Style : Celtic & fairy music
Ref : Loreena Mckennitt
Prik 158 - November 2012 - 17 Tracks- 55'
?This book-CD (both in English & French) is an invitation to travel in the world of Celtic and northern legends superbly illustrated by Arthur Rackham, the famous English drawer specialist in Fairy universes. Discover Ballads and traditional dances,from Scotland, Ireland, Sweden or Norway. They evoke the sylphs of Air, gnomes of the Earth, dragons' fire and the siren living in deep waters ... The composer Jean-Luc LENOIR and his musicians plays Lute, Lyre, Crwth, Dulcimer, Flutes, Hurdy-gurdy with wheel, Cello, Nyckelharpa ... These traditional instruments are accompanied by the beautiful voice of the Reknown Scottich female singer Joanne McIVER in Gaelic, Scottish, Breton or Norwegian. Listen to these ancestral tales extracted from very old books that JRR Tolkien has certainly read. The 32 pages book presents Rackam's illustrations, lyrics with an introduction to each ones.
17 TRACKS (55 min.): 01 - Air du Sylphe
/ 02- The Elfin Knight /
03- The Lost Elf
04 - Liti Kjersti og Elvekjongen /
05 - The Lilting Banshee
/ 06 - A Fairy's Love Song
07 - King of the Fairies /
08 - Sjugur og Trollbrura - Trollspolska /
09 – Bin, ban, Korriganan /
10 - Sir Eglamore - The Dragon Jig
11 - Solfager og Ormekongen /
12 - Ausi comme unicorne sui
13 - Silkie - The Tempest /
14 - The Mermaid's Croon
15 - Näckens Polska - Näckspolska /
16 - Two Magicians
/ 17 Witchery Fate Song
"Whenever words like elves, trolls or dwarfs are mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind is the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. He is the reference in this area.
But we often forget where his inspiration came from, although he never tried to hide it: the great Finnish epic Kalevala, the Old English manuscript from the first millennium Beowulf, the third-century German Nibelungenlied which itself was inspired by the Icelandic Edda. Tolkien delved into all of these ancient sources. He was not the only one. Many of the greatest works of literature, music, art and sculpture were born of this fantasy world, created by men such as Chretien de Troyes, Shakespeare, Goethe, Yeats, Purcell,Wagner, Grieg… The list is endless.
Celtic and Nordic mythologies actually form the basis of almost all heroic
fantasy literature as we know it today. This mythologies, like all mythology, are born from folktales, beliefs, rituals and local religions. They spring from the memory of the people (educated or not), from folklore, from oral tradition… and from songs.
The real reason for this recording is the desire to put together a (tiny) selection of songs which have as a theme traditional Celtic and Scandinavian fantasy creatures. Each song has a hero, be it a mermaid, a fairy, an elf or a dragon.
All are ancient, some extremely so. Many have been passed down orally for centuries. It is important to pay tribute here to the two collectors who took the time to write down the melodies and texts of these treasures of popular poetry before they were lost forever. Their names are: -Francis James Child (1825-1896): English and Scottish Popular Ballads, -Magnus Brostrup Landstad (1802-1880): Norske Folkeviser.
Most of the instruments played in this CD are traditional: the Celtic harp, theWelsh crwth, the Saxon lyre, the Swedish nyckelharpa, the Norwegian hardingfele, the Finnish kantele, the Irish bodhran, the Scottish smallpipe.
Finally, it seemed only proper to choose the works of Arthur Rackham (1867-1939) to illustrate these songs. Rackham is known for his illustrations of popular tales and ancient legends, such as Shakespeare’s Midsummer’s Night Dream and The Tempest, King Arthur and the Knights of the
Round Table, Peer Gynt, Ondine, Gulliver’s Travels, Grimm’s Fairy Tales,Wagner’s The Gold of the Rhine and The Valkyrie, Alice in Wonderland…all of these tales which plunge the reader into a world of magic and dreams."