Seamus Sands’ debut CD “Across Bridges” is unaccompanied, solo, traditional Irish fiddle playing. It is relaxed, melodic, rhythmic playing and the album includes a wealth of music – 59mins, 18 tracks (39 tunes), including personal and unusual versions as well as some very old tunes recovered from manuscripts and never before recorded. Without accompaniment or special effects, every note and nuance can be heard – ideal for anyone wanting to appreciate fiddle playing and to enjoy or learn from a wide range of tune types, not played at a hectic pace.
Below are just a few of the comments to date from media reviews of the album Across Bridges ….
“Took my breath away, pure and beguiling, casts quite some spell…” (RTE Lyric FM, Grace Notes)
“A superb album” (BBC Radio Ulster, Folk Club)
“a pleasure that unfurls with every return visit” (Irish Times, The Ticket)
“an inspirational album that captures the stark beauty of unaccompanied fiddle, at its best” (Tradconnect)
“the decision to record unaccompanied has paid off well….allows the listener to dwell solely on the melody, the subtlety of his intricate fiddle ornamentation, and the full range of a beautiful instrument made by the performer” (Newry Reporter)
“a rare album where each set leads seamlessly into the next and it leaves the listener pining for the next selection” (Custy Music)
“like clear, clean spring water” (Prof. M O’Súilleabháin, Irish World Academy of Music)
“his fiddler’s pedigree is never in doubt..” (LivingTradition magazine, Scotland)
“Across Bridges” was also nominated by the Irish Times as one of the top 5 traditional music recordings of 2015.
With the “Across Bridges” CD, Seamus also includes a 12-page CD booklet full of information, photos, and interesting stories related to the tunes.
From the cover notes …
These tracks, in Séamus Sands´ instantly recognisable style, speak with the authentic voice of a fiddle-playing tradition stretching back through many generations of his family. Along with his individual treatment of more familiar pieces, Séamus’ deep understanding of the music breathes credible life into tunes locked away in manuscripts for many years. – Pat Mitchell (Piper and Researcher)
Here’s a comment from his CD booklet…
“I play most of my music at night in the kitchen, with nothing but the accompaniment of fiddle shadows on the wall …it is music to relax and unwind to, music for mind and soul, and music to reflect on. This, my first solo recording gives an ear to some of that music, and includes some tune forms, versions, and rhythms that perhaps wouldn’t usually find a voice in most music sessions“.
The CD Tracks
- Corney is Coming / The Flowing Bowl / The Flowers of the Red Mill (Reels) 3:22
- Merrily Danced the Quaker’s Wife / Dance in Tekeli / Off She Goes (Single Jigs)3:18
- The Boy in the Boat / The Boy in the Gap (Reels)3:33
- Airde Cuan (Air)2:37
- Jimmy Doyle’s / Con Cassidy’s (Barn Dances)2:57
- The Ewe Reel / Mary O’Neill’s Fancy / The Rotten Spuds (Reels)3:25
- Old Lodge Road / Rodney’s Glory (Set Dances)4:12
- The Besom / The Man from Newry (Song Tune/Hornpipe) 2:40
- The Green Cup of Tea / Ballynacally Reel / The Rosebuds in Summer (Reels)3:11
- Caoineadh an tSagairt (Priest’s Lament) / Walls of Enniscorthy (Air/Jig)4:53
- Scully Casey’s / Her Lovely Hair Flowing Down Her Back (Hornpipes )2:55
- Green Grow the Rushes Oh / Jenny put the Kettle Down (Highlands)2:12
- Bessy Black (Figure Dance)2:22
- Gilbert Clancy’s / Paddy Fahy’s / The Hairy Chested Frog /The Silvery Bar (Reels)4:59
- The Swaggering Jig / Drops of Brandy (Slip Jigs)2:26
- McGahan’s (Hornpipe)1:35
- Anach Cuain (Air)3:44
- The Old Maids of Galway / The Drunken Reel / Sleeping Maggie (Reels)3:49
(Total playing time 59 mins)
Sample tracks (MP3)…