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October 2009 Newsletter

Inside This Issue

Inside This Issue

The witching month is upon us - time for lighted pumpkins on dark leave covered streets; wind blown rain storms, trick or treats knocking at our doors and let us not forgot about the gorgeous autumn foliage. Welcome to our special Halloween edition of the Celtic Radio Newsletter!

This month we are featuring a couple of excellent CDs by Scythian and Coyote Run. Two top notch bands that deserve your attention and a quick listen. We are sure you will find their music both energizing and addicting! Our video column this month is about the origins of Halloween and our DVD review features a movie that is often overlooked as a classic Halloween tale.

For setting the mood right, make sure to check out our annual play list of haunted melodies on our Celtic Moon broadcast. This is our third year in compiling some of the most stimulating  seasonal tracks for Autumn listening and it keeps getting better each year. Celtic Moon is now the most popular Celtic Radio channel and ranks as the #1 Celtic channel on Live365.com!

Got a spine chilling story to share with us, or perhaps your own ghostly experience? Then post your story on Celtic Radio's own Ghost thread. Warning, do not enter while alone - don't say we didn't warn you!


"By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this way comes." ~ William Shakespeare


Word comes to us that Scythian is planning an impressive new festival called "SunFlower Fest 2009" featuring a blend of talented performers playing at the stunningly beautiful Rocky Gap State Park in Cumberland Maryland Columbus Day Weekend. This event kicks off on October 10th, 2009 at 3:30 P.M. and promises to be the Celtic music event of the year.

The line up of performers includes Scythian, Blueground Undergrass, Albannach, Holy Ghost Tent Revival, The Morning Pages and Rebecca Jean Smith. But the venue will feature music on the lake, camping, bonfires and music deep into the night celebrating a village marriage of Joey and Sarah from Scythian. SunFlower Fest will definitely be one of the most memorable events to attend in recent memory and we are calling out to all Celtic Radio members to please pass this information on to all of your friends and family.

Camping is available on a first come first served basis, but hotel lodging is also available at the full service Rocky Gap Resort, Fairfield Inn, and the brand new Marriott Hotel. Rocky Gap State Park is only a 2 hour drive  from Baltimore, D.C., Northern Virginia and Pittsburgh. Get all of the details at the official SunFlower Fest website and hope to see you there!

Anglo-Saxon Hord!

An unemployed man has unearthed the largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold ever found with the help of his metal detector. Experts are now calculating its value—a process that could take more than a year because of its size.

Terry Herbert from Burntwood, Staffordshire, stumbled on the hoard in a private field with his trusty 14-year-old metal detector. Over five days in July, the 55-year-old dug up a fortune on the farmland near to his home. The find was declared as treasure by coroner Andrew Haigh, which means the cache will be offered for sale after it is valued.

More than 1,500 pieces of treasure—including around 11lbs of gold and 5.5lbs of silver—has now been uncovered. Archaeologists believe the hoard dates back to the seventh century and may have belonged to Saxon royalty. Among the riches are warfare paraphernalia, including sword pommel caps and hilt plates, often inlaid with precious stones.

[Read More]

The Beatles Live On

Irish session player Brian Hebert teams up with legendary octave mandolin champion and Berklee professor John McGann and virtuoso bodhran (Irish drum) player Joey Sullivan to create a unique musical blend of The Beatles and Traditional Irish and American Flatpicking tunes. Includes 26 morphed Beatles songs arranged as Jigs, Slip Jigs, Reels, Hornpipes, Slow Airs, and instrumental covers. With guest performance by Irish piper Pelham Norville.

After hearing the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964 when he was 8, Brian Hebert started to play rock and pop songs on the guitar. As a teen he went on to play blues harmonica, clawhammer banjo, classical guitar and then, after hearing the Boys of the Lough in 1974, Irish and Scottish fiddle, octave mandolin and tenor banjo. He's played at many Irish sessions around the Boston area since the late 1970's. He started morphing Beatles songs into jigs, slip jigs, hornpipes, and reels after a pilgrimage to Liverpool in 2006, which led to the Any Time At All.

[Read More]

Until next time, Slàinte.



Halloween History
Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the areas that are now Ireland, the United Kingdom, the Isle of Man, France, Northern Spain & Portugal, Western Germany, Switzerland, The Po Valley (Italy), Hungary and the Czech Republic celebrated their New Year on November 1st. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death.

Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.




Coyote Run

"Between Wick and Flame"

Originally formed in 1999, Coyote Run has changed significantly from its Celtic Folk roots, evolving into one of the hottest bands on the Celtic Rock circuit today. Blending traditional tunes with rich, literate lyrics, compelling melodies and rock, jazz and flamenco instrumental hooks, this band weaves a tapestry unlike any other out there. Their lyrics and music take the audience on a journey that is at once heart stopping and foot stomping. Tears, laughter, clapping and spontaneous dancing are regular features of a Coyote Run concert.

“Blending traditional tunes with rich, literate lyrics, compelling melodies and rock, jazz and flamenco instrumental hooks, this band weaves a tapestry unlike any other out there. Their lyrics and music take the audience on a journey that is at once heart stopping and foot stomping..."

Their instrumentation begins with musical elements familiar to fans of Celtic music, i.e. wailing bagpipes, dancing whistles, and intricately woven accordion lines, but then includes the tribal growl of the didgeridoo and the backbeat of the djembe, all couched and supported by world class jazz/rock bass, and electric and flamenco guitar. But none of this would work at all, were it not for the symphonic, nuanced and incredibly powerful rock drumming that surrounds, supports and drives all of the music. All of this musical power and richness wraps around our acclaimed lyrics. Founder David Doersch was a professor of Theatre for over 20 years when he began writing the music that brought this band together. His love of poetry, drama and myth has served as the focal point for this wildly unique band.

[Read More]


"Scythian Live Vol. 1"

Rousing and raucous, Scythian (sith-ee-yin) plays kicked-up Celtic and world music with hints of Gypsy and Klezmer, all infused with a touch of punk-rock sensibility. Take a pair of classically trained dueling fiddlers, toss in a rhythm guitar and the occasional funky accordion, then power it with the driving rhythm of a jazz percussionist, and you've got the ingredients for a show you won't soon forget. Their high-energy, adrenaline-peddling, interactive brand of music has one goal in mind; to get people on their feet and dancing. Their repertoire ranges from traditional and contemporary Celtic and folk music to the alluring and dramatic strains of Gypsy and Eastern European tunes, and then crosses back over the border to pick up some good old-fashioned bluegrass licks.

"Their high-energy, adrenaline-peddling, interactive brand of music has one goal in mind; to get people on their feet and dancing. Their repertoire ranges from traditional and contemporary Celtic and folk music to the alluring and dramatic strains of Gypsy and Eastern European tunes..."

Marching towards a musically victory of some of the most energetic live recordings we have heard to date, Scythian's Live Volume 1 is a masterpiece of fiddling, drums, guitars and vocals. You just might fold your arms, jump on top of the kitchen table and start kicking the dishes off as you dance to some of their incredible eastern European sounding tracks like Chava Nagila or the slow building "Gypsy Fiddle" that erupts into an explosion of phenomenal dance jigs that would bring down the house anywhere. Scythian has achieved, through their talents, what few bands can claim, a Live album that sounds just as good, if not better, then their studio version...

[Read More]


Go Wireless: Sennheiser!

We continue with this month's "Go Wireless" article to explore the many different ways to utilize wireless technology to improve your home music experience. The Sennheiser RS120 Wireless RF headphones with charging cradle is this month's featured product. This is an ideal choice for wireless use of both Hi-Fi audio, Computer and the TV. The open-ear headphones are supraaural and provide detailed, warm sound reproduction with a strong bass response. The headphone receives sound through walls and ceilings so you won't have to remain in the same room as your equipment. Power comes from NiMH batteries that are recharged by simply putting the headphones on their transmitter base that can be mounted to a wall. The entire system weighs just 8.1 ounces.

These headphones are absolutely amazing. There is no interference and the claims of 300 feet range is just about right. Sound quality is excellent. Bass is strong, mids are prominent, and highs are crisp. The headphones and base are ergonomically made and look just great next to your computer or home theater system. One of the impressive features of this product is the versatility of using it with any number of home music systems. Whether that is your DVD player, Computer, MP3 player or Internet Radio system - the Sennheiser RS120 works flawlessly with all...

[Read More]


CD Contests

Our October 2009 CD contest features music from Grey AengusMother GroveSusan McKeown and Lorin Sklamberg Michael Barry and FriendsThe Langer's Ball Skully High Priestess and  Leza Mesiah.

To be eligible for the monthly Celtic Radio contests you must post at least one message in the Celtic Radio community forums. Or sign-up for a Celtic Radio Founder's account to be automatically entered each month!

Winners to be announced November 1, 2009!

Good Luck Members!

October CD Contests





DVD Review - Something Wicked

"Something Wicked this Way Comes" is a classic elegant horror film from 1983 that tells the tale of Ray Bradbury's 1962 novel of the same name. It is about two 13-year-old boys, Jim Nightshade and William Halloway, who have a harrowing experience with a nightmarish traveling carnival that comes to their Midwestern town one October. The carnival's leader is the mysterious "Mr. Dark" who bears a tattoo for each person who, lured by the offer to live out his secret fantasies, has become bound in service to the carnival. Mr. Dark's malevolent presence is countered by that of Will's father, Charles Halloway, who harbors his own secret desire to regain his youth.

This Disney adoption of the movie combines fantasy and horror, analyzing the conflicting natures of good and evil, and on how they come into play between the characters and the carnival. The movie opens on a cloudy October 23rd. Two friends, William Halloway and Jim Nightshade, both on the verge of their fourteenth birthdays, encounter a strange lightning rod salesman who claims that a storm is coming their way...

[Read More]




What's New?
We have once again continued to expand our Video Website, called VideoCelt.com, with new features and enhancements.
The latest version of VideoCelt features speed improvements which have greatly increased the site's performance. A new video player can show videos in full screen or window display. We have also expanded our content by including an Article section were we can post interesting news and stories. Behind the scenes we now have the ability to sell short video advertising that can be purchased by musicians and businesses wishing to advertise on VideoCelt.
Currently we are featuring a daily video on our main page from our Celt Rock category. Be sure to visit atleast once a day to get all of the Celtic music videos you need. And if you run across a great video, be sure to suggest it to our video editor. We can redisplay videos from all of the major sites.
>>> Visit VideoCelt <<<




The Top Ten
Most requested songs for the past 60 days
Listen to the top ten count down on Highlander Radio. Visit our broadcast schedule for play times.

1. Loch Lomond [Live] - Runrig
2. The Mountains of Mourne - Celtic Thunder
3. King of the Fairies - Skully
4. Concerning Charlie Horse - Great Big Sea
5. Cousins Charlie - Elders
6. Massacre of Glencoe - John McDermott
7. Mull River Shuffle [Live] - Rankin Family
8. Swig - Barleyjuice
9. Past times with good company / - Blackmore's Nig
10. Spanish Eyes - Clanadonia



Celtic Radio TIP: Listen to Highlander Radio in beautiful streaming CD quality by using the Thompson MP3Pro decoder for Winamp. MP3Pro technology was developed by Coding Technologies. The folks at Coding Technologies have experts who have worked for years on technologies similar to SBR as well as audio coding experts who have worked on MP3 and MPEG AAC at the Fraunhofer Institute, where MP3 was developed. Their in-depth knowledge about both parts that constitute MP3Pro enabled them to optimize MP3 and SBR for the perfect combination you experience with MP3Pro.
This means that even though Highlander Radio is streamed at 64kps, using the compression technology of MP3Pro allows the stream to sound like a 128kps CD quality stream. Highlander Radio is backwards compatible with standard MP3, so there is no compatibility issues for our listeners that do not use the MP3 decoder.
To take full advantage of MP3Pro technology while listening to Highlander Radio, first download and install the Winamp media player. Then download and install the MP3Pro plugin. Configure Winamp to use the MP3Pro plugin by accessing options, preferences and input (under plugins). Click on the MP3Pro plugin and enable.





October Featured Music

Coyote Run
"Between Wick and Flame"

Mother Grove
"By Request"

"Live Vol. 1"

Jim McRae
"Global Gathering"

Irish Descendants
"Encore - Volume 2"


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