Irish songwriters must be forming a disorderly queue to have Lisa Lambe record their offerings. Last night in Geneva she sang a song Paul Brady left unrecorded for thirty years before he offered it to her.
She had to find one of those funny old cassette player things to listen to his rough cut of “It’s gotta be love,” a pleasant song that she enlivens with a voice that comes from a similar vocal space to that occupied by the likes of Norah Jones and Mary Black.
Supported by John McLaughlin on guitar and Eamon de Barra on flute, she did a spine-tingling version of “The Parting Glass” before neatly handing over the proceedings to the composer and fiddler Colm Mac Con Iomaire. (I always thought that The Voice Squad had exclusive rights to that song!)
Colm brought several of his own compositions to life supported by pianist Catherine Fitzgerald and Frank Tate on mandolin/ bazouki. Other members of the ensemble weighed in as necessary on his soundscapes inspired by anything from feeling lonely and jetlagged in Helsinki, “The Finnish Line”, to a tragic song about a groom in Connemara who drowned on his wedding day, “Liam O’Reilly”, and a poem by Theo Dorgan, “Sappho’s Daughter”. All available on his great album And Now The Weather.
A rock and roll vibe was injected into the proceedings by the very talented Mark Geary who honed his trade as a singer/songwriter in the bars and clubs of New York without losing any of his Dublin wit. He showcased tunes from his new album The Fool and had the crowd joining in the chorus of a rousing version of Battle of Troy.
All seven came on stage for the finale, a rousing jig followed by a cheerful sing-along to Fiddler’s Green.
Fair play to Culture Ireland for supporting these seven talented musicians on their current tour of Switzerland organized by Caroline Edwards. GLAS was honored to host them on their only date in Suisse Romande and they brought the capacity crowd to their feet at the end.
It was another great night in the annals of GLAS and raised CHF5,500 for the Gaza School of Music which provides an important creative outlet for children born into the world’s largest open-air prison.