Album Title – “Everything is Alright”
One thing about Celtic CD’s, it always seems you get your money’s worth, either with the amount of music on the CD or the variety. This Burning Bridget Cleary CD is a good length and has a lot of variety. You can expect songs you’ll want to dance to and songs to cry to as well as some Spanish and bluegrass influences.
Much of the music is played by only three musicians (two fiddles and one guitar) so don’t expect a huge sound on every song. There are the two very young female vocalists and fiddlers, Gina Gillespie and Rose Baldino, along with Rose’s father, Lou, on guitar.
Additional instruments can be heard on a few songs, filling in the sound where there is a void. Several of the songs are original or original compositions. That information is inside the cover which is short and sweet.
All of the Burning Bridget Cleary musicians are excellent on their instruments. They may not be the top Irish musicians or singers but excellent for sure and a pleasure to listen to. Burning Bridget Cleary is one of our favorite groups!
Here are some notes on each song.
1. Jimmy Leg Set:
Winnie Hills of Leitrim/ Jimmy Leg/ Terry Kane
Instrumental. Nice harmonizing fiddles. A Bodhran would add some depth to these tunes, but for just three musicians the sound does seem a little larger than it should. These are simplistic songs with repetitive themes as many Irish songs are.
2. The Shearin’s No For You
This is a song of mostly guitar and voice, with added simple fiddle lines. The female voice here is very pleasant and gets the job done although not necessarily memorable. There is some added whistle on this traditional sounding tune. It’s a great song for cheering yourself up and feeling good. Some may get bored with it if played too much.
3. Bunch of Green Rushes
Poor Man’s Fortune
This is a lively number with a lot of nuances. There is some sharp and difficult fiddle playing to be heard. It sounds like a good background piece for an Irish landscape slideshow. This one definitely shows off the talent of the musicians.
4. Peace & Plenty
This starts slow and soft, and finishes that way, somewhat abruptly. It is a pleasant and sad song. There is very melodic fiddle playing from a skilled fiddler, with semi-Spanish sounding guitar accompaniment.
5. Saucy Sailor
There is not much to say about this one. It is one of the best on the CD and you’ll enjoy its gypsy-influenced sound. The female vocal harmonizing is excellent and added background instruments give this tune a richer sound.
6. The Faeries
This tune reminded me of Peter, Paul and Mary. It is an interesting story weaved into a light, whimsical number. At first you may think, “What is this?”, but it will grow on you. The singers had fun with this one. It is one of the few songs with a male vocal.
7. Cat’s Meow
Josie McDermott’s Reel
Instrumental. This is more traditional Irish music. It reminded me of the days when my daughter first started Irish Step Dance lessons. I could envision a bunch of little girls practicing their first steps to “Cat’s Meow.”
8. Rolling Hills/ Jester/ Phoenix
Instrumental. This one is somewhat traditionally influenced but with medieval and gypsy thrown into the mix. It is heroic and bold sounding at times. I found it quite different and well done.
9. Three Set:
Waram Patat/ Jean’s Reel/ Miss Shephard/ Mason’s Apron
Instrumental. I felt toe-tapping bluegrass on this one. It would be very happy background music for any occasion. Music like this is a good showcase of the talents of both fiddlers. Over 6 minutes long.
10. Three O’Clock
Instrumental. A very intriguing piece. This one sounds like a jazz piece mixed with Irish influences. Unusual style for a Celtic group but I did like it a lot. Short, at less than 3 minutes.
11. Autumn Lux Lucis
Instrumental. A haunting number. It is a sad fiddle ready to bring you memories of something in your past. You may be humming it long after the song is over, but don’t expect it to be a cheer-maker. (Sometimes we make up descriptive words in these reviews)
12. Ah Tusa Shi/ Killavil Jig
This is an original song that reminds one of medieval style vocals. It is not the most complex tune and perhaps not the best song on the CD, but it does contribute to the variety you will hear and speaks of the overall talent of this band.
13. Soldier, Soldier
Get ready for a cool staccato style tune. It has that Cotton-Eyed Joe feel and is very peppy. I loved the two complementary female voices. It’s a short traditional style song of less than 2 minutes. Make sure you listen to the words as the story is quite interesting.
Burning Bridget Cleary Summary
I am personally happy to own this Burning Bridget Cleary CD and it goes very nicely in any collection of Celtic recordings. Burning Bridget Cleary can only become more popular if they stay together and on this path. This is a CD you will want to pick up if you are longing for something a little different in Celtic recordings and some new inspiration. Try to catch Burning Bridget Cleary at a festival too! We hope they end up doing more.
Check out the bands website here: