The Play List

Well, Rowan and I have arrived safely home and Avril and Henry got home yesterday, so Tinsmith is all alive and well. The rather long drive did bring up a question for me though: We often hear the query “if you were stranded on a desert island, what five albums would you want to have with you?” When really, the more pertinent question is: “what the #$^&@ do you listen to on a 26 hour drive??”

To answer that question, in no particular order, here’s some of what Rowan & Brooke listened to on the way home:

Solas – Reunion
A great (of course) album reuniting every member of Solas for one big concert – a surprising number of people – on a CD and a DVD. Haven’t seen the DVD yet as I just got home, but as I’m still quivering from white line fever, I may just do that now!

The Carolina Chocolate Drops – Dona Got a Ramblin’ Mind
Hard not to gush about these guys. As I said to Rowan, “we’ve only listened to it twice so far – let’s have it again!”. I will admit that they are even better live, but it’s still a great CD

Donal Lunny – Journey
This is something of a retrospective of his career to date on two discs. Mostly it is great, though I had forgotten about that horrible 80s synth-in-folk thing which I’m not very fond of…but if you take out maybe three tracks you’ve still got 21 brilliant ones featuring Lunny and people like Aly Bain, Bothy Band, Coolfin, Sharon Shannon, Moving Hearts etc etc etc.

Great Big Sea – Road Rage
This is my very favorite GBS album. Truth be told, it’s the only one I listen to regularly – it is a live album and it is really crazy and fun and great to keep you awake at 4am in East Tennessee.

Flook – Haven
I love Flook. They are great. Haven is the most recent album and I like it very much, though Flatfish is still my favorite.

John Doyle – Wayward Son
This is the best CD of any genre that I own, and I own quite a few. John Doyle is so classy. I also love In Play which is Liz Carroll and John Doyle just doing tunes. Liz is (in my opinion) one of the top three Irish fiddlers, they being: Liz Carroll, Kevin Burke, Eileen Ivers. Which leaves out any number of almost equally great fiddlers…but this is my list!

Tim O’Brien & Darrell Scott – Real Time
Avril turned me on to this album….WOW! It may rival Wayward Son as my favorite all time recording. It is just the two of them, no one else. It is all songs, and they play different instruments on every track. The sheer brilliance of it can’t be overstated, especially the last cut, “the second mouse” which you have to hear to believe. We listened to this one…ummm….four times I think.

Round the House – Safe Home
These are our friends from Arizona and this is their greatest album so far! Really nice, open arrangements, superb playing and great choices of material, both tunes and songs…we miss them already!

That’s about it….oh yeah, I listened to a commercial country station for a while. Made me remember why I love traditional music so much!