According to an interview in early August, The Cottars are preparing to enter the studio to record their third CD. Here's a quote from Ciaran:
"We’ll start recording a new CD between now and spring," he said. "We have 95% of the material ready and, once we find time to get into the studio, we’ll start laying down the tracks. This 3rd CD will likely be part of the US record deal that we expect to sign in the coming weeks."
That is certainly great news! Read that entire article here or read some more commentary here .
3. Byker Hill (trad) If I had another penny I would have another gill I would make the piper play The bonny lass of Byker Hill
Chorus: Byker Hill and Walker Shore Collier lads for ever more (2x)
The pitman and the keelman trim They drink bumble made from gin Then to dance they do begin To the tune of Elsie Marley
When first I went down to the dirt I had no cowl nor no pitshirt Now I've gotten two or three Walker Pit's done well by me
Geordie Charlton, he had a pig He hit it with a shovel and it danced a jig All the way to Walker Shore To the tune of Elsie Marley -- 4. Atlantic Blue lyrics (c) Ron Hynes
What colour is a heartache from a love lost at sea What shade of memory never fades but lingers to eternity How dark is the light of day that sleepless eyes of mine survey Is that you, Atlantic Blue? My heart is as cold as you.
How is one heart chosen to never lie at peace How many moments remain is there not oneof sweet release And who's the stranger at my door to haunt my dreams forever more Is that you Atlantic Blue? My heart is as cold as you, as you
I lie awake in the morning as the waves wash on the sand I hold my hurt at bay I hold the lives of his children in my hands And who's plea will receive no answer who's cry is lost upon the wind Who's the voice so familiar whispers my name as the night comes in And who's wish never fails to to find my vacant heart at valentines Is that you Atlantic Blue? My heart is as cold My heart is as cold, my heart is as cold as you.
-- 6. Pat Works on the Railway (trad.) In eighteen hundred and forty-one, I put my corduroy breeches on, I put my corduroy breeches on To work upon the railway.
Fil-li-me-oo-ri-i-ri-aye Fil-li-me-oo-ri-i-ri-aye. Fil-li-me-oo-ri-i-ri-aye. To work up on the railway.
In eighteen hundred and forty-two, I left the old world for the new, Bad cess to the luck that brought me through To work upon the railway.
In eighteen hundred and forty-three 'Twas then I met sweet Biddy McGee An elegant wife she's been to me While working on the railway.
In eighteen hundred and forty-five, I thought myself more dead than alive, I thought myself more dead than alive While working on the railway.
It's "Pat do this" and "Pat do that," Without a stocking or cravat, Nothing but an old straw hat While Pat worked on the railway.
In eighteen hundred and forty-seven, Sweet Biddy McGee she went to heaven, If she left one kid, she left eleven, To work upon the railway.
In eighteen hundred and forty-eight, I learned to drink me whiskey straight, It's an elegant drink that can't be beat For working on the railway.
Chorus -- 7. Georgia Lee lyrics (c) Tom Waits
Cold was the night, hard was the ground They found her in a small grove of trees Lonesome was the place where Georgia was found She's too young to be out On the street.
Why wasn't God watching? Why wasn't God listening? Why wasn't God there for Georgia Lee?
Ida said she couldn't keep Georgia From dropping out of school I was doing the best that I could But she kept runnin' away from this world These children are so hard to raise good
Why wasn't God watching? Why wasn't God listening? Why wasn't God there for Georgia Lee?
Close your eyes and count to ten I will got and hid but then Be sure to find me. I want you to find me And we'll play all over We will play all over again
There's a toad in the witch grass There's a crow in the corn Wild flowers on a cross by the road And somewhere a baby is crying For her mom As the hills turn from green back To gold
Why wasn't God watching? Why wasn't God listening? Why wasn't God there for Georgia Lee? -- 9 . Home By Bearna
Trad. Irish (from Co. Kerry)
In Scartaglen there lived a lass And every Sunday after mass She would go and take a glass Before goin' home by Bearna We won't go home along the road For fear that you might act the rogue We won't go home along the road We'll go home by Bearna
We won't go home across the fields The big thornins could stick in your heels We won't go home across the fields We'll go home by Bearna We won't go home around the glen For fear your blood might rise again We won't go home around the glen But we'll go home by Bearna
We won't go down the milk boreen The night is bright we might be seen We won't go down the milk boreen But we'll go home by Bearna We won't go home across the bog In fear we might meet Kearney’s dog We won't go home across the bog But we'll go home by Bearna -- 10. Send Me a River lyrics (c) Sinéad Lohan
We're doubtful of much hope today I'm so sad to see you sad Goldness of feeling think of a roman
Go in to the western wind Send me a river See the ship on the sea Send me a river 'cos I am not where I want to be
Designing for the kingdom And shaping to the crowd The scene was so revolting That the queen in the shame she bowed She bowed to the families of misfortune Who had lost a lonely life to her
She did not know She could cause sorrow within Send her a river See the ship on the sea Send her a river 'cos she is not where she wants to be
And when your evening gown Trails into the mud Remember what they're seeing Is not what it's all about And you've got to walk on through With millions on either side Watching you with their eyes
You did not know You could cause sorrow within Send you a river See the ship on the sea Send you a river 'cos you are not where you want to be
It is very good of walmart to allow me to listen to clips on their site when I have already ordered it from amazon!
Based on the clips (and I have heard them all), I expect to like Forerunner just as much as 'Made In Cape Breton' but I will be amazed if it comes up to the high standards of 'On Fire'. I should know soon because, according to the confirmation email, the expected delivery date is tomorrow or Wednesday!
I got the last copy of 'Forerunner' at Borders. The assistant mentioned that she alone rang up four sales of the CD. They have the CD in the World Music - Celtic section and have it available for listening.
I won't say anything about the CD until Roger gets his in the post!
"FORERUNNER—AS CLOSE AS THERE IS TO PERFECTION" -J. Ferguson April 2, 2006
THE COTTARS "FORERUNNER"
When Gordie Sampson's first solo recording "Stones" was released, I chatted with veteran Cape Breton musician Ralph Dillon (Buddy and the Boys, Rita MacNeil) at a release. He said when he listened to the CD—and I'm paraphrasing here—he couldn't find anything wrong with it. The singing, playing, mixing and instrument sounds were all flawless. It was like the perfect CD.
I suppose no recording is really perfect but "Forerunner" by The Cottars is as close as there is to perfection. The sister/brother quartet of Fiona and Ciarán MacGillivray and Roseanne and Jimmie MacKenzie have released their third recording and their first on the prestigious Rounder label. It's a wonderful collection of traditional and contemporary folk music that works on all levels. These four teenagers are skilled musicians and play a long list of instruments. They are joined by top-notch studio musicians in Cape Breton and Nashville for this CD. "Forerunner" was produced by Ciarán and Fiona's dad, Allister MacGillivray, and multi-skilled Cape Breton musician, Gordie Sampson. It was recorded at Lakewind Studios in Cape Breton and Sound Emporium in Nashville.
There isn't anything that comes close to a weak spot on this CD, but I have a few favourites. The polka medley with Roseanne on fiddle and Jimmie on tenor banjo really caught my ear. It seems like Tom Waits writes songs just for The Cottars. "Georgia Lee" is a haunting duet by Fiona and Ciarán. When I heard The Cottars' version of "Hold On" on the radio I actually didn't recognize Fiona's voice. It has matured so much in the last couple of years. An achingly beautiful rendition of Ron Hynes' "Atlantic Blue" has Fiona in a duet with guest singer, Jimmy Rankin. This is another CD with beautiful photography with the four photogenic young people against a leaden sky. Photography is by Andrew MacNaughtan.
The Cottars have really taken the folk world by storm the last few years and, in this case, "Forerunner" can only be an omen of better things to come for these talented young musicians. A must for your collection.
— John Ferguson, "Celtic Heritage Magazine", April/06
There is a new website from Yahoo Music featuring The Cottars.
Of particular note is the Tracks page. One can listen to as many as 25 full-length songs for free, courtesy of Rhapsody Music. Look for the 'play' icon before the song title to listen! At this time, only songs from the current CD 'Forerunner' are available.