Out of Court by Máire Ní Chathasaigh & Chris Newman
late 1991, Máire and Chris released 'Out of Court', an
effervescent mixture of baroque-influenced Carolan, straight-down-the-line
Irish dance music, haunting songs and a 17th century air from
the ancient Irish harp tradition, interspersed with original
compositions which exhibit some dazzling jazz-influenced pyrotechnics.
Buy this album now CD: £12.50 + p&p
|Profile page & index of recordings & sheet music|
1. Out of Court (Ni Chathasaigh/Newman)
2. The Harpers Chair/The Cherry Blossom
3.Will You Meet Tonight On the Shore?
4.Frieze Britches(trad.arr.Ni Chathasaigh)
5. Lady Gethin (trad. arr. Ni Chathasaigh)
6.A Sore Point (Newman)
7. The Graf Spey (tras .arr. Ni Chathasaigh)
8. Tuirne Mhaire(Máire's Spinning
Wheel) (trad. arr. Ni Chathasaigh)
9. The Eclipse/The Hurricane (trad. arr.
10. The Old Bridge (Newman)
11. The Wild Geese (trad. arr. Ni Chathasaigh)
12. The Lakes of Champlain (trad. arr. Ni
13. Stroll On! (Newmann)
1991 Máire Ni Chathasaigh & Chris
From the earliest times, the ancient Irish harp was a court instrument, played by and for the Gaelic aristocracy, and it's music, like most other forms of art music was sophisticated and technically demanding. When the old Gaelic order began to collapse after the defeat at Kinsale in 1601, the harp and its music went into gradual decline. Le Gouz, a visitor to Ireland writing in1644, tells us that nearly all the nobility at that time were accustomed to play the harp as well as listen to it: by 1792,only ten performers could be found to take part in the Belfast Harp Festival, and of those, only one, Denis Hempson, played the old repertoire in the ancient manner, with his nails-and he was 97 years old.
During the nineteenth century, the harp once again began to enjoy a certain vogue, this time among the more nationally-minded of the Victorian middle -classes, but it was largely used to accompany songs, in a manner so influenced by Victorian drawing room taste as to effect a fundamental alteration in the character of the music. The harp has continued to remain aloof from the living oral tradition almost until the present day. The true artistic spirit of the harpers was inherited by the pipers into whose repertoire passed much of the music of the harp: the uilleann pipes were a gentlemans chamber instrument developed at about the turn of the 18th century.
The harp is partnered on this recording by the guitar, an instrument which has accomplished the transition to the twentieth century with superlative ease.We range from the grandeur of the court music as represented by "The Wild Geese", to the baroque-influenced music of Carolan, to traditional dance music (which is Máire's speciality and something totally new to the harp tradition) to original compositions in the traditional idiom, to jazz-influenced original compositions with improvised solos- a unique demonstration of the adaptability of the Irish harp to the world.We're fortunate to be joined on this recording by a cross section of our friend and relations, who also happen to be the finest exponents of their instruments that you're ever likely to hear. We're very grateful to them all.
All titles copyright Máire Ni Chathasaigh & Chris
© 1991 Old Bridge Music
|Instruments:||Harp, Guitar / Mandolin / fiddle / bass /pipes|
|Label:||Old Bridge Music|