‘The Bold Kerryman’ by Séamus Begley “… a voice that brings ‘life’ to every song”(September 06, 2015)
There’s not much to write about accordion player and singer Séamus Begley that hasn’t already been written. One of Ireland’s outstanding traditional musicians, he combines the arts of narrative, poetry and music with the ability to rip out a rousing tune or tear at your heart with his voice. His latest album, ‘The Bold Kerryman’, demands you immerse yourself in its warm embrace and treat your ears to a voice that brings ‘life’ to every song he sings.
To hear this album is to hear songs as they should be sung. Each aspect of the tales they tell is brought out to its fullest extent by Begley’s treatment … the emotion, the longing, the loss, the pain, the love … all that’s needed, nothing more than just as it should be. From deep-seated tradition and recent days, from home shores and faraway, from past to present – the power of these songs remains undiminished. The meaning and significance is plain and obvious in political songs like ‘Táimse im' chodladh’ and ‘Wrap The Green Flag Round Me Boys’, the sentiment enfolded in ‘The Banks of Sweet Primroses’ and ‘Will You Go To Flanders’ and the feelings revealed in ‘Portland Town’ and ‘Gartan Mother’s Lament’.
‘The Bold Kerryman’ will become one of those albums you return to again and again, whenever you want to reach out to that part of yourself that simply adores this gentle music.
You can find ‘The Bold Kerryman’, which releases on 11 September, here: seamus-begley-the-bold-kerryman-pre-order
Review: Tim Carroll