Academic journal article Yearbook for Traditional Music

Irish Pirate Ballads and Other Songs of the Sea

Academic journal article Yearbook for Traditional Music

Irish Pirate Ballads and Other Songs of the Sea

Article excerpt

CROSS-REGIONAL collection Irish Pirate Ballads and Other Songs of the Sea. 2009. Smithsonian Folkways SFW CD 40553. Performed by Dan Milner with guest artists. Recorded, edited, and mastered by Gabriel Donohue. Annotated by Mick Moloney and Dan Milner. Produced by Dan Milner. 40-pp. booklet with notes in English. 1 colour, 5 b/w photographs, 1 illustration. 32-item bibliography, 9-item discography. 1 compact disc, 13 tracks (58:51).

What really provides thematic linkage in this 2009 Smithsonian Folkways offering is less the juxtaposition of songs about pirates and ocean-bound scoundrels from different locales and epochs, and more the omnipresence of Dan Milner, as primary singer, producer, compiler (see the detailed liner notes on each song), and overall concept designer. Drawing on a lifetime's experience of singing ballads, and building upon a previous release entitled Irish Ballads and Songs of the Sea (Folk-Legacy 1999), there is scarcely a better way to be introduced to such songs than through the rich narrative style of Milner. Joined by a stellar cast of Irish singers and traditional musicians from both sides of the proverbial pond, each featured performer is well known as a recording artist in his or her own right. But there is no doubt that this is Milner's project. …

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