Twenty-five years ago, Wendy Newton opened the doors of Green Linnet Records, which specializes in Celtic music from both sides of the Atlantic.
Twenty-five years ago, Wendy Newton opened the doors of Green Linnet Records, which specializes in Celtic music from both sides of the Atlantic. This two-CD compilation offers a 32-song label retrospective. Disc one takes listeners from 1976 to 1996; disc two covers more recent releases, running from 1997-2000. From the elegant craft of Altan and the stirring vocals of Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh to the fiery, super-melodic fiddling of Kevin Burke, Liz Carroll, Máirín Fahy, John Cunningham, Eileen Ivers, and Manus McGuire—and from the Celtic music of Brittany's Kornog and the distinctive piping of Lúnasa's John McSherry to John Whelan's button-accordion virtuosity and the modernist bent of Scotland's Wolfstone—there is much here to fire one's soul—and much to celebrate. The collection concludes with fiddlers Burke, Christian Lemaitre, and Cunningham, accompanied by guitarist Soïg Siberil, reprising the weeping Scottish air "The Dark Island." It's easy to imagine how this music originally stole Newton's heart 25 years ago.—PVV