More than 30 talented female singers and musicians from Donegal have created a unique musical gift this Christmas.
The Wild Atlantic Women ‘Live, Laugh, Love’ CD project is a collection of songs donated from local artists in aid of Donegal Hospice.
The compilation also remembers a much-loved young woman from Letterkenny, Fiona Carr, who passed away in August at the age of 30.
Fiona was a singer, dancer, Blue Ribbon member and a great fan of country music. The new album is dedicated to Fiona and a tribute to all families who pass through the doors of the Donegal Hospice.
A diverse range of women features on the Wild Atlantic Women double CD, with genres spanning from folk to country and traditional to modern.
Getting so many voices together may sound like a mammoth task, but CD creator Brighdin Carr said it was a lot easier than she ever expected.
Brighdin told Donegal Woman: “I had the idea during the Halloween holidays. I started to call women asking if they had any tracks that were sitting unused and would they like to donate them to the Hospice. I had 27 songs in my inbox within 24 hours. It was unbelievable.”
The tracklist features some of the biggest names in Donegal music, including Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh, Moya Brennan, Margo O’Donnell and The Henry Girls.
Lesser known artists are celebrated on the CD too, and every song and voice enrichens the vibrant mix.
There is a fitting tribute to Fiona Carr on the CD’s final track. A dream to include a song by Fiona was made into a reality thanks to the legendary band Bagatelle.
Brighdin explains: “Fiona recorded ‘Second Violin’ by Bagatelle when she was 15 for a Blue Ribbon CD. Nothing was ever done with it. But we talked to her family and it was decided she would be the last voice on the CD.
“It normally takes 6 weeks or more to get copyrights for a pre-recorded song, but Bagatelle and the label gave us permission within five minutes of getting the call,” she said.
Brighdin is full of praise for all the amazing women who contributed to the record.
The CD is currently on sale in Donegal Hospice and a small number of stores: McAteer’s of Shannagh in Fanad, Whoriskeys Ramelton and McFaddens Pharmacies in Letterkenny. Any local shop that wishes to stock the CD is invited to contact Brighdin.
“Because the artists come from Ballyshannon to Malin Head, what we’d love is to get local outlets to stock them all over. The more the merrier,” Brighdin said.
The CD will be officially launched on 6th January 2019 – Nollaig na mBan.
This event was inspired by Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh, who was an integral and valued part of the project.
A Wild Atlantic Women concert is taking place in An Grianan Theatre Letterkenny with many of the artists taking to the stage, alongside special guests.
Tickets are on sale now at www.angrianan.com/event/nollaig
Hear a snippet from every song on the album here: