Over a period of months, Mike Brodbine, the people and artists at the Harp and Bards have selected music that they feel is representative of that performed at the Pubs. This recording includes the music you will hear whenever you enter the portals of any of the Harp and Bard pubs. The songs on this album are those most requested by the many friends who frequent the pubs regularly to partake of the friendly feeling that prevails at any Harp and Bard.
The three groups of artists that are heard on this album are from the same country-Ireland—and their musical experience is somewhat the same, but that is where the similarity ends. Their style of performance is as different as night and day.
We first hear vocally from Chris Henshaw, a young, seasoned performer from Dublin. Chris now makes New York City home. He is the only performer that I know of who can walk into a recording studio, stand before a microphone and on the very first try come up with a perfect take (song). Chris not only did this on the first song, but on the following three songs as well. The joy of recording an artist like Chris Henshaw can be summed up only by saying "I am proud to have had the opportunity of having worked with Chris on this album".
Next heard are the McTaggarts—a group of 3 boys and a girl from County Cork. The reason we have included the McTaggarts is that most of the general public is unaware of the ability of many Irish folk and ballad singers to do not only ethnic but also contemporary music with equally great proficiency. The McTaggarts are presently on a very successful tour of Scotland and my hope is that we will have an opportunity to have them back in the United States real soon.
The next artist is the one and only Paddy Reilly. This might seem a bit trite to introduce an artist as the "one and only" but those who have had the opportunity of hearing Paddy on record or in person will appreciate the reason for introducing him in this fashion. Paddy started his singing (and acting) career in Dublin at a very early age. His total professionalism is proof of this. Paddy has lived the life of the songs he sings. This is evident in the performance of the songs he has recorded for this album. If there were any ethnic or American singer who could truly be called a Bard, it has to be Paddy Reilly. His sincere feeling for Ireland and her people is evident in the songs he sings—i.e., JAMES CONNELLY. A very special thanks to Paddy for the narrative on this record.