SEAN CASEY: THE PORTHOLE OF THE KELP
Sean Casey: fiddle
Paddy Gallagher: guitar, bouzouki
Pete Quinn: keyboard

Sean Casey is the son of the famous West Clare fiddle player Bobby Casey and has become a well-known member of the London Irish music scene. Although first instructed on the fiddle by the late Tommy McCarthy and by Brendan Mulkere, Sean Casey became known as a mandolin and banjo player, before being persuaded to replace Jimmy Power on fiddle for Sunday sessions with Dermot Kearney and Reg Hall. On the fiddle, which he plays on this recording, Casey has developed a very personal style of playing, uncommonly elaborate in its variations on the tunes, and challenging to follow for an accompanist. Of the two who back up Casey here, Paddy Gallagher (guitar, bouzouki) succeeds best with his minimal work in the background, whereas the not-so-subtle piano playing of Pete Quinn just sounds too often at odds with the fiddle and makes one wish for some unaccompanied tracks instead. Part of the conflict also resides with Casey's fiddle playing which is rather rough in tone. If you like your Irish fiddling to sound all nice and polished, this is not the CD for you. However, if you want to hear a player who gets at the meat of the tunes and challenges his listeners with his invention, give it a listen. 

Rating: ***

Price: $19.99
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Contents:
1. Reels: The Musical Priest / Jenny's Chickens
2. Reels: The Humours of Lissadell / The Queen of May
3. Reels: Tommy Coen's / The Reel of Mullinavat
4. Reels: The Templehouse  Toss the Feathers
5. Jigs: The Pipe on the Hob / Brendan Tone Rowe's
6. Reels: Farewell to Miltown / The Star of Munster
7. Reel: Pol Ha'penny
8. Reel: Colonel Fraser
9. Reels: The Bank of Ireland / The Woman of the House
10. Set Dance: The Drunken Gauger
11. Jigs: Banish Misfortune / The Cliffs of Moher
12. Reel: Lucy Campbell
13. Reels: Paddy Ryan's Dream / Over the Moor to Maggie
14. Reels: Rakish Paddy / The Green Fields of Rossbeigh
15. Reels: The Tempest / The West Wind
16. Reels: The Porthole of the Kelp / The Hare's Paw