Liz Doherty,
Last Orders
(Foot Stompin', 1999)

Liz Doherty is my new hero.

When she handed me a copy of her CD to review, she smiled and said she hoped I'd have nice things to write about it. Was she kidding? After hearing her perform several times at the 2001 Celtic Colours festival in Cape Breton, I was pretty sure the album would be good -- unless Liz had suffered a few really bad days in the studio.

She didn't disappoint, and her album quickly became one of my all-time favorite fiddle CDs.

Part of the reason is Liz's boundless energy and infectious spirit, which come through clearly on the recording. Equally exciting is her successful blend of fiddle styles from her native Ireland and her home away from home, Cape Breton. (Liz recently completed her doctoral thesis on Cape Breton fiddling, so she knows something of the style.)

Liz, raised in County Donegal, studied and now lectures in the music department at University College, Cork. She was a founder of the band Nomos and has played with the Bumblebees and Fiddlesticks. Her liner notes are thorough and fun, well worth reading for a bit of background on the tunes.

OK, done reading the liner? Now put the CD back on and play it again and again. Doherty is a bundle of irrepressible energy with a grand flair for fiddle ingenuity. My only question is, where the heck's her next album?

[ by Tom Knapp ]
Rambles: 27 October 2001



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