What happens when the acclaimed songwriter teams with the superstars of traditional music? Something magical is created. Belfast songwriter Duke Special joined the traditional group Ulaid for a truly extraordinary collaboration. We've seen many sides of Duke Special already but certainly nothing like this. Breathtaking combination with the traditional instruments elevates his music and creates something unique. And above all - this is a live recording that captures the atmosphere and makes the listener a part of the concert.
Some might think the genres of these artists are so different there's no way it could be combined. A listen to first chords of the opening track proves anyone with such opinion wrong. It almost seems as these superb musicians were meant to cross paths and you wonder why it didn't happen earlier. Everything happens for a reason and in the right time. Like climbing Mount Everest for those passionate but also experienced enough - it may seem impossible at first but then you realize it's a great and remarkable experience.
In case of Ulaid, it's trad music but it's self-composed trad music. And we all know what Duke Special is about.
Tracks like Far Set make you think it can't get more Irish than that. What started as an exploration
The audience forms an essential part of the performance, yet nobody needs to push them into singing along. They sing their hearts out in catchy chorus of On Account of My Dog Fido (" oh my dog what have you done? and why have you forsaken me?"), a gem Duke Special discovered in Belfast Library and which dates back to 1888.
The artistry of all musicians involved shines bright through the whole recording and presents these songs as something that demands to be listened to with respect.
Originally called The Belfast Suite, this album takes the listener on a journey to Emerald Isle and beyond. A love at first listen.