Grainne Hambly: nylon-strung harp

Along with Michael Rooney, Paul Dooley, and Michelle Mulcahy, Grainne Hambly has to be among my favorite harp players in Ireland today, and this new album, her third, confirms my impression of her as a tasteful player and a great interpreter of both the old harp repertoire and the traditional dance music of Ireland. Like on her previous two releases, Hambly's solo performance conveys  her confidence in the strength of her playing and material. Her playing on traditional tunes, even near-hackneyed ones like the "Stack of Barley," and newly or recently composed ones, including her own slip jig after which the album is named, is kept light and vivacious thanks to simple yet effective arrangements. Hambly can also conjure a more solemn, "classical" sound on some of the older harp tunes, even at times an ethereal, supernatural quality which befits airs like "Port na bPucai." This is, in its minimalist way, an uncommonly rich recording.

Rating: ****

Price: $16.99
Our Catalogue 
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1. Jig: The Geese in the Bog
2. Air: Ag Taisteal na Blarnan (Travelling through Blarney)
3. Reels: Jim Coleman's / The Mason's Apron
4. Slip Jigs: The Thorn Tree / I'm the Boy for Bewitching Them / My Mind will Never Be Aisy
5. Carolan Piece: Sir Arthur Shaen
6. Hornpipes: The Stack of Barley / The Blackbird
7. Pieces: King of the Blind / Carolan's Quarrel with the Landlady
8. Jigs: Munster Buttermilk / The Green Fields of Woodford
9. Air: Port na bPucai
10. Reels: The Sweetheart Reel / Into the Wood
11. Jigs: Mulhaire's / The Spotted Dog
12. Harp Piece: The Jointure and Jig
13. Schottisches: The Cat the Kittled in Jamie's Wig / Killarney Wonder
14. Laments: Fingall's Lamentation / Marbhna
15. Reels: The Green Groves of Erin / The Ravelled Hank of Yarn / Lucy Campbell
See also:
    Between the Showers
    Golden Lights and Green Shadows
    Books - Traditional Irish Music Arranged for Harp Vols. 1-2