16 February 2015

Ireland in the Feb. 2015 BU

Country superstar Garth Brooks is not the most uncontroversial subject in Ireland; but if you want to read some nice things he has said about bluegrass people, go to the website of Bluegrass Unlimited magazine and read the first paragraph of the cover story on Lorraine Jordan & Carolina Road. You won't even have to scroll down.
BIB readers may have seen the Willis Clan (USA) last spring at the Watergate Theatre in Kilkenny (20 Apr. 2014). They're a family band who place strong emphasis on their Irish roots, as their first album, Chapter One: Roots, made clear. Their second album, Chapter Two: Boots, concentrates on traditional country and bluegrass, with good original material. Read the review by Bill Conger (who also wrote the cover story) online.
Tony Friel, broadcaster and bluegrass historian in Co. Tyrone, wrote to Walt Saunders's indispensable 'Notes & Queries' column last year, asking about recordings of the Louvin Brothers song 'I'm no longer in your heart'. Congratulations to Tony, who now knows that it was recorded not by the brothers but by Charlie Louvin on his first solo album.

All this (quite apart from things not relating to Ireland) just in one issue. Look out for next month's BU - by established custom, the March issue every year is the one for instrument enthusiasts.

Update 22 Feb.: We forgot to mention that the book by Fiona Ritchie and Doug Orr, Wayfaring strangers: the musical voyage from Scotland and Ulster to Appalachia (see the BIB for 8 Nov. 2014), was given a Highlight Review by Chris V. Stuart in this issue, which you can read here.

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