Withstanding the Storm: Téada Release New Album


Withstanding the Storm: Téada Release New Album

Téada’s fifth album is being released this weekend, just in time for their double-bill concert with T with the Maggies at the National Concert Hall celebrating Cóisir Gael Linn 60. It is their first recording since Seámus Begley joined the group, and so the first since 2004’s Lá an Dreoilínto feature songs, in this case ‘An Spailpín Fánach’, ‘Pé in Éirinn Í’, ‘Saddle Tramp’ by Marty Robbins, and ‘Ar a mBóithrín Buí’. There is even some backing singing from the rest of group on the Robbins song – an unexpected country and western twist in the music.  

That makes the full line up as follows: Oisín Mac Diarmada on fiddle and piano, Séamus Begley on vocals and melodeon, Paul Finn on button accordion and concertina, Damien Stenson on flute, Seán McElwain on guitar, bouzouki, and bass guitar and Tristan Rosenstock on bodhrán.

Comprised of eleven tracks, it features the tunes of many composers, especially fiddlers: Paddy O’Brien, Brendan Tonra, Junior Crehan (two tunes), James Kelly (two tunes), Charlie Lennon (two), Damien Connolly (‘from Clare … who now resides in Connecticut, and has been composing some wonderful tunes over the past few years’), James Murray and Bobby Casey, as well as plenty of traditional tunes dug out from various collections and recordings.

Typical of the group, they ‘mix it up’ a good bit in terms of metre and tempo in the tunes: a slide version of a song (‘The Peeler and the Goat’), a slowed-down reel (‘Gone for his Tea’) combined with two barndances (‘Joe Derrane’s’ by James Kelly, and ‘All About Weaving’ by Charlie Lennon), the second of which is ‘at a brisker tempo’. There is also noticeably more piano accompaniment.

The album’s title, Aoinneoin na Stoirme (In spite of the storm), coincidentally echoes fellow Sligo-based group Dervish’s recent album, The Thrush in the Storm. Mac Diarmada takes the metaphor of the storm as well as the power of music literally. He writes in the sleeve notes: ‘Ireland has been greatly transformed since the fever of materialism became frozen and the readjustments that have been made have been deeply felt. But as our late Nobel Laureate Seamus Heaney said: “We are not simply a credit rating or an economy but a history and a culture.” Our music, songs, language and culture have deep roots; they will withstand any storm.’


Reels: Dinny O’Brien’s (comp. Paddy O’Brien) / The Sweetheart Reel / Paddy Kenny’s
Song: An Spailpín Fánach
Slides: Deálaí’s No. 1 & 2 / The Peeler and the Goat
Reels: The Reel with the Birl / Carraigín Ruadh (comp. Brendan Tonra) / Ryan’s Rant
Song: Pé in Éirinn Í
Jigs/Slip Jig: The Jig of the Dead / I Have a House of My Own with a Chimney Built on the Top of It (comp. Junior Crehan) / Paddy Breen’s / The Bird’s Call (comp. James Kelly)
Song: Saddle Tramp (comp. Marty Robbins)
Slow Reel / Barndances: Gone for His Tea / Joe Derrane’s (comp. James Kelly) / All About Weaving (comp. Charlie Lennon)
Jigs: Brísdín Bréide / The Thatched Cabin (comp. Junior Crehan) / Morning Sunday (comp. Charlie Lennon)
Song/Waltz: Ar a mBóithrín Buí / Tell Me Now (comp. Damien Connolly)
Reels: James Murray’s (comp. James Murray) / Porthole of the Kelp (comp. Bobby Casey) / The Watchmaker / The Spinning Wheel

Published on 13 September 2013

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