I have recently been introduced to an amazing Celtic musician, Eileen Ivers! I’ve heard her name, but have not listened to her music. In the last week, two of my students brought up her music. She played with the San Diego Symphony last weekend and they both went to the concert. One of my students gave me her Christmas album as a gift. What a pleasure! She is quite a musician and fiddler. I love her upbeat songs and the way she plays the fiddle. She is also very melodic as a violinist! Eileen and Natalie MacMaster are now my top two idols as fiddle players! Their music inspires me every day to continue writing my own jigs and reels as well as continue healing people through music! It’s such a gift to play the violin/fiddle and be able to use it therapeutically for my clients.
I’m really taken by the percussive sound that Eileen displays in her music. She has many songs that use bongos, djembes, and other African drums, which keeps the sound very upbeat and moving. My favorite song with such percussive tones is “On Horseback.” The song starts with the drums that drive the fiddle part and add cymbal hits. Her Christmas album is amazing and really captures the fiddle sound integrated with traditional Christmas tunes! Her music inspires me to move and dance and you always hear some Irish dancing in her style. She includes Irish, folk, and African dance styles into her sound as well as folk and African singing and chanting. She moves very quickly with her fingers, which reminds me of my style of playing. After all, music is all about expressing yourself in the most authentic way possible so here it is!!!