by Jacob Alvarado
If you have been watching PBS within the past three years, you have probably seen the new hit sensation from Ireland, The Celtic Woman. The female quintet has been on the top of the charts since their debut album. There have been several T.V. specials featuring them and they have been all over the world, including three concerts in Fresno. Like many artists, they have recorded a Christmas album. It is called A Christmas Celebration.
The first song on the album is the timeless classic, “O Holy Night”. The Celtic Woman, which include Chloe, Meav, Orla, Lisa and fiddle player Mairead, sing in a round as the familiar melody takes its shape. “Ding Dong Merrily On High” is the crowd favorite on this album. The Celtic choir backs up the women as they sing this Christmas classic. The next song is sung by Meav. She has been known to sing the songs that are in a different language. In this case, it’s “Silent Night.”
The next big number is the Irish sounding song “Christmas Pipes”. The haunting pipes mixed with Mairead’s fiddle is a wonderful piece of music. The soft voiced Lisa sings the Christmas staple, “The Christmas Song”. As she sings, I paint a picture in my mind of a snow covered hill and a gorgeous tree covered with lights. The next song is the Judy Garland classic “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”. Whenever I hear this song, I think that no matter what has happened during the year, everything will end up right. The album ends with a jazzy rendition of “Let It Snow”. The Celtic Woman show off their range of voices by turning up the jazz and singing their hearts out.
The Celtic Woman is one of my favorite artists and I am thrilled whenever a new CD comes out or when I hear they are coming to Fresno. If Celtic music is not your cup of tea, they sing traditional songs mixed with contemporary favorites. When they sing, it’s like a little bit of the luck of the Irish in your home.