Spink Comhaltas

From the blog

The Chieftains – Album Reviews

The Chieftains have been one of the most significant bands ever in the history of traditional Irish music, in its revival, and its popular appeal throughout the world.  They have collaborated with a Who’s Who of musicians down through the years, across traditional Irish music, international folk music, classical musicians, popular musicians and rock musicians.

This series has featured a single album for the other artists and performers, but this writer is making an exception for The Chieftains, and featuring 4 (of their many) albums:

Voice of Ages (2012) was produced by T Bone Burnett, and features collaborations with Imelda May, Lisa Hannigan, Paolo Nutini and others, as well as featuring one track from the international space station.  Personal favourite, track 8 – “When the ship comes in”.




The Wide World Over (2002) album was a 40th anniversary celebration, featuring lesser known bands such as the Rolling Stones as well as Elvis Costello.  Personal favourite track 17 – Long Journey Home





An Irish Evening (1992) – featuring Roger Daltrey and Nanci Griffith, and dancer Jean Butler






Live from Dublin – a Tribute to Derek Bell (2005) – featuring a host of artists, including Triona Marshall, Carlos Nunez, Micháel Ó Sullabháin, Ronnie Drew.  Personal favourite tracks – 14 – Finale, 15 – Farewell to Music

Don’t just read the review, buy the CD!

This article is part of a series of articles on selected traditional Irish musicians and CD’s.  At Spink Comhaltas, we believe it is critically important to support and promote our musicians, and never more so that at this time as the Covid-19 pandemic has ravaged the music industry.

Having role models and heroes is important in any walk of life, and this is true of musicians too.  Some of our strongest musicians who have developed with Spink Comhaltas over the recent years have learned as much of their music from listening to these artists – both on CD and live – as they have learned in formal classes.  We encourage our current generation of young musicians – and their parents – to consider building up their own collection of music.  And while we live in a world of streaming, there is something special about being able to read the sleeve notes on an album that an artist has put a lot of energy and effort into that will always be much more meaningful than listening on a streaming service.

The musicians we have featured here are outstanding performers.  Different music styles, instruments, and interpretations will appear – as well a mix of solo and group music.  For most of the musicians featured, the CD featured is one of a number of works by that artist.

Spink Comhaltas promotes traditional Irish music across Laois, Carlow, Kilkenny, Kildare and further afield.  With excellent teachers and resources, as well as one of the largest music instrument banks in the country, Spink Comhaltas is an excellent place to begin your journey in traditional Irish music.

In addition to teaching and promoting music, Spink Comhaltas also fosters connections – with musicians across different counties and counties, different genres of music, and other artistic and creative groups.  Check out our website for more details.