Micho Russell: Rarities & Old Favourites 1949-1993 | Album Review

Fri, Apr 3, 2015, 03:30

   
 

Album:
Rarities & Old Favourites 1949-1993

Artist:
Micho Russell

Label:
Claddagh Records

Genre:
Traditional

For sheer visceral energy and vitality, few musicians scale the heights of the late Doolin whistle player, lilter and singer, Micho Russell.

This two-CD collection, released to mark the centenary of his birth, lives up to its name, with just five of the 49 tracks released previously.

The pristine clarity of his whistle playing is a reminder of the free-spirited talent that led to him turning professional in his 50s, after years farming.

His story-telling and lilting too are suffused with a zest for life and a love of his home place that is timeless.

This is a corralling of a diverse body of work, recorded both near and far from home, and lovingly produced by Bill Ochs, with a book promised shortly.

Russell’s music was and is beautifully bare-boned, cleaving to its roots and yet indisputably flighty: free as a bird. A delight.