I was browsing CDs in a local shop, not looking for anything in particular and spotted The Rough Guide to Irish Folk. A quick look at the list of artists suggested it was worth the small investment....and wasn't it just! Some of the artists I have listened to for years, many of them were new to me. Sean Tyrrell's version of Mattie is even better than Christy Moore's (hard to believe). I played the CD to a fairly knowledgeable part-time DJ friend and he said "It isn't fair. Ireland has so many fine female singers...". Listen to Aoife Ni Fhearraigh, Maranna McCluskey of Oige and Mary Dillon of Deanta and you'll see what he means. It isn't often you find a CD without a dodgy track, but this is definitely one of them. Congratulations to the Rough Guide for having the sense to give pen-pictures of each artist, and the details of the albums from which the tracks were taken.
It seems very trite to buy a "rough guide" to anything, but this is a marvellous selection of really beautiful and inspiring Irish folk. I don't usually like much folk but this clever collation takes you from contemporary to more classical Irish folk, it is something you will listen to again and again.