Adapter: Loreena McKennitt.
Personnel: Fiona Joyce, Marian Bradfield, Martin Furey (vocals, acoustic guitar); Loreena McKennitt (vocals, harp, keyboards, bodhran); Tr¡ona N¡ Dhomhnaill (vocals, keyboards); Karen Scanlon (vocals, percussion); Ain Furey, Maighread N¡ Dhomnaill, Melanie O'Reilly, Rita Connolly (vocals); D¢nal Lunny (guitar, keyboards); Larry Coryell, M¡che l O Domhnaill, Brian Hughes (guitar); John Hurley (acoustic guitar, Spanish guitar); Des Moore (acoustic guitar, mandolin); Greg Boland, Colin Griffin, Brian O'Sullivan (acoustic guitar); Helen Davies (harp, irish harp); Dave Woodhead (mandolin); M ire Breatnach (violin, viola); Maurice Lennon (violin); Eileen Ivers, Nigel Walker, Oliver Schroer (fiddle); Liam O'Flynn (Uilleann pipe); Paul Duffy, Richie Buckley (tenor saxophone); Carl Geraghty (baritone saxophone); Ronan Dooney, Stephen McDonnell (trumpet, flugelhorn); Bernie Quinn (piano, keyboards); David Milligan (piano); Shaun Davey (synthesizer); Eoghan O'Neill (bass guitar, fretless bass); Paul Moore (bass guitar); Andy McGlasson, Paul McAteer (drums); Rick Lazar (congas); Noel Eccles (cymbals, guiro, maracas, surdo, triangle, percussion, crotales, chimes, wind chime); Dave McCune, Colm McElwee, Paul Moran (percussion); Fran McPhail, Phil Callery (background vocals).
Unknown Contributor Roles: Bob Wynne; Aine Furey; Shelly Berger.
Arrangers: D¢nal Lunny; Loreena McKennitt; Maighread N¡ Dhomnaill; M¡che l O Domhnaill; Rita Connolly; Shaun Davey; Tr¡ona N¡ Dhomhnaill.
A sleeve note helpfully divides the seven female Celtic performers on this disc into "singer-songwriter (Marian Bradfield, Fiona Joyce), Roots (Maighread Ni Dhomhnaill & Aine Furey) and experimental Celtic (Loreena McKennitt, Melanie O'Reilly & Rita Connolly)." In practice, you would say that they actually have much in common, in that they are all backed by acoustic instruments on tunes mostly played at slow tempos with lyrics that concern female issues of romance, reflection, and empowerment. But you would also point out further divisions: Melanie O'Reilly's music leans toward jazz, while Loreena McKennitt (something of a ringer here, since she is much better known than the others and gets only one track, the lead-off one) is often classified as new age. On the whole, the sampler suggests that Celtic music has many different areas for development, both by men (who turn up as instrumentalists, harmony vocalists, and songwriters) and women, and that some of those heard here are ready to pursue those areas. ~ William Ruhlmann