Celtic music pure
This album with dominantly Irish and Scottish songs and tunes focusses on the marrow: Dorothea Greve’s crystal-clear voice which has often been compared to Joni Mitchell’s and similarly clear arrangements for Celtic harp, acoustic guitars, Irish flutes (tin whistles) and drum (bodhrán).
Just how diverse acoustic music can be is revealed in this broad spectrum reaching from melodic renderings of historical poems such as We Are the Music Makers to light and breezy ballads such as Raggle Taggle Gypsies, from the dynamic performance of pieces like Heman Dubh to the dreaminess of Castle of Dromore or the woeful My Donald (Home of the Whales). Particular highlights are the harmonic vocals in Lord Franklin and the entire Ca’ the Yowes with its steel-strung harp so rich in overtones and the haunting deep G flute.
These tracks were recorded in the late 1980s and have been remastered in 2017. Blending with Doro’s voice and guitar are the harps of Fred Hageneder, today best known for his tree music (see this label).
This album is released in a very limited edition only … and post mortem, since Doro passed in May 2016.
This is a very personal album, carried by the voice (and the flutes) of an exceptional woman. The majority of the tracks was recorded in 1986, not with any commercial plans but for our love of Celtic music. Of course, folk had really gone out of fashion in the eighties and our band accordingly lacked success. But our first album To a Friend was exactly what it said on the tin, it was dedicated to our dearest friends. It was love that carried us.
This is especially true for the track To a Friend itself which was written by Doro to express her deepest gratitude to ‘Terry from the States’ whom she had met as a young woman and who had led her onto the path to her own inner light – which ever since she had been beaming out to the delight of everyone who knew her.
I also want to thank Mehmet Ergin, an excellent guitarist in his own right, and the owner of a top-notch music studio, who was there at the right place at the right time. It was him who had brought the young Doro to music and furthermore bestowed upon her a healthy self-esteem as a musician. This gift remained vibrant until her late years, on many stages around the world.
And: This album would not exist without Hank with whom Doro wrote some amazing songs (Autumn Child, Come Open Up) and whose multi-track device was at the heart of our home recording activities.
Most people today know Doro as a teacher and singer of Yiddish language, with a deep love for Jewish culture. And I have never doubted that it was her life’s destiny to contribute to the healing of the German-Jewish relationship. Once she said to me ‘Isn’t it strange attempting to do that as a blonde German?’, shrugged her shoulders and smiled. And she did manage to overcome many obstacles and any latent prejudices just because she was always authentically herself, always met people from the heart. When I looked at the photos of her Israel journeys, after she had passed, I saw these heart connections so clearly and they moved me to tears. So beautiful. I hope it also comes across in the memoriam video (see link on the right).
The Celtic Years, on the other hand, is a document from an earlier phase in her life, when her soul had found a second home in Ireland, in Donegal. Hence this album is also dedicated to you, Wolfram & Ulla, Shaun, Gudrun … and Spezl, the dog of my life (portrayed on the backcover). And of course to Laurian & Tom and their family.
The tracks are for the most part our interpretations of traditional Irish and Scottish songs and tunes, plus bits of our own material. But somehow they used to sound better in Donegal than in Hamburg, particularly on that eve of St Patrick’s Day when we played in the Lighthouse Tavern at Portsalon.
My favourites are Lord Franklin with Doro’s three-voice arrangement, and the mysteriously haunting Ca’ the Yowes in which she made the most of her largest tin whistle (the deep G she had made especially to suit my steel-strung Scottish harp).
I wish everyone a contemplative and heart-opening time with this music (and without it too :)
Fred Hageneder, March 2017
(28 March 1955 – 14 May 2016)
There are only 100 physical copies of this CD, so its a limited deluxe edition, offered here for a price that just covers the expenses. When there are sold out there will always be the download option.
The lyrics are too many to squeeze them into a printed booklet, but in the right column on this page you can download a PDF file with ALL LYRICS.
Dorothea Greve vocals, tin whistles, bodhrán
Fred Hageneder Celtic harps, acoustic guitar
Hank Tegtmeier acoustic guitar, bass, percussion