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Tamnaceol (Lancashire, England)

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Ranting & Reeling
Ranting & Reeling
Price: £14.11

5.0 out of 5 stars Up off your backside and on to the floor - great & inspirational music, 6 Nov 2010
This review is from: Ranting & Reeling (Audio CD)
I've loved this series ever since I first gave ear to any of the many recordings that fall under Reg Hall's inspirational work, the anthology "The Voice of the People". Of this series this is one of my all time favourites, featuring English fiddlers I love as much as the many Irish and other bow magicians I'm fond of. Here you'll find Willy Taylor, of 'The Shepherds', Northumberland fiddler and brilliant tunesmith, on 6 tracks, and there's Ned Pearson, 4 tracks, both give me goose bumps and make me want to move, either to dance or to pull a tune with them. And there's 'The Shepherds' too - Willy Taylor again, with Joe Hutton on northumbrian small pipes and Will Atkinson on harmonica, 3 tracks worth. There's a further 6 tracks of Will Atkinson and his mouth organ. And there's more, including Billy Ballantine on piccolo and a schottische played on tack 27 by 'The Cheviot Ranters', 28 tracks in total - brilliant, inspirational, fun, and a hell of a lot of fine tunes too - and an informative booklet by Reg Hall.

See also from Reg Hall's excellent series, "Rig-a-jig-jig: Dance Music of the South of England" -
Rig a Jig Jig


The Northumbrian Small Pipes
The Northumbrian Small Pipes
Price: £9.24

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "- seductive, wild, plaintive, lyrical, exciting and sophisticated.", 6 Nov 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Quoted from the sleeve notes, this is a brilliant collection of different players and different moods of the bubble machine, and some great Northumbrian tunes. If you want an introduction to this instrument and the variety it is capable of in different hands, this is the recording to start with. There's solo work of great variety from Billy Pigg, George Atkinson, Joe Hutton, Tom Clough, and for the instrument in ensemble there's duets to groups - there's Northumbrian pipers Colin Ross and Jim Hall with The High Level Ranters - and Colin Ross, Anthony Robb, Carole Robb and Alistair Anderson with The Cut and Dry Band, notes by Colin Ross... It's a gem, if you like this sort of thing, and I do, though amongst this wide variety I do have my favourites.


Irish Celtic Ballads & Traditional Music
Irish Celtic Ballads & Traditional Music
Offered by Music-Shop
Price: £12.98

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wishing that more of the Outlet catalogue were re-released -, 21 July 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
For any two of what's in here it's worth the purchase and the listen. Here's what's inside, from the archives of the once active Irish recording company 'Outlet':

1.) "Seamus Tansey: Traditional Irish Music" ~ One of Ireland's finest flautists

2.) "Finbarr Dwyer: Pure Traditional Irish Accordion Music"

3.) "John & James Kelly: Irish Traditional Fiddle Music" ~ a great album

4.) "Tara Folk: Folksongs of Ireland"

5.) "The Best of Irish Ceili Music" ~ Shaskeen, Eamon Ceannt, The Pride of Erin Ceili Band, etc...

6.) "Rince: Complete Irish Dancing Set" (alias "First Steps and Beyond"

7.) "Festival of Traditional Irish Music #1" ~ Roger Sherlock, The Sean Ryan Trio, Na Fili, Sean Maguire and Joe Burke, Brian Vallely, etc.

8.) "Festival of Traditional Irish Music #2" ~ more of the same, including Tom McHale, John Whelan, Finbarr Dwyer, Joe Burke, Kevin Loughlin, etc.

9.) "Cherish the Ladies" ~ Peg McGrath, Mary Mulholland, Kathleen Smyth

10.)"Armagh Pipers Club: Song of the Chanter"

As said in another review, something for everyone. Just finding two that interest you makes it a worthwhile purchase... I definitely recommend it, to the point that I've purchased a dozen of these for others, including more to give as gifts.


McAfee Total Protection 2010 - 3 User
McAfee Total Protection 2010 - 3 User

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars McAfee Protection = Complete Denial of Internet Access, 25 April 2010
We have two XP computers on McAfee and until recently were quite happy with the program. That has become a drastic turn around. As McAfee upgraded to 2010 automatically, it brought both computers down. With one, continually, it denied Internet Access, which would be the best defence against Internet bogies, but what would I need software for to do that when I could just pull the plug. Wanting to be fair we tried customer service, which it appears, but names given, to be coming from India. It was useless and kept repeating the same list of steps to work through. I did that repeatedly, hoping, removing everything that is McAfee and then carefully following all their suggestions to reinstall it. After probably half a dozen attempts with one computer, and too many hours, without any positive results, we removed McAfee completely. That computer is now happily trialing AVG, which is, across the board, a much more user friendly program, no B.S..

With the second computer it did the upgrade without giving me any options and brought the whole thing down, resulting in repeated 'System Shutdown' and now the computer stuck in 'Safe Mode'. I have now exorcised McAfee 2010 and have a lot more work to do to clean up the mess it has left behind, and to figure out what all went wrong.

The so-called 'customer service' is basically useless, repeating the same suggestions in a loop, and with little clear communication between us and McAfee's cheap option of basing that responsibility in India.

I understand that Norton has improved, so that might be an option for others, but having suffered the same kind of misery with them, after having been with Norton from the start, it won't soon be an option we'd consider. Both of these so-called big players seem to be now under the wing of the monster Digital River, and it has been our experience that they are more interested in quantity sales than a decent product or quality customer service... We know many who have turned to AVG, free and paid for, and while nothing is perfect or 100% I've not heard one person using AVG who has had any serious criticisms of that program.

AVG Internet Security 9.0 (3 User, 2 Year) (PC CD)

Maybe McAfee will clean up their act in the future, for now, for us, it has proved as bad or worse than any virus or malware. Maybe Norton has turned itself around and returned to a quality product? I'll keep open to that possibility, but as yet I don't trust them and have now, after hours of misery and headache, and not yet completely solved, lost all trust in McAfee too.

A 'fix' has been found for the problem McAfee caused us: NO!, sorry, it didn't last. In the end, with me scheduled to go into hospital, I've taken our computer to someone else to sort. Fingers crossed this mess McAfee has caused will soon be sorted, now hearing a long history of disappointment by others with regards to this software.

Knowing without a doubt that this hell had started with the McAfee automatic upgrade to 2010, which also made the Add/Remove feature of Windows useless, I managed to open and use a security software to shred most of the McAfee files on our computer. I then managed to use the McAfee Removal Tool, having copied that on to a pen drive from another computer. After a week without Internet access and trying to source the problem I'd got some information that the source of all our woes was McAfee identifying svchost.exe as a virus and removing it. Having removed McAfee their now available correction tool for this, available from thier website, isn't going to work, besides, it had to be downloaded off the Internet to start with and the problem has cut off all access. I live in hope someone else can sort this for us now... :-/


Irish Heartbeat: a Bodhran Tutorial/Learning to Play Bodhran [DVD]
Irish Heartbeat: a Bodhran Tutorial/Learning to Play Bodhran [DVD]
Dvd ~ Ray Gallen

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poorly thought out and designed, 5 April 2010
This DVD has no menu, but you can use the bottom progress bar to move about this limited video. It's as if someone just threw them in a studio and said do it, and they did, very, very basic, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing, but you're showed a little in a very small amount of time, and hardly get a chance to practice and then off the presenter goes banging away. The flute and whistle playing was more interesting. There's little useful mention of the music and the importance of phrasing is completey absent. This is clumsy and the person presenting does not come across as a natural teacher, at least as things go in this short introduction.

Some of his comment is commendable and worth repeating here ~
"And one of the most common problems in bodhran playing today is that it is played too loud and too fast. Whenever you're playing just remember to keep it nice and simple, don't play too fast, don't play too loud."

If only those few things were the only problem, musicality is another missed point, and being able to accept that just a few times in an evening is generally accepted as enough goat skin whacking.

His accompaniment for polkas is dire, dull and repetitive, and doesn't reflect any depth of understanding of the form, not in how he's beating the skin here. This apparent lack of understanding doesn't begin or end with polkas. He doesn't really seem to be listening to the tune, the melody, the musician playing the melody, and consequently it doesn't quite accomplish the hoped for goal ~ 'accompaniment', and complement. Consistently it is as if the music, flute or whistle, and the beating of the drum, were two different things. Just filling in the beats, following that, isn't enough. His approach and playing remain 'basic' throughout, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but, personally, and as already said, the melody playing is much more interesting, with the bodhran in this instance seeming to me to only be in the way.

The fat Cuban stogie sized tipper he uses is interesting and unusual. At no point does he introduce options, such as alternate ways of playing, or other types of tippers. A little attention is given to tone changing through pressure applied behind the skin.

While it's not useless, for one decent start, this style of playing, a two-ended cipin/tipper, called Kerry style by some, where both the top and bottom ends of the stick are used, go with the Hannigan book and video instead, and visit 'bodojo' online, the site and a decent start for anyone interested in the bodhran.

Steafan Hannigan - The Bodhran [DVD]

Best of luck, and please remember that humility, musicality and consideration for the music and others will serve you best with this instrument...


Crystal Clear
Crystal Clear

5.0 out of 5 stars Jerry Holland in the purest sense ~ solo violin, 5 April 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Crystal Clear (Audio CD)
Jerry Holland, R.I.P., Cape Breton fiddler and composer, and a lasting inspiration to many, one that will last a long time, a master with the bow. This is Jerry all by himself and is a prized listen in this household, along with many others, including the rest of his recording history, those things we could score, from the beginning, such as "Jerry Holland: Master Cape Breton Fiddler" (Master Cape Breton Fiddler), also highly recommended. This is 'clearly' a great way to hear the subtleties of his bow, and to appreciate the many moods of this music, from dance and humour to the depths of its historic roots and contemplation. We've been lucky to be on the dance floor in answer to Jerry's bow. He is missed, but through his recordings, and especially this one, we can still tap in and be reminded of those charms and his smile and laughter, his talents, his gifts.


Old Time O'odham Fiddle Music
Old Time O'odham Fiddle Music
Price: £13.35

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Music that moves the heart and the feet, 5 April 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This nudges into old-time music in the best down to earth way I can imagine. It rings of welcome and a promised good time. I love it and am at a loss for words to describe it, except that it immediately raised a smile and I never tire of listening to it. It is one of the best listens of many I've purchased in the last year. I've even picked off and learned a few of these tunes, and they are fun to play too... If you need some kind of category for it, well, I guess I'd call it old-time dance music, as I also found my feet moving to it as well as my heart...


Jackie Daly and Seamus Creagh
Jackie Daly and Seamus Creagh
Price: £9.91

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Two gentlemen and Sliabh Luachra, 28 Mar 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I've had this in every physical form it has been released in, vinyl, tape and CD, from its first release, 1977. I've also bought it as a gift to give to others, to entertain and inspire. If you've an interest in the traditions of Southwest Ireland, Sliabh Luachra, just for the polkas and slides it's a worthy purchase, to experience the lift and humour these two friends give the music. There's not a track of this I don't enjoy. It makes me smile. It makes me want to dance. It makes me want to sit in and join in the fun of a good set of tunes played well. Also featured here is the excellent bodhran maestro Colin Murphy, and for those of us with an academic edge to our interest there's even notes on it all by Peter Browne. Great music, for the heart, for the soul and the sole...
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 9, 2013 8:25 PM BST


Ray Gallen: Irish Heartbeat - A Bodhran Tutorial [DVD]
Ray Gallen: Irish Heartbeat - A Bodhran Tutorial [DVD]
Dvd ~ Ray Gallen
Offered by cdworld-ireland
Price: £5.20

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poorly thought out and designed, 28 Mar 2010
This DVD has no menu, but you can use the bottom progress bar to move about this limited video. It's as if someone just threw them in a studio and said do it, and they did, very, very basic, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing, but you're showed a little in a very small amount of time, and hardly get a chance to practice and then off the presenter goes banging away. The flute and whistle playing was more interesting. There's little useful mention of the music and the importance of phrasing is completey absent. This is clumsy and the person presenting does not come across as a natural teacher, at least as things go in this short introduction.

Some of his comment is commendable and worth repeating here ~
"And one of the most common problems in bodhran playing today is that it is played too loud and too fast. Whenever you're playing just remember to keep it nice and simple, don't play too fast, don't play too loud."

If only those few things were the only problem, musicality is another missed point, and being able to accept that just a few times in an evening is generally accepted as enough goat skin whacking.

His accompaniment for polkas is dire, dull and repetitive, and doesn't reflect any depth of understanding of the form, not in how he's beating the skin here. This apparent lack of understanding doesn't begin or end with polkas. He doesn't really seem to be listening to the tune, the melody, the musician playing the melody, and consequently it doesn't quite accomplish the hoped for goal ~ 'accompaniment', and complement. Consistently it is as if the music, flute or whistle, and the beating of the drum, were two different things. Just filling in the beats, following that, isn't enough. His approach and playing remain 'basic' throughout, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but, personally, and as already said, the melody playing is much more interesting, with the bodhran in this instance seeming to me to only be in the way.

The fat Cuban stogie sized tipper he uses is interesting and unusual. At no point does he introduce options, such as alternate ways of playing, or other types of tippers. A little attention is given to tone changing through pressure applied behind the skin.

While it's not useless, for one decent start, this style of playing, a two-ended cipin/tipper, called Kerry style by some, where both the top and bottom ends of the stick are used, go with the Hannigan book and video instead, and visit 'bodojo' online, the site and a decent start for anyone interested in the bodhran.

Steafan Hannigan - The Bodhran [DVD]

Best of luck, and please remember that humility, musicality and consideration for the music and others will serve you best with this instrument...


English Country Dances
English Country Dances

9 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Where's the 'dance'?, 20 Jan 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: English Country Dances (Audio CD)
This is dreadful. There's already the problem that it is presented as a selection of the dance music collected by John Playford, so often handled poorly, as here. In this recording the problems of 'fancy' are at their worst, any life that would speak of 'dance' is missing. This lot were, by the results and their sources, more interested in the studies, or 'divisions' on the melodies. They get carried away and lay the melodrama on thick. There's a one word quote on the front, given from 'Fanfare' ~ "Entrancing". Maybe that's appropriate, if meaning mind numbing. This is as to be expected by those who haven't a clue about the history and important purpose behind these melodies, to power dance, to inspire movement. The results here are more along the lines of an opiate, dulling the senses. If you have an interest in these melodies with lift and life in them, don't buy this, instead explore recording intended to be danced to. You can chase some of those up from either the English Country Dance Society, E.F.D.S.S. in England, or the Country Dance Society, C.D.S. in North America, and there's `The Broadside Band'. Be on your guard where `Playford' dances are concerned, or any `dance' that suffer the interest of the `classically inclined', as here, oozing out as syrupy sickeningly sweet concoctions. Where `early dance' is concerned there's no shortage of dull results from misunderstanding and bad interpretation...
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 27, 2012 6:50 AM GMT


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