or collaborated with Tom Jones or Luciano Pavarotti, the Chieftains recorded several albums for Ireland's respected Claddagh label. The Chieftains Collection: The Very Best of the Claddagh Years features 12 tracks from that period, and although the material is more strictly traditional and the playing a bit more conservative than it has become since, the group's taste for intricate arrangements is already apparent. Never satisfied to simply bash straight through a set of two or three reels in unison, on tunes like "Tadhair Dom do Lamh" and "The Walls of Liscarroll" they essentially take turns soloing or playing in twos and threes before finishing up in exuberant ensemble. These were the days before Matt Molloy, so the flute playing was somewhat more restrained than it is now, and Peadar Mercier's bodhran is a bit ponderous. But for the most part the playing is exciting and expert and the recorded sound is very good. The only complaint might be with the disc's length -- surely the band's first five albums could have yielded more than 40 minutes of worthwhile material.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/5/1999
  • Label: Atlantic
  • UPC: 075678322440
  • Catalog Number: 83224

Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Chieftains Primary Artist
Derek Bell Harp, Tiompan
Seán Keane Fiddle
David Fallon Bodhran
Martin Fay Fiddle
Paddy Moloney uillean pipes, tin whistle
Peadar Mercier Bodhran
Sean Potts tin whistle
Michael Tubridy Flute, Concertina, tin whistle
Technical Credits
Paddy Moloney Arranger, Producer
Dave Kavanagh Executive Producer
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