Dannsair irish music
Irish Music, dannsair
Russ Doherty and Suzanne Duffy
welcome to dannsair

The reviews below are more lengthy versions of the reviews quotes on the previous page. Return to short reviews

Reviews for the CD "Mists of Ennistymon"

"For fans of Traditional Celtic music DANNSAIR has recently released their fourth album 'Mists of Ennistymon', just in time for St. Patrick’s Day revelry. Led by frontman Russ Doherty, and backed by a sonic array of flutes, fiddles, drums, bass and guest vocalists, DANNSAIR not only leads us on a musical journey through Ennistymon, County Clare, but also the Celtic region of Astorias, Spain, Breton on the French coast, and the Hebrides Islands off the Scottish shore. From the hauntingly beautiful title track to reels like Rocky Road to Dublin 'Mists..' never gets bogged down in any particular style. Recorded by Dominic Camardella at Santa Barbara Sound Design. 'Mists...' is a lovely addition to any Celtophile’s collection, not to mention a true hometown treat." - Mike Gehagan, Santa Barbara Independent, March 17, 2009

"Guitarist Russ Doherty’s great-great grandfather left Ennistymon for Canada after the famine of 1849. Eventually his children traveled to Chicago where Russ was born. Returning to Ireland with his family (including daughter and vocalist Siobhan Doherty), the opening title cut is a beautifully wistful original melody that invokes a nostalgic feeling for home. Dannsair’s fourth album in as many years then weaves its journey thorough a well-arranged mix of traditional and original compositions that are intimate, expressive and sincere. Dannsair’s instrumental flavor puts the spotlight on fiddles, flutes and whistles, but a solid rhythmic foundation is crafted with guitar, keyboard, bass and percussion. Siobhan Doherty gives us a thoughtful, contemplative vocal rendition of “The Hawk Omen,” a ballad from the Hebrides Islands. She also demonstrates her elegant songwriting abilities with “Remember” (a tribute to her Irish ancestors) and “The Blood Red Sun” (inspired by a large wildfire and co-penned with her father). Siobhan is a recent graduate of UC-Berkeley with a BA in Theater and Dance. Flutist Linda Holland also composed “Ulysses’ Lament” that begins the medley found at track 10. From Chile, Andrea Arrendondo is the album’s other featured vocalist, and she has a beautiful silky voice well suited for storytelling (“Newry Highwayman”), a Richard Shindell composition (“Fleur de Lis”), or reflective love song (“Milagro de Amor”). One of blind Irish harper Turlough O’Carolan’s classic compositions, “O’ Carolan’s Welcome,” is infused with splendid harmonies before it evolves into a rollicking reel called “Rolling in the Barrel.” The members of Dannsair are a multi-generational bunch, and they are keeping traditional Celtic music vibrant and alive while also composing new pieces that capture the same emotion and excitement as those tunes from centuries before." - Joe Ross Reviews, April 2009

Performance Reviews

"As we were walking up and down State Street, we were enticed by the live Irish music coming from this establishment. We didn't necessarily order any drinks, but we sat there for a good hour, listening to the lively music by Dannsair. I was reminded of my dance tour in Ireland and craved to go back. I felt I was right back there! The people were warm and the musicians were very interactive. We liked them so much that we bought one of their CD's. It was clean too. If you like pubs, this one is well worth a try." – Mae F., Sherman Oaks, CA, The James Joyce on Yelp.com, 2010

"Yeah it's a bar. Not a club. You will not get your groove on, you will not get your freak on. You will, however, sing Irish folk songs with Dannsair and play a damn good game of pool. This place is Irish...uber Irish and I love every unpretentious, crowd-lovin, bartender's-your-best-friend moment in this place. If you want a place to drink with friends and have a fucking blast without having to dress in those 4" heels that make you bleed, this is the place." – Marissa S., San Francisco, CA, The James Joyce on Yelp.com, 2009

"The atmosphere, the beer, the music by Dannsair, and the food makes it feel like a little bit of Ireland in Santa Barbara, California. Prices are reasonable, food is good, and then there's the music. Also, you cannot forget the beer. Corn Beef and Potatoes are great. I even enjoyed the local poached sea bass they had as a special. The sides are a bit saltier than I preferred, but that why its’ a pub; lots of beer to wash it down. The live music was fun. It really brought out the atmosphere, with the names of the regions in all of Ireland." – Anson C., Fullerton, CA, Dargan's Irish Pub on Yelp.com, 2010

Dannsair with Santa Barbara Symphony, St. Patrick's Day 2007

"The night was not over, as there was a St. Patrick's-themed Irish coda to be heard, with special guests Santa Barbara-based Irish music group Dannsair. The performance began with Yaron Gottfired's Irish Suite for Orchestra and Irish Band, and continued through several more traditional Irish numbers before sending the crowd off into a frenzy..." - Charles Donelan, Santa Barbara Independent.

"At the tail end of Saturday night's performance ... the timely guest Irish ensemble, Dannsair, offered a feisty little Celtic reel, "The Star of Munster," as an encore. Bodhran player and singer Susan Picking mentioned that on St. Patrick's Day, one would have to visit church before visiting the pub. Such an image of propriety seemed symbolic for a concert, where the meat-and-potatoes business of Chopin and Beethoven came first, with Irish-themed music as a novel nightcap. But ... for all its good intentions ... the orchestral parts seemed to bog down the vibrant mobility of the Irish band." - Josef Woodard, Santa Barbara News-Press.

"Fabulous performance Sunday with SB Symphony...I loved it!!!!" - Renee Hamarty, Music Director, Arts & Letters, Summer Opera Under the Stars.


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